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Edibles" typically refers to food products that have been infused with cannabinoids, particularly delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and/or cannabidiol (CBD), which are the active compounds found in cannabis. Edibles offer an alternative way to consume cannabis compared to smoking or vaporizing it. Edible cannabis products come in various forms, such as brownies, cookies, cakes, Gummies, chocolates, chips, crackers, popcorn, cooking oils, and tinctures.

However, one of the most common questions among those new to edibles is: How long do the effects actually last?

When do the effects of edibles kick in?

Unlike inhaled cannabis, which sends cannabinoids directly to the bloodstream via the lungs, weed edibles introduce cannabinoids through the digestive system. As a result, there's a more extended onset period. Typically, users begin to feel the effects anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours after consumption, depending on individual factors and the type of edible consumed.

How long do the effects of edibles last?

The duration of edible effects can vary significantly depending on factors such as the potency of the product, the individual's metabolism, and their tolerance to CBD edibles. On average, the effects of edibles can last anywhere from 4 to 8 hours, but it's not uncommon for some users to experience lingering effects for up to 12 hours or more, particularly with higher doses.

Factors Affecting Onset Time

Several factors impact how quickly the effects of edibles become apparent:

THC and CBD Content: The ratio of THC to CBD in the edible plays a role. Higher THC concentrations may lead to a faster onset of effects.

Product Type: Edibles that are absorbed sublingually (through the mouth's mucus membranes) can kick in faster than those that need to be digested.

Metabolism: Individual metabolic rates vary, influencing how quickly the body processes and absorbs cannabinoids.

Body Weight and Composition: Heavier individuals might experience a slower onset due to THC being stored in fat cells.

Tolerance: Regular cannabis users might develop tolerance, affecting how quickly they feel the effects.


Edibles' lasting effects can benefit or pose risks. Newcomers may overindulge due to delayed onset, thinking the initial dose is ineffective. Prolonged effects also warrant refraining from driving or using heavy machinery post-consumption.

Must read: Safety-sensitive workplaces

Benefits of Edibles

Edibles offer several advantages over smoking cannabis, such as:

Respiratory Health: Edibles eliminate the risks associated with inhaling smoke, which can be harmful to the lungs.

Extended Relief: The longer duration of effects is beneficial for individuals seeking prolonged relief from symptoms.

Discreetness: Edibles can be consumed inconspicuously, making them suitable for situations where smoking is not feasible.

Side Effects of Edible Cannabis

High doses of THC edibles can lead to uncomfortable symptoms that might persist for hours or even days. These can include:

  • Cognitive impairment
  • Extreme sedation
  • Anxiety
  • Hallucinations
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Tiredness
  • Changes in appetite


Edibles offer a unique and extended cannabis experience, with effects lasting from 6 to 8 hours. Their onset time varies based on factors like THC/CBD content, metabolism, and product type. Starting with a low dose and waiting 24 hours before re-dosing is advisable to manage effects and avoid adverse reactions. Be mindful of the legal regulations in your area.

More Information: Is CBD legal?

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