Delta 8 vs CBD: Differences, Effects, & Legality [Updated]

Your journey as a cannabis consumer is probably fun, given the variety of strains and products to try. If you are looking for substitutes for the usual THC, you have several great options such as delta 8 and CBD. The key to choosing is finding the differences between delta 8 vs CBD.

Despite being cannabinoids found in the marijuana plant, delta 8 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) have distinct properties that make them unique. 

Both have something valuable to add to the table, so it is essential to know exactly what they can offer. Not familiar with one of these two chemical compounds? Keep reading.

What is Delta 8 THC?

In investigating the differences between delta 8 vs CBD, you want to start understanding what isomers are. Isomers are chemical compounds made up of the same number of the same types of atoms. What makes isomers different is their arrangement.

Having said this, let me introduce delta 8 as a THC isomer. It is similar to other THCs in composition, but not in how they are organized. Other THC isomers include delta 9 and 10.

Because it has recently gained more attention, people think that delta 8 is a new discovery. The truth is, scientists have been aware of this compound for decades. In fact, it was found by The Father of Cannabis Research, Raphael Mechoulam, in 1965.

delta 8 vs cbd

This cannabinoid can be derived organically from the plant, or it can be synthesized from delta 9, or the psychotropic THC isomer often mentioned alongside CBD as a major cannabinoid. Both types are considered psychoactive due to their mind-altering effects.

What makes delta 8 unique is its less extreme effects when compared to delta 9. While delta 9, commonly called by the public and some manufacturers as simply THC, offers sedative and euphoric effects, as well as hyperfocus, anxiety, and paranoia, delta 8 is known to be milder.

Aside from delta 9, another THC isomer is the recently booming: delta 10. Both delta 8 and 10 are new to the public eye. Both are also known for their milder effects compared to delta 9. What makes them different is their level of potency.

Delta 8 is characterized by its indica-like impact, which has a distinct body high, while delta 10 is touted to have sativa-like properties, which gives more of a brain high. The former may be a milder valiant than delta 9, but the latter is milder still. 

One excellent question would be, “Does delta 8 have CBD in it?” The answer to this is a bit complicated: yes and no. A pure delta 8 distillates will not have CBD in them. Otherwise, it can have small amounts of the compound. 

What is CBD?

delta 8 vs cbd

Steering from the THC-related discussion, let’s move on to the CBD aspect of the delta 8 vs CBD issue. Cannabidiol is the main non-psychoactive ingredient of the marijuana plant. It is extremely popular because of its known medicinal properties.

Its therapeutic effects are so widely recognized that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has acknowledged it, despite the Controlled Substances Act classifying marijuana as a Schedule 1 drug that has no approved medical use.

The FDA’s recognition of cannabidiol came to the point where it has approved Epidiolex, a medication with this cannabinoid as a main ingredient. It was formulated to help treat rare forms of seizures such as Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome.

Because of its medicinal value, the compound has also fought its way out of the Drug Enforcement Agency’s scheduling. It was a Schedule 5 drug, but thanks to recent hemp-related laws, it is no longer a controlled substance. 

Despite its tumultuous past, it actually has a lot of benefits, which it delivers to the human body via the endocannabinoid system (ECS). In fact, all cannabinoids, even THCs, interact with this organ system in order to make its magic happen.

If there is one cannabinoid that is a great alternative to the psychotropic delta 9 THC, it is cannabidiol. This compound offers some advantages provided by the marijuana plant without the body high.

How Does Delta 8 and CBD Differ?

Is delta 8 and CBD the same? The answer is no. They possess different qualities that give them advantages. In comparing delta 8 vs CBD, it is important to highlight their differences because these are exactly what makes both compounds unique. 

The most touted difference between these two is that delta 8 is psychoactive while CBD is psychoactive. Here, we are talking about psychoactivity as the state of having an altered brain function, including perception, mood, consciousness, and behavior.

With this definition, delta 8 THC is definitely a psychotropic drug, as it affects the body and mind considerably. However, some people assert that CBD is a psychotropic substance, as well, albeit substantially toned-down. 

These individuals argue that CBD alters the brain’s function, too, but not in the way that THCs do. However, some scientists do not consider CBD psychoactive because it is not intoxicating. 

Another important difference between delta 8 vs CBD is their chemical composition. Cannabidiol is a unique cannabinoid in itself. Meanwhile, delta 8 is a THC isomer, which means that it shares the same makeup as other cannabinoids from marijuana.

These essential differences contribute to each compound’s properties, giving them varying effects on the human body. 

What Do Delta 8 and CBD Do to the Body?

So, what can you expect when you consume delta 8 vs CBD? The first thing that might pop into your head is delta 8 can give you a body high, while CBD can give you more of a brain boost. This pretty much summarizes the two compounds’ effects.

To get into a more in-depth discussion, let’s talk about what you can expect with delta 8’s body high. As mentioned, it is similar to delta 9’s effects but less potent.

Whereas delta 9 can have negative impacts, delta 8 provides a more restrained experience. This results in a more clear-headed high and more balanced focus. You can also experience relaxation and calmness without the couch-locking sedation of delta 9.  

delta 8 vs cbd

On the other hand, CBD’s cerebral effect focuses more on enhancements to your brain functions. This is characterized by a boost in energy, cognition, and creativity, as well as mood improvement. It also offers calmness and relaxation, making it a great sleep aid. 

However, keep in mind that CBD’s cerebral effects are different from sativa-dominant strains’ brain high. 

As you can observe in looking at delta 8 vs CBD , the two have similar benefits, except for the psychotropic part. This is why many consumers who opted for CBD to avoid the negative effects of delta 9 now prefer delta 8 THC, as it is milder than delta 9 but more potent than CBD.

Is Delta 8 & CBD Legal and Safe For Me?

Knowing the difference between delta 8 vs CBD, your initial reaction might be to go out and get some products infused with the two compounds. However, you should know that the law remains complicated when it comes to cannabis and its cannabinoids.

Thankfully, you can easily go out and get CBD products with the help of the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (AIA) and its implementation. The federal document clarified that cannabidiol is no longer a Schedule 5 substance.

What you should be more vigilant about is delta 8. Yes, this compound is fairly new to the public eye and the cannabis market, which means that states will need to create laws to address its distribution, purchase, and consumption.

delta 8

You should know that 14 states in the US have moved to ban delta 8, reasoning that more research is needed regarding its psychoactive effects. 

Aside from this, it is important to remember that marijuana remains to be listed as a Schedule 1 drug, including all tetrahydrocannabinols such as delta 8 and 9, as well as the synthesized version of delta 9, dronabinol. 

Unfortunately, even the AIA does not affect this matter. What the implementation of the AIA says is that any non-hemp-derived THCs and synthetic THCs remain to be controlled substances under the CSA.

The AIAI, however, allows THC within the legal threshold. This means that all extracts from hemp, which are cannabis plants with only 0.3% of THC or less.

So, is delta 8 safe? What about CBD? It is important to mention that while generally safe, both cannabinoids have possible side effects.

For delta 8, adverse reactions can include confusion, drowsiness, and low blood pressure. It can also result in bradycardia or tachycardia, depending on the consumer. 

CBD side effects can include reduced appetite, drowsiness, fatigue, dry mouth, and diarrhea. Again, this can depend on the individual. 

In fact, the individual’s tolerance, body weight, and body size can affect how effective these compounds can be. 

The Best Place To Buy Delta 8 & CBD

Today, you can purchase delta 9-infused products, from gummies and chocolates to vape pens, oils, dabbing darts, tinctures, and flowers. In fact, it has become a popular alternative to delta 9 THC. 

For CBD products, you can get pretty much the same kinds of products like oils, tinctures, gummies, and vape pens. Make sure to get any of these products from a trusted dispensary or brand.

The important thing about buying infused items is to go to a reliable shop such as CBD Genesis. This way, you can rest assured that you consume tried and tested products for your benefit and safety.

Final Thoughts

Talking about delta 8 vs CBD can definitely shed some light for people who are interested in trying out either or both of these cannabinoids. For your health and legal safety, make sure to visit CBD Genesis for certified and high-rate products.