How Long Does It Take For CBD Gummies To Hit You?

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There are numerous CBD products, which can be administered in diverse ways to enable the active ingredients to enter the body’s circulation and take effect. Over recent years the popularity of CBD gummies has rocketed, with customers preferring the ease of administration. 

CBD oil must be administered via a dropper bottle under the tongue and capsules must be taken with a glass of water in the same way as a drug. 

So, compared to other CBD products gummies are as easy to take as a sweet and are easy to carry around. This convenience means the gummies will fit around anyone’s working day or during the evening. Sometimes customers prefer to take their CBD discreetly, at work for example, and a gummy is the ideal way to do this. 

How CBD Is Absorbed Into The Body 

CBD products are absorbed into the body’s circulation in diverse ways depending on their format. The method and speed of this absorption and the consequential effects vary considerably among the different products. Oil tinctures are made up of CBD and a carrier oil, such as coconut oil. The tincture is applied underneath the tongue (sublingually) via a dropper bottle, where it meets the sublingual mucous membranes. The CBD can pass through these membranes quite easily with direct access into the bloodstream. This direct route means the effects of the CBD are experienced more quickly when taken under the tongue. 

In a comparable way, vaping CBD products is also a direct route into the body’s circulation. The CBD molecules are drawn into the lungs, where they must penetrate the liquid surface lining of the lung before reaching the thin permeable barrier through which the CBD molecules gain access to the body’s circulation.  

Topical CBD products, such as creams and oils, are applied directly onto the skin (topical). The CBD is dissolved in a carrier cream, which can then be applied and absorbed. The process of absorption is via diffusion, where molecules move from a high-density state to a low-density state. When applied to the surface of the skin the CBD cream is in a state of high-density, so it will naturally defuse through the skin surface to create a lower density. Topical CBD creams are slightly different in that their effects are experienced in two ways simultaneously. Firstly, where the cream is applied, but also where the cream is absorbed through the skin into the body’s circulation, where the effects will be experienced more generally. 

CBD products that are eaten, such as gummies, cookies or capsules that are taken with a glass of water, are absorbed more slowly into the body’s circulation. This is because they must pass through the digestive system. So, the effects of the CBD in these products are likely to be slower to occur but when they do the effects may last longer because the CBD transfers from the digestive system into the body’s circulation more gradually.  

How Is A Gummie Broken Down When It Arrives In The Stomach? 

The process for the breakdown of a gummy is a combination of mechanical and biochemical processes. Most people automatically want to chew a gummy when it is in their mouth as opposed to just sucking it. This chewing process breaks the gummy down physically into smaller more digestible pieces.

On swallowing, the part-chewed gummy soon arrives in the stomach and small intestine, where the body’s enzymes break down the sugar or sucrose into smaller, more manageable molecules of glucose. These smaller glucose molecules, which are mixed with the CBD oil are then better able to then transfer through the lining of the gut straight into the bloodstream and subsequently around the rest of the body. 

What Affects CBD Absorption In The Gut? 

The absorption of CBD in the gut is governed by numerous factors, some of which are not static but change according to the experience of the individual. Consequently, it is very difficult to determine exact statistics about the absorption process when it is subject to constantly changing influences. However, the following factors all have a bearing of the efficiency of absorption in the gut: 

Full Or Empty Stomach 

If you eat a gummy on an empty stomach, there will be little other food to slow the process of absorption. Consequently, the absorption of the glucose and CBD oil will occur more quickly. However, if a gummy is eaten on a full stomach the stomach will have to work much harder to digest the entire stomach contents before it can make its way into the bloodstream. The overall effect of this is that the CBD oil will be released into the bloodstream more slowly and consequently its effects will be delayed as well. 


Simply put the body’s metabolism is the sum of all the hundreds of complex chemical reactions that take place in your body to keep it functioning well. The working of this amazing system of evolution is partly determined genetically but also slows as you age. Some people are born lucky with a faster metabolism, where they seem to be able to eat whatever they choose without putting on weight, whereas others with a slow metabolism often struggle to keep their weight down. 

The metabolism slows down with age for numerous reasons but some of these include a slowing down and less efficient operation of the actual metabolic processes, less physical activity, and loss of muscle mass. 


When eating a CBD gummy, the efficiency of your metabolism will govern not only how fast the gummy is digested but how quickly the CBD molecules will arrive at the places they are needed. 

Body Composition  

The composition of the body changes throughout lifetime. People sometimes eat more and increase their weight, putting on fat during times of stress, while at other times weight may fall due to illness. The total body fat of men and women are routinely different at 15% and 25% respectively. These differences in body composition will have some effects on how CBD oil works once ingested. These variations have not been clearly researched but anecdotally it is accepted that heavier people often require more CBD oil to experience the same effect as a lighter person and, they may take longer to process the higher CBD concentration in their body. 

Digestive Enzymes  

Food is broken down in the digestive system predominantly by hydrochloric acid in the stomach and then a series of digestive enzymes in the small intestine. The aim of digestion is to break foods and drinks down into smaller more manageable molecules, where it is easier for them to cross through the wall of the gut into the bloodstream, where they can then be transported where needed.

The efficiency of gastric enzymes can be affected by a number of factors, but stress in particular can have a profound effect. When the body experiences stress or threat it initiates a flight or fight response, preparing to battle the threat or simply run away and escape from it. In this emergency state of mind digesting food suddenly becomes a low priority and so the digestive systems and their blood flow shutdown so that blood can be diverted to organs such as the brain, lungs, and heart where it is required more urgently. 

Consequently, someone taking a CBD gummy in a state of high stress may experience a longer absorption time and a longer time for it to act. Additionally, as the CBD molecules pass through the liver the separate enzymes there may metabolise the CBD slightly and reduce its effect. 


As with any drug repeated use creates tolerance. This means when you start taking any new drug its initial effects may appear quite strong however with repeated use the effects gradually diminish.

Often, drug tolerance develops because the metabolism of the drug becomes more efficient, as the body learns to adapt to the new chemicals. As the liver enzymes involved in metabolism become more active, they remove them from the body more quickly. 

how long does it take for cbd gummies to hit you

Prescription Drugs 

GP’s must pay careful attention to the interaction between different prescription drugs and the side effects that can occur. In the same way CBD oil can interact with these same drugs, usually only in a minor way, and make them less effective. Consequently, if this is the first time you have taken any CBD product and you already take prescription drugs it is best to check with your GP just to be clear on any possible interaction.  

What Does CBD Feel Like? 

Once the CBD oil is digested and has passed through the liver it is free to enter the bloodstream, where it circulates to all parts of the body. The CBD interacts specifically with the endocannabinoid system in the body, which is a collection of receptors in our central and peripheral nervous system associated with the brain, organs, connective tissues, glands, and immune cells. 

The effects of CBD vary from person to person depending on their health, metabolism, and state of mind but some of the most frequent benefits of CBD expressed by users are a sense of calmness and relaxation, ease of falling asleep, better quality and longer sleep, as well as recovery from inflammation, whether caused by over exercise, injury, or illness. 

As the effects of CBD do vary among people it is only possible to give average times for how long it takes to start experiencing the effects of the CBD. Generally, people often notice an initial calming effect after about 30 minutes, whereas others may not notice anything for two hours. It is useful to try the CBD with a couple of friends at the same time so you can find out whether you are a person, who experiences effects more quickly or slowly and then you have a rough idea of where you sit on the spectrum of effects.   

Where Does The CBD Start Acting? 

So, how long does it take for CBD gummies to hit you? Once the CBD is in your bloodstream it starts to make contact with the endocannabinoid system (ES), which is a series of receptors associated with the peripheral and central nervous systems and spread throughout the brain, spinal cord, organs, and immune system. The ES was discovered in the 1990s by researchers who were looking into the effects of THC, the active ingredient in cannabis that makes you high. The ES is complex and already operates in the human body completely separately from any effects of cannabis products. Research into the ES is still ongoing, but it has been established it is involved with the function of the following in the body: 

  • mood 
  • sleep 
  • appetite 
  • memory 
  • reproduction and fertility 
  • appetite and digestion 
  • metabolism 
  • chronic pain 
  • inflammation and other immune system responses 
  • liver function 
  • stress 

The ES functions using three separate components: 

  1. Endocannabinoids, which the body manufactures itself 
  2. Two receptors, C1 and C2, which the endocannabinoid molecules attach to 
  3. Enzymes, which specifically breakdown the endocannabinoid molecules once they have served their function 

When you take a CBD product, such as a gummy, the CBD molecules make their way through the bloodstream to the C1 and C2 receptors, where they will initiate the desired effect. Research into the ES has highlighted that more than 15 body functions are regulated by it. The ES acts as a moderating system, which helps the body to maintain homeostasis or the optimum level of operation. If an external force outside the body creates an injury the ES will react, releasing natural endocannabinoids to sooth the inflammation and help return the body to its former state.  

Will The CBD Stay In My System? 

Consuming your CBD orally, such as with a CBD gummy, is a slightly slower method of absorption. The gummy must be first chewed and then travel down to the stomach, where the process of absorption starts. Whereas CBD dropped under the tongue transfers into the blood circulation quickly via the thin cells there. So, taking the CBD orally takes longer to get the full effects of the CBD, as it becomes completely absorbed into your digestive system. It also lasts the longest among CBD absorption methods. The downside, however, is that once you've consumed the CBD oil, you can't stop its effects, and you will have to experience the effects of it for the next several hours, although for the most part these will be mild.  

A limited amount of research has been carried out to assess just how long the CBD stays in the body. Creating an accurate timeframe is difficult because human metabolism varies from person to person, some are more effective at eliminating waste compounds in the body. Additionally, someone who has routinely taken CBD products for some time may well be more effective at eliminating that product. Also, a well person and a sick person will have different metabolic efficiencies, which will affect the elimination of waste compounds. 

how long does it take for cbd gummies to hit you

The CBD may remain in your body for some time even after the immediate affects you can feel have worn off. The time taken for any chemical to be eliminated from the body is called the half-life. The name comes from the time taken for half of the original dose to be eliminated. As a result of the variation in human metabolism the exact half-life of CBD is difficult to discern with some researchers quoting 18-32 hours, while others quote one or two days. Researchers suggest that even after five days there is likely to be a small, residual concentration of CBD in the body.  

Summing Up 

The popularity of gummies has soared over recent years. Customers essentially like the convenience, where a gummy can be eaten discreetly at work for example, and they are easy to carry around and store. Chewing a gummy is enjoyable and simple, there is no need for a dropper bottle to put drops under the tongue nor a glass of water to swallow a capsule. 

The range of gummies on the market is vast but simply by looking out for a reliable manufacturing process you can be sure you’ll be taking one of the best quality products. 

These processes include organic hemp cultivation, where the soil is regularly assessed for toxic compounds. Similarly, a state-of-the-art extraction process such as carbon dioxide extraction, will ensure you are buying the best quality CBD oil.  

All stages of the production process at CBDfx adhere to the quality assurance program, the American Current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP). Companies must pass an accreditation program, which demonstrates all ingredients and production processes are regularly monitored against clinical grade standards. 

Once the products are packaged a QR code is printed on the outside and this corresponds with the batch of gummy products. By scanning this QR code it is possible to read the laboratory analysis of that product to verify the CBD content. So, customers can be confident they are using a verifiable product. 

Simon Knott
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