The hemp industry is rapidly expanding, and it can be challenging to keep up with the new formulations hitting the market every day. By now, you’ve heard of the two most abundant cannabinoids—CBD, the non-psychoactive hemp-derivative praised for its therapeutic potential, and THC, the component in the cannabis plant that causes you to get high. But a new cannabinoid is emerging into the spotlight, and experts think it may offer some of the best attributes of both primary cannabinoids. 

Delta 8 THC is hemp-derived, which makes it just as accessible as CBD products. Its effects are much more similar to traditional THC, which means it hosts a range of recreational and therapeutic benefits. If your first thought was, “What is Delta 8, and how is it legal?” don’t worry! We’ll break down everything you need to know about Delta 8’s benefits, risks, legality, and more.

What is Delta 8? 

Delta 8: Everything You Need To Know

Delta 8 THC is a mildly psychoactive cannabinoid naturally found in cannabis material, although it’s usually only available in trace amounts. Some people describe the effects of Delta-8 as being “a cross between THC and CBD,” but that’s not entirely accurate. 

So, what’s the difference between Delta 8 and Delta-9? On a molecular level, not much. The two are different only by one carbon bond, but that one slight difference makes for an entirely different cannabinoid. The most significant difference is that Delta-8 is said to be less potent than Delta-9. Plus, it can be derived from hemp, which opens it up to a very different legal atmosphere. 

Delta-8 is a natural cannabinoid, but it is also an isomer of CBD. That means the CBD and Delta-8 molecules have all of the same components, but they are arranged differently.

Because it’s not very abundant, Delta-8-THC is commonly made from CBD through a process called isomerization. During this process, CBD is exposed to an acid that rearranges the molecule into Delta-8-THC. After some refinement, the result is a Delta-8-THC distillate that can be used to make all sorts of different Delta-8 products.  

It’s important to note that Delta-8-THC, like other hemp products, has not yet been evaluated by the FDA. The FDA warns that some products may be marketed in ways that put the public health at risk.

Will Delta 8 Get You High?

Delta-8 THC is indeed psychoactive, which means it will get you high, but the effects aren’t quite what you’d expect from traditional THC products. 

For starters, Delta-8-THC’s psychoactive effects are said to be less potent than Delta-9’s. We have no evidence to verify precisely how much less powerful Delta 8 may be, but some sources report that it’s about half as strong. 

Delta-8-THC’s products are usually described as relaxing and euphoric and are often compared to the effects of Indica cannabis strains. Some people also report a substantial “body high” with less cerebral effects. Of course, everyone’s Delta-8-THC experience will differ based on dosage, tolerance, weight, and other unique biological factors. Intensity aside, many people report that the effects are still different. 

Does Delta 8 Show Up On a Drug Test?

Does Delta 8 Show Up on A Drug Test?

Yes, Delta 8 can trigger a false positive drug test result, and there’s no way to prove that it was Delta-8 and not Delta-9 that triggered the positive result. This is because drug tests look for THC metabolites and not Delta-9-THC itself. More specifically, drug tests look for the metabolite 11-hydroxy-THC. Just like Delta-9, Delta-8 THC converts to 11-hydroxy-THC inside the body and will cause you to fail a drug test. 

Is Delta 8 Legal? 

Is Delta 8 Legal?

Because Delta 8 THC is derived from hemp, it’s federally legal under the definitions used in the 2018 Farm Bill. By definition, legal hemp material includes: 

“the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of that plant, including the seeds thereof and all derivatives, extracts, cannabinoids, isomers, acids, salts, and salts of isomers, whether growing or not, with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis.”

Therefore, Delta-8-THC products derived from hemp and containing less than 0.3% Delta-9-THC are legal by federal law.

Where Is Delta 8 Illegal?

Of course, some states have conflicting laws, and Delta-8-THC is illegal in some states. State laws are subject to change, but Delta-8-THC is illegal or restricted in the following states to date:

  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • Arkansas
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Kentucky
  • Idaho
  • Iowa
  • Michigan
  • Mississippi
  • Montana
  • New York
  • North Dakota
  • Rhode Island
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Washington 

The Benefits & Risks of Delta 8

The Risks of Delta 8

Because Delta-8 is so similar to Delta-9, many benefits and risks are presumed to be the same. For now, Delta-8 research is limited, but experts suggest that it may have neuroprotective properties and some potential for managing pain and inflammation and controlling nausea and vomiting. Delta-8-THC is more shelf-stable than Delta-9, so current research is focused on discovering its full pharmaceutical potential. 

Anecdotal reports commonly support the idea that Delta-8 is less likely to cause anxiety or paranoia. One of the most cited Delta-8-THC studies evaluated the use of Delta-8 for managing nausea and vomiting in pediatric cancer patients. The study found Delta-8-THC to be 100% effective but noted that it was less likely to cause anxiety than Delta-9. 

No research has been done to identify the side effects of Delta-8, but most existing research suggests that it was “well-tolerated.” Otherwise, common risks of THC use include: 

One of the most significant risks of Delta-8-THC is the risk of getting a bad product. Delta-8-THC production is relatively new, and the hemp industry is still scarcely regulated, so it’s essential that you do your research to learn how to choose high-quality products backed by third-party lab tests. 

Where to Buy Delta 8?

Urb Dark Chocolate Delta-8 Chocolate

$24.99  in stock
as of September 22, 2021 8:00 pm

Urb Dark Chocolate Delta-8 Chocolate -300MG - 25MG Delta-8 Per Chocolate Piece.

One of the most significant benefits of Delta-8 is that it’s much more accessible than traditional THC products. Because it’s a legal hemp product, you can buy Delta-8-THC online and in local stores from various vendors. 

Many Delta-8 brands ship to states across the country, but Delta-8-THC is not legal in all states. Make sure you’re familiar with your local Delta-8 laws before you order Delta-8 online. 

We feature a variety of highest quality Delta-8 products with coupon codes to help you save! Read through our Delta-8 buying guide to find the perfect product for you! 

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Delta 8 Safe?

  • Delta 8 THC is a natural hemp cannabinoid with similar drawbacks to Delta-9-THC. To avoid low-quality products that are potentially unsafe, look for a brand that offers lab reports to prove the potency and purity of their products. 

How Long Does Delta 8 Stay in Your System?

  • Delta-8-THC may stay in your system for 30 days or more, but the amount of time Delta-8 is detectable depends on the type of drug test used. For instance, a saliva test may only detect THC for a few days after the last use, while a hair follicle test can detect THC for several months. A urine test, the most common type of drug test, may detect Delta-8-THC for up to 30 days. If you’re worried about an upcoming drug screening, learn what to do from the experts.

How is Delta 8 Made?

  • Delta-8-THC is through a process called “isomerization,” where CBD is converted into Delta-8. High-quality products are carefully refined, and third-party lab tested for potency and purity. 

Koi Delta 8 THC Tincture Oil - Watermelon 1000mg

$49.99  out of stock
as of May 18, 2024 4:04 am

Koi Delta 8 THC Tincture - Watermelon Koi Delta 8 THC Tincture Oil - Watermelon is packed with flavor and hemp-derived Delta-8 THC. These tinctures come in 5 mouth-watering flavors, including Strawberry, Mango, Lime, Blue-Razz, and Watermelon. Each 30 mL bottle contains 1,000 mg of Delta-8 THC to...

Kat Austin

Kat Austin

After a difficult pregnancy, simultaneously worsening back injuries, increased anxiety, and more intense migraines, Kat was seeking relief but was being offered a myriad of prescriptions that left her, like many others, with unwanted side effects. Upon discovering the medical benefits of cannabis and CBD, she has seen a complete transformation in her life. Through her writing, extensive research, and analysis, Kat hopes to give you the tools you need to design your most effective health regimen.