Delta 8 vs Delta 9: Know the Difference

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This article is supplied content by cbdMD

Seems like it wasn’t that long ago that THC was just THC—and in most places, it was illegal. Now that cannabis laws in the United States are loosening up, you can find a variety of products online and in stores touting different “deltas” of THC, most often Delta 8 or Delta 9. But what are they, and what does it mean for you if you take them?
In this article, we’ll run down the differences between Delta 8 and Delta 9 THC, and also talk about some of our favorite THC products from one of our favorite brands. Let’s start with delta 9, because that’s the easier one to explain.

What Is Delta 9 THC?

Tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, occurs naturally throughout the cannabis plant, but there are slightly different forms of it based on molecular structure. In raw, living cannabis, it mostly takes the form of THCa, which actually isn’t intoxicating. That’s why to get the high, people dry it, smoke it, and/or bake it into things. The heat turns the THCa into Delta 9 THC, and that’s the stuff that brings you those psychoactive effects.

Because it takes so little processing to get Delta 9 THC, it’s basically the “natural” form of the compound. If you’ve smoked whole cannabis or eaten an edible made with it, the Delta 9 is responsible for most of what you’re feeling.

What Is Delta 8 THC?

Delta 8 is another molecular variant of THC that naturally occurs in the cannabis plant, but just in tiny amounts. Extracting it usually isn’t worth the effort. So why are we now seeing it all over the place?

The reason is that technicians have figured out how to synthesize it from another compound from cannabis that you’ve probably heard of—CBD. As you may have noticed, there’s a lot of CBD around, so that makes Delta 8 pretty easy for cannabis companies to manufacture.

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Delta 8 vs Delta 9: The Differences that Matter

As we noted, when you consume whole cannabis you’re mostly feeling the Delta 9. So a Delta 9 product will probably make you feel similar to that. Based on user experience, Delta 8 is less potent—some people call it “diet THC.”

For that reason, you might prefer Delta 9 if you either want to get stoned or you’re using THC to help a specific issue, like nausea or sleeplessness. On the other hand, if you’re prone to negative side effects from THC like paranoia, you’ll probably feel those more strongly too.

Another thing to keep in mind about Delta 8 THC, though, is that it’s made with solvents that might be harmful to your health. The FDA actually issued a warning about that not long ago.

Legality is another important difference between Delta 8 and Delta 9. The 2018 Farm Bill legalizing CBD didn’t anticipate that you could make a form of THC from it, so Delta 8 is technically just as legal as CBD is. Delta 9 products can still be federally legal, however, so long as they’re derived from industrial hemp and the THC makes up no more than 0.3% of the product by dry weight.

That’s one reason why our favorite Delta 9 products come from cbdMD. cbdMD was always strict about meeting federal laws with their CBD products, and now they’re branching into Delta 9.

Delta 9 Gummies and More From cbdMD

We’ve sung the praises of cbdMD’s CBD gummies before on this site, due to the company’s commitment to quality, consistency, safety, and deliciousness. The new Delta 9 THC gummies continue this pattern. Each gummy has 10 mg of Delta 9 THC, along with 50 mg of CBD and small amounts of other substances from cannabis to yield a balanced, full-body effect.

If 10 mg of THC is too much at a time, cbdMD also has Delta 9 microdose capsules with just 1 mg per softgel. It also includes CBD and other beneficial hemp derivatives.

Just keep in mind that you need to be at least 21 years old to purchase these, and you must keep them out of reach of children and pets. If you meet those requirements, enjoy the trip!

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