Delta 8 vs. Delta 9: the showdown of the 2020s

By Dharma D8   |   April 22, 2021

Delta 8 vs. Delta 9: the showdown of the 2020s

Coke vs. Pepsi, the Red Sox vs. the Yankees, the Beatles vs. the Rolling Stones. Rivalries seem to come naturally to us as people. Recently, a new rivalry has popped up in a very unusual place: the world of holistic medicine. Utilizing natural plant remedies like hemp has grown in popularity in as little as the last five years. According to this market research company, hemp is projected to become a massive multi-billion dollar industry by 2027. To get the best out of our hemp, we've taken care to separate out two compounds found in hemp to focus on in our products.  We want to explore with you the showdown of Delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol (Delta 8 THC or D8) vs. delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Delta 9 THC). This is a reasonably new rivalry topic as Delta 8 THC has only just recently started to gain national attention. what has caused this contest, and is it even much of a competition at all? Let's talk about it.

What is Delta 8? How does it compare to Delta 9?

Let’s start by talking about what these two compounds even are.

Cannabis has a group of chemical compounds that are called cannabinoids. These compounds are the reason that cannabis has the effects that it does. Cannabinoids are able to have an effect on the Endocannabinoid System (ECS). This is a system of receptors that helps your body control certain functions. Cannabinoids can have an effect on people because they can stimulate and, in some cases, bind with these receptors. Delta 9 THC and Delta 8 THC are both cannabinoids, and both have effects on the ECS. This is where some differences start to come into play.

As you can probably guess from the names, D8 and Delta 9 THC are very similar. In fact, they are almost the same. But they have one small difference in their structures. This difference has less of an impact than it may seem at first. Delta 9 THC binds nice and tight with the ECS receptors. This is how it causes that euphoric feeling that is so often associated with cannabis. The difference in structure means that Delta 8 THC also binds with the ECS receptors, but this bind isn't quite as tight. It causes that same euphoric sensation, its effect has been described as a more peaceable experience over Delta 9 THC's.

This is where the rivalry starts. Many people say that D8 isn’t worth it because it doesn’t have the same intensity as Delta 9 THC. whether or not it's worth it really depends on the person. Some people are very new to the world of THC and are hesitant about what kind of effect it could have on them. So, a more delicate result could be more attractive as it could make a good introduction for them. 

People may want to look for Delta 8 THC rather than Delta 9 THC because they are more likely to find it readily available. Delta 9 THC is high in concentration in marijuana, while Delta 8 THC is a bit harder to find in any cannabis plant. This makes a large difference because hemp was made federally legal in the United States back in 2018. This doesn't mean that it is legal in every state. it does mean that it is more likely to be legal in your state than products directly extracted from marijuana. Meaning, that you are more likely to find hemp-derived D8 than you are marijuana-derived Delta 9 THC.

What else can Delta 8 do?

There’s already been a fair amount of research looking at the potential benefits of Delta 9 THC. While these are very promising and should be talked about, we’re going to brush over them for right now. Mainly because no one ever really talks about the potential health benefits of Delta 8 THC. We want to give it a chance to really shine. So, what kind of benefits could Delta 8 THC offer?

Help with anxiety

This is an idea that tends to surprise people. After all, it's not unheard of for people to use THC and feel paranoid, especially if they are uncareful and do not do any prior research into different strains assuming all marijuana products are created equal. There has been a fair amount of research to suggest that Delta 8 THC may be helpful for dealing with anxiety at the correct levels. Studies, like this one, have found that anxiety and anxiety relief are often associated with the same ECS receptor that Delta 8 THC interacts with most. When you also consider that Delta 8 THC has a different effect as Delta 9 THC, it's not surprising that they are more likely to release pleasant feelings of euphoria.

Help with inflammation and pain

This is something that has been explored with Delta 9 THC time and time again. Most of the research surrounding this has found that Delta 9 THC could help with inflammation and pain. If Delta 8 THC is more gentle, how much could it help? As it turns out, it could be very helpful. This study found that Delta 8 THC helped decrease corneal inflammation and pain. This means that it could be very beneficial for those who are struggling with many different conditions.

When it comes down to a comparison between Delta 8 THC and Delta 9 THC, there are a few take-aways. One is that Delta 8 THC is often described as providing a feeling of euphoria that is clearer. Some people even say that it makes them more productive. Another is that hemp is more likely to be legal than marijuana, making Delta 8 THC more accessible than Delta 9 THC. When it comes to potential health benefits, it seems like the two are pretty evenly matched. When looking at this battle, the main thing to ask yourself is, what kind of effect are you looking for?

If you think that Delta 8 THC has the effects that you’re looking for, then why not check out what we have here at Dharma8. We have a wide range of Delta 8 THC products for you to pick from, so no matter what your taste or style, you’ll be able to find the right product for you. We test every one of our products for content and quality, so you know that you’re getting the best Delta 8 THC out there. Interested in learning more? Read about Delta 8 CBD.


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