What is Delta 8 Distillate: Everything You Need to Know

Delta-8 is a minor cannabinoid that occurs nominally in the cannabis plant. It is chemically similar to the better known delta-9 THC but is generally considered less intoxicating. Many anecdotal reports claim delta-8 produces a floating, clear-headed high that’s more gentle than delta-9 THC or other cannabis products

amber colored delta 8 distillate

Distillates are refined cannabis concentrates that contain only one specific cannabinoid. In the case of delta-8, because it naturally occurs in such small amounts, delta-8 distillates are expensive to produce, requiring manufacturers to synthesize the compound and formulate it into a versatile oil form. Once prepared, delta-8 distillate can be vaped, smoked, added to edibles, or used topically.

Delta-8 THC distillate is among the most powerful consumption methods, but because the cannabinoid is less intoxicating than its delta-9 counterpart, it may have fewer adverse effects. Read on to learn everything you need to know about delta-8 distillate, its uses, and what to consider before trying.

Key Takeaways

  • Delta-8 THC is very similar to delta-9 THC, except it is slightly less intoxicating and may have fewer adverse side effects.
  • Distillate is the purest form of a cannabinoid, offering a reliable and targeted consumption experience.
  • All delta-8 distillate products use synthetic delta-8 THC created by converting CBD from hemp.
  • Delta-8 is not regulated by the FDA and may carry adverse health risks.

What is Delta-8?

Delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol (delta-8 THC) is a cannabinoid found in minor amounts in the cannabis plant. The chemical is structurally similar to the better-known delta-9 THC, but has two atoms distinction from the latter and interacts slightly differently with a consumer’s endocannabinoid system.

Anecdotal reports claim that delta-8 produces a milder and more focused high than other types of cannabinoids. This gentle, floating feeling has resulted in delta-8’s exploding popularity nationwide, especially among those who don’t want to “get high” but still reap the medical benefits. Delta-8 also provides an avenue for intoxication in states where cannabis is still against the law.

These elements make Delta-8 THC promising for children’s use, who are susceptible to delta-9 THC, or those seeking a less euphoric pain management tool during the day. However, these benefits may only apply to naturally occurring delta-8, unlike the synthetic version made from alchemizing CBD. Delta-8 is also a synthetic product by necessity since it’s so hard to source from the plant. Synthetic cannabinoids can be dangerous, as the potential side effects and risks are as of yet unknown.

Because delta-8 isn’t federally regulated, however, there’s some concern about its intoxication and the industrial or chemical traces that may be in some products. The US Food and Drug Administration issued a general warning about companies’ making misleading medical claims about delta-8’s effects. 

What is Distillate?

Distillates are isolated cannabis concentrates that contain only one cannabinoid, such as THC or CBD. These extracts focus on only preserving the singled-out cannabinoid and leave behind the other compounds, such as terpenes, that would produce the Entourage Effect when consumed. On average, distillates test at least 90% potency.

How to make delta-8 distillate

  1. Farmers cultivating cannabis specifically for distillate will manually dry the plants and cure them in airtight containers to eliminate bacteria and allow the cannabinoids to stabilize.
  2. Processors take the cured cannabis material and extract the cannabinoids using chemical or solvent-less extraction methods, such as propane, butane, ethanol, or CO2, to lure the cannabinoids out of the plant matter’s trichomes.
  3. After extraction, distillate processors filter the cannabinoids by using cold temperatures to remove sugars, chlorophyll, other plant compounds, and residual solvents.
  4. Decarboxylation comes next, converting the cannabinoid’s precursors into the active compounds that will interact with the body.
  5. Finally, the material is distilled into its purest form by alternating heat and cold to remove all the final residuals from the formula and separate the desired cannabinoids from the solution. The final result is a clear, viscous liquid that contains only one cannabinoid.

Types of Delta-8 Distillate

Full-spectrum delta-8 distillate

Full-spectrum delta-8 distillate products forgo the final distillation process mentioned above and contain trace amounts of other cannabinoids besides the delta-8 THC. While only present in small quantities, these additional cannabinoids can help produce the Entourage Effect, where compounds working together provide more desirable effects than when used individually.

Delta-8 isolate distillate

Delta-8 isolate contains only delta-8 THC in its purest form. These products are preferable because they produce consistent results, especially when consumers want to avoid other cannabinoids or terpenes.

How to Use Delta-8 Distillate

Depending on consumer preference and lifestyle, there are varying methods for using delta-8 distillate. Distillates can be added atop smokeable flowers in a bowl or joint or dissolved in a dab rig for vaporizing. Some manufacturers also produce distillate cartridges for vaping delta-8 distillate on the go.

Distillates are decarboxylated, meaning it’s easy to create delta-8 distillate edibles without introducing an unwanted weedy flavor. Delta-8 THC distillate can also be used topically for pain management in a particular area or used orally as sublingual tinctures.

Users can harness delta-8’s milder, less-anxiety-producing effects in recreational settings or for medical purposes. Naturally-occurring delta-8 THC yields many of the same potential health benefits as its cousin delta-9. Its minimized adverse effects make delta-8 an enticing alternative for those who don’t want to get too high. However, the benefits are unclear when dealing with synthetically-derived delta-8, and most products on the market should be approached with proper due diligence.

Potential Benefits of Delta-8 Distillate

Delta-8 distillates are highly versatile and can be consumed in various ways. When sourced from reputable manufacturers, they offer consistently dosed cannabis products that are flavorless and safe to ingest. They have zero odor compared to smoking or vaping and provide a high concentration of cannabinoids that are handy for those looking to target specific health conditions.

Potential Risks of Delta-8 Distillate

For the inexperienced user, delta-8 distillate may have its downside. Even though the cannabinoid is less potent than delta-9 THC, it still causes intoxication that can overwhelm the cannabis naive. Using some distillates can also mean losing out on the Entourage Effect’s full benefits, which could provide better results for some.

Delta-8 distillate products are also not federally regulated, meaning that the delta-8-THC products found on shelves may not necessarily meet health and safety standards, and the industrial processes used to create them could mean ingesting dangerous byproducts.

Delta-8 vs Delta-9 THC: What’s the Difference?

Delta-8 THC and delta-9 are practically identical in structural and chemical terms - only a handful of atoms clue viewers into any difference. They interact with the body’s cannabinoid receptors, impacting a wide swatch of physiological processes with matching therapeutic effectiveness.

However, while delta-9 THC is the most abundant cannabinoid in cannabis, delta-8 is one of a handful of very minor compounds. This sparse cannabinoid is slightly less intoxicating than delta-9 THC, which has euphoric and sedating effects. 

The Bottom Line: Should You Use Delta-8 Distillate?

Delta-8 distillate is the most potent form of the cannabinoid you’ll find on the market today, containing pure delta-8 THC. This chemical offers many of the same health benefits and pleasurable sensations as delta-9 THC but a much gentler potency, making it highly desirable.

But the question remains: is delta-8 distillate safe? It’s nigh impossible to source delta-8 THC from the cannabis plant naturally. While it’s safe to consume as part of the plant, every product on the market is created with synthetic delta-8 THC. The consumer is responsible for conducting due diligence and sourcing products from reliable manufacturers with trustworthy production methods and available lab-testing results. 

If you’re looking for clean, reliably sourced delta-9, CBD, or CBN products, Evn’s selection of lab-tested options is ready to delight various consumer preferences. 


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