Delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol most commonly known as Delta 8 or D8 gained the attention of many because many view it as an effective alternative to Delta 9. You are probably interested in knowing more about Delta 8 and we are more than happy to assist you.
In this post, we will provide you with the necessary information you need to properly consume Delta 8. You’ll discover how Delta 8 differs from Delta 9 as well as the benefits, risks, and other concerns associated with D8.
So what are you waiting for? Continue reading to know what Delta 8 holds for you.
What is Delta 8?
Delta 8 refers to a specific cannabinoid that you can find from both hemp and cannabis plants.
Delta 8 THC is a minor cannabinoid that has small concentrations in hemp and cannabis plants. In terms of its chemical structure, Delta 8 is very similar to Delta 9, which is the primary psychoactive compound in cannabis. This cannabinoid is said to be responsible for the “high” we typically associate with marijuana use.
The only difference between Delta 8 and Delta 9 is that the former is half as potent as the latter. But we’ll discuss more of their differences later.
You can derive Delta 8 from the federally legal hemp plant by isolating it from the other cannabinoids. In recent years, there has been a rise in consuming Delta 8 products because they seem to be a viable alternative for Delta 9 THC.
Today, one of the most popular methods of consuming Delta 8 is through tinctures and edibles such as Delta 8 gummies. Many gummies infused with Delta 8 come with 25 mg of the cannabinoid, which could be enough to get users moderately high.
At 25 mg, several users testify that the effect is often a clear-headed mind with an energetic disposition. They also add that consuming Delta 8 25 mg offers a less sedative effect as compared to those with high Delta 8 content.
Even though Delta 8 can provide a mood lift and relaxation, newbies should consume products cautiously. The reason behind this is Delta 8 might still cause some impairment, especially for those whose THC tolerance is still developing. One should start with a very low dosage, observe the effects, and take it from there.
Delta 8 vs Delta 9: Which One is the Right for You?
Although Delta 8 and Delta 9 are both THC, which means they possess similar structures, Delta 8 produces milder psychoactive effects. Based on users’ testimony, Delta 8 provided a clear-headed relaxation. On the other hand, Delta 9 exerts more potent effects, which can lead to a “marjiuana-kind-of-high.”
You’ll find 115+ cannabinoids in a hemp plant. Delta 9 is the most dominant, while Delta 8 naturally exists in trace amounts.
Based on their chemical structure, Delta 8 and Delta THCs differ in the location of a specific double bond on their respective carbon chains. Although there is a slight difference, it primarily impacts how these two cannabinoids affect the human endocannabinoid system (ECS).
As you ingest Delta 9, such as via smoking or eating, it binds with CB1 receptors in the human ECS. The interaction produces certain classic effects that recreational THC users seek, such as euphoria, altered sensory perception, and sedation.
Now, Delta 8 binds the same receptors, but there is lesser affinity, which results in milder psychoactive effects. As stated, you may feel clear-headed, which results in relaxation and mood upliftment. Added effects could be pain relief with anti-worrying effects, giving you more apparent mental clarity.
As you go in your Delta 8 dosage, the cannabinoid could induce more potent effects akin to Delta 9. Yet when you microdose, such as from 10 – 25 mg, users could potentially experience the therapeutic effects of Delta 8. It eases your mind that you do not have to overthink. It may even stimulate appetite.
Now, when you consume Delta 9 at 5 to 15 mg dosages, you may still feel some intoxicating effects such as emotional amplification, giddiness, sensory changes, and slowed reaction times.
So, while there is a similarity in their structure, Delta 8 can provide THC users an alternative and lessened impairment, and this makes it very appealing for those seeking benefits from hemp THC without intense psychoactivity.
Benefits of Delta 8
Delta 8 and Relaxation
Many users state that Delta 8 produces deeply relaxing effects that happen both physically and mentally. It gives overall feelings of calmness and contentment. Delta 8 brings out relaxation through a few different physiological mechanisms.
It binds to CB1 receptors concentrated in the central nervous system, influences neurotransmitter release, and reduces excitability. Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) levels also increase, which results in calming effects. Delta 8 lowers blood pressure and heart rate, which makes the body more relaxed. It provides muscle relaxation that can loosen tension and decrease pain.
Delta 8 and Appetite
Delta 8 can help those struggling with low appetite, increasing appetite by activating the endocannabinoid system’s hunger signals. When ingested, Delta 8 binds to CB1 receptors in the brain and digestive tract. These receptors play a key role in stimulating appetite.
Activating CB1 receptors triggers the release of ghrelin, a hormone that signals hunger to the brain. Delta 8 also inhibits hormones that suppress appetite.
Delta 8 and Pain
Delta 8 exhibits pain relieving and anti-soreness properties and can relieve mild to moderate and intense pain. Delta 8 binds with the CB1 receptors in the central nervous system and the CB2 receptors in the peripheral nervous system. These receptors modulate pain perception.
Activating them with Delta 8 receptors can decrease the painful stimuli traveling to the brain. It disrupts pain signals, providing generalized relief.
It may also limit swelling of muscles, contributing to the pain. Research indicates that it can reduce cytokines and could further decrease pain sensitivity.
Delta 8 can dampen overactive pain signaling patterns over time for chronic pain like joint pain and intense headaches. Regular small doses can provide pain management.
Delta 8 and Overthinking
Delta 8 25mg can quiet a busy, restless mind and reduce excessively recursive thinking patterns known as overthinking. It facilitates being present in the moment. Overthinking involves repetitive negative thoughts and constant mental problem-solving. This over-analysis leads to unnecessary stress and overthinking.
Delta 8 can disrupt such unproductive thinking loops through several mechanisms. It binds to CB1 receptors in the central nervous system that regulate neurotransmitter release. Neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin are impacted. This results in elevated mood and decreased overactivity in regions of the brain associated with excessive thinking.
Delta 8 and Sleep
Many users find Delta 8 enhances sleep quality, leading to more restorative sleep. It can aid issues like difficulty in sleeping, restlessness, and poor sleep maintenance. Delta 8 promotes relaxation and eases fearful, intrusive thoughts that interfere with falling asleep. Its stress-relieving properties allow calming both the body and mind. Additionally, it induces mild sedation that helps initiate sleep without causing complete drowsiness or sleepiness the next day, like some pharmaceutical sleep aids.
Delta 8 Tolerance
Similar to any substance affecting the body and mind, regular consumption of Delta 8 products will eventually lead to tolerance. Over time, your endocannabinoid system will adapt to the presence of Delta 8 THC in your system, where its effects diminish. You would need to adjust the dosage to sustain effectiveness.
Why does the human ECS produce tolerance towards Delta 8?
Tolerance to Delta 8 occurs when the ECS of the body contains CB1 receptors, which bind with Delta 8. Repeated exposure to Delta 8 results in downregulating the CB1 receptors, which means they become less responsive to the presence of Delta 8. When there is lower receptor sensitivity, you’ll feel less of the effect of Delta 8.
Now, the pace at which Delta 8 tolerance happens depends on how frequently you consume D8 products. If there is daily use of such D8-infused items, you’ll notice that your body’s tolerance builds up within just 2 – 3 weeks. If you classify yourself as a moderate user, then your tolerance could reach up to a month or more. Even occasional consumers lead to some tolerance progression over several months.
If you want to reduce the tolerance build-up of your body, abstaining from Delta 8 for a week (or even longer) could restart the sensitivity levels of your CB1 receptors. Experts suggest a 3-4 weeks break from D8 consumption to attain a complete tolerance reset. This suggestion clears all residual tolerance and returns your ECS to baseline sensitivity.
Try to remember that when you restart your Delta 8 consumption, your tolerance will begin accumulating again. If you desire to maintain long-term effectiveness, you may integrate periodic tolerance breaks.
Some Cautions for Delta 8
Delta 8 captured the attention of many THC lovers out there because of its less potent yet relaxing effect. However, there are still some considerations and cautions that you should keep in mind when consuming D8 products:
- Even though it has less potent effects than its Delta 9 sibling, Delta 8 can still cause impairment, especially to those who are just starting out their THC journey. Do not drive, operate machinery, or do similar tasks after consuming Delta 8 products.
- Delta 8 interacts with a specific metabolite, which is CYP3A4. This is an enzyme that is instrumental in metabolizing commonly prescribed medications. If you are taking medication and planning to incorporate Delta 8 into your routine, see first a medical professional.
- Delta 8 THC may also come with specific side effects, such as dizziness, dry mouth, bloodshot eyes, altered sense of time, and difficulty concentrating. Note that these adverse effects vary from person to person.
- Due to its popularity, you may purchase Delta 8 products with safety and purity issues. These mediocre products cannot provide the effects you are looking for. Worst, they could also cause unwanted health effects. Only purchase from reputable brands with third-party testing like Stirling.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Delta 8 legal?
The legality of Delta 8 resides in a gray area, but here are some facts:
If the Delta 8 comes from a hemp plant and the THC content is less than 0.3%, then the D8-infused products are federally legal, according to the 2018 Farm Bill. However, certain states in the USA may have different laws regarding Delta 8, which should prompt you to determine its legality within your area.
Is Delta 8 detectable by a drug test?
Regular workplace drug tests screen the presence of Delta 9 THC metabolites. These tests do not necessarily detect Delta 8. However, the human body converts Delta 8 into metabolites similar to Delta 9.
This only means that Delta 8 can trigger a positive result in a standard drug test because Delta 8 and Delta 9 are indistinguishable in immunoassay tests. Certain studies show that Delta 8 can appear in drug tests for approximately 3 to 4 days following moderate use. Chronic users could test positive for 7 days or longer.
How is Delta 8 extracted?
Given the technology we have today, extracting Delta 8 is achieved in various ways.
Solvent extraction utilizes specific liquids like ethanol to extract Delta 8 and other cannabinoids from the source hemp plant. This method offers high yields and low costs, yet there is a risk of contamination.
Distillation is another method for obtaining Delta 8. This extraction method uses pressurized steam. Many consider this method one of the cleanest means of D8 extraction.
Another method to remove Delta 8 is called cold pressing. This process takes advantage of the centripetal force to mechanically separate plant compounds. Cold pressing upside is that it does not use solvent to operate, yet an area of concern is it produces lower yields.
Solventless extraction techniques like ice water hash avoid chemicals entirely and help maintain purity, but require more steps. One excellent way to use solventless extraction is by cavitation extraction. This is an innovative technique and is currently applied by Stirling CBD. The technique allows extracting ultra-pure Delta 8 without requiring solvents. This method uses extreme bubble dynamics to mechanically extract those prized cannabinoids such as Delta 8.
How do people use Delta 8?
There are several ways to enjoy the health benefits of Delta 8. Below is a list of the most common forms of consuming Delta 8 THC:
Vaping: In vaping, you inhale Delta 8 concentrates or vape cartridges via a vaporizer pen. Inhaled Delta 8 comes into your bloodstream quickly, giving you faster effects.
Edibles: Delta 8 gummies are the common goods for Delta 8 edibles. These products offer longer-lasting effects of around 6 – 8 hours, but the effect kicks in at 60 to 120 minutes following ingestion. Edibles are famous for their precise dosing.
Topicals: Here, manufacturers infused Delta 8 into creams, lotions, and balms. Topicals do not cause psychoactive effects but could provide the sought-after pain relief.
Tinctures: Users place Delta 8 oils under their tongue for 30 – 60 seconds before swallowing. Known as sublingual application, Delta 8 tinctures offer faster onset of effects because the cannabinoid enters the blood vessels more effectively.
How is Delta 8 different from CBD?
Many users, most likely the newbies, confuse Delta 8 and CBD. Although these both come from cannabis and hemp plants, there are some nuanced differences between them.
One of their main differences is psychoactivity. Delta 8 can produce a mild high, while CBD is a non-psychoactive plant compound. In other words, the latter will not make you high.
Delta 8 binds with CB1 receptors in the ECS. On the other hand, CBD has a low affinity for the mentioned receptors, and it influences the ECS indirectly.
How much Delta 8 is safe to consume?
If you are new to consuming Delta 8, you should start with a 5 – 10 mg dosage. This is to assess your tolerance and avoid any adverse effects.
Doses above 50 mg will have more substantial intoxicating effects that could lead to higher risks. To stay on the safe side, doses under 50 mg are recommended.
Delta 8 THC is famous because it offers intriguing mild psychoactive effects, which is an excellent alternative to Delta 9.
To enjoy Delta 8 safely, you could start with conservative doses and buy only from reliable brands such as Stirling CBD.
While Delta 8 provides a unique cannabinoid experience, personal responsibility remains essential.