Does Cranberry Juice Help Pass a Drug Test? Here is What Science Say…

Daniel Miller avatar
Daniel Miller, Ph.D, Drug Testing Specialist

Last updated on Jul 18, 2023

Drinking 25oz of cranberry juice each hour for three hours before the test can help you to pass it. However, you need to take additional supplements for this method to work.

By drinking it before the drug test you’ll temporarily flush the drug metabolites out of the bladder and dilute your urine. Thus the concentration of THC metabolites will be lower than the detectable level.

But you can use water or any other drink instead.

Below we’ll explain why this method works and what you need to do.

Does Cranberry Juice Help Pass a Drug Test?

How to Use Cranberry Juice before The Drug Test

You will need


  1. Take the 10 grams of creatine ethyl supplement 3 hours before the test.
  2. Take 200 milligrams of vitamin B 3 hours before the test.
  3. Drink 25oz cranberry juice every hour for three hours before the test.
  4. Take a home urine test before you go to the test center.

How Does It Work

Cranberry juice is a natural diuretic that contains aspirin, zinc, niacin, and pectin. All these are known as possible home remedies for passing a drug test.

But do these components make this juice a reliable detox drink for THC detox? What do scientific experiment reports have to say?

It Contains Salicylic Acid

Salicylic acid is a colorless crystalline organic acid with the formula C7H6O3. This is a keratolytic and one of the key ingredients for making aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid).

There is a lot of supporting scientific evidence that confirms that taking aspirin some hours before taking a drug test can mess up results by giving a false negative.

For instance, these lab results in the Journal of Analytical Toxicology show that ingesting aspirin before a drug test may potentially yield negative results.

aspirin false negative

One thing that you need to understand, however, is that this method only works in the Enzyme Multiplied Immunoassay Technique (EMIT) drug tests but won’t beat a GC-MS test.

Luckily, the immunoassay is the most commonly used since it is easy to carry out and the cheapest for most drug screening companies to administer.

The GC-MS test is used as a confirmatory test if you’ve tested positive with the immunoassay test.

However, drug screening companies don’t rely solely on the GC-MS test because it’s quite expensive regarding the equipment used and time.

The salicylic acid content in juice might help in passing a drug test. However, there are a few grey areas that make it a little bit unreliable.

First, the amount of juice you need to drink to meet the required amount of salicylic acid is unclear.

When using aspirin to create a false negative in a drug test, it’s recommended to take four pills (amounting to 1300mg) 4 to 6 hours before the test.

Unfortunately, there isn’t any research to prove the amount of salicylic acid present in a given amount of cranberry juice.

Secondly, you need to be aware that while aspirin might cause a false negative, it’s not always a guarantee.



A study on the effects of zinc in detecting cocaine, methamphetamine, and THC, for instance, confirms that zinc can be effective in thwarting a drug test.

As I told you before, cranberry juice contains zinc content, albeit in small amounts. Thus, according to most people’s thinking, this juice is reliable in passing a drug screen.

Several online resources argue that when ingested, zinc bonds with THC metabolites making the metabolites too large to pass through the kidneys and are thereby rerouted to feces.

This isn’t true.

Most of the newest research reports including this 2013 post in the Journal for Analytical Toxicology, show that zinc has zero effect on drug test results when ingested.

Furthermore, this study notes that when ingested, there isn’t enough of this supplement in the urine sample to interfere with the results.

It states that zinc can only interfere with results if used as an adulterant (added directly into the urine).

In summary, our results support the possibility that addition of zinc directly to urine can produce false-negative results with EMIT-based testing. In contrast, our results refute the possibility that self-administration of zinc can produce false-negative drug testing results

Therefore, if you want to pass a drug test with zinc, you’ll need to add it into your urine sample rather than ingesting it.

There is a catch to this, though. Contrary to what previous studies suggested, the latest research, including this PubMed paper of 2013, states that new spot tests have been developed to detect the availability of zinc in the urine.

Zinc sulfate can invalidate urine drug and alcohol testing but can be detected using the novel spot tests developed.

Cranberry Contains Niacin

This is yet another popular reason that most people support their claim of cranberry ability to help pass a drug test.

About flushing metabolites from the body, the layperson believes that niacin promotes the breakdown of fat.

This isn’t true. As I have explained in my other article on the use of Niacin to pass a drug test, while niacin is involved in the catabolism of dietary fat, it only converts fat into energy but does not speed up your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR).

Another challenge that arises with the use of niacin to clean flush your system is the amount required. The thing with niacin is that it is only effective when used at high doses.

A typical regimen for this technique requires ingesting between 500mg and 2000mg of niacin each day plus several gallons of water for a couple of weeks before the screening date.

Worth noting, cranberry juice has a negligible amount of niacin (approximately 0.04g of niacin in 100g of juice).

Can you imagine the amount of juice that you need to force down your throat to attain the minimum required dosage of 500mg?


Pectin is a natural polysaccharide found in fruits. In science talk, pectin is the equivalent of gelatin derived from animals for use in the kitchen. Read about using Certo to pass drug tests here.

Unlike gelatin which is a protein, pectin is a fiber. This is what Kraft Foods uses to manufacture Certo and Sure-Jell, thanks to its excellent gelling nature.

How does Pectin work in a drug test?

Most of the marijuana metabolites are excreted with the feces. However, there’s a process called enterohepatic recirculation.

During this process, part of the metabolites from the intestines is reabsorbed back into the blood.

After that these metabolites can be excreted with the urine and be detected by the drug test.

Pectin in cranberry juice works as an absorbent. It binds to the marijuana metabolites in the intestines and prevents their reabsorption. So these metabolites are excreted with the feces.

Does Cranberry Juice Help to Detox from THC?

Marijuana metabolites (THC and others) are highly fat-soluble. They can be stored in body fat for months. From the fat THC is slowly excreted into the blood.

Some studies confirm that cranberry juice can help to improve fat metabolism and thus speed up the release of THC into the blood for further excretion.

In one of the most popular studies, the Canadian Cardiovascular Congress researchers asked the participants to include a glass of low-calorie juice in place of a soft drink alongside their meals.

The results showed a notable decrease in both BMI and body weight.

Drinking cranberry juice for burning fat is a complex process that involves counting calories and combining a well-balanced diet with exercise. Otherwise, it might not bear any fruits.

However, the researchers hesitated to attribute this weight loss directly to the cranberry.

This was mainly because the weight loss could also be linked to replacing soft drinks, which had high calories, with another drink with lower calories.

In its natural form, cranberry is a low-sugar juice that most find unpalatable due to its weird taste.

But that’s not what you get in most supermarkets and grocery stores. Instead, the market has a small portion of real cranberry juice topped up with high amounts of artificial sweeteners.

This might, therefore, end up adding more calories to your system rather than burning.

If you want to burn fat by drinking cranberry juice, you need to go for low-calorie juice with no added sugars.

Again, considering that natural juice has fructose, it might be recommendable to mix one portion of juice with one portion of water.

Generally, drinking it to burn fat involves counting calories and combining a well-balanced diet with exercise. Otherwise, it might not bear any fruits.

It Works as a Diuretic

Most scientific studies suggest that cranberry works as a diuretic. Put in layman’s language, a diuretic increases the amount of salt, water, and toxins that are flushed out of your system.

It does this by forcing you to take a pee frequently. However, this involves taking more of this juice non-stop to increase your urine output.

When used as a diuretic, it works in the same manner as water, coffee, or tea.

While it does not boost the excretion of metabolites in the blood or fat, it minimizes the concentration of the available metabolites in the urine sample, thereby taking the levels of metabolites to go below the concentration cutoff.

THC COOH concentration in the urine

You could also do this with plain water without having to spend a penny on cranberry juice as they work in the same way

As Betsy Foxman, Epidemiologist, Michigan School of Public Health puts it, when speaking to the NY Times, you are simply diluting. Dilution is among the most popular methods of passing a drug test.

You need to do it with moderation, though. Taking an obscene amount of liquid not only dilutes the metabolites in the urine but also alters several vitals of your urine, including creatinine levels, specific gravity (density of urine), and color.

This could alert the lab technician, thereby making you a candidate for a repeat specimen. If it’s evident that you’ve tried to adulterate the urine, there’s a high chance of going for a second observed sample.

You could also be putting your life in great danger since taking too much liquid may cause hyponatremia. This is a condition when there are abnormally low levels of sodium in your blood.

As an electrolyte, sodium helps in controlling the movement of water in and out of the cells.

Electrolyte imbalance may lead to confusion, nausea, fatigue, drowsiness, headache, and energy loss.

Of course, the last thing that you want to do when taking a drug test is appearing sickly before the lab technician.


As you may have realized, cranberry juice can indeed help you pass a drug test. But it does this only as a dilution method.

Therefore, you’ll need to take lots of it to dilute the concentration of metabolites as much as possible.

You could also do this with plain water without having to spend a penny on cranberry juice (they work in the same way, duh).

But remember that taking too much water within a short time could lead to hyponatremia and death at worse.

The information on this website about detox products and synthetic urines is for educational purposes only. We do not endorse or condone their illegal use. Always consider the laws in your area and the potential legal consequences. Consult with a healthcare professional before using any products. Your responsibility and well-being are paramount.