Anyone who follows the cannabis industry knows about cannabinoids like CBD and other emerging options like CBG and beyond. However, even more types of cannabinoids are coming out that, unlike CBD, actually provide similar psychoactive effects to the cannabis that you get in your local dispensary. In fact, you may have already seen it online: Delta 8. Some cannabis enthusiasts may be reluctant to dive straight into a new product before they’ve done their research. If Delta 8 has shown up on your radar, let’s take a closer look at this new substance and what it means for your smoking experience.
What Is Delta 8?
To gain a better understanding of Delta 8 THC, we have to look at THC as a whole. Although only referred to as THC, the truth is that the cannabinoid in your weed that’s responsible for the psychoactive effects you experience is called Delta 9 THC. Delta 8 THC is another cannabinoid found within the hemp plant that is an analog to Delta 9 THC, offering the same types of benefits with a different name. Remember this as it will be important later.
Delta 8 vs Delta 9
Of course, the next obvious question is, is there a difference between Delta 8 and Delta 9? It’s important to remember that many of the emerging cannabinoids have very little research, meaning that we still don’t technically know that much. What we do know is that there is a minor change in the chemical structure, with the atomic bond being lower in the chain (the eighth carbon rather than the ninth). Some claim that this results in a less potent experience, but as any experienced weed enthusiast will know, everyone has a different experience, which means that you never know what you’re going to feel when you try it for yourself.
They can both be consumed the same way. Whether your choice of using it is through edibles, dab pens, rolling up a joint with dry flower or any way you can think of.
CBD Vs THC
So what’s the difference between a cannabinoid like CBD and Delta 8 or Delta 9 THC? Whereas both Delta 8 and Delta 9 produce psychoactive effects, CBD does not. CBD is instead believed to have the same type of health benefits as THC without the high. However, again, more research needs to be done in order to understand what type of impact it has on the body. The good news is that CBD is relatively harmless, but it’s up to you whether or not to try as there are no guaranteed results.
Is Delta 8 Legal?
This is where things get tricky. When the Farm Bill was introduced, it gave hemp growers the opportunity to sell hemp products with cannabinoids. As you may be familiar with, CBD products that are sold nationally are not allowed to contain more than .03 percent THC or they are considered illegal. However, because Delta 8 is a derivative that is not the main Delta 9 derivative we’re acquainted with when it comes to marijuana, many see this as a loophole to sell Delta 8 products to the general population. This regulatory oversight is an issue and there’s no telling whether or not states will begin to outlaw it or the federal government will take action. We must wait and see!
Delta 8 Potential
The good news is that, as long as it’s in the gray area, Delta 8 can be purchased online nationwide. This makes it far more accessible than Delta 9 THC, even in places where weed has been legalized for recreational use. The potential is also there for people who want to try weed for medical conditions. The biggest problem with CBD is that there are no guaranteed benefits you can expect, and some users report not feeling anything at all. Meanwhile, there are many people who believe in the healing power of weed. Delta 8 offers an alternative that, if less potent than Delta 9, can be more tolerable. (But again, we need more research!)
The CBD market has cracked hemp wide open to produce a wide variety of natural derivatives that others want to try. If you’ve heard of Delta 8 but weren’t sure whether or not it was worth the purchase, use the guide above to learn more about what it is, where you can find it, and whether or not it’s legal to possess.