Potency, concentration, and strength; are all words used to describe the effectiveness of the chemical compounds produced by cannabis and hemp plants. For consumers, potency matters. It can represent value for money and can influence the overall experience one might have. In this article from The Hemp Doctor, we’ll compare the potency, effects, legality, and more of these two cannabinoids, Delta 8 and Delta 9 THC.
Delta 8 THC vs. Delta 9 THC
Let’s begin by elucidating that more than 500 chemical compounds exist in cannabis and hemp. These substances include cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, alkaloids, and more. Cannabidiol (CBD) and delta 9 THC (D9) are the most widely used cannabinoids, as many consumers are aware. You might not know that other analogs, such as delta 8 THC (D8), are gaining popularity.
Cannabinoids and ECS system
Let us also explain how these compounds work with the human body to produce effects common to hemp and cannabis. The chemical compounds activate cannabinoid receptors throughout the human body to create a range of benefits. These receptors are part of what’s called the endocannabinoid system (ECS). It helps the body regulate critical functions, including memory, motor skills, appetite, and so on, helping to maintain homeostasis in the human body.
Furthermore, the entourage effect can enhance these effects from cannabinoids interacting with ECS receptors. Some initial research shows these compounds can produce results independently; this type of product with only one cannabinoid and no other compound is called an isolate. But when different hemp-derived compounds enter the bloodstream and into the ECS system simultaneously, they boost one another’s effects. Full spectrum and broad spectrum products allow consumers to take multiple compounds simultaneously, such as different cannabinoids and terpenes. The effects experienced from products like these can vary. Every person will have different tolerance, so we recommend you start slowly.
Characteristics of these chemical compounds include:
Delta 9 THC
- The scientific name for D9 is delta-9-
- Technically, it starts out as THC-a, but once exposed to heat (a process called decarboxylation), it converts into D9.
- It has both psychoactive and therapeutic properties, binding to the cannabinoid receptor (CB1) in the brain.
- The delta 9 THC sourced from hemp will have a low concentration; by law, hemp-derived products can only contain a maximum of 0.3% delta 9 THC. When sourced from cannabis, it will typically have a much higher potency.
Learn all about this potent cannabinoid in this previous article. (D9 Potency/add live link)
Delta 8 THC
- Its scientific name is delta-8 tetrahydrocannabinol, also called D8.
- D8 naturally occurs in the cannabis and hemp plants but in low concentrations. It can also be synthesized in a lab for commercial use.
- It has a similar pharmacological profile to D9 but a weaker bond to the cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1).
- This cannabinoid has milder psychoactive properties. The euphoric effects from D8 are thought to be half as intense, with less paranoia than D9.
What Influences the Potency of D8?
Many factors can influence a product’s overall potency, with plant genetics being the primary factor. Other factors include the plant’s growing conditions, quality, and harvesting methods. Another factor determining the strength is which part of the plant manufacturers use for extraction. Flowers closer to the top will produce more trichomes, which is where the compounds exist. Product storage also plays a big part in maintaining its potency.
Why Do People Consume D8?
D8 can be ideal for specific consumers because of its availability and potency. Products such as D8 are widely available in most states, making these products easy and convenient. Another reason is that many consumers wish to experience hemp-derived products without the traditional euphoria of D9. If the effects of D9 are too strong for you, D8 could be a good alternative. Products with a higher potency aren’t always better!
What Is the Legal Status of D8 in the USA?
The fact is that the legal status of D8 is complex. Technically, hemp-derived products with a maximum of 0.3% delta 9 THC are federally legal. However, the law doesn’t reference any other THC analogs. Due to the lack of policy, substances like D8 can be considered semi-legal. In addition to this grey area, some states restrict the sale of hemp products, like D8. Be sure to check your local laws.
Where Can You Purchase D8 Products?
There are plenty of ways you can get hemp-derived D8 in the US. However, one of the issues facing the hemp industry is transparency and product safety. As a trustworthy source for premium hemp products, we feel it’s essential to have our products tested and provide lab reports online for our customers. We want you to feel confident about your purchase.
What Types of D8 Products Are Available?
The Hemp Doctor has a variety of D8 formats available for consumers. Starting with our high-quality edibles, including gummies, chocolate cereal treats, and more. We also offer full spectrum tinctures and softgels. There are also several vapes and other concentrates, flower, and prerolls.
Want to know more about the rising popularity of D8? Read this. (D8 popularity/add live link)
Take Your THC to a New Level
The bottom line, D8 is potentially 50% less potent than D9, with many of the same health and wellness benefits, which is excellent news for consumers with a low tolerance or who are trying hemp for the first time. As the market matures and grows, more innovative cannabinoid products will enter the market. Do not fear. You will be sure to get the most out of the experience if you continue educating yourself on hemp’s effects and potential risks. Stay safe and enjoy.
Made in the USA! Our premium hemp is 100% organic grown using cutting-edge farming in the nutrient-rich soils of Colorado and North Carolina, allowing us to offer compliant products high in phytocannabinoids and safe for adult consumers. The Hemp Doctor is pleased to provide the world’s best, full and broad spectrum products, shop today.
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