Regardless if you’ve ever consumed it, you’re probably familiar with marijuana in some way. Whether it be the strong skunky odor or the powerful psychoactive effects, weed has become a topic of hot discussion in the past few years. Many states have legalized marijuana for both medicinal and recreational use, which has largely reversed the negative connotation that has haunted the hemp plant for centuries.
But there is more to this fascinating plant than just weed. In fact, the hemp plant contains an astonishing amount of both psychoactive and non-psychoactive cannabinoids. You may already be familiar with Delta-9 THC, the psychoactive compound in weed, and you’ve most likely heard about the non-psychoactive compound called CBD. Today we’ll be going into great detail about one of the newest psychoactive cannabinoids on the market today: HHC. This fascinating cannabinoid is breaking barriers in the cannabinoid industry, but what exactly is it? Is HHC stronger than Delta-9? Is it legal? Keep reading to find the answers to all these questions and more!
HHC: What Is It?
HHC, short for hexahydrocannabinol, is a naturally occurring cannabinoid within the hemp plant. Similar to Delta-8 THC, HHC is only available in very small quantities and must be chemically altered in order to be viable. Yet since it occurs naturally within the hemp plant, it is not considered to be synthetic and is therefore legal as long as it is derived from federally legal hemp (more on that later).
Manufacturing HHC requires that a hydrogen molecule be saturated to convert it to THC and then to HHC, a process known as hydrogenation. The freshly-minted HHC can now be infused into a variety of familiar products such as edibles like gummies and tinctures, and inhalables like vape cartridges and disposables. As an added bonus, HHC products have a longer shelf life than other cannabinoid-infused products.
Understanding How HHC Works In Comparison to Delta-9 THC
In order to have a better understanding on how HHC works, it’s important to compare it to Delta-9 THC, a cannabinoid which many users are familiar with. There are many similarities between Delta-9 THC and HHC, but it ultimately depends which cannabinoid you’re consuming and what you’re wanting to experience out of your high. We’ll go over both cannabinoids and explain the expected effects of both cannabinoids, thus answering the following question: is HHC stronger than Delta-9 THC?
What Is Delta-9 THC?
Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, or Delta-9 THC for short, is the active component in marijuana. Delta-9 THC is the arguably the hardest hitting of all the naturally occurring cannabinoids within the hemp plant, which is why many people tend to feel overwhelmed the first time they try it. THC bonds heavily to your body’s natural CB-1 receptors that are located throughout your brain and body. This strong bond to your CB-1 receptors is what causes the intense high that can often last for hours. Some of the most common effects from marijuana include deep relaxation, euphoria, an increased sense of humor, heightened sense of touch and taste, and drowsiness. Some of the less-pleasurable side effects include increased paranoia, disorientation, and agitation. If you’ve experienced any of these latter side effects, you may have consumed more THC than your body can handle. This is why manufacturers recommend starting slow with any cannabinoid consumption.
Another reason you may expxerience these unpleasant side effects is due to consuming the wrong strain; marijuana is categorized into three strains: indica, sativa, and hybrid (a blend of both indica and sativa). Indica strains offer a drowsy weighted high that can leave you feeling “in da couch,” whereas the high from sativa strains offer an enhanced sense of creativity and focus. Hybrid strains are a blend of both indica and sativa, though they usually lean more heavily towards one of the two. Many users prefer indica strains for evening use, sativa strains for daytime use, and hybrid strains for a comfortable blend of the two for either nighttime or daytime enjoyment.
Now, for the million-dollar question…is HHC stronger than Delta-9 THC? The short answer is no. The effects from an HHC high are similar to those from a Delta-9 THC high, just not as intense and overwhelming. This more subdued high is what makes HHC more attractive for new users! HHC offers a smoother and more relaxing high, sharing similar effects to the indica strains of Delta-9 THC. You can expect to feel a dreamy euphoria, improved cognitive functions like focus and creativity, and heightened senses of touch and taste. If you are prone to bouts of paranoia, you might want to play it safe by consuming HHC until your body becomes comfortable with the effects. The effects of HHC come on gradually and allow the user to remain clear-headed and in control. When crafted by reputable brands, HHC is rigorously tested by third-party independent labs to confirm purity and potency, thus adding to the advantages of consuming this cannabinoid over Delta-9 THC.
Legality of HHC vs. Delta-9 THC
One of the greatest differences between HHC and Delta-9 THC is the legality. Thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, HHC is legal on a federal level. According to this bill, all hemp-derived cannabinoids must contain 0.3% THC or less. While Delta-9 THC is making tremendous headway on becoming legal for both medicinal and recreational use, there are many states who will not allow Delta-9 THC to be used at all based on the high THC content. Although HHC requires extraction and hydrogenation to be utilized, the low THC content allows this cannabinoid to be sold in many states throughout the country. Many states have their own laws concerning hemp-derived cannabinoids, so you’ll need to check your local laws to confirm HHC is available within your state.
While it’s true that HHC is not as strong as Delta-9 THC, there are many advantages to using this particular cannabinoid. The high is smoother and more tolerable for new users, thus lessening the chances of feeling overwhelmed. The effects of HHC mimic the effects of Delta-9 THC, particularly the indica strains. An HHC high is not as intense as a Delta-9 THC high but still offers relaxation, euphoria, improved cognitive functions, and much more. HHC is also legal on a federal level, although certain states may have their own ruling on the legality within that state. HHC comes in a variety of products that are often subjected to intense testing by independent third-party labs. The decision to consume HHC products over Delta-9 THC products depends on what effects you’re looking to experience while high. Remember to start small with your doses until you can accurately gauge your body’s reactions. Not sure what HHC products to start with? Check out our incredible selection of HHC gummies and disposable vapes! If you have any questions on HHC, Delta-9 THC, or any other hemp-derived products, feel free to reach out to us here at Erth Hemp. We look forward to hearing from you!