Delta-11 is one of the most intriguing cannabinoids to spring from the hemp revolution. Though it’s made similarly to CBD and Delta-8-THC, this potent THC isomer is nearly three times more potent than traditional THC. As you can imagine, it’s incredibly popular, and people are excited to explore its recreational and therapeutic potential.
Before you dive into Delta-11 for any type of pain relief or sleep support, especially if you already treat these conditions with prescription medications, you may want to consider the possibility of Delta-11 drug interactions. You should always talk to your doctor before incorporating therapeutic cannabinoids into your regular medicinal regimen. But, let this article serve as a guide to the conversation you need to have with your doctor.
Here’s what we do and don’t know about Delta-11 drug interactions:
Table of Contents
How is Delta-11 Metabolized?
THC Drug Interactions
Can You Combine Delta-11 and Delta-9?
Can You Take Delta-11 With Alcohol?
Tips for Using Delta-11 When You Take Medications
Where to Buy Delta-11
If you don’t already know, the way a substance is metabolized has everything to do with whether it interacts with other substances. Therefore, understanding how Delta-11 is metabolized helps us understand what types of medications it may interfere with.
The primary reason that drugs interact inside the body is because they have conflicting metabolic needs. In other words, when substances share the same metabolic pathway, they can impact each other's absorption.
Delta-11, like other THC products, is thought to be metabolized via the CYP3A4 metabolic pathway. In fact, research has found that both CBD and THC heavily rely on the CYP3A4 metabolic pathway for absorption and are known to inhibit the CYP3A4 enzyme. This is also the primary metabolic pathway used by many prescription medications. For this reason, you may need to take certain medications a few hours apart or at different times during the day.
Still, all of the data available is about either CBD or Delta-9-THC, so where do Delta-11 drug interactions come into play?
The answer is we aren't entirely sure, but many experts assume that it uses the same metabolic pathway and has the same drug interactions as traditional THC.
Delta-11 and traditional THC are similar in many ways, so it’s not a far fetched assumption. There is one primary difference between the two, however. Delta-11 is known to be far more potent, around 3x the strength of traditional Delta-9-THC, so may have a higher chance of drug interactions when used in moderate to large doses.
Some medications come with a “grapefruit warning.” This label further demonstrates the idea of conflicting metabolic pathways. Grapefruit is known to inhibit the CYP3A4 enzyme, which means that it can delay or prevent the absorption of drugs that rely on that enzyme. The grapefruit warning simply means that you shouldn't take that medication with grapefruit juice.
That means that they have the potential to react with any drug that uses that same metabolic pathway, which unfortunately is most prescription medications.
In other words, THC may utilize the same metabolic pathways as any medication that comes with a grapefruit warning.
Still, some evidence suggests that the interaction may not be very significant. One study found that "Studies of THC, CBD, and CBN inhibition and induction of major human CYP-450 isoforms generally reflect a low risk of clinically significant drug interactions with most use," but also noted that human trials are lacking and more information is needed.
Although we don't have any research that specifically addresses Delta-11 drug interactions, we do know a bit about THC drug interactions in general:
Although it's possible that the interaction is small, THC is still known to negatively interact with some prescription medications, including:
As we mentioned previously, all of these medications rely on the CYP3A4 enzyme that THC may suppress. This means that the drug may break down more slowly due to a lack of available enzymes.
In some cases, this means that the medication will be less effective. This can be particularly dangerous when taking a necessary life saving medication. In other cases, a drug may break down so slowly that it is not metabolized before your next dose. That means that high levels of the medication can accumulate in the body, which can definitely be dangerous.
THC may sometimes amplify the effect of certain medications. For instance, THC may increase the sedative-like effects of benzodiazepines since THC sometimes has a sedative effect of its own.
It's uncertain whether Delta-11-THC interacts with all of the same medications in the same manner as traditional THC, but the effects are thought to be very similar. That doesn't necessarily mean that you cannot take Delta-11 if you already take other medications, but you may need to take some extra steps to ensure your safety.
The most important step, of course, is discussing Delta-11 with your prescriber before you combine any substances or change your medication routine.
Many people wonder if there could be any adverse or potentially beneficial interactions between Delta-11 and Delta-9. In other words, is it safe to take Delta-11 and Delta-9 at the same time?
In short, there's no known adverse reaction caused by combining the two, but the benefits may be minimal. Delta-11 is already incredibly potent on its own, and its effects may overshadow the effects of traditional Delta-9 products. Your personal THC tolerance will affect the general effects you feel, but you should be wary of overdosing on THC. While taking too much THC does not have fatal consequences, you may potentially experience side effects like paranoia, anxiety, or trouble breathing after consuming too much.
In some cases, people tend to mix THC with alcohol. This method, called “crossfading,” may be unwise when using a THC product as potent as Delta-11. Drinking alcohol before taking THC can increase THC absorption in the body, which can quickly lead to an unpleasant dosing experience. One older study even suggests that THC may slow down the absorption of alcohol, which may prevent feelings of drunkenness and lead to over consumption.
Research doesn't have much to say about Delta-11-THC specifically, especially in terms of combining it with alcohol, but it's better to play it safe and choose only one recreational substance at a time.
If you regularly take medications, don’t fret! You still may be able to enjoy the therapeutic or recreational benefits of Delta-11-THC. Before you add Delta-11 to your dosing routine, however, be sure to consider the following tips:
If you plan to use Delta-11 or any other hemp-derived cannabinoids therapeutically, always discuss it with your doctor first. Be sure to ask your doctor about potential Delta-11 drug interactions, and make sure that he or she is up to date on current THC research.
Below are some other methods for trying Delta-11 safely that you may want to bring up:
If you've gotten your doctor's approval, then you should start with using Delta-11 in very small doses. This is especially important if you don't have much experience with THC and aren't sure how you'll react. Delta-11 is incredibly potent compared to other hemp-derived THC products, so starting with small doses will help you best understand where your dosing threshold is.
Read “How Much Delta-11 Should I Take?” to learn more.
You should definitely follow your doctor's recommendations first, but if he or she doesn't give you any specifics about when to take Delta-11, we recommend taking Delta-11 at a different time than when you take your prescription medications. Usually a few hours is enough to suffice, and will allow the body's CYP3A4 enzymes to regulate in between doses.
When you first start taking Delta-11, keep track of small details, like how much you took, what time you took your prescription, what time you took your Delta-11 dose, how intense the effects were, or how long they lasted. This type of information will help you and your doctor adjust your dosing routine to better suit you.
It may go without saying, but you'll probably want to avoid layering on other substances when you combine Delta-11 with your medications. Only combine Delta-11 with other substances when you have your doctor’s go ahead, and avoid combining Delta-11 with other recreational substances or alcohol. Delta-11 may alter the effects of alcohol when taken together.
Understanding how Delta-11 is made is paramount to choosing a high-quality product. Make sure that the product you choose is hemp derived and made via safe manufacturing practices. It should also be third-party lab tested to prove label accuracy.
One of the greatest benefits to Delta-11-THC is that it is federally legal when made from legal hemp material, which means you can buy it online and have it shipped right to your door.
Check out our Elev8 Collection to find the best hemp THC edibles, flower, and tinctures the market has to offer! All Vida Optima products are 100% Farm Bill compliant and made according to the industry’s highest quality standards.
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