What Is the Science Behind Delta 8 THC?


While Delta-9-THC has been around quite some time, the Delta-8-THC derivative is the new kid on the block. But it’s quickly gaining popularity. Like most people, you may also have questions such as what is Delta 8 THC, what’s the science behind it, and what’s the hype about Delta 8 Tinctures. Here’s the answer.

Effects of Delta-8-THC

If you haven’t experienced Delta-8-THC yet, let’s start with the absolute basics.

Cannabis is filled with hundreds of chemical constituents that are quite different from each other. Take the example of Delta-9-THC and Delta-8-THC. There’s just a difference in the position of a Carbon-Carbon double bond, yet the effects they cause are significantly different. 

In the case of Delta-8-THC, it is defined as a psychoactive compound with antiemetic, analgesic, and neuroprotective properties. Therefore, it produces the same effects as Delta-9-THC. 

Benefits of Delta-8-THC

Delta-8-THC is similar to Delta-9-THC in getting you high psychologically and physiologically, but the difference lies in potency. The Delta-8-THC derivative is slightly less potent.

In one research, researchers have found Delta-8-THC to be anti-nausea and anti-anxiety. After taking THC, if you experience anxious behavior, your heart rate goes up, or there are signs of dizziness, the Delta 8-THC tinctures will reduce these effects.

Also, if you get “too” high by consuming THC or CBD, then the researchers also suggest that Delta-8-THC has a lower psychotropic potency because of which it wouldn’t get to as high as you normally get.

Another claim includes that of a clear-headed high. This means you’re never out of control and can do your things safely.

Just like other THC compounds, the overall benefits of Delta-8-THC include:

  • Simulate appetite
  • Pain relief and reduces inflammation
  • Eliminate nausea
  • A less-potent, clear-headed high
  • Might work topically when applied to the skin

Science Behind Delta-8-THC

Now that you know what Delta 8 THC is, you might be curious about the less potency of Delta-8-THC? The first reason is the structure of the compound itself. The slight difference in the position of carbon-carbon double bonds offers greater chemical stability and lengthens the shelf life. Thus, it doesn’t go oxidation too fast too soon to get you high quickly.

The second is the pharmacodynamics property. Just like Delta-9-THC, Delta-8-THC is a CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptor, thus bonding with them when in contact. But this is at a lower potency level. The Ki value of Delta-8-THC is:

  • 44 ± 12 nM at the CB1 receptor
  • 44 ± 17 nM at the CB2 receptor

These are much higher than the value for Delta-9-THC, which indicates that the 8-THC derivative binds less effectively to the receptors, making it less potent.

The science behind why Delta-8-THC increases appetite has to do with increasing dopamine and serotonin level in the hypothalamus and hippocampus gland. But this was researched, taking mice as subjects.

Because of its low popularity compared to THC and limitations on quantity, the research conducted is limited. So, to hold the same status as Delta-9-THC, more research will be needed. 

The compound became federally legal in 2018, courtesy of the 2018 Farm Bill. Therefore, you can order Delta 8 Tinctures online. But it’s important to order from a reliable, licensed vendor.

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