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CBD Products and Bioavailability Rates

Edibles, Tinctures, Topicals, and Vape – How do you maximize your CBD dosage.

Bioavailability is the degree and rate in which CBD is absorbed into the bloodstream so that it is able to have an effect. There are Basically four delivery methods for CBD: Oral (edibles, beverages and capsules), Sublingual (tinctures and sprays), Topicals (salves and lotions) and Inhalation (vape and cigarettes). Each delivery has its benefits and each consumer has their preferences. So what’s the right way for you?


CBD taken orally is an increasingly popular way to ingest CBD. CBD gummies, chocolates, and beverages can be tasty ways to satisfy one’s hunger and at the same time take a daily dosage of CBD. All are easily available and can be found where most CBD products are sold. Another advantage is that edibles should be clearly labeled as to how much dosage there is per serving.


Eating or Drinking your CBD means that it will first have to travel through ones digestive system before it enters the bloodstream, this may take upward of 30 minutes. A 2009 study found that the bioavailability rate of CBD taken orally was between 4% and 20%. Meaning that if you were ingesting a gummie bear labeled with 25mg of CBD, then your bloodstream was receiving 1mg to 5mg of CBD. Not very good bang for your buck, but convenient and consistent.

Tinctures are probably the most popular way to ingest CBD sublingually. Whether you prefer isolate or full spectrum there are a wide array of concentrations and flavors available for this method. Lozenges and Sprays are other options for this delivery as well. The vein under the tongue is called the sublingual gland and when a liquid is administered it gets absorbed into the bloodstream via the mucous membrane. By doing this you bypass the digestive system and have a quicker more direct dose.


Studies have found that the bioavailability for CBD ingested sublingually is between 20% and 30%. Let’s say I have a 500mg tincture in a 30 ml bottle -each full dropper of 1 ml equals 16.7mg of CBD. Taken sublingually I am receiving 3.4mg to 5mg of CBD per dose. Therefore a better yield, yet will take some math skills and a dropper is not as consistent per dose.

What about topicals? Is the skin capable of transferring CBD into the bloodstream? In short the answer is no, CBD will not reach the bloodstream when absorbed topically. However, CBD salves and lotions are permeable through the skins pores and it does interact with the nearby cannabinoid receptors. Therefore, CBD topicals are particularly effective at alleviating aches and pains associated with muscle and joint soreness and inflammation. To be able to administer a topical directly onto the part of the body that aches is a benefit that can be felt immediately.


Inhaling CBD via a hemp cigarette or a vape pen are found to be the fastest ways for CBD to enter the bloodstream. Depending on your surroundings some may find it an annoying habit.

However, vape does come in a wide choice of concentrations and flavors. Vape shops are slowly adding more CBD E-liquids to their product selections. Organic hemp cigarettes or pre-rolls are also gaining popularity, with no nicotine and no tobacco these are quickly becoming an alternative for those trying to quit smoking. Studies have found bioavailability rates for inhalation are between 34% and 56%. Let’s say you are smoking a hemp cigarette with 20mg of CBD, your yield of CBD would then be between 7mg to 11mg of CBD per stick.


By understanding the bioavailability of the different products offered some consumers may choose different methods for taking their dose of CBD. For some it may be a matter of taste or convenience, for others it could be habit or cost. Either way there are thousands of products and brands of CBD to choose from. Make sure you do your due diligence and view lab reports, and get to know as much about the brands and products you ingest into your body.