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How Long Does THCA Stay in Your System?

How Long Does THCA Stay in Your System?

Mar 12, 2024 | 0 comments

THCA has gained recognition amongst the cannabis industry and all of our fellow cannabinoid friendly folk. Now that we have discovered a fresh way to deliver the same euphoric high to your front door, there are some common questions surfacing.

If THCA provides a high similar to THC, does it stay in your system as long? We’re going to navigate through the steps necessary to provide you with comfort and safety while stoned.

A woman wearing sunglasses and blowing out smoke from a pre-roll

What is THCA?

THCA or Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid is found within raw cannabis plants. It is the precursor to THC and without it – THC would not exist. THCA offers many therapeutic and medicinal benefits in its raw form, however it is not psychoactive in this state. A process called decarboxylation, which is essentially the application of heat, is necessary for THCA to transform into THC and provide psychoactive effects and a high just like you get from THC! What’s the biggest difference? THCA can be delivered to your doorstep legally in most states!

What is THCA Used for?

THCA can be utilized in your ultimate health journey. It has been found to aid with inflammation and nausea or vomiting; encompassing antiemetic and anti-inflammatory properties. There is also on-going research into the neuroprotective and anti-cancer benefits that THCA can provide. Many medical professionals and scientists are looking into THCA for potential aid with conditions such as fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, Crohn’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, arthritis, and more.

The main takeaway here is that THCA is used to help relieve stress, pain, swelling, and protect your neurons from negative side effects of other medical conditions. 

The extensive beneficial characteristics of THCA are also just a cherry on top for those of us that enjoy THCA recreationally instead of necessarily for medicinal purposes. THCA can be smoked, vaped, or consumed through baking or cooking it at high temperatures to decarboxylate THCA into THC. Thus, inducing the euphoric high us stoner friends are familiar with from its counterpart THC. 

Cannabis leaf and THCA flower next to a drug test strip in space

Does THCA Show up on Drug Tests?

The short answer here is, yes.

Drug tests that specifically target THC will be triggered by the usage of THCA – especially when it has undergone decarboxylation and dropped a carboxyl group transforming it into – you guessed it – THC.

Even raw THCA can still potentially appear on a drug test. Throughout the curing process of the raw cannabis plant, small amounts of THC are already being released as decarboxylation begins taking place at this stage. Direct sunlight or storage near any source of heat can also induce decarboxylation on a smaller scale. Keep in mind that in order to reap all the benefits of potent THCA, further decarboxylation still must occur such as smoking, vaping, or cooking it.

Regardless of the stage THCA is in during consumption, you are better safe than sorry and should assume that you have detectable THC in your system.

There are also many different types of drug tests such as urine, hair follicle, or blood tests. Each test may differ in how far back they can trace your usage of THCA.

How to get THCA out of your system? Unfortunately, there is not necessarily a bulletproof method to rid your body of THCA. Plan ahead and avoid the stress!

A red analog clock with a cannabis leaf in the middle of it

Want to learn more about THCA and drug tests? Read this blog post!

How Long Does THCA Stay in Your System?

This question is a tough one to answer – as it is extremely variable. Each and every one of us is unique in our own way internally and externally. Thus, here are some factors to consider before consumption of any cannabinoid – especially if a future drug test is in question or you have somewhere important to be that may not be the best environment to be high in. 

Factors that Influence Your THCA High


Always pay close attention to the recommendations any company or product may include for the use of THCA. You should start with a smaller dosage and increase over time as you gain confidence and comfort. The amount of THCA you consume may differ from each product based on its specific concentration of THCA. The more you consume, the longer it will take to leave your system and the longer your high will last.

📍Method of Consumption

The form in which you consume THCA may induce effects faster than other options. Smoking or vaping THCA will typically induce effects much more quickly than edibles. However, the longevity of your high may be shorter when smoking or vaping compared to edibles. Edibles need time to break down in your system and therefore take more time for the onset of effects and these effects may last longer.


If you’re an avid cannabis user, the same dosage of THCA for you may not promote the same intensity nor longevity of effects for others with a lower tolerance. We recommend any newcomers to the world of THCA to start slow and small with their intake. You can always increase your dosage but you cannot take back what you’ve already consumed when you realize it may have been more than you would’ve liked. If you’re new here, check out our beginner’s guide for THCA!


THCA can be derived from different strains of cannabis plants. Envision what your specific cannabis high goals are and find a strain that works best for you. Here is a little tip to help you remember the difference between the most common strains: 

Indica – In Da Couch: This strain is best for evening use and can promote relaxation, stress relief, but may make you sleepy.

Sativa – Sunshine: These strains are best for daytime use and allow you to function with more energy throughout the day. Sativas are known to spark creativity and focus.

Hybrids: These are pretty straightforward. Hybrids offer a middle ground to Indicas and Sativas and can be enjoyed in almost any environment (per your comfort level with THCA).

Certain strains can be more potent than others and offer different effects across the board. Do your homework and find the best strain for you and your experience level. Read more about what to look for in a THCA pre-roll!

Different strains of THCA pre-rolls: sativa, indica, and a hybrid

📍Metabolism / Body Composition

We all possess different metabolic rates, the rate at which consumable products are broken down and passed throughout our digestive system.

Some science states that on average women have higher metabolisms than men, and thus women may experience the effects more quickly, strongly, and for a shorter amount of time. Your body weight and mass index can also affect how quickly your body metabolizes THCA. 

Our bodies’ chemical compositions are all different and it is important to note if you have any pre-existing health concerns as THCA may interact within your system differently. Again, we recommend starting slow and learning about yourself through monitoring your dosage, tolerance, and comfort levels.

📍Food / Water Intake

It is important to eat some sustenance before consuming THCA. Most vitamins, medicines, and supplements always recommend eating food before or with your dose. Consuming THCA on an empty stomach will not necessarily harm you, however ensuring that you’ve eaten, can prevent any potential cause for an upset stomach and help your body digest it more slowly.

Staying hydrated is crucial for anything. Dehydration can cause many different negative side effects and the combination of dehydration and cannabis use may be a perfect cocktail for discomfort.

A man laying on the couch with a bowl of food and a TV remote in his hand

Tips: How to Come Down from THCA High

Okay so you’re uncomfortable, anxious, or straight panicking – or maybe you have somewhere to be. No need to worry, we’re playing a mental game here. Take deep breaths, sit down and relax.

📍Drink water

We’ve said it once and we’ll say it again, dehydration is not fun especially when you’ve now added cottonmouth on top of it. Keep a glass of water handy and stay hydrated throughout your high. We also love electrolytes, and they can add some yummy flavors into your cottonmouth cure and help resolve the symptoms of dehydration much faster.

📍Take a seat

If you’re at home and experiencing discomfort or panic, relax. Literally, relax and find a cozy seat on the couch or lay down in bed. Close your eyes and breathe or even allow yourself to doze off and wake up once the effects have subsided.

📍Find something to focus on

Turn on your favorite comedy movie, watch music videos, or start working on a simple – safe project. “Dale, no power tools.” You may consider painting, coloring in an adult coloring book, working on a puzzle, or playing a video game. Anything that stimulates your senses and takes the spotlight off of your high can help you relax and enjoy the ride.

📍Phone a friend

We love validation and words of affirmation. Call your favorite person and have them tell you a good story, or even just ask them about their day. You get some brownie points for caring and also may start feeling better when your safe person is confirming you’re okay. It’s also a great distraction from your high and can make the time go by faster.

📍Lastly, avoid any combination of other stimulants

Coffee, energy drinks, any form of caffeine is not going to magically wake you up from your high. In fact, it may cause adverse effects when you are mixing the two. We also recommend avoiding alcoholic beverages – nothing that can cause a cross fade. Drink some high quality H2O!

Concerned about the safety of THCA flower? Read more about it here!

So Truly How Long Does THCA Stay in Your System?

Taking all influencing factors into consideration and making a plan to stay ahead of any roadblocks is the only way to truly uncover the answer to this question.

The answer will vary for each and every one of us! Educating yourself and learning your own personal comfort level and tolerance are key here.

THCA has opened the door for new opportunities within the cannabis world. Moonwlkr offers three different strains of THCA to help you fuel your customized stoner experience. Strap in and enjoy the ride!

A hand in sterile gloves holding an analog alarm clock next to cannabis plants
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