How Bioavailable Is Your CBD? Depends On How You Take It


Whether you use cannabidiol for migraine relief or for shushing anxiety, how fast it acts depends on its bioavailability. Bioavailability refers to how much CBD is actually absorbed into to your bloodstream to show effects. The bioavailability of cannabidiol differs based on a number of factors. These mainly include the compounds and oils it is combined with, and its delivery mode.

Taking about the latter, here are 5 different CBD delivery modes and what you can expect from them in terms of their bioavailability:

1 – Vaping

Vaping CBD is among the fastest ways to get relief from symptoms owing to the high bioavailability of the cannabinoid through this route. However, the effects are not long-lasting. Vaping takes CBD directly to your lungs and from there it diffuses into your bloodstream.

This means CBD does not have to cross many barriers to reach your blood which allows vaping to give instantaneous results. For someone who needs immediate anxiety relief, vaping CBD is a good idea.

2 – Oral Ingestion

Oral intake of cannabidiol includes CBD capsules, treats, and beverages. When you consume cannabidiol orally, it has a low bioavailability. This is because the cannabidiol that you consume passes through your esophagus and reaches your digestive system.

There it goes through gastrointestinal processes.  After this, CBD crosses the cells lining the small intestine to go to your bloodstream. Due to this, CBD’s oral consumption bioavailability is only 6%. However, the effects last longer.

3 – Sublingual Use

Next up, we have the use of cannabidiol sublingually. Taking CBD sublingually gives results almost as quickly as vaping it does. This is because CBD is absorbed into your bloodstream quickly through the oral mucosa. It doesn’t have to pass through the GI tract or get processed.

When you chew on CBD gummies, the method is technically oral ingestion. However, if you chew slowly and let as much CBD to be taken in sublingually as can be then the effects are faster.

4 – Topical Application

Topical application of cannabidiol refers to massaging the compound onto your skin. This includes the use of lotions, creams, balms and the like. Such use of cannabidiol doesn’t take the compound into the bloodstream. It only affects the skin and its top three layers.

You cannot expect to apply a topical CBD lotion and get relief from your headache. Many people confuse this method with CBD’s transdermal use.

5 – Transdermal Use

Transdermal CBD application is different from topical use. This is because in case of transdermal usage, the product actually penetrates your skin and reaches your bloodstream. This allows the CBD to not only show effects at the area applied but throughout the body.

Topical products are easier to make whereas transdermal CBD has a pretty complicated making. It includes certain chemicals compounds and emulsifiers which enable it to absorb into the bloodstream through the skin. For this reason, transdermal CBD is also more expensive.


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