An Introduction to Delta-8
Are you feeling hazy about delta-8 THC? You’re not the only one.
Most people are already familiar with delta-9 THC (simply referred to as “THC”) and cannabidiol (CBD). Delta-8 is another cannabinoid found in cannabis plants. In 2020, delta-8 sales reached $10 million.
This cannabinoid is picking up in popularity, too.
What exactly is delta-8 THC, and how does it work? What potential health benefits can you experience with THC products?
Keep reading to find out! With this delta-8 overview, you can learn everything you need to know before trying delta-8 for the first time.
Read on to learn more about this interesting phytocannabinoid today!
What is Delta-8?
Before we dive into the details, let’s answer the question that’s likely on your mind: what is delta-8 THC, exactly?
Delta-8 is one of the many cannabinoids (or phytocannabinoids) found in cannabis plants. Cannabinoids are chemical compounds that can interact with the human body’s natural endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS was named with cannabinoids in mind since cannabis was discovered first.
Cannabis plants contain over 540 chemical substances, including over 100 cannabinoids. Scientists are still learning more about cannabinoids, though. There are many they haven’t delved into deeper yet.
Some cannabinoids are more prominent than others, making it a challenge to study each cannabinoid in detail.
Cannabinoids like CBD and THC can interact with the mind and body. Different cannabinoids can cause different effects, though.
For example, CBD is best known for its soothing, therapeutic effects. CBD might help ease anxiety or pain. It could also help you sleep or ease nausea.
THC, on the other hand, could help stimulate your appetite. In addition to pain relief, it’s also known for its psychoactive properties. For example, THC could make you feel high or cause hallucinations.
What is delta-8 THC exactly, then?
Delta-8 is the degraded form of delta-9 THC. Usually, cannabinoid-synthesizing enzymes create cannabinoids like CBD. With THC, however, you can wait for delta-9 to degrade into a new form of THC.
Delta-8 vs. Delta-9 THC
What exactly is the difference between these two forms of THC?
The main difference is a single chemical bond. Remember, delta-8 is considered the degraded form of delta-9 THC. They are chemically similar, with the difference of their chemical bonds.
Delta-8 is one step over from delta-9’s placement.
The two forms of THC do share similarities, though. For example, both might:
- Ease pain symptoms
- Reduce nausea
- Stimulate your appetite
One of the big differences between the two is the potency. In fact, delta-8 has only 70% of delta-9’s potency. If you’re concerned about experiencing intense side effects, consider trying delta-8 instead.
The reduced potency makes it ideal for first-time users. You won’t have to worry about the intense psychoactive effects associated with delta-9.
For example, you might not experience disorientation or fogginess if you choose delta-8 over delta-9. You might avoid the paranoia and anxiety-related side effects, too.
Before trying THC products for the first time, it’s important to remain realistic. Everyone experiences effects a little differently. For example, your age, weight, or current health might impact the effects you experience.
Scientists are still researching the full range of effects THC might have on the body, too.
Is It Legal?
Is delta-8 THC legal to use in the US?
According to federal and state laws, the answer is yes. You can legally purchase delta-8 products online. Before you do, however, make sure to check the label.
You shouldn’t purchase products that contain over 0.3% THC. Only products that contain less than 0.3% are legal for purchase. If the product doesn’t indicate the amount, make sure to double-check with the supplier beforehand.
You should also refer to your local and state laws, too. Laws are constantly changing regarding delta-9 THC’s legality. Changes in state and federal laws might impact your ability to purchase THC online.
Some companies won’t ship products to areas if the local law conflicts with H.R. 2: The Agricultural Act of 2018. We also refer to this act as the 2018 Farm Bill.
You’ll take full responsibility if you purchase THC products in areas where the Farm Bill prohibits THC use.
However, delta-8 is legal to purchase and use on a federal level in most states. Otherwise, you might struggle to purchase THC in:
Despite the legality concerns, delta-8 is becoming more popular throughout the US. Before purchasing THC products for the first time, compare prices. Prices have increased 18% year-over-year on average.
Researching different suppliers can help you find a company that offers the products you need at an ideal cost.
Can Delta-8 Make You High?
Can delta-8 make you high, the same way delta-9 does?
While yes, you might feel high using either form of THC, remember: delta-9 products have a higher potency. You might not experience as much of a high using delta-8 THC products.
Either way, you should avoid using machinery before using either form of THC. Avoid driving, too.
Are you prone to using cannabinoids regularly? Frequent use could impact your experience. You could build a tolerance, which might lead to lessened effects.
Most people need to take increasingly higher doses to achieve the desired benefits as a result. However, that could become expensive over time.
Instead, you might want to consider tolerance breaks. Tolerance breaks are gaps in use. These gaps give your body the chance to rest and lose some of its resistance.
How long should you make your delta-8 tolerance break? You can check here for more information.
If you plan on trying THC or CBD products, consider consulting a doctor first. Some medications can have adverse interactions with cannabinoids. It’s important to do your due diligence beforehand.
Make sure you’re purchasing high-quality products, too. Otherwise, you might buy a product that contains harmful fillers. Instead, look for third-party testing and the product’s certificate of analysis (COA).
The COA can give you peace of mind that you’ve chosen safe, high-quality products.
THC and Drug Tests
Before you start purchasing CBD or THC products, consider your career. Does your job schedule regular drug tests? You might want to avoid using THC products if it does.
Drug tests that search for delta-9 metabolites can end up positive if you use delta-8 products. Both forms of THC can show up on a drug test.
CBD, however, might not end up on a drug test. It depends on the type of drug test.
Keep that in mind before purchasing products for regular use.
How Does Delta-8 Work?
As part of your delta-8 overview, it helps to learn more about how delta-8 THC really works.
First, how is delta-8 made?
The distillate is made using a fractional distillation process. Manufacturers use the cannabis flower and trim to create their products. They use temperature variations, vacuums, and specialized equipment to begin this process.
By the end of the product, delta-9 degrades into delta-8 to create an isolate.
Isolate allows a manufacturer to purify each available cannabinoid. The process removes solvents and residual impurities from the product. It can ensure undesirable compounds are removed as well.
The entire process ensures you receive a potent, refined, and clean end product.
Remember, it’s important to find a high-quality product with a COA. Otherwise, you might not realize the product contains pesticides or other harmful compounds.
You also want to avoid purchasing a diluted product that fails to stimulate results.
The Endocannabinoid System
In order to fully understand how delta products impact your body, you need to understand the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is a cell-signaling system found in humans and other mammals.
Cannabis was discovered before the ECS. The ECS was named with cannabinoids in mind as a result.
You have an ECS, whether or not you’ve ever tried THC or other cannabinoids.
The ECS regulates different functions throughout the human body. These functions include your:
- Appetite and digestion
- Chronic pain
- Motor control
- Learning and memory
- Liver function
- Immune system responses
- Reproductive system function
- Cardiovascular function
- Bone remodeling and growth
- Muscle formation
- Skin and nerve function
It’s important to note that the ECS regulates your inflammation levels.
Inflammation is the body’s natural response to an injury or invaders. It’s meant to help your body heal. Too much inflammation, however, can lead to neurodegenerative or autoimmune disorders.
It can also cause chronic pain.
Your ECS keeps the body in a state of homeostasis, or balance. An outside factor, such as a car accident that results in injury, can throw you out of homeostasis. Internal factors, such as germs and sickness, can throw you out of homeostasis, too.
Your ECS then kicks in to try to help you regain homeostasis.
Cannabis and the ECS
Your ECS has three main components: endocannabinoids, receptors, and enzymes
Endocannabinoids and phytocannabinoids like CBD and THC interact with the ECS in similar ways. Phytocannabinoids like CBD and THC can both interact with the body’s natural CB1 and CB2 receptors. These receptors are responsible for telling cannabinoids to take action.
These actions can affect both the mind and body.
For example, cannabinoids might tell the body to relieve inflammation. Reducing inflammation levels could lead to pain relief.
Delta-9 is able to interact with both CB1 and CB2 receptors. CBD, on the other hand, stops enzymes. Enzymes are responsible for breaking down endocannabinoids once their job is complete.
CBD’s ability to stop enzymes might allow endocannabinoids to have a prolonged therapeutic effect. However, scientists are still learning the full range of effects CBD might have on the body.
What about delta-8 THC?
Scientists believe delta-8 can interact with the CB1 receptors in the brain. This would allow delta-8 to produce feelings of energy, focus, and euphoria. It might help reduce pain symptoms and decrease nausea, too.
Otherwise, delta-8 might help produce anti-anxiety and neuroprotective benefits.
Remember, everyone reacts to THC a little differently, though. It’s important to remain realistic before trying THC for the first time.
Before trying THC or CBD products, it helps to consider why you want to use cannabinoids. Here are a few potential benefits you might experience after trying THC.
THC products might help reduce nausea and vomiting symptoms. This benefit is ideal for patients with Crohn’s disease or gastrointestinal disorders.
It might also help cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy. Otherwise, chemotherapy and radiation could cause nausea. THC products might help.
It’s possible that THC and CBD products might have neuroprotective properties, too.
THC might help produce acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter. It plays a role in neuroplasticity, cognition, and memory.
There’s some research that suggests delta-8 THC might impact tumor cells. It could slow the growth of cancerous cells, too.
In one study on lab mice, THC reduced tumor size. It also increased the survival time for these mice. However, more human research is needed.
Delta-8 products might stimulate your appetite, too. This potential benefit is ideal for patients who have trouble eating. For example, it could help chemotherapy and AIDS patients.
Remember, inflammation can cause pain symptoms throughout the body. THC might help fight inflammation. Reducing your inflammation could help ease pain symptoms.
You might experience body-wide relief as a result.
Delta-8’s ability to bind with CB1 receptors might allow it to influence anxiety and fear responses, too. You could minimize your anxiety and stress levels as a result.
Delta-9 THC, on the other hand, might trigger your anxiety.
Unraveling Delta-8 THC: Everything to Know When Considering This Cannabinoid
To recap, what is delta-8 THC? It’s one of the many cannabinoids that can interact with your body’s endocannabinoid system. Taking delta-8 could help relieve pain and other symptoms.
However, THC impacts everyone a little differently.
Don’t rush to try the first delta-8 products you find online. Make sure to do your due diligence first. Purchase THC products from a high-quality supplier.
Look for a certificate of analysis to ensure you’re purchasing a high-quality product, too.
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