It’s not uncommon for people to seek out THC for its variety of benefits, and some on a merely recreational level. These days though, there are numerous options when it comes to the type of THC that is available to consumers. Two of the most popular forms are delta-9 THC, or delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, and delta-8 THC or delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol. But what’s the big difference, especially when it comes to the effects felt by consumers? Read on to find out.
What is Delta-8?
Delta-8 THC is produced with cannabis sativa plants, also called hemp plants, with a delta-9 THC level of less than 0.3%. According to the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp is legal to sell in the United States as are products made with it. From these hemp plants, delta 8 products can be made into a variety of forms.
Whether you opt for an edible like a gummy or an inhalable option like a delta-8 vape, first comes the extraction process to create it. Delta-8 is a minor cannabinoid in all hemp and cannabis plants, meaning it is there naturally in very small amounts. Because of this, many of the products available today are made with processed CBD.
Chemically speaking, there is one key difference between delta-8 and delta-9 THC. The double bond on their carbon chain lies in a different position; for delta-8 it is on the 8th carbon chain and for delta-9 it is on the 9th.
What is Delta-9?
Delta-9 THC is one of the major cannabinoids in cannabis plants, means it can be found abundantly. Delta-9 is the cannabinoid most users turn to when they are seeking out a more euphoric high. Most known for its intoxicating and psychoactive properties, most delta-9 THC comes from marijuana plants specifically.
The reason delta-9 THC can be so intoxicating is because of how the receptors in our bodies and the ECS (endocannabinoid system) react to it. The CB1 receptors in the ECS respond to delta-9 with what is referred to as a high binding affinity. This means that the interaction between this receptor and delta-9 is in excess.
Delta-9 is also known to have other effects such as relaxation, appetite stimulant, sleep aid and more. Like any substance though, delta-9 THC can affect everyone differently. Some users have also reported increased paranoia or trouble concentrating.
Differences In Effects
There are a few key differences when it comes to delta-8 and delta-9. One is based on their chemical structures, with a small difference in a double bond on the carbon chain that has big impacts. Delta 8 has the double bond on its 8th carbon chain while delta 9 has it on the 9th. This seemingly small difference is what is believed to cause the major differences in how the two cannabinoids make you feel.
According to some delta 8 users, the effects are like a milder version of delta 9 THC. Many users have reported a sense of calm and even clarity, while still experiencing some “high” with lessened side effects. Delta-8 could offer a middle ground to users, somewhere between traditional delta-9 THC and the non-psychoactive CBD.
The way delta 8 affects you is dependent on a few more factors still, including but not limited to your THC tolerance, your consumption method, dosage and even metabolism. These days there are a variety of ways you can consume delta-8 THC, from edibles to flower to tinctures and oils.
Finding a Reliable Product is Key
No matter what type of cannabinoid you are looking for, it’s always a good idea to check out third-party lab test results to ensure the quality of your product. Independent lab tests are the best way to find out how many cannabinoids are present in each product, and at what level.
If you are looking for a delta-8 product that will keep the euphoric effects to a minimum like anecdotal evidence suggests, you will want to find a product with an accurate label report that doesn’t contain more delta-9 THC than you want. An easy way to find the best delta-8 products on the market today is with Real Tested CBD and their independent lab test results and transparent reviews.