Activated CBD content? WTH does it all mean

My daughter (3) takes CBD everyday 1ml twice a day of the 2000mg stuff, for infantile spasm. Its helped us tremendously, but when I look at some manufacturers labels… I cant help but wonder if some products only have a high milligram number, while have a say 40% activated CBD as a marketing ploy. Our best results have been with Extract Labs full spectrum 2000mg, which has a 79% activated CBD content. There has to be more science to this activated percentage and mg labeling. Im sure there are companies out there selling inferior products mascarading as the real deal. I know there has to be someone here with some intimate knowledge of CBD oils and the confusing labels. Help me understand. @Growernick where do I go from here?


Let me see if I can help here. We may need to call in some experts on this one because we always want to offer meaningful guidance – especially when it pertains to our children.

A few things:

First: It’s nothing short of miraculous that you have managed to find in the cannabis plant the compound necessary to harness your daughter’s infantile spasm. It’s hard to make this bearded fellow cry but stories like hers have a tendency to make me tear up a little. If there is one way to pay this miracle forward it is this powerful call to action: Share her story with the world! Perhaps there is another little one out there can benefit from your daughter’s experience. This sharing of information can truly impact lives worldwide.

OK, now that I have that out of the way, my second point. I want to call in our entire @memberdirectory to lend a hand on this topic:

Hey everyone, this one is coming from the heart: let’s talk about activated CBD and labeling of CBD products. What does it all mean? How are we measuring dosages (I know a lot about decarbing and activating THC products but I must admit my knowledge is somewhat limited on CBD). Is there any standardization to dosages that we can apply appropriately?

Can our community please clear up some confusion for @smokinokie and I about CBD?

Thanks GNET family! :green_heart:


Hi all. There are several key points to understanding the bio-availability of cannabinoids. This a lonnnng answer. I’ll provide the basics here:

First: You better know that this is still a very young industry with highly varying degrees of knowledge per that manufacturer. If they can actually explain how it works and are happy to do so, its’ a good chance that they’re on the right path.

Secondly, CBD is more commonly found in its’ alternative state which is CBDA which is its’ ACIDIC molecular form. This just means that there is an acid-based coating that the plant grows to protect the base-molecule. The coating by the plant is called “Carboxylation.” (Think of it as the candy-coating on an M&M) This acid-coating is tough enough to protect the molecules from digestive stomach acids and doesn’t break down the same as with CBD itself. The simplest way for people to gain access to this CBD, is to remove that coating so that these base-molecules can be digested by the body instead of being excreted through waste. This is called “Decarboxylation.” To remove the coating from the molecules, CBDA has to be heated or decarboxylated (or “Decarbed”) for a certain time period (usually 180 degrees F for at least 35 minutes) to “melt” or “cook” the coating off and get access to the CBD inside. The trick is to get as complete of access to this as possible. This percentage of access is called bioavailability which describes how much of the CBD you will digest verses how much you’ll pee-out.

Remember: In this case, it’s up to the percentage of properly decarbed material that dictates your level of bioavailability. If it wasn’t heated enough or heated for less time than is required, it won’t be as bioavailable.

Thirdly: THEN, it’s up to the formulation of the product as to how bioavailable it is as there are numerous additives (natural or otherwise) that increase uptake of any substance. As an example, if you add certain amino acids to this, it will increase the bodies ability to digest and interpret it in a more advantageous way.

Fourth: Individual Metabolism of the patient/consumer. There are ways to increase your metabolism. ie: diet, exercise, supplements, etc.

Dosage-wise: this fully depends on bioavailability and your bodies’ individual metabolism. If the CBD product has 79% “activated” product, you’ll need to get their definition of “activated” and find out how they decarb it to know the actuality. The other 21% will be in CBDA form which has benefit as well but that’s not what’s being asked here.

I hope this helps…

David Gawitt

Gadco Agriculture, LLC
Golden, Colorado, USA


Not promoting them, but the website shows what lab reports should look like and how to read them.
They also have an article on the differences between activated and cbd on their site as well.
There is also a pie chart explaining uses for the cannabinoids
hope this helps.


I have found that John the owner of is extremely knowledgable on the subject of CBD and efficacy. He tests all his products to prove/disprove test results provided by his suppliers. Please reach out to him for expert advice. I particularly love the nano spray products they carry from Pura Gold. Peace.


Sorry to hear that my heart goes out to you and your family. I know a family friend who’s daughter can even inject anything in her through mouth. food, drink, medicine, etc. I have seen great results and yes full spectrum cad oil is the best for having for beneficial cannabinoids that help CBD have different effect based on the cannabinoid profile.

Hemp and Cannabis CBD is different as it contains different cannabinoids and more abundant source.

I also want to Mention that tinctures I have had much success with and Dinamed flower which is CBD dominant below 0.3%THC with 8-13%CBD Charlottes Webb is another cbd rich cannabis flower along with AC/DC, Shark Shock.

Look into THCA tinctures, which are non psychoactive. I found to be 4x more effective than CBD tincture alone. Also high CBGa and CBG is a very potent and medicinal cannabinoid with little research done so far. I have acquired my tincture through Medical Dispensary as patient I try to stay away from OCT products as they have been seeing test results with synthetic cannabinoids in the tincture which is in spice or K2. horrible and a shame on the people infiltrating the industry for a buck.


I would not take my statement as an expert medical opinion, I simply know a little about how the labels etc work, and hope to provide some insight while you wait for an expert opinion.

  1. The CBD market is not well regulated. Get all your products tested before relying on them if you can. I know of products that claim to have CBD in them but there was not a single trace.

  2. You may know about CBD vs CBD-A? CBD-A is CBD with a carboxyl group attached to it. The carboxyl group is often removed by heat in a lab to “active it”. Often times labels will refer to CBD as the “activated” form while CBD + CBD-A are combined to make up the “Total CBD” claim on the label. Again the regulation is not there to guarantee these words are being used as I am explaining them. CBD-A is still known to have some benefits, but CBD might be what you’re looking for.

  3. Hemp often lacks many of the cannabinoids and terpenes found in medical cannabis. But this MAY not be important to you (please see below)

The best thing you can do is find a product that works, test what’s in it, and try to get a similar product every time. Hopefully you can just get from the same supplier and not have to worry.

Hope this helps.


All cannabinoids are processed from CBGa and CBG. THCa and CBDa are activated by heat yes but also decarboxylation of the cannabinoids. There are ways to isolate these cannabinoids before they do so. Usually they deep freeze the live plant and used it extraction chemical extractions under pressures and condensation methods. Chromatography basically you can refine all the way to a condenser plate and have pure product.


We have had best results with full spectrum oils. Has a very small amount of THC in it.


I’ll try to explain what i have discovered in the simplest way i can. “Activated” CBD is basically decarbed cbd, or the A-acid has been converted or activated, meaning that you will feel the effects. Nonactivated CBD-A is what you really want if you have a medical issue, like cancer, copd, ect. You really won’t feel the effects, or the calming that cbd provides, but its doing its work.
Now i don’t claim to be an expert, these are just the results that have been consistent: back pain, joint pain, any pain activated cbd does wonders. Activated cbd worked well with anxiety and ptsd, but sometimes the patient might need activated thc. Activated thc works well with addicts. But with the patients i had with cancer or other medical ailments, a 20:1 thc:cbd (unactivated) combo works wonders. Hope this helps, and good luck!


Thanks for all the intelligent answers yall. Since we started CBD with Landree, it has felt like an experiment the whole time. She is such a little trooper. I’ve read countless articles about cannabinoids. I have read test results from many CBD oil batches. But, when I read the labels of some products’ I can’t help feeling mislead.
A second point to me asking this question for me is: If, we as an industry that is almost exclusively private, don’t get all of our ducks in a row, when it goes nationwide. I can guarantee that the big boy corporations are gonna have big govt. on their side. Lets try to tow the line and keep the big corporations in their lane. We need an system of how a product is accredited, may a seal of some sort verifying that the product is vetted and is true to its name. We as a group that has been in the shadows for decade, shouldn’t let this happen. We have the scientists’, the ingenuity, the willpower, and perserverance to make this happen. We all need to band together and make it so.
@Growernick Big Thank you for letting me get this out to the masses as a new comer.


“Activated” just means decarboxylated. So it’s CBD not CBD-A as Blinky states. Is this oil derived from Cannabis or from Hemp? I’'m familiar with products from Canada where the CBD is derived from Cannabis & the highest CBD oil it’s about 30%. I’m wary when I see anything higher than that.

The marketing is ridiculous for sure where the “2000mg” might be the total number of mgs in the bottle. That isn’t really helpful from a dosage standpoint and is just confusing for the consumer.

I encourage everyone to DIY their own oil since it can be half to a third the price. Let me know if anyone needs a process/recipe.


@Dianna.Donnelly you get it. So we end up doing all this math to figure out the dosing for a 3 year old. 2000mg/60ml ends up being 33.333mg/ml of 79% activated CBD. When you weigh these numbers against an oil with a lower percentage of act. CBD it gets ridiculous trying to figure out how much to dole out. My wife and I could tell with our kid when we tried a product with a lower percentage. To get the same CBD dosage of a certain brand it took 1.73 times the amount as the product with 79%. Then if you look at common CBD dosages for epilepsy it an enormous amount. I just get frustrated I guess. I’m still very happy with the results we are getting.
And yes, I would like to learn the process/recipe.


I’ve been in this Hemp and Cannabis industry for a little over a year now. At SaferGro we actually provide products for the at home grower. I’ve recently have been wondering how extensive the home growing and processing of your own grow is becoming in states where it is legal. What you just stated by DIY and saving a third to half of the cost is good news for me.
Thanks for your input!


@smokinokie Here’s a blog post by a lady who writes our Boveda grow journal. It explains it all really well. I believe she now uses a small crock pot instead of a double boiler.

As I understand it, sourcing strong CBD rich strains can be difficult. But DIY is half to a third the pricing of already made oil. Also, you can choose what oil you want putting more control into the patient’s or caregivers hands. If you have any questions, I can ask the author.


A little update on Landree. We upped the dosage of Oil for my little Hemp baby. Shes taking a total of 3ml of 79% activated. From a 2000mg 60ml bottle that’s about 100 mg a day. We are seeing increases in her vocabulary and decrease in her seizures. I’m just glad I can share our success with others. Extract Labs big kudos to them for making a great product.


So great to hear! When a friend was working in clinic advising patients on beginning doses, the patients were afraid to go about 25mgs per dose. She used to tell them that wee children take from 100 to 300 mgs per day of CBD oil.

So amazing & yes, wonderful to no longer have to keep it hush hush.