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  • by Nicola Boulton September 27, 2022 5 min read

    How Fast Can CBD Take Effect on Your Body?

    CBD is a compound present in the cannabis plant. It is available in various formulations and can be utilized in various ways, such as topically and sublingually. Moreover, its effectiveness is based on the intake method, dosage, and individual’s metabolism rate.

    Until recently, many people opposed products extracted from cannabis because of the controversy in the recreational use of marijuana. However, CBD has become the talk of the day by everyone and has been embraced as a natural healer for several health issues. With so many therapeutic health benefits and few side effects, CBD has become the perfect choice for those wishing to treat their health conditions more naturally.

    What Is CBD?

    According to Corroon & Kight (2018), cannabidiol (CBD) is a naturally occurring compound extracted from the cannabis Sativa plant. While over one hundred compounds in the cannabis plant, CBD and THC are the major compounds. CBD and THC interact with the human brain in the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS regulates a range of functions and processes in the body, such as mood, sleep, immune system, memory, and appetite, among others. Unlike THC, CBD is not psychoactive. It does not cause a mind-altering effect. This property has made CBD attractive and legal to be incorporated into people's lifestyles to improve their healthy life and well-being.

    How Does CBD Interact with the Body?

    The body naturally produces its endocannabinoids that support the ECS. Just like any nutrient in the body, your body can have a deficiency of endocannabinoids and might need extra. According to Pellati et al. (2018), CBD interacts with your body differently from other cannabinoids. Unlike the other cannabinoids, CBD does not bind with the endocannabinoid receptors in the ECS. Typically, cannabinoids cause an effect on the body by attaching themselves to cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2 in the endocannabinoid system. However, CBD does not strongly bind with CB1 and CB2 receptors like other cannabinoids. Thus, these two receptors cannot affect its action in the body. Instead, CBD's effect happens when it binds to non-cannabinoid receptors. For example, CBD modulates the serotonin and vanilloid receptors to cause anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties.

    Knowledge of how CBD interacts with the human body is slowly accelerating. How long CBD takes to cause an effect in your body depends on factors like the method of consumption, dosage, and individual's metabolism rate.

    The Method of Consumption

    The method you choose to consume CBD will alter how fast you feel its effect. Each method of consumption goes through different biological systems, determining how fast CBD gets into your bloodstream to cause an effect. Learn more about how long does cbd last?


    This is the most common method for CBD consumption which involves a variety of CBD edibles such as gummies, truffles, or mints. Ingestion involves administering the product directly through the mouth to go through the whole process of digestion. CBD consumed through ingestion does not get into your bloodstream immediately. Instead, it goes through the digestion pathway and eventually to the liver, where it is metabolized and absorbed into your bloodstream. While in the liver, CBD undergoes metabolism, where the liver enzymes reduce its concentration before being released into the bloodstream. This method of consumption is likely to take a much longer time before causing an effect on your body. Due to the slow absorptive nature of the gut, CBD edibles are likely to cause an effect after 2-4 hours after ingestion. Besides, the lengthy process and the reduced CBD concentration during metabolism may result in smaller amounts of CBD being absorbed into the bloodstream. This might also result in weaker effects.


    The sublingual method involves placing the CBD product under your tongue for around thirty seconds before swallowing it. The mucus membranes partially absorb CBD for quicker entry into the bloodstream. Effects may be felt within seconds. You might also get a second onset of effects a few hours later for the CBD that was not absorbed sublingually but went through the whole digestion process. This method of consumption is among the quickest way to feel the effects of CBD in your body. Learn more about list of cannabinoids


    Inhalation involves smoking or puffing a CBD product which passes smoke or vapor into the lungs, where it is immediately absorbed into the bloodstream. When smoke or vape oil gets into your lungs, it rapidly enters your bloodstream and circulates all over the body. The effects of inhalation are so strong that you can feel the onset of results within three minutes after consumption. Inhalation is seen as the quickest method of delivering CBD into your bloodstream.


    According to Stella et al. (2021), the transdermal method involves CBD patches designed to deliver a long-lasting effect more efficiently. CBD diffuses into the bloodstream through your skin with the help of permeation enhancers. CBD is insoluble in oil, and the skin contains an oil layer that makes it difficult for CBD to pass through it. Permeable enhancers are ingredients added to CBD and help carry CBD across the skin. CBD patches deliver steady doses over a period while avoiding the lengthy digestive system that lowers the bioavailability of CBD in the bloodstream. Effective transdermal products leave you with a long-lasting effect than edibles.


    This method of CBD consumption is mostly effective for chronic pain relief in specific areas. A CBD topical is any cream, lotion, balm, or salve infused with CBD. According to Maghfour et al. (2021), CBD-infused topicals can be applied directly to the parts of the body experiencing pain for targeted treatment. The onset of effects with topical application of CBD is usually after 90 minutes. CBD-infused topicals are usually applied freely and generously onto the skin to overcome the low CBD absorption rate of the skin.


    Dosage doesn't affect how fast CBD takes effect in your body. The only difference you might experience from a higher dose is the strength of those effects in your body.

    Metabolism Rate

    Your body's metabolism influences the time CBD takes to break down and absorb into the bloodstream.


    How fast CBD affects your body is highly determined by how you consume it. Some methods will make you wait for long hours before feeling the effect of CBD. Others will deliver you results in a very short time. If you want to experience stronger effects, higher doses of CBD are recommended. However, it is recommended that you start with lower doses and then gradually increase to higher doses until the ideal effect is felt.


    Corroon, J., & Kight, R. (2018). Regulatory status of cannabidiol in the United States: a perspective. Cannabis and cannabinoid research, 3(1), 190-194.

    Pellati, F., Borgonetti, V., Brighenti, V., Biagi, M., Benvenuti, S., & Corsi, L. (2018). Cannabis sativa L. and nonpsychoactive cannabinoids: their chemistry and role against oxidative stress, inflammation, and cancer. BioMed research international, 2018.

    Maghfour, J., Rundle, C. W., Rietcheck, H. R., Dercon, S., Lio, P., Mamo, A., ... & Yardley, H. (2021). Assessing the effects of topical cannabidiol in patients with atopic dermatitis. Dermatology online journal, 27(2).

    Stella, B., Baratta, F., Della Pepa, C., Arpicco, S., Gastaldi, D., & Dosio, F. (2021). Cannabinoid formulations and delivery systems: Current and future options to treat pain. Drugs, 81(13), 1513-1557.

    Nicola Boulton
    Nicola Boulton

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