Delta-8-THC is a minor cannabinoid found in the hemp plant in very small quantities. It is considered a degraded type of THC that is not directly made from cannabinoid synthesizing enzymes found in the hemp plant. Storing THC for a prolonged period of time degrades it into delta-8-THC. Commercial farmers and sellers implement molecular isolation as well as selective breeding to obtain higher quantities of delta-8-THC.
Currently, Delta-8-THC is thriving in the cannabis market as one of the most exciting and most intoxicating cannabinoids within the hemp industry. The compound which contains close similarities to Delta-9 THC is widely being sold across the USA which some believe is allowable pursuant to the 2018 Farm Bill legalizing cannabinoids extracted from hemp, but that point of view is controversial and disputed by some.
In comparison to Delta-9 THC, Delta-8-THC is less potent. Delta-8-THC products are half as strong as delta-9 products. Delta-8-THC is also more stable than delta-9 THC as it is difficult to oxidize to cannabinol (CBN) and has an extensive shelf life. However, the compound bears similar physiological and psychological effects to the Delta-9-THC.
With regard to the structural or chemical make-up, delta-8-THC is different from delta-9-THC attributed to the positioning of a vital chemical bond. Despite both delta-9-THC and delta-8 THC having double bonds within their molecular chain, delta-8-THC forms that bond on the 8th carbon chain while delta-9 THC holds that bond on the 9th carbon chain. It is a minor difference but with significant effects in the manner in which the body’s endocannabinoid receptors bind and react to the molecule.
A report from the U.S National Library of Medicine indicates that delta-8-THC contains anxiety-reducing properties. According to anecdotal reports, consuming delta-8-THC leads to a calm and focused high, with less anxiety that one usually experiences after consuming delta-9-THC.