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How Long Do CBD Gummies Last? Expiration, Duration, and Maximizing Their Effects

Written By Ellese Symons Apr 9th 2024
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CBD gummies are sweet, sold in an abundance of flavors, and are considered one of the most enjoyable of the many product types available. Since each chewy hemp supplement delivers a precise, premeasured serving of cannabidiol, they're ideal for home use and travel. As consumer enthusiasm expands, so has the number of people asking how long CBD gummies last. 

It's a great question but requires contextual framing to answer. Some people asking how long CBD gummies last want information about expiration dates and shelf-life; others are looking for details about the duration of their effects. So, instead of letting anyone down by choosing a lane, let's explore the question from both angles. 

After covering the finer points impacting shelf life, we'll explore the factors influencing onset and duration. Then, we'll explain why we suggest starting with a partial serving and highlight the gummy formulations developed by our expert botanists to maximize specific effects.   

CBD Expiration Dates: The Many Factors Influencing Product Shelf Life 

CBD (cannabidiol) is the most abundant of the many cannabinoids in hemp flower. The CBD gummies sold in convenience stores, specialty shops, and direct-to-consumers from brand websites are made with the cannabinoid-rich oil extracted from hemp flower. The 15-20:1 CBD to THC ratio in the final product ensures there's no risk of intoxication.   

Although the specific ingredients used can vary by brand, most CBD gummies are made with hemp extract, some type of gelatin or vegan equivalent, a sweetener, and natural or artificial colors, flavoring agents, and preservatives.1 Their flavors and textures are a lot like the gummy candies most adults have enjoyed since childhood. Many premium-quality gummies retain their health and wellness potential up to 12 months post-production. There are, however, multiple factors that can cause CBD gummies to degrade faster than anticipated. 

The Quality of Each Ingredient 

Most reputable manufacturers invest in accelerated and real-time shelf-life stability tests to help ensure their expiration dates are stated as accurately as possible. That requires ensuring the integrity of every ingredient in their gummies, regardless of the amount used. The ingredient that degrades first can impact the integrity of an entire batch.2 

Cultivation & Extraction Methods 

Industrial hemp is a hyperaccumulator, meaning it absorbs potentially harmful contaminants, including heavy metals, pesticides, mold, mildew, fungi, e coli, and salmonella as it grows. Some extraction methods can leave solvent residue behind that can have less-than-optimal effects on product stability. Soil testing and hemp industry gold-standard extraction methods help ensure optimal longevity.

Product Packaging & Storage   

Gummies exposed to heat and/or sunlight during manufacturing, packaging, or distribution can lose their potency weeks or even months before their time. To protect your investment, stick with gummies packed in dark bottles and opaque pouches.4 Store your CBD gummies in a dark location. Temperatures exceeding 70° F accelerate cannabinoid degradation. 

How CBD Works In the Body: Factors Influencing Onset & Duration 

Compared to CBD oil tinctures and topicals, it takes longer for the effects of CBD gummies (and other edibles) to peak because the cannabinoid is processed through your digestive system before circulating through your bloodstream. Based on decades of study, we know CBD asserts its influence on multiple molecular targets, including the receptors of the serotonin, dopamine, and GABA systems.5 

But it's the cannabinoid's impact on the endocannabinoid system (ECS) most often credited for CBD's positive impact on so many seemingly unrelated concerns. Cannabis researchers believe its indirect influence on ECS receptors supports homeostasis.6 Most sources suggest CBD edibles take 1-2 hours to make their presence known for effects that last 4-6 hours for most CBD users. There are multiple factors at play impacting how long it can take for CBD to assert that influence.7 

The Amount of CBD Per Serving 

CBD concentrations can vary considerably from one crop to the next. Reputable brands protect consumers by confirming the CBD content of their products through third-party batch testing. You can protect yourself by consistently verifying claims of third-party test results. If you can't find a certificate of analysis, shop elsewhere. Although 75% of CBD brands claim their products are tested by an independent lab, only 13% submit samples for at least 90% of their products.8 

Body Composition & Metabolism 

CBD and other plant-based cannabinoids are attracted to fat, meaning a lean person who is physically active metabolizes (and eliminates) CBD faster than a person with a higher BMI who might have a higher percentage of each serving stored in adipose tissues. If 30% is stored, for example, only 70% of the cannabinoids available after ingestion circulate in the bloodstream.7 Age, genetics, lack of sleep, and other factors impacting metabolic function can also impact onset timing and duration. 

Frequency of Use 

A considerable number of people are pleased with the results of applying CBD topically after an intense workout or keeping a jar of gummies on hand for the occasional sleepless night. But many people find they get the best results when using hemp-derived CBD products consistently to keep their intake of cannabinoids stable. According to a 2019 CBDistillery® survey of 1,900 customers, most respondents reported achieving positive results within 7-14 days of consistent daily use. 

Serving Sizes Suggestions: The Benefit of Starting Low and Slow   

Based on the feedback of our 2019 survey respondents, most CBD users report favorable results using our hemp-derived products for relaxation, better sleep, discomfort and inflammation after physical activity, and mild or temporary anxiety. You won't know exactly how your system will respond to ECS support until you choose a product and try it, but you may not want to start with the serving size suggestion printed on our product labels. 

Every CBD user has a unique physical chemistry, meaning an amount that works for someone else could be significantly different than the serving size that's right for you. Instead, we suggest starting with half of a gummy. If a partial serving doesn't provide the results you're hoping for, increase your serving sizes gradually in small increments. Some first-timers move on to a full gummy with their next serving; others wait a few days (or more) between increases to give their systems time to adapt and respond. The choice is yours.  

Product Recommendations: Finding the Ideal CBDistillery® Gummies to Maximize Their Effect 

Not only does going "low and slow" help you determine the amount of CBD that suits you best, you're also minimizing the risk of developing minor but unpleasant side effects. While 93% of our 2019 survey respondents reported no adverse effects, some CBD users experience fatigue, dry mouth, changes in appetite, or digestive distress.8 

When you choose from the selection of CBD gummies at CBDistillery®, you're selecting products made by a respected industry leader with more than 2 million satisfied customers and 43,000 verified reviews. Our CBD gummies are vegan, kosher, made with 100% clean ingredients, and backed by a 60-day satisfaction guarantee. Now that you know why so many CBD users recommend our premium quality gummies to family and friends, you may also want to consider which of our rigorously tested, quality-assured gummies would best fit your needs, preferences, and lifestyle. 

CBDistillery® ahhh distilled Full Spectrum CBD Gummies 

CBDistillery® ahhh distilled Full Spectrum CBD Gummies give you the full array of minor cannabinoids, terpenes, and other nutrients in the same ratios found in nature. Their CBD to THC ratio ensures there's minimal risk of intoxication. You'll gain the potency-maximizing potential of a property cannabis is known for called an "Entourage Effect”9 delivered with a subtle strawberry flavor. 

CBDistillery® ahhh distilled & shhh distilled Broad Spectrum CBD Gummies 

Broad spectrum CBD gummies have the diverse cannabinoids and terpene profile needed for an entourage effect but non-detectable amounts of THC. CBDistillery® ahhh distilled Broad Spectrum CBD Anytime Gummies have a delightful tropical fruit flavor. Our CBDistillery® shhh distilled Broad Spectrum Sleep Gummies are formulated specifically for sleep. They have 5mg of melatonin per serving. 

CBDistillery® ommm distilled CBG + CBD Gummies 

Our expert botanists formulated CBDistillery® ommm distilled CBG + CBD Gummies for a sense of calm and clarity. They're made with full spectrum CBD oil, enhanced concentrations of CBG (cannabigerol), and just enough subtle orange flavor to brighten your day. Every naturally flavored gummy gives you 15mg of CBG and 15mg of CBD. 

CBDistillery® shhh distilled CBN + CBD Sleep Gummies 

Also made with full spectrum hemp extract, CBDistillery® shhh distilled CBN + CBD Sleep Gummies are infused with just enough of the minor cannabinoid CBN (cannabinol) for rest, relaxation, and an enhanced entourage effect. Every elderberry-flavored gummy delivers 5mg of CBN and 15mg of CBD, the ratio deemed ideal by our expert botanists. 

CBDistillery® ommm+ distilled THC + CBD Gummies   

CBDistillery® ommm+ distilled THC + CBD Gummies could be just what you need to decompress at the end of a stressful day. Each berry-flavored gummy gives you everything our full spectrum hemp extract offers for ECS support, plus just enough delta 9 THC for relaxation, an enhanced entourage effect, and a mellow, uplifting buzz. You'll get 25mg of CBD and 5mg of THC per one gummy serving. 

CBDistillery® shhh+ THC + CBN + CBD Deep Sleep Gummies 

CBDistillery® shhh+ distilled THC + CBN + CBD Gummies are made to help you get the rest you need to wake feeling refreshed. They have a delicious dreamberry flavor and a rigorously tested blend of cannabinoids selected to help you drift off naturally and remain in slumber mode: 5mg of THC, 25mg of CBD, and 5mg of CBN (cannabinol), a minor cannabinoid with sleep-promoting potential.10 

Discover How Long the Effects of Your CBDistillery® CBD Gummies Could Last  

There are multiple factors that determine how long you could expect a jar of gummies to retain their potency, including the manufacturer's quality control standards. When you choose CBDistillery® CBD gummies, you'll find a downloadable certificate of analysis (COA) on our product pages. If you prefer shopping locally, you can scan the QR code on our product labels. Although you won't know precisely how long it takes for CBD to make its presence known until you try it, most people can expect the effects of CBD to last 4-6 hours once they've adapted to hemp-derived cannabinoids. 

If you have questions we haven't answered or aren't quite sure which CBDistillery® gummies would be the best fit for your health and wellness routine, consider scheduling a personal consultation. 

References 

  1. Hallak S. (2023) What are Gummies Made Of? Candy Pros. 

  1. Schmidt E. (2022) 5 Key Reasons Why Cannabis Brands Need Shelf Life and Stability Testing. ACS Laboratory. 

  1. Valizadehderakhshan M, Shahbazi A, et al. (2021) Extraction of Cannabinoids from Cannabis sativa L. (Hemp)—Review. 11(5) Agriculture 384. ttps://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture11050384 

  1. Duarte I, Rotter A, et al. (2009) The Role of Glass as a Barrier Against the Transmission of Ultraviolet Radiation: An Experimental Study. 25(4) Photodrmatol Photoimmunol Photomed 181-84. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1600-0781.2009.00434.x 

  1. Brunt T, Bossong M. (2020) The Neuropharmacology of Cannabinoid Receptor Ligands in Central Signaling Pathways. 55(4) Eur J Neurosci 909-21. https://doi.org/10.1111/ejn.14982 

  1. Sallaberry C, Astern L. (2018) The Endocannabinoid System, Our Universal Regulator. 34(6) JYI 48-55. https://www.jyi.org/2018-june/2018/6/1/the-endocannabinoid-system-our-universal-regulator 

  1. Harmon J. (2020) How Long Do the Effects of CBD Last? CBD Academy. 

  1. Harrington A. (2021) 25% of CBD Products Are Not Tested for Purity. Forbes. 

  1. Nahler G, Jones T, et al. (2019) Cannabidiol and Contributions of Major Hemp Phytocompounds to the "Entourage Effect"; Possible Mechanisms. J Altern Complement Integr Med 70(5) PDF download. 

  1. Harris D. (2022) What Is CBN (Cannabinol)? CNBS.