Thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, most can recognize THC by its scientific name: delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol. But what many may not know is that delta 9 isn’t the only form of THC on the market. Although delta 8 was first discovered in 1965, just one year after the discovery of delta 9, because of its origins it has often been overlooked. Namely the fact that it is chemically derived from CBD rather than taken from the Cannabis sativa plant itself.
In spite of its origins, delta 8 is a form of THC, and it should be treated as such. But does delta 8 show up on a drug test? Or is it completely safe to use like quality CBD? Because delta 8 THC is new to the popular market, there are still many questions surrounding its origin and effects such as:
- What is delta 8?
- How does delta 8 compare to delta 9?
- Will delta 8 get you high?
- Does delta 8 show up on a drug test?
- Is delta 8 legal?
What Is Delta 8?
Delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol, delta 9’s lesser known cousin, is quickly gaining recognition thanks to the murky laws surrounding it and delta 8’s similarity to delta 9 THC. With a similar chemical structure to delta 9, delta 8 THC does have some of the same effects, but overall it is thought to be less potent than its illegal counterpart.
Chemically derived from CBD rather than produced straight from the Cannabis sativa plant, delta 8 rose in popularity after the 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp-produced CBD. This placed delta 8 in a sort of gray legal zone since the bill did not specifically address THC manufactured from legal compounds like CBD.
Despite its origin, delta 8 interacts with your endocannabinoid system (ECS) differently from CBD. Although it bonds to both cannabinoid receptors, delta 8 more often interacts with your CB1 receptors than your CB2 receptors – just like delta 9 THC.
Because the two have a fair number of similarities before we dig further into it and questions like “does delta 8 show up on a drug test,” you should understand how both THC compounds interact with you and how they differ from each other.
Delta 8 vs. Delta 9
Although delta 8 and delta 9 are both forms of THC and can result in some intoxicating effects, their similarities stop there. What sets delta 8 and delta 9 apart at a chemical level is the location of a single double bond. And that double bond is thought to be the reason behind THC’s intoxicating effects, despite the fact that delta 8 and delta 9 also come from two different strains of Cannabis sativa.
Delta 8 first carved a path away from delta 9 after the 2018 Farm Bill was passed, legalizing strains of cannabis that contain less than 0.3 percent of THC. In fact, delta 8 is often produced from CBD rather than taken straight from hemp. However, it is possible to extract delta 9 THC from hemp as well.
Because of the differing location of their double bonds, delta 8 and delta 9 interact with your ECS differently, producing varying degrees of intoxication. Even so, are the differences enough, or like delta 9, does delta 8 show up on a drug test?
Will Delta 8 Get You High?
Thanks to its very loose regulation, delta 8 isn’t subject to the same rigorous testing protocols as CBD and other legal hemp products. What this means is that delta 8 products are unlikely to contain precisely what they say they do – and may contain delta 9 THC and other unregulated chemicals. So while delta 8 can get you high, so too could any of the other ingredients contained in unmonitored products.
More importantly, because it is unregulated, no two delta 8 products will be the same, resulting in varying degrees of intoxication. This is dangerous for a number of reasons, the most important of which may be that you can easily overestimate your tolerance based on past experience, possibly leading to dangerous actions in the future.
Since It Has THC in It, Does Delta 8 Show up on a Drug Test?
Although derived from CBD, delta 8 products have a higher volume of THC in them. And while quality CBD will not cause you to fail a drug test, delta 8 doesn’t follow the same rules.
Thanks to their similar chemical structures, detecting delta 8 versus delta 9 in a urinalysis presents a unique challenge. So does delta 8 show up on a drug test? It can, but it can also result in a false positive for delta 9 THC, leading to a failed drug test even if delta 8 is legal in your state. Delta 8 can also interfere with drug tests for delta 9, creating a false negative.
Unfortunately, the intricacies of how delta 8 currently affects drug testing still need more research and may result in new drug testing regulations.
Note: Just because THC (in any form) is legal in a given state, organizations can still set their own drug policies, so it’s always best to know your employer’s policies.
How Does Delta 8 Compare to the THC in Full Spectrum CBD?
We would be amiss if we didn’t mention our new full spectrum CBD products when it comes to discussing the legality of THC. Despite the fact that full spectrum CBD does contain THC, albeit less than the federally legal amount of 0.3 percent, it is fully legal and will not intoxicate you. It could show up on a drug test though, especially if you use them consistently over time. If drug testing is part of your life, you’re better off using our Superior Broad Spectrum CBD products.
And it should be noted that the THC contained in full spectrum CBD is not delta 8 THC because, as we mentioned, delta 8 is not regulated or properly tested. But don’t just take our word for it. Every single product manufactured or sold by cbdMD is tested by ISO-certified third party labs so that we can provide you with an open and transparent Certificate of Analysis. The same can not be said for delta 8 THC products, which is why cbdMD does not offer them.
Is Delta 8 Legal in Your State?
Thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, delta 8’s legality is a bit of a loophole. This is because the bill directly calls out delta 9 THC and cannabis strains that contain more than the federally legal amount of THC (0.3 percent), neither of which accounts for delta 8. And as delta 8 is produced from CBD, which is derived from hemp, it is technically legal. But that doesn’t mean that all delta 8 products are legal.
As we mentioned above, delta 8 products don’t undergo the same testing and qualifications as CBD, and therefore don’t have standards to uphold. Without regulation, delta 8 products can easily contain delta 9 THC or other unlisted ingredients. As an unregulated product, that leaves it up to individual states to decide on the legality of delta 8.
Unfortunately, sources are conflicting; even a simple online search returns various articles stating delta 8 is or isn’t legal in a particular state, or the legality has yet to be determined. Which is why we’ve looked around and compiled a list of the most likely delta 8 regulations in your state:
- Alabama: Allowed or Under Review
- Alaska: Restricted / Banned
- Arizona: Under Review or Restricted/Banned
- Arkansas: Allowed or Restricted/Banned
- California: Under Review or Restricted/Banned
- Colorado: Restricted/Banned
- Connecticut: Regulated or Restricted/Banned
- Delaware: Restricted/Banned
- Florida: Allowed
- Georgia: Allowed
- Hawaii: Allowed
- Idaho: Restricted/Banned
- Illinois: Allowed or Under Review
- Indiana: Allowed
- Iowa: Restricted/Banned
- Kansas: Allowed
- Kentucky: Allowed or Restricted/Banned
- Louisiana: Allowed
- Maine: Allowed
- Maryland: Allowed
- Massachusetts: Allowed
- Michigan: Regulated or Restricted/Banned
- Minnesota: Allowed
- Mississippi: Under Review or Restricted/Banned
- Missouri: Allowed
- Montana: Restricted/Banned
- Nebraska: Allowed
- Nevada: Restricted/Banned
- New Hampshire: Allowed
- New Jersey: Allowed
- New Mexico: Allowed
- New York: Restricted/Banned
- North Carolina: Allowed
- North Dakota: Restricted/Banned
- Ohio: Allowed
- Oklahoma: Allowed or Under Review
- Oregon: Allowed or Under Review
- Pennsylvania: Allowed
- Rhode Island: Restricted/Banned
- South Carolina: Allowed
- South Dakota: Allowed
- Tennessee: Allowed
- Texas: Allowed
- Utah: Restricted/Banned
- Vermont: Restricted/Banned
- Virginia: Allowed
- Washington: Restricted/Banned
- West Virginia: Allowed
- Wisconsin: Allowed
- Wyoming: Allowed
For more information on questions such as “does delta 8 show up on a drug test” or for more in-depth information on everything CBD, keep an eye on our frequently updated blog. Looking to stay up to date on the latest supplement news and cbdMD’s upcoming special offers? Connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, or chat with someone live today!