CBD Oil: How Long Does It Take for the Effects to Kick In?

Please note: the use of CBD for medical or recreational purposes may be illegal in your country.

In recent years, more consumers than ever have started to take advantage of the health benefits of CBD oil.

Despite its ever-growing popularity, there are still a lot of things the average consumer doesn’t know about how to use these products. This article will investigate how long it takes for the effects of CBD oil to kick in.

CBD oil; image source:

The General Rule

As a general rule, consumers will start to feel the effects of CBD oil taken sublingually almost immediately. Those who prefer to ingest the oil will have to wait at least 20 minutes. These general rules of thumb aren’t universally applicable, though, since there are many factors that influence how long it takes for consumers to feel the effects.

Since there is no universally accepted dosage or recommended daily allowance for CBD oil, each consumer should expect slightly different results. Instead of taking more almost immediately if the CBD oil doesn’t start producing desirable effects or, worse, assuming that all the attention this impressive substance has been getting in recent years is just hype and giving up, consumers should try to figure out how CBD oil will interact with their digestive systems. They can find tips from Flora CBD about how best to use CBD, or just read on to figure out what factors to consider.

Metabolism Speed

Every person’s metabolism works at a slightly different rate. For those with fast metabolisms, orally ingested CBD oil will only take around 20 minutes to work. Those who have especially slow metabolisms may have to wait an hour or more to feel the effects.

User’s Weight

Weight influences, not just metabolism speed, but also circulation and overall health. Consumers who weigh more have more fat cells, which allows them to store greater quantities of CBD. If they have slow metabolisms, it may take longer for heavier users to feel the effects, but their bodies will be able to use the stored CBD for days.

Dosage and Potency

A higher dose of CBD won’t make it available to the endocannabinoid system any faster, but it will increase bioavailability. Dosage isn’t just about how much CBD oil consumers take. Each product has a different potency or level of CBD concentration.

As a rule, CBD isolates have more concentrated levels of this desirable chemical compound than broad-spectrum extracts, but users who take isolates instead of broad-spectrum products may miss out on some of the benefits of the entourage effect. Hemp contains many cannabinoids, terpenes, and other chemical components that may interact with CBD and users’ bodies to speed up or slow down rates of absorption.

Quality of CBD Oil

Not all CBD oils are created equal, and that affects the absorption rate. High-quality products don’t have impurities and additives, so they’re typically absorbed and processed faster. Products that use carrier oils may be metabolized at different rates.

Recent Meals

Taking CBD on an empty stomach can help users feel the effects faster. Those who have just eaten heavy meals, on the other hand, may have to wait several hours before they notice its therapeutic effects.

Intended Effects

Everyone takes CBD for different reasons. Some want to relieve pain and inflammation, while others are using it to treat mental health disorders. The desired therapeutic effects can impact how long it takes the CBD to kick in since not all of its actions follow the same biological pathways.

CBD reduces pain and inflammation by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which is responsible for maintaining internal homeostasis. The endocannabinoid system extends throughout the body, so even the treatment location can affect how long it takes to work.

CBD also interacts with other receptors in the body and brain. Consumers who take it for mental health symptoms may have to wait longer than those trying to treat pain because they’re not waiting for the CBD to interact with the endocannabinoid system. Instead, they’re waiting for it to bind to serotonin receptor 5-HT1A and vanilloid receptor TRPV1 in their brains.

CBD Bioavailability

No matter how efficient their metabolisms are, no consumers will absorb 100% of the CBD oil they consume. The oil must pass through the digestive system, which breaks it down into usable and unusable substances. The non-usable substances, and a small amount of the desirable cannabinoids, will not be absorbed through the consumer’s intestinal lining. Instead, they’ll be processed as waste.

The CBD that is absorbed through the lining of the intestines will enter the bloodstream. It will then be routed to the endocannabinoid receptors throughout the user’s body, where it can start to produce desirable effects. The CBD that makes its way into the blood is the only part of CBD oil considered a bioavailable component.

CBD bioavailability is measured in consumer products as the amount of CBD that will be readily absorbed by users. Any excess will be routed into users’ fat cells and stored. This CBD will still be used by the endocannabinoid system but will be released over the course of days or longer.

How Long the Effects Last

CBD can still be detected in users’ systems 72 hours after smoking. However, CBD oil ingested orally can only be detected in the blood for around six hours after ingestion. Those worried about drug testing should purchase CBD isolates or broad-spectrum oils that have 0% THC, just to be on the safe side.

The length of time that consumers experience beneficial therapeutic effects varies significantly based on body weight. Since CBD is stored in fat cells, those with higher body weight can expect small amounts of CBD to be released into their bodies over the course of days or longer, while thinner consumers may only benefit from CBD’s therapeutic effects for a matter of hours.

The Bottom Line

CBD oil produces results within minutes when taken sublingually. Consumers who prefer to ingest the oil will have to wait between 20 minutes and several hours to feel the effects.

The length of time they will have to wait will depend on their body composition, metabolism, and other factors, so are patient when waiting for results.


Revision 22.5.2020 – dead link removed


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here