What is CBD Bioavailability and Why does it Matter?

We all know that CBD products can be a bit pricey, which is why a common question is, how do you get the most effectiveness from CBD products?  This depends on several factors, but a major one is ‘bioavailability’ of the product. This article will tell you what bioavailability is and how to maximise it.

What does bioavailability mean?

We all know that CBD comes in the form of different products and concentrations like tinctures, lotions, gummies etc. Each of these products has a different method of usage. If you are newly introduced to CBD, then you must have several questions like how much CBD to consume or how to consume or which product to go for? All these common queries can be understood by knowing what Bioavailability of CBD is. In general, bioavailability means the rate at which a substance or a drug mixes into your bloodstream. When doctors prescribe medications, they take into account the bioavailability of the medicines and then prescribe a dosage. 

In simple terms, not all of the substance you take will go into the bloodstream and give out results. Some of it will be digested or broken down. Now that you know what bioavailability is, the next step is to know what factors affect CBD bioavailability. This will depend on the concentration of CBD, the type of product and the method of consumption. It brings us to the next major question.

What’s the best and most efficient way to take CBD?

Since bioavailability is all about the rate of introduction of a substance into the bloodstream, the most effective method is to directly inject CBD by intravenous administration. Theoretically, this will deliver 100% of CBD into your blood. Still, not everyone is comfortable with sticking a needle into their arms. For them, we will discuss other methods of consumption and discover which one is more efficient. 

Oral Consumption:

This is the most common and most accessible form of consumption. CBD products like edibles, capsules and beverages can be consumed orally. But the biggest drawback of this method is that CBD then has to go through digestive and metabolic systems, which filter out a significant chunk of CBD and reduces its bioavailability. A study conducted in 2009 by the National Institute of Drug Abusive concluded that edibles have a 4%-20% bioavailability rate, 20% being the most optimistic. This is really poor when compared to other products.

To give you a better picture, if you eat an edible that has 100mg of CBD. In the most optimal condition, you will get only 20mg in your bloodstream after all the breaking down and digestion. This is even worse than paying taxes!

Sublingual Consumption:

This is done with the help of sublingual gland present beneath the tongue. When a substance is introduced on the sublingual glands, it directly enters the bloodstream as the gland absorbs it. Standard products that can be sublingually are tinctures, sprays and lozenges. The only way CBD can be degraded is through enzymes in the mouth. Since this is a more direct method, it impacts the body quicker, and the effects have more extended availability. Reports have said that this consumption has a bioavailability rate of 12%-35% which is still higher than edibles (oral consumption) 

Vaporised Consumption:

This method involves inhaling CBD in the form of vapours through vape pens. Inhaling, when compared with other methods, has a higher bioavailability rate. This method is standard and is known for fast reactions. Because when CBD is inhaled lungs directly absorb it and introduce it into the bloodstream. Although people who consume CBD for health benefits don’t prefer this method due to the potential adverse effects of vaping.


Understanding the concept of bioavailability is essential as it allows you as a customer to be more informed and choose wisely according to your needs. If you want a more potent and cost-effective method, then, sublingual consumption and vaping can be your go-to. Whereas if you are more of a casual consumer, then edibles like gummies and chocolates are idea. Knowing this concept is also essential for sellers, as then they understand the need for a variety of products. 

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