Skip to main content

This is quite an unknown fact around CBD Oil however; when taking CBD Oil with the right kind of food – foods rich in Fatty Acids, CBD Oil can be absorbed more efficiently by the body.

Often when a customer is beginning to take CBD Oil, they ask us here at CBD Oil UK how and when to take it and rightly so!

CBD Oil which is vastly different that hemp oil as it carries cannabinoids which are derived from the Cannabis Sativa L plant family carries specific benefits which hemp oil, produced from the seeds of the hemp plant does not.

Consistently taking CBD Oil by implementing it into your diet has been shown to carry various health benefits – these may be improved by taking CBD in the most efficient manner which is why you have came here!

The internet is full of misinformation and to be quite honest, can get very confusing at times. The best way to find out if it is more effective to take CBD Oil with or without food is to look into the science behind it and how it’s processed within the body.

Should You Take CBD Oil With or Without Food?

You should be taking CBD Oil with food. By taking CBD with food, you can improve the way in which the body puts the Cannabinoid to use by increasing its bioavailability.

Why Take CBD Oil With Food?

In short, you can improve what is known as the bioavailability of the supplement by taking it alongside the right kind of foods. By the right kind of foods, you should be looking towards foods which are rich in fatty acids.

The term bioavailability is defined as the following by Oxford:

 “the proportion of a drug or other substance which enters the circulation when introduced into the body and so is able to have an active effect.”

-Oxford Dictionary

In Layman’s Terms, Bioavailability means how available for use the substance is to be used in your body once it has been taken – the less waste here the better.

The primary way to take CBD Oil is orally, this means that the supplement must pass through your bodies digestive system. When passing through the digestive system, CBD alongside the other nutrients initially get broken down inside of the stomach by the hydrochloric acid. Once this step is complete, the small intestine begins absorbing the CBD in order to then pass it through the portal vein which leads the CBD into your liver.

It’s at this very point in the digestion process, in the liver where having food while taking CBD Oil can improve the bioavailability and absorption rate.

hat Happens to CBD in the Liver?

Once Cannabidiol (CBD) reaches the liver, a group of enzymes known as cytochrome P450 (CYP450) begin working on the compound.

They begin metabolizing the compound before it starts being distributed throughout the bodies circulatory system. Whilst this is happening, an event referred to as first pass metabolism occurs. This event breaks CBD down further into over 100 different metabolites – a majority of these metabolites are not used by the body and therefore are passed through the body in the excretion process.

When these metabolites are excreted out of the body containing CBD, this reduced the concentration of the supplement inside of your body and the overall bioavailability of the product.

This results in your body not getting as much CBD as what it would have due to the first pass metabolism.

However, when taking CBD alongside foods which are rich in fatty acids you can increase the bioavailability of the supplement. This occurs as the foods being taken are able to help the CBD bypass the first pass metabolism event.

This means that taking CBD with certain kinds of foods can influence more CBD entering the bloodstream when compared to taking CBD without food.

What Foods Are Best To Take With CBD Oil?

The best kinds of foods to take with CBD Oil to increase its bioavailability are foods which are rich in fatty acids. The term fatty acids includes foods which include both medium and long chain triglycerides.

The reason fatty acids are so good when taken alongside CBD is that they act as coupling agent for Cannabinoids such as CBD, CBDa, THC etc.

Foods rich in medium and long chain triglycerides are directly processed (metabolized) and turned into energy by the liver. By being directly metabolized into energy by the liver, we are able to reduce the amount of CBD which is lost in the first pass metabolism process.

Your body is then able to put the fats, CBD & other nutrients contained within the supplement to use almost immediately.

Research To Show Taking Food With CBD Is Better

There have been two studies conducted, both of which came to the conclusion that taking foods rich in fatty acids, containing both medium and long triglycerides with CBD improves the bioavailability of the compound to the body.

Study 1: University of Nottingham.
A study which was carried out at the University of Nottingham came to the conclusion to support that there is beneficial effects to taking CBD alongside fatty acids.

The study seen that taking CBD with long chain triglycerides bypassed some of the first pass metabolism process which then allowed for more CBD to be absorbed into the body.

Study 2: GW Pharma LTD
Another study which was conducted in April 2013 by a leading team of researchers at GW Pharma LTD (a medicinal cannabis company) found that the effectiveness of Cannabinoids (both CBD & THC) was four times higher when taken after a meal. You can view the study here.

What Food Should You Eat With CBD Oil?

You can see above that taking any food which is rich in fatty acids is certainly beneficial. You can see the difference between medium and long chain triglycerides below.

  • Medium Chain Triglycerides contain between 6-10 carbons.
  • Long Chain Triglycerides contain over 14 carbons.

You can find these in most fats and certain foods such as:

  • Soybeans
  • Salmon
  • Coconut Oil
  • Walnuts
  • Caviar
  • Meat
  • Avocado
  • Eggs
  • Oysters
  • Herrin

Can Bioavailability Improve Without Eating?

Yes, you can improve bioavailability of your CBD Oil without eating alongside it! The best way to do this is to take your oil sublingually, under the tongue.

You simply do this by taking a few drops of your favourite CBD Oil and placing these directly under your tongue. Hold the drops under your tongue for anywhere between 60-90 seconds and then proceed to swallow any remaining contents. By taking the oil sublingually, you are able to avoid most of the digestion process and therefore reduce the amount of wasted CBD.

Even when taking CBD Oil sublingually, it’s near impossible to completely avoid the digestion process. Taking a product such as the Pure 800mg CBD Oil Spray which has a MCT Carrier Oil as opposed to a traditional Hemp Oil Carrier liquid can vastly improve the bioavailability of the CBD.