Well, the hemp isomer hosts a series of psychoactive effects of its own, but is thought to have fewer drawbacks and a dosing threshold that is easier to navigate.
Curious if it's right for you? Let’s talk about why Delta-8 may be perfect for new cannabis users (and explore which products in our Elev8 Collection are best for beginners):
Delta-8-THC has effects that are similar to Delta-9’s. After all, both cannabinoids interact with the CB1 receptors in the brain, the endocannabinoid receptor that’s directly responsible for THC’s psychoactive effects.
There’s an important difference between the two however. Delta-9-THC (traditional THC) primarily interacts with CB1, while Delta-8 interacts with CB1 receptors and CB2 receptors (the receptors found in the immune system known for a more prominent body response).
CB2 receptors don’t incite psychoactive effects. That means that while a specific dose of Delta-9-THC may all go towards inciting psychoactivity (CB1), the same Delta-8 dose is split between both receptors (CB1 and CB2), with only approximately half of it inciting psychoactivity.
For this reason, Delta-8’s effects are thought to be “less heady” and more balanced. The effects are sometimes said to be half as potent as traditional THC products, but it may be more accurate to say that the effects are just different.
In short, Delta-8 is euphoric and relaxing, but not sedating, overwhelming, or incapacitating. Want more details? Read about our first hand experience with Delta-8-THC.
Mostly due to the milder effects we mentioned above, Delta-8 may have a wider dosing threshold for most people. Where the effects of 5 milligrams and 10 milligrams of a traditional THC product can be wildly different, the difference between 5 milligrams and 10 milligrams of Delta-8 is much more forgiving.
That’s not to say that more isn’t more, just that the effects of Delta-8 don’t quickly stack up to the anxiety, panic, or other adverse effects associated with taking too much THC. For new users, this forgiving dosage gap makes Delta-8 pretty accessible, and starting with a ten milligram dose will usually give you a feel for Delta-8’s general effects without being too much.
In general, Delta-8-THC may have a much lower association with the adverse effects associated with traditional THC, like paranoia, panic, or anxiety.
One study that evaluated the use of Delta-8 as an anti-nausea medication for pediatric cancer patients found that Delta-8 may actually be more effective than traditional THC therapies because higher doses could be used without adverse effects. Most children tolerated larger doses of Delta-8 than they could tolerate of Delta-9.
There isn’t much evidence to help us understand why Delta-8 may have fewer risks, but it seems pretty safe to assume that it’s milder effects and more balanced interactions within the Endocannabinoid System come into play.
We mentioned that Delta-8 was more accessible for new users due to milder effects, but it’s also more accessible in general. Because Delta-8-THC is considered a legal hemp product, it falls under the federal definition for industrial hemp, which is legal in the U.S. thanks to the Hemp Farming Act of 2018.
Delta-8-THC laws vary by state, but it’s legal in most states, including many areas where Delta-8-THC is illegal. Plus, you don’t have to visit a cannabis dispensary (or even a store) to get it, so it’s even more accessible than traditional THC products in states where cannabis is legal.
You can shop for Delta-8-THC online from any state where Delta-8 is legal. All Vida Optima products are 100% Farm Bill compliant, meaning they hold up to federal hemp standards, and they ship right to your door.
If you’re just getting started with Delta-8-THC, you are probably looking for a gentle, no-frills starting dose. Luckily, there are plenty of options that may meet your needs that are straightforward, easy to measure, and easy to use.
Whether you’re a first time user or you've tried THC in the past and you’re hesitant to give it another shot, we recommend these Delta-8-THC products for beginners:
Delta-8-THC gummies are easily one of the most popular dosing styles on the market, probably because they taste delicious. They need to be metabolized during digestion, which means the effects creep on slowly over a two hour period, and they fade slowly after about 4 hours.
Our Elev8 Gummies each have a perfectly portioned 10 mg dose of Delta-8, a dosing point that’s great for most beginners.
Our Elev8 Delta-8 Tincture Oil can feel intimidating, but it’s actually easy to use and has a few unique benefits that you won’t find with most dosing methods. Most significantly, it can be easily measured in small increments, which makes it easy for new users to take very small doses while “testing the waters,” or to gradually increase their dose as needed.
Tinctures are also taken sublingually, meaning they are dropped under the tongue so that Delta-8 can be absorbed directly into the bloodstream through the mucous membranes in the mouth. That means you can expect fast acting effects that reach their peak in around 45 minutes.
Sublingual candies, like our Elev8 Hard Candy or Elev8 Caramels, are a sort of cross between tinctures and gummies. These individually wrapped doses taste great and kick in quickly for a smooth, steady ride.
Just like our straightforward gummies, our candies come in a 10 mg dose that’s perfect for beginners and doesn’t require any measuring (unlike a tincture). However, they’re meant to melt in your mouth so that they can be absorbed quickly, just like a sublingual oil. The effects should kick in around the 45 minute mark and last 2-4 hours.
Looking for something different? Shop our full Delta-8-THC Collection of edibles, vapes, flower, and more.
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