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Why CBD Takes Time to Really Make a Difference

We love to get feedback from our broad-spectrum CBD clients. So many times, people tell us that taking CBD is helping them feel better. It makes it easier for them to stick to their busy schedules. Or to walk without pain. And even to workout longer, harder or more frequently.

But sometimes, we hear that CBD isn’t working for someone. They tell us, “I took my CBD last night. But I don’t feel any different.” Now, we’re not hear to say those voices are wrong. So, what do we say to people who ask, “Why isn’t CBD working for me?” It’s simple: it takes time to experience CBD effects. And here’s why.

Why Does CBD Take Time to Work?

Ever wonder why some people notice CBD effects right away? But it takes longer for others? We’ll let you in on a secret: that’s totally normal. And it all has to do with your endocannabinoid system (ECS), and its goal of keeping your body in balance (homeostasis.)

On its own, your body should stay in balance with the endocannabinoids it produces naturally. Sometimes, though, outside factors throw it off balance. (Things like stress or illness can contribute to imbalance.)

Now, when you take CBD, it stimulates your ECS. Which can get you back into homeostasis. And here’s where we find our difference-maker in your CBD experience. If your ECS is already in balance, CBD won’t make you feel that different right away. But if your ECS was far from homeostasis, you’ll probably notice a difference right after your first dose of CBD. Still, that doesn’t mean it’s not working for those of you in balance. It just may take a bit longer for you to notice what’s changed. And, in the meantime, here are some things that can make your CBD experience more noticeable. Right away.

How Long Does CBD Take to Work? Delivery Method Matters

Here at 12Twenty CBD, we have many different forms of CBD available. (We call that your delivery method.) And each of them kicks into your body at different times.


This form of CBD contains cannabidiol diffused in a carrier oil. You take it under your tongue. So your body absorbs the CBD quickly, bypassing your digestive tract and getting on the fast track to your bloodstream. Tincture effects kick in quickly, but also disappear at a faster rate.

Edibles When you eat a CBD edible like a gummy, your body must digest the food before the CBD enters your bloodstream. (The same is true of CBD softgels.) That means it takes longer to notice the CBD effects. But once they begin, things should last longer.

Topical You can also apply CBD products to your skin. Here, again, you bypass digestion. So, while topical CBD kicks in slower than a tincture, it’s still a faster delivery method than a CBD edible.

When Does CBD Start Working? Right Away, if You Pay Attention!

Now that we’ve explained which forms of CBD take longer or shorter to kick in, we can go back to the bigger question of how long does CBD take to work? Remember, we said that if your ECS is balanced, taking CBD may not make an immediate impression.

But that doesn’t mean it’s doing nothing. It just means that the effects it produces will be subtle. So, if you want to notice the CBD difference, you’ll have to pay close attention.

One way to tell how CBD works for you is to keep a journal. Before your daily dose, check in with your body and write down what you feel. Are you tired? Stressed? Are there sore points on your body?

Next, take your dose and wait a while. Now it’s time to check in with yourself again. Be sure to pay close attention to even subtle differences, and write them down. Of course, on the first few days, or even weeks, you might not come up with anything to record. But then, after a week or two, try taking a day off from CBD and see what you notice. We’re guessing that’s when you’ll realize what a difference-maker that daily CBD dose really is!

CBD Dosing Guide and Bioavailability Tips

Keep in mind, the guidelines we just gave aren’t universal. So, if you truly don’t see any CBD effects after a few weeks, a change may be in order. First, check your daily dose. Because we always tell CBD newbies to start with a low dose. But we also suggest gradually increasing your intake until you see your desired effects. And, if nothing’s doing after several weeks, bumping up your daily CBD dose could make the difference.

Plus, there are dosing tips to help your body use more of the active CBD in every dose. (We use the term bioavailability to describe this term.)[i] Now, some forms of CBD have higher bioavailability than others—tinctures have the highest.

But what you eat with your CBD also makes a difference. For starters, don’t take CBD on an empty stomach. Taking your CBD dose with food will help bioavailability. (And will keep potential minor side effects at bay.) Then, if you really want to win with bioavailability, add some healthy fats to the pre-CBD meal. (Think avocados, olive oil or our favorite hemp-leaf salad.) Trying these tips should help you notice the difference taking CBD makes for your body.

And if you’re still struggling to find your CBD stride? Feel free to reach out with questions. Because we don’t just own a CBD company. We also take this hemp extract every day. So, since we’ve been on this journey for a while, chances are we could share some tips to make your ride a bit smoother! Seriously, all you have to do is ask!


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