Some sources report that in rare cases, false positive test results have come from CBD oil that breaks down into very small amounts of THC in the stomach. Other studies, however, have refuted this finding.
This article explains why a positive drug test can happen with CBD use, which types of CBD are most likely to trigger one, and what you can do to avoid it.
Use the utmost caution and do your research when purchasing a quality CBD oil product to ensure its purity, especially if you need to undergo a drug screening.
Very small amounts of THC present in the material that CBD is extracted from can get into the CBD oil in high enough amounts to result in a positive drug test. This scenario may be more likely to occur when CBD oil is purchased from cannabis dispensaries in places where cannabis is legal.
How to Avoid a Positive CBD Drug Test
What are the odds that CBD oil users will test positive when subjected to illicit drug screenings? And what can be done to prevent it?
In fact, one study discovered that almost 70% of the CBD products sold online were mislabeled. This caused "potential serious harm to its consumers.” The reason for this widespread mislabeling is that CBD products are not strictly regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
CBD oil is usually marketed as THC-free, but that's not always the case. Full-spectrum CBD oils contain other cannabinoids, which may include THC. Isolate products may be contaminated with THC, as well.
There are several techniques for extracting CBD oil from the cannabis plant. The extraction method determines whether the CBD oil is an "isolate" or a “full-spectrum oil.”
There are many distinctions between marijuana and hemp that relate to CBD oil. Marijuana contains both THC (the "high"-inducing element) and CBD. Hemp contains CBD and only trace amounts of THC.
Depending on how much CBD (and thus THC), you consume, how often you consume it, your body weight and your diet, it’s possible for THC to accumulate in your body in as little as four to six days and trigger a positive drug test. Research has found that THC can be detectable in your system for up to 30 days, but it’s usually only present in heavy cannabis users after the first week.
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While the information here suggests CBD won’t make anyone fail a drug test, there’s no way to guarantee that. The only way to ensure you will pass a drug test is to abstain from using any sort of CBD product.
So you’re in the clear, right? Not quite. There are two ways you could hit that 50 ng/mL mark.
Why CBD might cause you to fail a drug test
Drug tests don’t screen for CBD, but that doesn’t mean you’re in the clear.
First, THC is fat-soluble, so when you ingest it — especially via edibles or a drop of oil under the tongue — it’s absorbed along with other fats and can be stored in your body’s fatty tissue.
And in 2018, the CDC released a report that found that more than 50 people in Utah were poisoned by CBD products that actually contained synthetic marijuana commonly known as Spice and K2.
How cannabis drug tests work
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When it comes to marijuana, drug tests typically only screen for THC — the compound in cannabis that gets you “high” — or one of the compounds created when your body metabolizes it. And by law CBD products can only contain up to 0.3% THC.
During a recent conversation, postdoctoral fellow Tory Spindle, Ph.D., a researcher in the Behavioral Pharmacology Research Unit at the Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, explained how we drug-test for cannabis.
How We Drug-Test For Cannabis
Finally, Spindle pointed out the findings of the Johns Hopkins study are highlight the issue of some poorly regulated CBD products being advertised as “THC free,” even though they were found to contain levels of THC similar to (or higher) than the THC levels present in the cannabis used in a study conducted by Ryan Vandrey, Ph.D., associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
The Feds Are Coming For Delta-8 THC
“There is a need to understand whether the use of CBD products (. ) can impact drug testing for cannabis given their growing availability and increased interest in CBD for therapeutic purposes.”