Cannabis is a tricky substance. The federal government still considers marijuana as a schedule 1 drug, despite 29 states having medical programs and eight offering a recreational option. This level of legality hasn’t done much for some patients, having lost their jobs after failing a drug test regardless of their medical clearance. Marijuana’s blurry permissive lines have many patients wondering if they may get the boot next. If truly possible, what gets marijuana out of your system?
First, Know the Specs
True abstinence from cannabis is the only true way to ensure a clean system. Since this isn’t possible for most patients, a bit more information is needed to know how to get around this.
Marijuana’s psychoactive ingredient is THC, which is fat soluble. After its effects fade away, fat cells release THC metabolites present in the system into the bloodstream. Metabolites are what are left in the body after a substance has been processed in the body. Flushing these metabolites fully is dependent on a few different factors for the user including:
- Body mass index (BMI)
- Cannabis consumption rate
- The potency of the marijuana ingested
- The amount of cannabis ingested
- Rate of exercise
- The specific criteria of the drug test
THC metabolites have a half life of seven days, meaning that the amount present in the system decreases by 50 percent. It can take at least three to four weeks for metabolites to flush from a regular user’s system. For chronic consumers, cannabis can stay present in urine for 77 days after last use.
For reference, these metabolites last in urine for 10 to 30 days for regular users (three to 77 for heavy ones), one to seven days in blood, 90 days in hair and one to seven in saliva.
Thankfully, a standard drug test can be passed without all weed out of the system. THC metabolite levels need to be just below the minimum amount required per specific test, which is typically 50 mg/mL.
With quite a few ways to get rid of weed in your system, knowing this info will help with finding the best route.
The Weed System Flush
A starting point for the most basic marijuana detox process is to dilute your urine. People usually resort to chugging massive amounts of water in efforts to achieve this. Water only dilutes the urine temporarily, so starting days or weeks ahead of a test is pretty fruitless. Chugging two liters the day of would be slightly better, but still creates a whole new problem. Urine then becomes colorless and loses its base level of acids and vitamins, both signs that lab workers look for when drug testing. There are ways around this, like certain detox drinks that mask dilution. Supplementing Vitamin B and creatine are also helpful in this.
Vitamin B-2 and B-12 help give urine its yellow hue so taking about 50-100 mg hours before the drug test will bring the color back. Creatine is also an integral part of this process. As a naturally occurring acid that comes out with body waste, lab techs can easily identify when it’s not present. It only has a half life of about three hours, so taking a higher-than-average does hours before the test should do the trick. Once your body breaks down the amount of creatine it needs, it automatically flushes the rest out of your system.
What Gets Marijuana Out of Your System
Water, B vitamins and creatine aside, there are other useful methods. Light consumers could take the fruit pectin route, which requires the user to mix a pectin packet with an electrolyte drink the day of the test. Fruit pectin is high in fiber, which would help prevent THC metabolites from entering urine or the bloodstream and instead being expelled through bowel movements.
Exercise also has some benefits for flushing weed from the system. Since cardio and strength training help burn fat, exercising would burn off the THC stored in fat cells. It also encourages sweating and THC is excreted in small amounts through sweat. Exercising isn’t recommended within 24 hours of a drug test however, because THC is re-released into the bloodstream as fat burns. One study found that THC concentrations in blood plasma increased up to 15 percent, so it’s best to get exercising done in the days prior to testing.
Detox drinks are one of the most popular methods, though they are not always a guarantee. A consumer can find drinks specific to hair tests, blood tests and urine tests, but it’s best to go with a top rated brand. Clear Choice Rescue Cleanse, One Shot Concentrate and Mega Clean have high ratings.
If all of the above fails, there’s always synthetic urine. Clear Choice makes a version of this called Sub Solution, and it is highly recommended.
Want to read more about marijuana detoxing? Read this