Wednesday December 9, 2020
By Paul Barach
You’ve been hearing a lot of good things about delta-8 THC lately. It’s supposed to be a much milder, less psychoactive high than regular delta-9 THC (commonly just called THC) while still possessing the same health benefits. These include pain relief, stress relief, and anti-nausea. Since you have been feeling a little sore and anxious lately (who knows why that could be?) but don’t want to be intoxicated throughout your day, you decide to give it a try.
However, the moment you feel that warm wave of relaxation spreading across your body, you remember that you have a drug test coming up for your job. It’s not a job that you can afford to lose right now and questions start popping up in your head. What is delta-8 THC and how is it different from delta-9 THC? Is it different enough that won’t show up on a drug test? If it does, how do you pass that drug test with flying (perhaps yellow-tinged) colors?
You’re not alone in these concerns. Drug tests are the bane of any cannabis consumer looking to stay employed in government or certain private sector jobs while still being able to enjoy their favorite cannabis products. While it’s a hassle for weed fans just looking to have some fun or relax in their free time, it’s a true concern for any medical marijuana patient trying to keep their job and health insurance while maintaining their quality of life. This is especially true when it comes to delta-8 THC, which may have some potent health benefits for MMJ patients that CBD alone does not address.
Not to worry. For anyone looking to pass a drug test after consuming delta-8 THC, PotGuide has got you covered with some effective tips and tricks. However, first, let’s delve into what delta-8 THC, how it differs from delta-9 THC, and what that means when it comes to drug tests.
What is Delta-8 THC?
Delta-8 THC is one of the hundred cannabinoids that have been identified so far by cannabis researchers. Delta-8 THC shares the same basic shape as it’s psychoactive brother delta-9 THC (which we’ll just call THC for the rest of this article), but it lacks a couple extra atomic bonds. However, because of their shared structure, both bond to the CB1 receptor in the brain.
Delta-8 THC is produced naturally in very small amounts by both cannabis and hemp plants, although a large percentage of delta-8 THC that’s found in the plants comes from THC degrading over time. This has made it difficult to isolate and extract in the past.
However, as marijuana product research and development has continued to improve, producers are starting to create delta-8 THC concentrates using special breeding methods as well as new ways of extracting and processing the molecule from the plant. One of these methods being used is CO2 extraction from processed hemp. Because hemp is federally legal, products created from it like CBD and delta-8 THC are no longer considered Scheduled drugs. This makes delta-THC very appealing to consumers in non-legalized states.
Most delta-8 THC is extracted into concentrates, where it’s been gaining in popularity with the medical community and for recreational users who feel that regular weed products are too strong to enjoy consuming. While more research has to be done, anecdotally people are saying delta-8 THC gets you half as stoned as regular THC with a much smoother experience, while possibly having similar (some say stronger) pain relief, anti-nausea, and appetite enhancing effects.
Will Delta-8 THC Show Up on a Drug Test?
The first thing to know is that, for as much emphasis as some employers or authorities put on them, drug tests are not the finely-tuned instruments they’d want you to believe. Unfortunately, that means that your chances of delta-8 THC showing up on a standard drug test are not zero. THC products - whether it’s delta-9, delta-8, or 11-hydroxy - all get broken down by your metabolism into THC metabolites.
There are not delta-8 or delta-9 THC drug tests. Drug tests are not looking for what went into your body, just what came out. If what comes out is metabolites indicating that you consumed more than .03% THC, it doesn’t really matter where it came from or how federally legal it is.
If your delta-8 THC product had more than .03% THC, or you are using it regularly enough for that small percentage to add up, it may show up on a drug test. Even without those things, there’s still a possibility.
How to Pass a Drug Test after Consuming Delta-8 THC
If you have been consuming delta-8 THC and are concerned about an upcoming drug test, don’t panic. Thanks to the accrued wisdom and research from generations of cannabis consumers, there are plenty of methods to pass that test.
The first method, of course, is abstinence. While individual people’s metabolism, body fat percentage, levels of consumption, and individual chemistry will differ, generally THC metabolites will pass entirely out of your system in three or four weeks. However, much like other forms of abstinence, while it may be effective, it’s neither entirely practical for most people or very much fun. This is especially true if someone is consuming delta-8 THC to help manage a medical issue.
The second method is to get healthier, which is just good advice overall. Your first step is to hydrate. If you feel like you’re short on time, drinking a couple gallons of water per day will help to flush those metabolites out of your body even faster than regular abstinence alone. While drinking plenty of water is overwhelmingly positive for your health, overhydration can cause some negative health effects of its own. Along with those metabolites, you’ll also be flushing out valuable nutrients and electrolytes. Be sure to add some sports powder or other electrolyte supplement into your diet in those weeks, and start taking multivitamins.
While you’re hydrating, be sure to eat as many leafy greens and iron-rich foods as you can. A diet rich in iron and other nutrients can help speed up your metabolism, which helps to process out those metabolites. Another way to speed up metabolism and shrink those cannabis-storing fat cells is to exercise. Whether it’s weight lifting, cardio, or yoga, increasing your heart rate means boosting your body’s chances of clearing everything out before the big day.
When it comes to the day of, whether you’ve been eating healthy, jogging, and chugging water all week or since yesterday, make sure you pee in the morning before your test. This will clear out the metabolites that have built up in your sleep. A couple hours before your test, start chugging water and add in some B-12 vitamins. This will dilute the sample even further which will either pass it or you’ll buy some time having to retake it. Ingesting some diuretics like cranberry juice or strong coffee can’t hurt either.
The third option is, of course, cheating the test. Find a friend or loved one who is sober (or just drinks alcohol) and ask a big favor. Keep the bag taped to your leg so it warms up, then pour it in when you get some privacy. There are a couple of companies that provide fake urine, but it’ll take some Googling to make sure they’re legit and won’t disrupt the test. Like many things, getting caught cheating is way worse than failing legitimately.
The Wrap Up
In conclusion, don’t let the fear of a drug test stop you from trying delta-8 THC, especially if you are desperate to try any treatment to relieve your medical issue. Some day, cannabis will be federally legal and these tests will have gone the way of prohibition. Until then, your best option is to wait until after the test to try anything new. Barring that, get a large water bottle and head to the faucet.
Have you had a drug test after consuming delta-8 THC? Did you pass? Share your experiences in the comments below.