What Is ABV & Should You Keep It?

What is ABV And Why Should You Gather It?

Have you ever heard of ABV? Read our guide to learn about ABV and why you should keep your already vaped herbs. You can make a lot of use out of ABV, and therefore get almost 100% of the total cannabinoids found in medical marijuana. You know it makes sense.

What Does ABV Stand For?

ABV stands for ‘Already Been Vaped’. When a herb is vaporized it turns brown and develops a slightly different smell to the one you might be used to from fresh marijuana. People who are experienced in the art of vaping will collect ABV so that they can use it later. You may be wondering what they use it for if the material has already been used for vaping.

Should You Vape ABV?

Is it better to smoke rather than vape to get all of the cannabinoids, since when you smoke marijuana there is nothing left over? The answer to that is no, smoking is not better.  When you vaporize a herb you can absorb far more of the cannabinoids than you would through smoking, so even though not all of the cannabinoids get released through the first vaping it is more efficient. The remaining cannabinoids stay in the material so it makes sense to release them somehow later.

When we smoke, we can only absorb around 1/5th of the cannabinoids that are in the herb. The rest of the cannabinoids are broken down because of the high temperatures that occur in the process of burning. Those cannabinoids are lost forever. Vaping will release between 50 and 80 percent of the cannabinoids, and the rest stay in the leftover plant. That means there could be as much as half of the cannabinoids left in the ABV.

The vaporization process does not destroy the marijuana. What is left is just dry, brownish marijuana with a slightly different aroma. The plant has been through decarboxylation, and this means that it is safe to absorb THC from it through the alimentary route.  If you want to make brownies or cookies, you need to decarboxylate the material before you mix it up. There’s no need to do this with ABV because it has already been done. The flavor isn’t amazing, so you wouldn’t want to consume pure ABV, but you can do it for other purposes.

Experimenting With ABV

If you are thinking of experimenting with ABV, be sure to remember that the strength of the material will depend on the strength of the original marijuana and the temperature that you vaped it at. The temperature can have a lot of influence on the amount of cannabinoids that are extracted from the weed. There are some visual cues, a brighter color will mean that the ABV is more powerful in general, but there can be exceptions to this.

Sometimes dark brown material can still have a large amount of THC in it.  The time that it takes for ABV to kick in can be different to normal marijuana too. Sometimes it takes three hours to kick in, and sometimes it takes one hour. Sometimes the effects can last for a short time, and sometimes they will last for 24 hours. Because of this, you need to consider the consumption method carefully.

Capsule Form ABV

Using gelatine capsules to make ABV pills can be a simple and easy way of taking it in. You can buy capsules online and fill them yourself, the just swallow them. Some people add a little olive oil to the mix to help soak up the THC.  It can be hard to predict how quickly the capsules will kick in and how many you need to swallow to feel the results. If you have a lot of THC and you are open to experimenting in an almost ‘Russian roulette’ way then this can be a good, low-effort method but there are simpler options.

ABV & Peanut Butter Sandwich

Another simple and low friction way of using up ABV is to spread it onto some bread along with a layer of peanut butter. The fat from the peanut butter will absorb the THC and this means that your body will be able to absorb it better too. It is hard to measure the amount of ABV you are using in this case too, and you will probably want to mix it with salted peanut butter to mask the taste. This can be more effective than using capsules, tough, which is why it is a fairly popular method.

Getting the THC Out of the Herb

If you’re feeling more confident you can extract the THC from the ABV using some simple and comparatively easy methods, such as making ABV butter, or cooking ABV with coconut oil, and then straining the resulting product. Use a slow cooker set to 50 degrees Celcius, and leave it in there for several hours. The longer the better. Strain the liquid using a coffee filter, and you should get a powerful liquid that you can add to your baked goods or mix in with cocoa and then dilute to make a drink. It may take some experimentation to figure out the exact temperature and time to get the best results with these methods.

Take Care With Doses When Experimenting

As we have mentioned several times, it can be hard to figure out the right dose of ABV and you might find that it is too strong or lasts too long at first. While you are experimenting with it, start with just half a gram or one gram and wait for a few hours after taking it to see if it takes effect. If it doesn’t take effect, then you can  have another.

Do not take lots in one go unless you know that you have a couple of days where you can ride out the effects if there are any unwanted effects. THC is not dangerous by itself, but being high can be dangerous if you find that you are expected to perform complex tasks in that state. Play it safe and do not take more ABV than you are certain you will be able to handle unless you are going to have the time to ride out that high feeling for a while until it wears off. You can always take more later but you cannot undo a dose if it turns out that it was far too much for you to handle.

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