Can You Build CBD Resistance Over Time?

by | Apr 6, 2023 | Latest News | 0 comments

Cannabidiol is a naturally occurring chemical found in the cannabis or hemp plants. Discovered in the 1940s, cannabidiol is one of one hundred and thirteen cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. People often assume that our bodies build CBD resistance the same way we build a tolerance to THC or alcohol. That actually may not be the case!

First Of All, What Is CBD Tolerance?

Tolerance is when the body becomes used to a specific medicine, supplement, or substance. When the body builds tolerance, more of the substance is required over time to produce the same effects. The occurrence of building tolerance is typically categorized into three groups:

  • Behavioral.
  • Cellular.
  • Metabolic.

A behavioral tolerance means that psychologically you have adapted to the results of the supplement. A cellular tolerance means your body’s cells are becoming less responsive to the supplement, requiring higher doses over time. Metabolic tolerance shows that less of the supplement is reaching the target area. While these are the three most common tolerances, it is possible for a supplement to affect all 3 groups or none at all!

Because different supplements affect people differently, we may develop tolerances at different rates. Environmental factors and genetics play prominent roles in building a tolerance to medications.  Cannabinoids such as THC mostly build tolerance on the cellular level. When people use THC consistently, their endocannabinoid receptors become less sensitive and produce less. Studies suggest that this is not the case with cannabidiol. It is believed that CBD users develop a reverse tolerance.

THC Tolerance vs. CBD Tolerance

The way our bodies develop tolerance to cannabidiol is actually almost the opposite of what you may think. Many people refer to the way we build resistance to cannabidiol as a CBD reverse tolerance. Cannabinoids like THC bind to our endocannabinoid receptors, resulting in increased tolerance with consistent use. Our bodies already have endocannabinoids, so the THC binds to your receptors in a similar way to the existing cannabinoids.

As a result, your body responds by sending fewer endocannabinoids. This means you will need to consume more THC to feel the same high or medicated as previously experienced. Cannabidiol does not offer the same decrease in endocannabinoid production with consistent use. Because cannabidiol does not bind to the endocannabinoid receptors in your body the same way as THC, tolerance is built differently.

This difference means that once you find your perfect daily CBD dose, you may not ever need to change it.

CBD and Health


Is Cannabidiol Legal In The United States?

Yes, all 50 states have legalized the sale and consumption of cannabidiol. Though it is legal in all states, there are varying levels of restriction on the supplement. In December 2015, the FDA allowed researchers to conduct clinical CBD studies. By 2018, legalized hemp in the U.S. was permitted for agricultural production, and CBD supplements were legal to produce, sell, and consume as long as they were hemp-derived and contained 0.30% THC or less.

Can You Get Addicted to Cannabidiol?

There are many benefits of adding a CBD supplement to your daily vitamins. If you choose to take a cannabidiol supplement every day, you will of course have a higher level of endocannabinoids. This is beneficial for regulating all body systems – but are there downsides?

Cannabidiol is a non-psychoactive and non-addictive chemical. Some people believe that THC and CBD are addicting – but there is no research that supports that claim. In fact, there is a sturdy accumulation of scientific research that supports the opposite. It is very unlikely to develop a CBD dependence.

According to Harvard, “CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential…. To date, there is no evidence of public health-related problems associated with the use of pure CBD.” Unlike other types of remedies for pain, inflammation, or insomnia, the medical community has not determined to date, that CBD resistance with long-term use poses any health risk.

Is There Such Thing As CBD Withdrawals?

If cannabidiol is non-addictive, can you still experience withdrawals if you stop taking it regularly? The simple answer is yes, if you stop taking any supplement cold turkey, you may experience minor withdrawal symptoms. While these withdrawal symptoms may be extremely minor, it’s best to be informed of the potential symptoms.

If someone stops taking CBD daily, it is a possibility they may experience:

  • Fatigue.
  • Anxiety.
  • Increased irritability.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Decreased mood.

These symptoms may stem from the decrease of endocannabinoids produced in your body. You should adjust relatively quickly to stopping cannabidiol consumption – typically in about 2 or 3 days. If CBD resistance is a concern for you, stopping all CBD supplements should not produce any major side effects.  Talk to your physician about taking CBD supplements and your plan to stop using them.

Cannabinoid Tolerance Breaks and Concerns About CBD Resistance

The term “tolerance break” is commonly used in the cannabis community. A tolerance break can be described as a break from using cannabis in hopes of resetting the body’s cannabis receptors. Tolerance breaks are common for THC users who are looking to completely detox their bodies of THC. Because THC binds to our endocannabinoid receptors, you will need to consume more THC over time to feel the same effects. The goal of a THC tolerance break is to reset the tolerance – meaning you will start a clean slate and won’t need as much THC to feel high.

Some cannabis users may take a week-long tolerance break, while others may take months away from the supplement. Because cannabidiol tolerance is different from THC tolerance, is there a point in taking a CBD tolerance break? In short, the answer is no – there is no benefit to taking a tolerance break from cannabidiol according to many clinical studies.  It is currently deemed safe to use long-term.

CBD’s reverse tolerance effects allow for the body not to require more of the supplement over time, meaning you won’t need to take a break.  There are no clinical studies yet that have determined CBD resistance is a risk, even when used daily. While tolerance breaks aren’t necessarily needed for CBD users, it is always best to listen to your body.

Different Routes of Administering Cannabidiol

Cannabidiol (CBD) comes in several different routes and forms these days. You can purchase CBD in a capsule, edible, tincture, whole flower, vaporization, topical, and even suppository form. If you are concerned about CBD resistance, you can try different routes to achieve your wellness goals.


Quality CBD supplements are commonly consumed orally. Taking a CBD supplement in the form of a capsule may be the easiest way to receive your daily dose. While CBD capsules are an easy way to boost the endocannabinoids in your body, it does not have the quickest onset when consumed orally.


Similar to capsules, CBD edibles are also consumed orally. Because the body must metabolize the supplement, it can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours to feel the relief of an oral CBD supplement. Edibles have a bioavailability of about 4%-12% – which is lower than pure oils or inhalation methods. Though lower bioavailability is available through oral supplements, CBD edibles can be a tasty treat and may help with a variety of symptoms.


Tinctures are another route of administration for consuming CBD. Tinctures are a sublingual product that is created by diluting CBD oil in alcohol. Tinctures became a widely used route of administration before CBD education was widespread. The bioavailability for tinctures is similar to oral supplements, with about 4%-12% bioavailability available. Tinctures can be flavored and added to foods and beverages.

Smoking and Vaping

Additionally, people have grown very fond of smoking and vaping CBD. Whole flower CBD is available for purchase and has a very high bioavailability of around 25% when consumed. Smoking and vaping CBD offers immediate onset of relief and can be very beneficial for users who experience several ailments.

Despite the quick onset and high bioavailability, many doctors do not recommend smoking or vaping CBD. Because you have to heat the CBD in order to inhale it, you are more susceptible to inhaling carcinogens as well. Smoking and vaping CBD may lead to chronic cough, bronchitis, and inhalation of toxic products such as carcinogens. If you are considering smoking or vaping CBD to treat your condition, it is best to consult with your primary care physician first.


Cannabidiol is also available in the form of topical creams and lotions. This method of administration is great for anyone suffering from chronic pain. You can rub a topical CBD cream right onto the tender or sore area for targeted relief.

There is little preclinical research that shows the bioavailability of topical CBD creams and lotions. Despite the lack of preclinical evidence, there are several patient testimonials that discuss the long-lasting effects of topical CBD products. Topicals that are absorbed through the skin are localized, with no known potential of contributing to CBD resistance.


Finally, the last route of administration is the suppository route. This route is relatively uncommon in comparison to the others. Suppository CBD supplements can be beneficial in relieving menstrual cramps, Crohn’s disease, and even lower back pain. There is limited research available regarding the bioavailability of suppository CBD supplements.

CBD Discount

Our Cannabidiol Supplements May Be Right For You

DocCBD offers a line of With seven different products to choose from, we have formulated products for every wellness need.  Read our COA to learn more about the natural extracts that work with cannabidiol that can help with symptoms of insomnia, inflammation, anxiety, and chronic pain.

Our products include:

  • 25 MG Broad Spectrum CBD Capsules.
  • CBD Sleep Gummies with CBG and CBN.
  • Fast Acting CBD Pain Roller.
  • Mint Flavored CBD Calm Tincture.
  • 25 MG CBD Softgel Capsules.
  • CBD Pain Relief Cream.
  • 12.5 MG CBD Softgel Capsules.

Because cannabidiol is a non-FDA-approved supplement, several poor-quality CBD products are available. When purchasing cannabidiol products, it is important to buy from a reputable source. We strongly recommend asking for COAs – certificates of analysis – when CBD shopping. The COA is a complete list of “ingredients” in the product and is important for the consumer.

All DocCBD products are domestically sourced from American agricultural hemp and are complete with COAs. Our supplements are formulated using patented bio-enhanced technology to optimize bioavailability and absorption. This allows for the maximum benefit from natural cannabinoids that survive the digestive process to provide the best value for wellness.

Our patented cannabidiol supplements are gluten-free and lactose-free, and other ingredients are identified as GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) per the FDA’s standards. Our supplements are also free of artificial flavors, coloring, or fragrances. Every DocCBD product is third-party tested for quality and safety.

DocCBD offers a monthly subscription in order to help our patients receive quality cannabidiol supplement products at discounted rates. If you have any questions on how DocCBD may be able to help you reach total wellness, we are happy to help! Please feel free to call our office at (888) 316-6659.

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