Delta-8: Sinful or Helpful for your Health?

Most people in the United States have not heard of Delta-8. It is, however, becoming a very popular cannabis product in hemp/CBD stores across the country where they are legal. The people who appreciate the advent of Delta-8 in the marketplace are growing in number. The people who decry the use of anything cannabis are becoming more vocal.

What is Delta-8?

We will start here with what Delta-8 is NOT. It is not Delta-9. Both are forms of tetrahydrocannabinol. Delta-8 is an analogue of Delta-9. As you may know, D9 is an illegal cannabinoid at the Federal level across the country. Even though it is illegal in the United States and a Schedule 1 drug (why it still is classified as Sched 1 is beyond us), it is legal of adult use in many States already. Delta-8, however, when it is derived from Industrial Hemp, is legal in the United States

Since Delta-8 products are similar to Delta-9 but not the same there are notable differences in how Delta-8 affects people as compared to Delta-9.

How can Delta-8 be Used?

So far, we have experienced most our customers seek out Delta-8 products specifically for sleep. People consistently claim CBD AND Delta-8 have helped improve their length of sleep and quality of sleep.

Many people have discovered better sleep using cannabinoids. For those with modest sleep issues, such as occasional sleeplessness or anxiety which causes sleep to be more erratic, modest doses of CBD have been helpful to relieve the discomfort from stress and anxiety and this helps people ease into better sleep. When the discomfort is higher from more sleeplessness or higher anxiety, customer are using a combination of CBD and Delta-8. This drastically improves the level of anxiety and discomfort and helps boost sleep outcomes.

The following statistics from the Sleep Association help underscore the need for more natural options with lack of sleep issues.

discomfort from knee pain
Sleep may be much better with the aid of CBD

Sleep Deprivation Statistics:

37% of 20-39 year-olds report short sleep duration

40% of 40-59 year-olds report short sleep duration

35.3% adults report <7 hours of sleep during a typical 24-hour period.

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Delta-8 and its analgesic properties are very useful to consumers who face persistent pain and do not wish to engage opiates for pain relief. Not only does the Delta-8 require a prescription to consumer, it also does not suffer the same limitations at opiates as far as over-dose levels. The risk of death from overdose with opiates used for pain is far greater than with cannabinoids. In fact, there have been no documented direct deaths from consumption of Delta-8 products. This is a significant reason why so many people are switching from prescription opiates to cannabis products.

There are other benefits claimed for Delta-8 which include anti-emetic qualities, appetite suppression (orexigenic) and neuroprotective behavior.

The US Farm Bill (2018) and Legal Cannabinoids

Since 2018, Industrial Hemp processors have been allowed to produce cannabinoid products from Industrial Hemp as it the content of Delta-9 THC does not exceed 0.3% (by dwt). This means more minor cannabinoids such as the Delta-8

US Farm Bill 2018 industrial hemp

Since all legal Delta-8 is derived from Hemp plants, it bypasses the stipulation of any THC being derived from marijuana plants (which, by reasonable definition, is still cannabis sativa, the very same plant that produces Industrial Hemp).

The Sinful Nature of Delta-8 and your Health

Cannabis naysayers are quick to describe the evils of the psychoactive behaviors of cannabinoids. Even though there are relatively few cannabinoids that actually have psychoactive properties, those who are against all things cannabis use the few friends of THC as examples of compounds that are destined to destroy our civilization – or something like that.

When it comes to pharmaceutical products, most firms will reference a list of “side effects” when the side effects are actually more of “direct effects”. With Cannabis products, we try to educate our customers across the spectrum of direct effects and health impacts of cannabinoids.

One common direct effect of Delta-8, much like other THC brethren, is the dry mouth. This is why we typically recommend to Delta-8 consumers to hydrate well. Additionally, even though the incidence appears to be far less than that associated with Delta-9, there are people who experience bouts of paranoia with Delta-8. Linked closely to this is the possibility of increased anxiety rather than decreased as you’d expect in the more modest cannabinoids such as CBD.

Cannabidiol (CBD) does not have any psychoactive properties. Most of the opponents of cannabis products still do not support the use of CBD as a curative or beneficial compound. Numerous studies and hoards of anecdotal testimony suggest that CBD along with many other cannabinoids are still exceptional targets for more in-depth testing and research into overall efficacy and impact on human health. Delta-8, like Delta-9, is in the same group: Does the collection of benefits (which is significant) outweigh the psychoactive nature of THC compounds?

The Helpful Nature of Delta-8 and your Health

Recreational and medical fans of Delta-8 are quick to report that the direct effects of larger doses of Delta-8 include the mild euphoria, uplifted mindset, happiness, and relief from the discomfort of pain, aches and other troubling conditions. When taken within two hours of intended sleep, most consumers are satisfied with the improved sleep they experience without the same drowsy impact of some OTC medications and pharmaceuticals.

As the Delta-8 compound does bind with the CB1 and CB2 receptors (perhaps not as energetically as regular Delta-9), it is believed that it is also a key agent in improving cancer treatment outcomes. This is important as more studies into the medical impact of botanical agents such as CBD, THC and Delta-8 are still vital to help settle the ongoing dispute as to whether Cannabis should be considered an herb, a medicine, or a drug.

Hemp Angel - Hemp isn't evil, it's a blessed herb

What is the Best Way to enjoy Delta-8?

Full Service cannabis stores in States across the country are able to offer Delta-8 alongside other cannabinoids such as CBD, CBG, CBC, and more – all as long as they are derived from Industrial Hemp and compliant with the 2018 Farm Bill.

When Delta-8 products started breaking into the popular culture, it did so in the States more energetically where Delta-9 was illegal. Therefore, States such as North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia embraced the delta-8 products being developed. Vape cartridges and edibles were the first big categories to embrace the Delta-8 distillates.

A fair representation of users of CBD vape products learned that combining the CBD vape sessions with occasional Delta-8 sessions may help ease anxiety and help promote relaxation more than just one of the cannabinoids used as a solo treatment.

This same discovery has applied to the hemp edibles crowd who have enjoyed more relaxation thanks to CBD’s calming impact for anxiety. When a small amount of Delta-8 is introduced, such as under 10mg, the CBD appears to be boosted while overall relaxation improves without introducing a “high” feeling.

Experiencing Delta-8 Products at Carolina Hemp Hut

Delta-8 products started growing in popularity in late Summer 2020. During the COVID-19 concerns for immune health, people were experiencing higher than typical levels of anxiety. Limited sleep, irritability and other symptoms were also presenting more commonly. Our stores saw far more online orders (for safety reasons) of our wide array of CBD/Hemp edibles and vape products for the negative health impacts from the pandemic. As the Delta-8 products moved from a “suspicious” product to a “go to” product for the discomfort people were facing, it grew rapidly in popularity.

Some weeks, the Delta-8 sales of products such as Edibles, Vapes, Infused Flower, and topicals exceed the popularity of the benchmark CBD products. When polled, most customers reveal that the goal of consuming Delta-8 is NOT the high, but relief from three key issues:

  • Sleeplessness/Insomnia
  • High Anxiety
  • Body Aches/Pains
Vegan and Organic CBD rich gummy bears - edibles- from Sun State Hemp and Carolina Hemp Hut

When customers seek products for relief of the above bullets of discomfort, we always explain the differences in the two cannabinoids CBD and Delta-8 as well as provide a direct warning as to the possibility of some psychoactive impact with larger doses of Delta-8.

We are encouraged that most consumers are seeking relief from discomfort rather than a “high”. We, as a team, work to eliminate the stereotypes of cannabis that have evolved from years of government embargo on natural medicines (from cannabis). Our goals include educating consumers on ALL available cannabinoids to permit not only broader acceptance of botanical solutions, but to dispel the many myths associated with cannabis as a plant and product.

Some last thoughts on Delta-8 and You

It is key to mention that the level of medical and scientific research with regard to Delta-8 and a host of other cannabinoids is still lacking. Government funding is nearly non-existent. Big Pharma, except for GW (who is attempting to corner the market on all things cannabis it would seem), is resistant to adopting cannabis compounds in their drug therapies at this time, but more are considering it.

More testing, both anecdotal and clinical, will help determine the overall strength of safe doses, the impact on the body and brain, and possible drug interactions. Much like any other cannabis product or cannabinoids (such as the cannabinoids in Echinacea), your body’s own chemistry and metabolic action will have an impact on your overall dosing and health impact.

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