Health/CBDHow Do Delta 8 THC And Delta 9 THC...

How Do Delta 8 THC And Delta 9 THC Differ


With the legalization of hemp in 2018, the interest in the compounds comprising the plant has soared with a specific focus on cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). 

Subsequently, that interest has resulted in an evolving industry with innovative product lines. Learn how some of these cannabinoids relate to each other

In order for these products to remain federally legal, the THC content needs to be no higher than 0.3% per dry weight. The restriction on this specific cannabinoid is due to its psychoactive nature. 

THC, also referred to as delta 9 THC, along with CBD, are the primary cannabinoids in the cannabis genus, with delta 9 being abundant in marijuana and minimal in hemp. 

The percentage of THC and its potency in marijuana means consumption of products derived from this plant will intoxicate or produce a “high.” For this reason, marijuana is deemed a federally illegal substance. 

However, some states have legalized medicinal marijuana being sold in dispensaries with an adequate doctor’s order. There are even a few states with legalized recreational usage, but considering the federal law, it might be something you enjoy recreationally with an air of caution. 

Another cannabinoid gaining recognition among the cannabinoids is delta 8 THC. How does this compare to delta 9? Let’s learn about these components together.

How Do CBD And THC Interact With The Endocannabinoid System Receptors

Cannabinoids bind with receptors within the endocannabinoid system in an effort to establish homeostasis among the primary systems. The indication is that THC specifically focuses on CB1 and CB2 but is able to intoxicate due to the interaction with CB1. CBD does not bind with either of these. Thus it’s non-intoxicating traits. 

However, it can mitigate the binding process between CB1 and THC, helping to inhibit some of the adversity created by THC. A majority of the focus in the THC “family,” if you will, has been on delta 9 THC, but recently delta 8 THC is becoming an interest.

The cannabinoid is far less abundant in cannabis but boasts a more stable option than delta 9. View how delta 8 and 9 compare.

How Does Delta 8 THC Differ From Delta 9 THC

The term “delta” implies the molecules are “double bonded” or share “two sets of electrons between atoms. This occurs for delta 8 THC at the 8th carbon chain; with delta 9, it is the 9th. These considerably impact how the cannabinoid interacts in the endocannabinoid system with the receptors.

Delta 8 binds with each receptor, CB 1 and 2, while delta 9 and CB1 bind solely. This is the reason for delta 9 having a potent psychoactive response, more so than delta 8, even though both have this capacity. 

An issue with proper research is that delta 8 degrades as plants mature, leaving very minimal quantities of the cannabinoid for testing, leaving the compound without federal regulations and few studies. 

In order to accumulate sufficient quantities to study a naturally occurring substance, a considerable expense would be involved. The suggestion to this end is that the products consumers find in stores indicating “delta 8 THC” likely are artificially derived, meaning delta 9, a naturally occurring cannabinoid, is safer for consumption. 

Further, delta 8 synthetically created options usually include delta 9 in the ingredients, and most labs aren’t equipped at this point to designate differences between delta 8 and 9 THC at this point.

What Is Delta 9 THC

Delta 9 THC has become well-known in its association as a derivative of hemp with CBD products due to its psychoactive nature and label as a controlled substance when its level soars above the federally legal limit of 0.3% per dry weight. 

When complying with the regulations, delta 9 THC will only derive from hemp for products to be sold on the market, use hifi farms to view varied options. That tells the consumer that these are all-natural, safe, and meet federal compliance.

It is essential to recognize as a consumer, however, that while these products meet federal regulations, the items are much more potent. That means dosages are adjusted so that consumers start at a lower dose, with likely a lesser amount needed to reach the desired effect. Once you reach that goal, the dosing should balance and remain consistent.

It’s further necessary to be mindful of drug testing. If there is a zero tolerance on the job site, any degree of THC could produce a positive outcome. Plus, the cannabinoid will build up over time based on consistency of use and quantity.

Final Thought

Are delta 8 and 9 legal in your state? You can likely find delta 8 online and in some varied markets. Still, it’s not federally regulated; there’s little capacity to research the cannabinoid, it’s more often artificially generated, and the legality is more gray than positive.

Delta 9 THC is a bit more complicated, suggesting you contact your state to get the definitive guidelines if you want to participate in its usage. It will be either a very firm no or express approval. 

Hemp-derived products with THC of no greater than 0.3% – per dry weight seems to be the key – are federally legal. That seems to be relatively cut and dry. But state legislation has a significant hand, making it critical that you understand your local laws to remain compliant. The stigma that follows the cannabinoid plays on.

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