Cannabidiol (CBD) is a relatively new phenomenon for humans. While consumers far and wide zealously lap up the newly discovered benefits of the marvellous molecule of the cannabis plant, many are seeking more exciting ways to enjoy their favourite tonic. CBD oils have been a firm favourite since CBD landed on the scene, however, more recently, CBD edibles have grown in popularity.
When purchasing edibles such as CBD gummies, one thing’s for certain: they are lip-smackingly tasty. But, a myriad of questions commonly remain on buyers’ hungry lips: how soon will I feel the effects? What, exactly, are the effects? How many should I take, and how often? How long will the benefits last? Some may also reasonably wonder whether CBD edibles work at all.
The answer, in short, is that any benefits of CBD gummies are usually felt within the first hour of consumption, and these effects can last up to 6-8 hours. However, that’s a generic answer and in reality, timeframes are variable and determined by a number of factors including your unique biological makeup. That doesn’t mean you have to test the CBD-infused waters blindfolded, however. Stick with us so we can arm you with the knowledge you need to start off on the right foot with CBD edibles that can, quite literally, change your life for the better, once you’ve found what works for you.
What are CBD Gummies?
CBD gummies are a form of ingestible cannabidiol. Much like a regular sweet, they are available in many delectable, fruity flavours and are chewed and swallowed. The gummy passes through the digestive system and begins to take effect as the CBD is absorbed during the digestive process.
It’s important to note that while CBD provides many wellbeing benefits including stress-reduction and improved sleep, it is a non-intoxicating substance. Cannabidiol is not the same cannabis compound as its famous counterpart tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which has psychoactive effects. Legal CBD edibles in the UK contain zero THC (or less than 0.2%) and do not result in a ‘high’.
The Benefits of Edible CBD
Ingesting a CBD edible enables you to enjoy many of the benefits of cannabidiol. Research is preliminary but studies so far have shed light on the positive impact of CBD on human wellness. Cannabidiol interacts with our complex endocannabinoid system and can promote relaxation, stress-reduction, relief from some symptoms of anxiety, improved sleep, more energy, as well as offering pain relief from chronic muscle pain and/or joint inflammation. Research has also begun to uncover the positive influence that CBD may have on mental health disorders such as depression.
Furthermore, trying CBD as an edible brings exclusive benefits. Firstly, enjoying a CBD gummy is generally far more palatable than dropping CBD oil under your tongue. They are flavoursome, easy to take and welcome within any hectic routine. Additionally, while the effects of a CBD edible may take longer to experience due to initial movement through the digestive system, the flip side is that the effects can also take longer to wear off.
How Soon Will CBD Edibles Work?
It is generally advised to enjoy your CBD gummy around 60 minutes before you wish to feel the effects. However, how soon the benefits are noticed is really down to the individual and depends on a multitude of factors. You may experience the effects within 30 minutes, while they kick in for somebody else after almost 2 hours. Moreover, the benefits of CBD may be subtle in nature – especially on a low dose - and it could be hard to tell when they have arrived. Since CBD does not have the psychoactive effects of THC, you won’t feel a distinct ‘high’.
The good news is, you can experiment with dosing and you will find out what works for you over time. Continue reading to gain an understanding of influential factors on absorption speed and how to dose safely and sensibly.
How Long Do the Effects of CBD Gummies Last?
We stated earlier that, generally speaking, the effects of CBD from gummies last around 6 to 8 hours. However, we now know that there are a number of factors that can influence how CBD is digested and absorbed, and it’s important to take into consideration the concentration strength of the CBD gummy.
What Affects the Efficacy of CBD Edibles?
A multitude of variables will influence the effectiveness of your CBD edible and the period of time that you will experience the benefits over. These include:
- Body Weight and Composition – An individual with a heavier body weight usually requires a higher concentration of CBD in order to feel the effects, and it can take longer for them to kick in. Your body’s digestive enzymes can also differ to the next person and vary according to your mood – for instance, a highly stressed person may have unbalanced gastric enzymes which break down food less efficiently. Some prescription medications may also influence digestion speed.
- Metabolic Rate – Your metabolism determines how quickly your body is able to convert food to necessary carbohydrates, acids, protein and energy for optimal cell function. An individual with a higher metabolism will absorb CBD more quickly – and therefore experience the effects more swiftly - than a person with a slower metabolic rate. However, those with a higher metabolism are likely to experience more short-lived effects of CBD, since their bodies are capable of flushing it out more rapidly.
- An Empty Stomach vs a Full Stomach – When a CBD gummy enters a full stomach, it’s going to wait longer to be broken down. On an empty stomach, your gastric enzymes are able to dissolve the gummy more quickly.
- Gummy Potency – Naturally, the higher the strength of CBD gummy, the longer it will take to work through your system and the stronger and longer the effects will be.
The Ideal Dosage
Regardless of your body weight and composition, your metabolic rate and whether you have recently eaten or not, it is always recommended to start low and slow in terms of dosing if you are new to CBD edibles (usually 1-2 gummies per day).
It’s evident that when it comes to the ideal dose, there is no “one size fits all”. Build up your dosage slowly and surely and monitor how soon and how intensely you feel the effects. Experiment with different times of the day and consider your goals; perhaps enjoying your gummies first thing in the morning gives you energy and less stress throughout the day. Alternatively, chewing your gummies in the evening may relax you for bedtime and promote a comfortable night’s sleep. Take them a couple of hours before you doze off so that the effects can be experienced in full, but have fully worn off by morning. If you enjoy your gummies for muscle pain relief, chew a gummy as and when your begin to experience a flare up.
Start slowly when taking CBD gummies. Be patient and gain an understanding of how the edibles affect you personally. Try 1-2 gummies per day initially, around an hour or two before you wish to experience the desired effects, and allow around 8 hours until the effects begin to wear off. You may feel drowsy at first, and might wish to try your first gummies before bedtime to avoid this effect during the day.
Always check the concentration of your CBD gummies and start small. You can take additional edibles or alternative CBD products later if you need to increase the dosage, or you can progress to a higher strength gummy.
Finally, if you have any concerns about adding CBD gummies to your wellness routine, it’s always a good idea to consult with your GP first.