The Difference Between Delta 8 and Delta 9 THC

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You’re probably familiar with delta 9 THC, your typical, college-years cannabis that we all know and love. And perhaps you’re beginning to get with the trends and have heard about delta 8 THC. But how do they measure up to each other? Which one would win in a cannabis contest? We’ll explore how they compare — from their effects and make up to their products and potency in this post.

The Difference Between Delta 8 and Delta 9

While delta 9 THC and delta 8 THC are very similar, there are key differences when comparing the two. Delta 9 is the cannabinoid that most users seek out when they want to experience a “high” — it’s what most people are referring to when they say “THC.” Delta 9 may produce strong psychoactive effects like laughter, joy, relaxation, talkativeness, and sometimes anxiety and paranoia. 

You can find delta 8 THC in cannabis plant material in minimal amounts, but to harvest enough to profit would not be efficient. It would take too much of everything, really: time, effort, and money. Instead, delta 8 is extracted and concentrated from the raw plant material and then undergoes a distillate process. Consuming delta 8 THC results in more mild psychoactive effects than delta 9 THC. And because of this usage, individuals may seek out delta 8 THC specifically for its potential medicinal properties — such as reduced inflammation, relief from insomnia, pain reduction, and insomnia relief without any negative side effects. 

Delta 8 and Delta 9 THC Molecules

Although they are very similar in their chemical makeup, there is a slight difference between delta 8 and delta 9 THC. There is a double bond on the eighth carbon atom in the molecular structure of delta 8, while delta 9 has a double bond on the ninth carbon atom; hence their respective names. This slight difference is what leads to the distinct cognitive changes and physical effects between the two compounds. Given this fact, what are the delta-8 vs delta-9 effects? 

Get to Know the Delta 8 THC and Delta 9 THC Effects 

There are many incredible potential benefits of delta 8. It can bind to the CB1 receptor throughout the body — which are receptors that are part of our endocannabinoid system. This system potentially helps our body regulate and maintain homeostasis (also known as maintaining balance throughout the body). Some research suggests that delta 8 THC helps people produce a neurotransmitter called acetylcholine, which is responsible for cognition, neuroplasticity, memory, and arousal. Other potential benefits of delta 8 THC include stimulating appetite and decreasing nausea, especially potentially beneficial to those undergoing chemotherapy or facing other illnesses.

Some researchers have observed delta 8 bonding to not just the CB1 receptors but the CB2 receptors, too. This helps the cannabinoid convince the body to regulate pain and anxiety better. And although everyone experiences pain differently and at different degrees, delta 8 is known to potentially relieve pain in most individuals to some degree, especially those with neuropathic inflammatory pain. Delta 8 has also been known to result in potential relaxation as well as potentially decreasing anxiety. These potential benefits occur without the psychoactive effects of delta 9 THC. This means that, yes, there are a plethora of potential benefits of delta 8 THC with little to no adverse side effects!

So when comparing the effects of delta-8 vs delta-9 effects, they are both ideal for their own reasons. Delta 9 THC has an antiemetic effect, also known as being effective against vomiting and nausea. It also effectively treats glaucoma symptoms — reducing the eyeball pressure caused by the disease. Delta 9 THC is also an antihistamine. It reduces swelling in the nose and throat that is a result of allergic reactions.

Delta Munchies Hand Smoking Sparked Delta 8 Joint

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Are delta 8 and delta 9 legal?

Unlike delta 9 THC, delta 8 THC is federally legal, but some states are beginning to ban it due to its lack of regulation. Delta 8 can technically be created by anyone in their dusty garage, but reputable brands use ISO9000 and GMP certified labs to create and test their product for safety. Using these types of professional labs ensures clean and potent products. 

Delta 9 Extracted

There are a few ways to conduct delta 9 THC extraction. 

  • Butane Honey Oil (BHO): A highly studied method used extensively in the food and perfume industry. This method involves cannabis being placed in a container before butane is sprayed on it to begin the extraction process. 

  • CO2 Extraction: The non-toxic, environmentally-friendly method of separating cannabinoids from the plant that leaves zero traces of toxins behind and is also used in the industries of beer, coffee, tea, and fruit is known as CO2 extraction. 

  • Ethanol Extraction: A safe, efficient, and effective method; it’s considered safe by the FDA and is often used as a food preservative. During this method, the cannabis plant is soaked in ethanol. When the THC is extracted the product goes through a refining process that enhances its purity.

  • Water Extraction: The cannabis plant is stirred in cold water, which causes trichomes to separate from the plant. Once they fall off, the product will pass through a series of screens. This method utilizes a solvent-less extraction method and ends with a 50-70% THC level product.

  • Isopropyl Oil Extraction: Dried cannabis flowers are first soaked in alcohol. They are shaken gently, strained into a dish, and then the solvent is removed using a vacuum oven, resulting in THC-rich oil!

Delta 8 Extracted

Delta 8 THC products are not extracted in the same ways delta 9 THC products are. While delta 8 is found in many types of cannabis delta 8 flowers, it is found only in small quantities. In fact, most dried delta 8 flowers contain under 1% of delta-8! For consumers to fully experience the effects and the benefits of delta 8, it has to be extracted — either through isolation of the compound or by synthesizing it from other cannabinoids. There are two ways to create delta 8.

  • Fractional Distillation: The separation of a mixture into its component parts. During this process, chemical compounds are separated by heating them to a temperature at which one or more fractions of the mixtures will vaporize. Delta 8 THC is extracted from the hemp flower of the cannabis plant and undergoes the process of rapid heating, cooling, and vaporizing that helps separate the compound from the plant during this process!

  • Synthetic Manipulation: Involves the processing of CBD to delta 8 or delta 9 THC. The chemicals needed to activate the reaction to do this can inadvertently create toxic byproducts during this process. This method is not recommended unless you have a proper lab setting and a strong background in organic chemistry!

The Products of Delta 8 THC vs Delta 9 THC

Today, from smoking to gummies and tinctures, there are many creative, fun options available for consuming delta 8 vs delta 9. Both can be consumed in the following ways.

  • Water pipes come in slightly different varieties, such as bongs and bubblers. 

  • Vaporizers steadily heats cannabis to a high enough temperature to extract THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids, but that is too low for potentially hazardous toxins to be released. 

  • Tinctures are a liquid cannabis extract used most commonly by consumers looking for dosage control and fast-acting effects without the health risks associated with smoking.

  • Ingestible oils can be either eaten or put in easily ingested capsules and have an oil consistency. 

  • Edibles are any food that contains cannabis. These products typically have longer onsets and usually result in powerful, full-body psychoactive effects.

  • Infused food and drinks can be made a variety of ways, but most often, edibles contain an infused ingredient that is high in fat, such as olive oil or butter. This allows the extraction of the plant’s therapeutic properties. 

  • Topical cannabis is a thick oil that has been decarboxylated to activate cannabinoids and is absorbed through your skin.

Looking for delta 8 THC for sale? We recommend some of our favorites here at Delta Munchies! 

  • Delta 8 Gummies: From perfect peach ring, to mouth-watering watermelon and a variety of sour bites, too, our gummies are loaded with the best delta 8 edibles on the market. They’re perfect for a cozy night in or a day out and about.

  • Delta 8 THC Vapes: Our rechargeable vapes will leave you feeling relaxed and energized at the same time and come in a variety of flavors, from Grape Ape to Banana Lush.

  • Delta 8 Prerolls: They come in various strains, from sativa to indica and hybrid too; our prerolls are the perfect option for on-the-go adventures — conveniently rolled just for you.

  • Delta 8 Tincture: Put a delta 8 twist into any food or beverage of your choosing with our classic fruit flavors. Our juicy tinctures have been crafted especially to transport you into a state of relaxation.

All of our products are laboratory tested to ensure safety and potency!

Delta 9 vs Delta 8 Safety

Is delta 8 safe? There are no reported deaths of consuming delta 8 or delta 9. You cannot die from THC, but acting stupid or reckless while intoxicated from marijuana can result in death. You cannot overdose on cannabis the way that you can overdose on other substances. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there have not been any reported deaths resulting solely from cannabis use. While you cannot die from cannabis use, consuming too much and having a bad reaction is possible. This commonly happens more with edibles and THC products. We recommend that if you’re new to cannabis to give yourself plenty of time to feel the effects of cannabis before using more so as not to consume too much.

The same is true for delta 8 THC— it cannot result in death from consuming the product alone, but making reckless decisions while intoxicated can. Delta 8 is safe to consume if you have a reputable source that you’re getting your products. It can be lab-tested to ensure there are no residual solvents and pesticides in your products.  

Delta 8 vs Delta 9 Potency

Let’s talk about potency. Although delta 8 and 9 THC are part of the same compound, they vary in potency and result in different types of highs, which are great for different demographics and situations. Delta 9 provides both mental and physical stimulation, while delta 8 leans more towards the physical side. There is said to be about a 50% potency between delta 8 and delta 9. For example — if we picture good old-fashioned, delta 9 THC as a beer, then delta 8 thc can be considered a “bud lite.”

While both delta 8 and delta 9 provide you with medicinal benefits, delta 8 provides these wellness benefits like body relaxation, mental calmness, and overall mood enhancement without the fear of getting “too high.” Delta 8 has the advantage of having little to no negative psychoactive side effects, but all of the potential medicinal qualities of delta 9, making it the perfect choice for individuals who are seeking THC specifically for medicinal benefits and don’t want the adverse side effects to go along with it. Delta 8 is especially ideal for those who don’t want to get super “high” but still experience the positive effects of THC. 

There you have it — when comparing delta 8 and delta 9 THC it’s impossible to determine a true winner. The main selling points for each depend on the desired experience of the user. Although they are so similar, they are competing in their own categories entirely. And what’s not to like about that?

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