Delta 8

Delta-8 vs. CBD: What are They?

Before trying anything, you must do your research about it. This is especially true for substances you take for your health.

With cannabis products going mainstream after the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, more and more people are willing to try them out. If you’re a first-time user of any cannabis products, though, you’ll likely read up on what cannabis is, as well as the products that can address your needs.

For many people, looking into cannabis brings various terms that can be confusing, from CBD and THC to Delta-9 and Delta-8. Below, we discuss what these are, particularly the differences and similarities between CBD and Delta-8 THC.

Why CBD and Delta-8 THC?

Cannabidiol or CBD and Delta-8 tetrahydrocannabinol or Delta-8 THC are two of the most common cannabis products available in the market, together with Delta-9 THC, which is what people refer to when talking about “THC” and is the main psychoactive component of marijuana.

Currently, THC is still considered a Schedule 1 drug, so it’s heavily regulated. CBD and Delta-8 THC, on the other hand, are legal for sale and consumption in most states, per the 2018 Farm Bill.

THC or marijuana is mainly used as a recreational drug, while CBD and Delta-8 are more often used to address one’s health issues. But CBD and Delta-8, despite being both cannabis products, are still vastly different. This is why we aim to explore CBD vs. Delta-8.

 

Marijuana vs. Hemp

Before we talk further about CBD, Delta-8, and THC, let’s first discuss the oft-mentioned marijuana and hemp. These two kinds of cannabis plants produce different cannabinoids. In addition, one of them is legal while the other is heavily regulated.

The main difference between marijuana and hemp is the amount of THC in them when measured by dry weight. Marijuana is a cannabis strain with THC levels higher than 0.3%. Since THC is the main psychoactive ingredient, the use of marijuana and Delta-9 is restricted in most states.

Hemp, on the other hand, is a cannabis strain that contains less than 0.3% THC. This is where CBD — and Delta-8, by extension — are commonly extracted from.

What is CBD?

Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a cannabinoid. It’s a chemical compound present in hemp. The cannabis plant has over 100 of these cannabinoids with CBD being one of the most prevalent along with THC.

CBD only has the smallest amount of THC, the psychoactive component of marijuana that causes a “high.” It’s considered non-psychoactive since its THC levels are lower than 0.3%.

When the Farm Bill was signed into law in 2018, it removed all hemp-derived products from the list of prohibited and heavily regulated substances. This means that hemp-derived CBD is legal for sale and consumption.

However, if you get your CBD from marijuana, even if it has the exact molecular structure as CBD from hemp, it will be considered illegal.

Oil is the most common form that CBD takes, and it’s also the form that most consumers buy. However, CBD is available in other forms, such as gummies, beverages, and tinctures. There are even cosmetic products that make use of CBD.

However, CBD is mostly popular because it’s been touted for addressing a variety of health issues, such as:

Epilepsy

Epidiolex is the first and currently only cannabis-derived medication approved by the FDA. Epidiolex is used to treat people who experience seizures. Though some epilepsy syndromes don’t respond to anti-seizure medication, numerous studies found that CBD can reduce the number of seizures and stop them altogether in some cases.

Anxiety

A polar opposite of the anxiety-inducing THC, CBD is often used to relieve anxiety. In a Forbes Health survey, over half of the respondents who use CBD report that they do so for their anxiety.CBD has anxiolytic properties, but it’s not yet an approved anti-anxiety medication.

Chronic Pain

Though there aren’t significant studies on humans on whether CBD helps control pain, there have been animal studies that suggest it could address pain and inflammation due to arthritis. Other studies also suggest CBD can be used to treat notoriously difficult neuropathic pain.

Insomnia

Preliminary research suggests that CBD can help alleviate various sleep disorders, including insomnia. It’s been reported among people who use CBD for chronic pain that they sleep better. It is unclear, though, whether it’s because of pain relief or if CBD directly affects sleep.

The same can be said about those who use CBD for their anxiety. When you go to sleep less anxious, you can sleep well and stay asleep instead of tossing and turning through the night.

 

What is Delta-8 THC?

Like CBD, Delta-8 THC is a cannabinoid found in cannabis plants. Unlike CBD, though, Delta-8 occurs only in trace amounts in both hemp and marijuana.

Delta-8 has a similar chemical structure as Delta-9 or what we commonly refer to as THC, although they’re not exactly the same. Delta-8 is a more stable molecule than THC. As a result, THC’s intoxicating effects aren’t as intense with Delta-8.

Though Delta-8 is a type of THC and is a naturally-occurring compound in both hemp and marijuana, the Delta-8 products in the market are created from hemp-derived CBD. Lab technicians manipulate CBD through isomerization to produce Delta-8.

Like CBD, Delta-8 is often used to address health concerns. If research on CBD is still preliminary, Delta-8 studies are even smaller. Still, anecdotal reports and some key scientific research show that Delta-8 can help with the following health issues:

Increased appetite

Delta-8, like its cousin Delta-9, has been known to be an appetite stimulant, which can help those who experience disordered eating due to a lack of appetite.

Reduced anxiety

Like CBD, Delta-8 is reported to have anxiolytic properties. Although it has not been approved as an anti-anxiety medication either, users still report taking D8 to calm down and relieve anxiety.

Pain relief

Delta-8 is not as intoxicating as THC, but it still offers mild psychoactive effects. As such, it can potentially regulate a person’s pain sensitivity, so they feel pain at much lower levels.

Better sleep

Reduced pain and anxiety, combined with the mild euphoria that Delta-8 brings can make someone experience higher quality of sleep.

Digestive support

Researchers suggest that Delta-8 is an effective solution for nausea and vomiting, which are common side effects of chemotherapy.

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