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Meds How strong are my edibles?

momofthegoons

Vapor Accessory Addict
Staff member
Figuring out how much THC is in your edibles can seem tricky but it's really a simple formula.

The first thing you need to determine is how much THC is in your starting product. Most cannabis strains are around 10%, but some can go over 21%. If your bud's THC content isn't labeled by the dispensary or grower there are several sites that can give you a ballpark. Leafly is one and has an extensive library of strain information. If you can't find the strain you are looking for, a general assumption of 10% can be used.

Every gram of cannabis has approx. 1000mg. of dry weight. If your herb has 10% THC, 10% of 1000mg would be 100mg. So you can figure 100mg per gram of cannabis used. So to figure out how strong your edibles will be, you take the total milligrams of your ground herb and divide it by the amount of servings in your recipe. For example; three grams of ground marijuana equals 300mg THC. 300mg divided by the recipe yield, (a classic cookie recipe makes 60 cookies) equals 5mg per cookie.

It's always a good idea to use medibles with caution. It's recommended that you eat your medible with fatty or protein rich foods so that the effects of last longer in the body. If you eat cannabis in a candy form the high doesn’t last as long due to the sugar. When you've eaten an edible, it can take 2 hours to take effect. If you don’t feel high enough, don’t eat another edible! This can lead to your ingesting too much. Eat something fatty instead to increase the effect. If you feel too high, drinking orange juice or fruit juice to raise your blood sugar may help.
 

momofthegoons

Vapor Accessory Addict
Staff member
I just came across an even better site for calculating how much THC/CBD is in your recipe for your cannabutter as well as how much is in each dose of your finished product. Unfortunately, if you don't have the tested percentages of THC/CBD shown on your product you wont be able to accurately figure this out.

The calculator can be found here.
 

Baron23

Well-Known Member
I just came across an even better site for calculating how much THC/CBD is in your recipe for your cannabutter as well as how much is in each dose of your finished product. Unfortunately, if you don't have the tested percentages of THC/CBD shown on your product you wont be able to accurately figure this out.

The calculator can be found here.
You mean you aren't supposed to keep taking more and more each half hour until two hours later it hits you like a freight train and you lay on the couch drooling for six hours? Wow, I've been doing it wrong! hahahaha
 

Stevenski

Enter the Dragon
Staff member
You mean you aren't supposed to keep taking more and more each half hour until two hours later it hits you like a freight train and you lay on the couch drooling for six hours? Wow, I've been doing it wrong! hahahaha

No mate. You have been doing it just fine :smile:.
 

momofthegoons

Vapor Accessory Addict
Staff member
This has always been a tricky thing for me because I've never known the THC levels of my herb. This article sort of breaks it down in a way that's easily understood...

How to Precisely Calculate THC Dosages for Homemade Weed Edibles


Of all the questions people ask me about cannabis cooking, dosing THC properly is one topic that always causes home cooks the most concern.

When I started writing about cooking with cannabis, I taught people how to estimate a reasonable THCdosage range to use in their cooking, just as cannabis cooks have been doing for thousands of years. Determining this “dosage window” involves balancing factors such as plant strength with the tolerance levels of the people consuming the food.

But instead of a reasonable dosage window with variations of 10 – 15 milligrams, wouldn’t it be great to know exactly how many milligrams of THC per serving your homemade edibles contain? There’s a formula you can use to get a pretty close approximation, even when the plant matter you are using has not been lab-tested. Is this formula totally foolproof? No, because THC levels can vary widely, but it will give you a pretty good idea.

However, if you are cooking with cannabis that HAS been lab-tested, you can use this formula to calculate even more precisely just how many milligrams of THC—and even CBD—per serving your homemade edibles contain.

I’m going to explain the formula here, but don’t worry about doing the math because there’s a handy Marijuana Dosage Calculator tool that does all the work for you. You get access when you sign up for my free 10 minute online dosing class that will teach you how to use it anytime you cook with marijuana.


Determine THC Percentage

thc-absorption.jpg
For the sake of argument, let’s say that you do not know how much THC is in the plant material you are using, since most people won’t. A U.S. government study in 2009 said the national average of THC is 10 percent, but we know that not all weed is created equal.

Reportedly, the government grown cannabis from the University of Mississippi that is supplied to researchers tops out at a measly 3 percent THC, whereas a 2015 Colorado study that analyzed 600 samples from that state saw some top shelf strains containing a whopping 30 percent THC.

If you are cooking with schwag—low quality brick weed, trim or with government weed—use a THC content closer to 3 percent to start your estimate. If you know that your plant material is more potent than schwag, you might want to start your estimate with 10 percent or slightly higher.

But since Uncle Sam says average marijuana contains 10 percent THC, that’s what we will use in our example. It’s also a nice round number that makes it easier for people who are mathematically challenged to grasp the concept.

The Formula
calculate-the-thc-in-weed.png


Here’s how to do it:

  • 1 gram of cannabis = 1000 milligrams
  • 10% of 1000 milligrams is 100 milligrams
This means that, assuming we are using “average” marijuana, one gram of cannabis contains 100 milligrams of THC.

Are you with me so far?

Next, let’s calculate how many milligrams are in a batch of marijuana butter.

As an example, let’s say I used one ounce (equaling 28 grams) of average quality marijuana to make one cup of butter. That would mean 2800 milligrams of THC went into that one cup of butter.

Moving on, the amount of THC in a given recipe will depend on the amount of butter used.

marijuana-butter.png
If I used 1/2 cup of that butter to make a batch of 36 cookies, then 

the entire batch would contain 1400 milligrams. Divide 1400 mg by the number of servings, in this case 36, to determine that each cookie will contain about 38.8 milligrams of THC.

To recap, first you need to estimate the percentage of THC in your plant material (or use the numbers from the lab test) and divide that into 1000 to get the per milligram amount.

Next, calculate the number of milligrams in your infusion and in the amount of infusion you will use to make your recipe. Divide that by the number of servings your recipe makes, and you will know the per serving dose.

You can use this formula to create recipes that always ensure you are delivering a THC dose that meets your needs.

If you find a given recipe delivers too strong of a dose, cut the amount of cannabutter or oil and dilute with regular butter or oil to make up the difference. Cookies not strong enough? Add more THC to your recipe with some decarboxylated kief, hash or hash oil.

I hope you grasp the dosage calculation concept. If not, don’t worry; click to the free dosing class for another example and access to the dosage calculator tool that will do all the work for you.


 

momofthegoons

Vapor Accessory Addict
Staff member
Huh.... who knew?

How much pot is really in that brownie? Chocolate can throw off tests

Chemists say that there is something about chocolate that seems to interfere with cannabis potency testing. A chocolate labelled as 10 milligrams of THC could have far more and send someone to the emergency room with hallucinations.


How much pot is really in that brownie? Chocolate can throw off tests


How much marijuana is really in that pot brownie? Chocolate can throw off potency tests so labels aren’t always accurate, and now scientists are trying to figure out why.
In areas where marijuana edibles are legal, pot comes in cookies, mints, gummies, protein bars — even pretzels. These commercial products are labelled with the amount of high-inducing THC. That helps medical marijuana patients get the desired dose and other consumers attune their buzz.

But something about chocolate, chemists say, seems to interfere with potency testing. A chocolate labelled as 10 milligrams of THC could have far more and send someone to the emergency room with hallucinations.

The latest research on chocolate, to be presented at a San Diego meeting this week, is one example of chemistry’s growing role in the marijuana industry. Besides chocolate’s quirks, chemists are working on extending shelf life, mimicking marijuana’s earthy aroma and making products safer.

The marijuana business is at a crossroads in its push for legitimacy. The U.S. federal government still considers marijuana illegal, yet more than 30 U.S. states allow it for at least medical use (In Canada, cannabis is legal for both medical and recreational use). Even in those states, there are no recognized standard methods for testing products for safety and quality.

Chemists working for marijuana companies and testing labs are developing those standards and some are legally protecting their ideas.

Scores of cannabis-related inventions have received U.S. patents, said Boston attorney Vincent Capuano, who holds a doctorate in organic chemistry. Inventors have patented ways of putting cannabis into milk, coffee pods, ice pops and chewing gum.

“There’s a lot of flash and hipness, snake oil and marketing. But there’s still a lot of real chemical advance happening,” Capuano said of the industry. “It’s right in centre field for chemists.”

Marijuana contains hundreds of chemicals, including cannabinoids such as THC and CBD, a trendy ingredient with unproven health claims. Some pose challenges when they’re processed. Chocolate is a good example.

“The chocolate itself is affecting our ability to measure the cannabinoids within it,” said David Dawson, chemist and lead researcher at CW Analytical Laboratories in Oakland, Calif., which tests marijuana.

The more chocolate in the vial, the less accurate the test results, he found. He thinks some of the THC is clinging to the fat in chocolate, effectively hiding from the test.

In Ottawa, a government lab is working on a sensor to help police identify marijuana-impaired drivers. The goal is to detect cannabinoid molecules in saliva or breath droplets, using light and nanoparticles. Still years away from roadside use, the technology might someday also be used by marijuana growers to determine the peak time to harvest, said chemist Li-Lin Tay, who leads the work for National Research Council of Canada.


To do his work with chocolate, Dawson grinds a THC-infused chocolate bar in a commercial food processor, weighs samples, adds solvent to the material (“It starts looking like chocolate milk,” he says), before measuring the THC potency. He’s tested cocoa powder, baking chocolate and white chocolate to try to determine what ingredients are hiding the THC during testing.

This will lead to better testing standards and safer products, he said.

Dawson’s research is on the agenda at the American Chemical Society meeting in San Diego. The conference includes 20 presentations about marijuana’s technical challenges, said Markus Roggen, a Vancouver, B.C.-based chemist organizing the program. That’s a big change from a few years ago when presenters didn’t get much beyond the basics such as: “This is THC. This is CBD.”

Some in the marijuana industry hold “a mythical belief in the goddess of cannabis,” Roggen said, but chemists view marijuana more objectively. For its part, the industry is learning to accept the “new guard of scientists with a different approach to the plant,” he said.

Another focus of research is a group of chemicals called terpenes that give the marijuana plant its pungent aroma. Many terpenes get lost or changed in the process of making a THC or CBD extract. But users want a certain smell and taste, said chemist Jeffrey Raber.

Raber heads the Werc Shop, a Los Angeles company that mixes terpenes from lavender, oranges, black pepper and other plants to mimic the flavour and scent of cannabis varieties. The mash-ups are sold to companies who add them to oils, tinctures and foods.

Monica Vialpando, a San Francisco chemist, is working to prevent drinks with CBD and THC oils from separating into unappealing layers while sitting on the shelf. The oils don’t dissolve in water, a problem for companies trying to create new drinks.

“We’re fighting against the true nature of the THC,” Vialpando, who came to cannabis from the pharmaceutical industry.

Chemists solve the problem by increasing the surface area of the oil particles and adding ingredients, called surfactants and emulsifiers, to prevent separation.

She said consumers should be skeptical of outrageous claims for edibles and beverages, including that all the THC or CBD in a product will be absorbed. Some potency will always be lost in the digestive system before it hits the bloodstream, she said.

But for now, exactly what happens in the human body with most of these products is unclear, Vialpando said, because there’s been very little safety testing of cannabis emulsions in animals, much less in humans.
 

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