When you’re enjoying a toke after a long day at work or on a weekend, do you ever wonder how long your weed will stay in your system? While a high might only last a few hours, research shows that the cannabinoids will linger in your body for days – maybe even weeks – after you smoke or ingest an edible.
How long will your cannabis stay detectable in your body? It all depends on your consumption habits and how much THC is in the product you’re enjoying!
How Long Does It Stay Immediately After Consumption?
Smoking or vaping weed is the most efficient way to get the cannabinoids THC – the part of cannabis that gives you the characteristic high – into your bloodstream. People will often reach a peak level of intoxication within about five minutes of smoking cannabis; the THC levels will decline over the next couple of hours, with the decline slowing down for several hours.
How long it stays in your system can be influenced by the specific type of cannabis, how much you smoke, and how you consume it. While smoking or vaping cannabis works quickly, it takes longer to feel the effects if you eat it – it can be up to two hours after consuming. If one smokes a strain with high levels of THC, it’s much different from taking therapeutic capsules of high-CBD cannabis.
Of course, it’s important to be careful about how you consume weed. For instance, to be safe, you can’t drive for at least six hours after smoking cannabis, as that’s about how long impairment could last regardless of the strain.
How Long Does Cannabis Stay In Your System?
Cannabis can stay in the system long after the intoxication has worn off, though! It’s because the body retains metabolites from weed in your fat stores; your system gradually eliminates these in your waste.
Exactly how long it remains, though, is still a matter of debate. Cannabis can be detected in urine for between three and 30 days, while other research suggests it’s closer to a week to 21 days. It depends on what kind of THC concentration cutoff you use.
Again, the difference can often come from how often you use it. If you’re a frequent user – once a day or more – a higher amount of THC will build up in the system, staying in your body at higher levels for a longer time. An occasional user, on the other hand, will eliminate THC from their system much faster.
There’s still a lot of research to be done on how the body processes the cannabis you ingest. What we do know is that cannabis products with a higher ratio of THC to CBD tend to stay in the system longer than those with more CBD; as well, the THC from edibles remains in the body slightly longer than if it were smoked or vaped.