If you’ve been enjoying delta-8 products, you’re probably wondering what the deal is with delta-10. How are delta-8 and delta-10 different? And if you’re completely new to alternative THCs, this article will answer all your burning questions, such as:
- What are delta-8 and delta-10 THC?
- How will delta-10 and delta-8 make me feel?
- Are alternative THCs like delta-8 legal?
- Will taking delta-10 or delta-8 show up on a drug test?
- How are delta-8 and delta-10 different from CBD?
We’ll answer all of these excellent questions and more in a moment. But first, let’s go over how these hemp-derived compounds work.
What Are the Active Compounds in Hemp and Cannabis?
The primary active ingredients in hemp and cannabis plants are called cannabinoids. So far, scientists have isolated over 100 individual cannabinoids, including:
- Cannabidiol (CBD)
- Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)
- Cannabigerol (CBG)
- Cannabinol (CBN)
- Cannabichromene (CBC)
- Cannabimovone (CBM)
Each of these compounds has a slightly different molecular structure and offers unique therapeutic benefits.
How Do Cannabinoids Work?
Cannabinoids work by stimulating sites in a network of receptors called the endocannabinoid system (ECS). Although modern medicine has only been aware of the ECS for three decades, the system evolved over 600 million years ago. Nearly all organisms on earth, including primitive species like sea urchins, have an endocannabinoid system that helps them maintain internal balance.
The endocannabinoid system plays a role in a wide array of vital functions, such as:
- regulating body temperature
- managing hormones
- balancing moods and emotions
- regularizing sleep cycles
- regulating inflammation and immune responses
- managing metabolism and appetite
The ECS accomplishes all these tasks through two types of receptors: CB1 receptors in the central nervous system and CB2 receptors in the peripheral nervous system, including our immune cells. The system functions in a similar way that neurotransmitters work, but the signals move in the opposite direction. Internal compounds called endocannabinoids bind to ECS receptor sites, modifying the actions of the cells.
Scientists have identified two primary endocannabinoids, 2-arachidonyl glycerol (2-AG) and arachidonoyl ethanolamide (anandamide). When levels of 2-AG and anandamide are adequate, the body stays in relative balance.
But when levels of natural endocannabinoids fall, the body struggles to maintain homeostasis, and health issues can result. An extreme lack of endocannabinoids may provoke a serious condition called Clinical Endocannabinoid Deficiency (CECD). CECD has been linked to difficult-to-treat illnesses like migraines, fibromyalgia, and IBS.
Thankfully, plant cannabinoids like CBD can help boost our natural endocannabinoids and directly or indirectly modulate ECS receptors. Ancient Asian medical systems like Ayurveda and traditional Chinese medicine have included cannabis plants in their healing practices for thousands of years. Modern science is finally beginning to understand how these plants work.
How Is THC Different from CBD?
The main difference between THC and CBD is the way each binds with endocannabinoid receptors. The shape of the THC molecule allows it to bond directly to CB1 receptors in the brain, provoking potent psychoactive effects.
In contrast, CBD interacts indirectly by modifying the action of the receptors rather than creating a direct link. This mechanism is why CBD doesn’t cause intense psychoactive effects like THC does.
How Are Delta-8, Delta-10, and Regular THC Different?
Scientists recognize the different types of THC by the placement of a particular double bond. The official scientific name for traditional THC is delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol because the molecule has the double bond on the ninth atom of its chain of carbons. This position allows THC to make a strong link to CBD receptors in the central nervous system and causes the typical effects associated with “marijuana.”
When the double bond is shifted slightly, as with delta-8 and delta-10, the molecule changes to a form that can no longer link as tightly with the receptors. For this reason, delta-8 and delta-10 THC produce significantly milder psychoactive effects. While traditional THC can sometimes impart overwhelming sensations like paranoia and heavy sedation, hemp-derived delta-8 and delta-10 usually promote a mellow, clear-headed high.
Which Is Better: Delta-8 or Delta-10 THC?
Whether you choose delta-8 or delta-10 will depend mainly on your personal preference. Delta-8 and delta-10 produce similar effects, but each compound has its own “color.” You can think of the differences between the two in the same way that cannabis strains are divided into indica and sativa.
Delta-8 produces more calming effects similar to indica strains like Hindu Kush or Northern Lights. You may prefer delta-8 if you’re looking for something to wind down in the evenings or relax on the weekend.
Consumers often compare delta-10 to a sativa strain like Durban Poison or Sour Diesel. Delta-10 produces more energetic effects, making it an excellent choice for outdoor activities or workday productivity.
You may prefer one over the other or keep both delta-8 and delta-10 around for different purposes and occasions.
What Benefits Do Delta-10 and Delta-8 Offer?
Besides providing a convenient way to relax and enhance creativity, delta-8 and delta-10 may offer similar therapeutic benefits as traditional THC. We still don’t have a lot of information about delta-10, but the National Cancer Institute has defined delta-8 as having “antiemetic, anxiolytic, appetite-stimulating, analgesic, and neuroprotective qualities.”
Similar to medical marijuana, delta-8 and delta-10 may offer a range of therapeutic benefits, such as:
- reducing nausea and vomiting
- alleviating anxiety
- stimulating appetite
- relieving pain
- protecting neurons
- reducing inflammation
- lowering intraocular pressure
Will Taking Delta-8 or Delta-10 Cause Any Side Effects?
Moderate delta-8 or delta-10 consumption is unlikely to provoke the kinds of intense side effects associated with typical cannabis. That said, higher doses of delta-8 and delta-10 THC may cause similar side effects, including:
- red eyes
- increased appetite
The easiest way to avoid side effects is to start with a lower dose of delta-8 or delta-10 and gauge the effects before consuming more. If you notice any uncomfortable sensations, reduce the amount you consume in the next session.
Can I Take Delta-10 and Delta-8 at the Same Time?
Yes, absolutely. Taking both at the same time can produce a well-rounded buzz similar to a balanced hybrid cannabis strain. However, please keep in mind that the two compounds won’t “cancel each other out.” The total amount of THC determines the intensity of the effects, and consuming twice the usual dose can provoke some of the side effects we mentioned earlier.
Are Delta-8 and Delta-10 Products Legal?
The regulations outlined in the 2018 Farm Bill permit all hemp-derived products as long as they contain less than .3% delta-9 THC. Unfortunately, although alternative THC’s like delta-8 and delta-10 are federally legal, some states have passed laws banning the compounds. We recommend that consumers check with their state and local authorities to determine if delta-8 and delta-10 products are legal where they live.
Will Taking Delta-8 or Delta-10 Make Me Fail a Drug Test?
Unfortunately, yes. Delta-8 and delta-10 produce many of the same metabolites as regular THC does. Drug screenings search for the presence of these metabolites to determine if the test subject has been using cannabis. We suggest that you refrain from consuming delta-8 or delta-10 products if you’re required to pass a drug test for cannabis.
Where Can I Buy the Best Delta-8 and Delta-10 Products?
You can find delta-8 and delta-10 products in some local CBD shops in states that permit the compounds. You can also buy delta-8 and delta-10 at most dispensaries in states where recreational cannabis is legal. In addition, many online hemp and CBD stores also offer delta-10 and delta-8 flower, gummies, tinctures, vapes, and other lab-tested products.
Consumers should avoid purchasing delta-8 or delta-10 products from black market sources as they may contain harmful ingredients, such as pesticides, molds, heavy metals, residual solvents, and dangerous additives. Reputable vendors will provide official Certificates of Analysis (COAs) that ensure their products are safe.
Thank you for joining us on this exploration of delta-8 and delta-10 THC. Stay tuned to our classifieds for vetted listings from high-quality CBD, delta-8, and delta-10 vendors.
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Zach is the founder of HempCBDExchange.com. Amateur writer. Social media ninja. Travelaholic. Passionate about all things cannabis & hemp.