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What Is HHC? How Does It Work & Is It Safe?

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What Is HHC

As the cannabis space race accelerates, substitutes for traditional CBD and Delta-9 THC are mushrooming everywhere. HHC is a new cannabinoid that has just recently started to emerge on the cannabis market.

Despite being closely related to THC, the anecdotal data indicates that it does not show up on regular drug testing (unconfirmed).

It is also the most stable form of THC because HHC resists oxidation, heat, and UV light so well. You won’t have to be concerned as much about your supply degrading and losing its effectiveness as a result.

Here is everything we currently know about HHC, its current legal situation, and future applications for this unique cannabinoid.

Key Points:

Here is a summary of what little information we do have.

  1. An enhanced version or hydrogenated version of THC is HHC.
  2. HHC is equally potent to THC and has similar effects.
  3. HHC’s shelf life is noticeably greater than that of THC’s.
  4. Compared to THC, HHC is more heat- and UV-resistant.
  5. Despite the lack of research on HHC’s safety, there is no evidence that it is more harmful than THC.
  6. Cannabis plants naturally create HHC.
  7. HHC might not appear on a typical THC drug test, however this hasn’t been confirmed.

Table of Contents:

Every new cannabinoid that emerges offers us something fresh, but it’s always advisable to exercise caution if you choose to use HHC or anything else that is unproven.

Time will tell if HHC turns out to be the long-lasting cannabinoid that we didn’t know we needed.

What Is HHC?

HHC (aka Hexahydrocannabinol) is a cannabinoid that is a hydrogenated form of THC. Similar procedures are used here to stabilize the chemical structure of vegetable oil by adding hydrogen atoms, which is a step in the hydrogenation process that transforms vegetable oil into margarine.

Weak concentrations of HHC are found naturally in the hemp plant. It requires a laborious process to saturate it with hydrogen atoms under high pressure and in the presence of a catalyst like nickel or palladium in order to produce a useful amount of THC.

Although THC’s double bond is broken and replaced with a hydrogen atom in its chemical structure, the cannabinoid’s properties and potency are largely unaffected. There are currently at least eleven identified isomers of this hydrogenated form of THC that is known through studies and research.

This supposedly minor change raises the binding affinity of THC for various receptors, including the CB1 and CB2 endocannabinoid receptors and TRP pain receptors.

Additionally, because THC is particularly susceptible to oxidation and breakdown in its natural state, this modification to THC’s molecular structure makes it significantly more stable. The oxidation of THC results in the loss of hydrogen atoms and the formation of two new double bonds. Only about 10% of the psychoactive potential of THC is present in the resulting substance, CBN (cannabinol). 

Contrarily, HHC doesn’t lose its potency as quickly when exposed to air compared to other cannabinoids. Due to its high heat and UV resistance, HHC is the best cannabinoid choice for prepper communities in the post-apocalyptic world.

How Is HHC Produced?

THC is hydrogenated to produce HHC. Hexahydrocannabinol, or HHC, is created by this technique from THC. Although hemp is now the main source of the cannabinoid’s production, CBD was the precursor to HHC. Hemp became federally legal in 2018 when the Farm Bill was passed by Congress.

A THC molecule is transformed into HHC by joining it with a hydrogen atom. In this case, the hydrogenation method is applied. Although it may sound a little complicated, vegetable oil is transformed into something akin to vegetable-based butter through a process called hydrogenation.

HHC is one of the cannabinoids that is difficult to make at home. For this, specialized lab equipment and possibly dangerous substances are required. Large-scale HHC manufacturing must take place in “explosion-proof” labs with grounded hardware to lower the risk of static shock.

Kyle Ray, Colorado Chromatography’s chief operating officer, explained the procedure. Ray described the production of HHC as a secret procedure that happens inside a chemical reactor. Ray instructed Leafly to “see the reactor as a black box.” “CBD goes in, HHC comes out.” The HHC is described by Ray as a dark gold oil prior to distillation, and it is refined from there.

Despite the fact that both CBD and HHC are cannabinoids, their effects are dissimilar. For instance, CBD is frequently linked to leisure while HHC is more frequently associated with stimulation. Many people also think that HHC is more psychotropic than CBD.

Who First Synthetized HHC?

American chemist Roger Adams developed the semi-synthetic cannabis compound HHC in 1944. Delta-THC is combined with hydrogen atoms to create HHC. The process of hydrogenation transforms THC into HHC as is discovered by Roger Adams.

Adams produced HHC using THC from regular marijuana, but nowadays the cannabinoid is frequently produced using a method that starts with hemp, a cannabis plant with a low THC content that Congress legalized under the 2018 Agricultural Improvement Act. 

How Many Kinds Of HHC Are There?

The HHC family is composed of a variety of isomers. There are ten HHC isomers in all at this time. Hexahydrocannabinol, the first alternative cannabinoid on the market, is number one.

  1.  HHC — Hexahydrocannabinol
  2.  9α-OH-HHC — 9α-hydroxyhexahydrocannabinol
  3.  7-OH-HHC — 7-hydroxyhexahydrocannabinol
  4.  8-OH-iso-HHC — 8-hydroxy-iso-hexahydrocannabinol
  5.   7-9α-OH-HHC — 7-oxo-9α-hydroxyhexahydrocannabinol
  6. HDHHC — 3-Dimethylheptyl-11-hydroxyhexahydrocannabinol 
  7. 10α-OH-HHC — 10α-hydroxyhexahydrocannabinol
  8.  HU211 — 1,1-Dimethylheptyl-11-hydroxytetrahydrocannabinol
  9.  HU243 — 11-Hydroxy-3-(1′,1′-dimethylheptyl) hexahydrocannabinol
  10. 10α-ROH-HHC — 10aR-hydroxyhexahydrocannabinol

What Are The Effects Of HHC?

Regarding HHC’s effectiveness, there isn’t much agreement. The challenge is exacerbated by the fact that the final cannabinoid product is a blend of two distinct HHC molecules: 9R HHC actively binds to the body’s endocannabinoid receptors, whereas 9S HHC, because of its slightly different molecular structure, does not do so nearly as well.

The one that “fits [into the receptors] generates similar effects” to Delta 8 THC, but calls for a significantly higher dosage, claims Richard Sams of KCA Laboratories. Effects resembling those of THC can be seen at high doses.

In other words, while HHC can have effects on the body and mind similar to those of THC, it is less potent milligram for milligram than Delta-8 THC. The normal Delta-9 THC is thought to be about twice as powerful as Delta 8 THC.

Will A Drug Test Reveal HHC?

HHC might not be detected in a typical drug test. However, if your job routinely screens for cannabinoids, this does not mean you are free to use HHC. Let’s examine how cannabis drug testing functions in more detail and see why HHC might pass these tests—for now.

Drug tests seek out the compounds produced when drugs are metabolized by the body, not the drugs themselves. Instead of checking for THC, a cannabis drug test looks for 11-hydroxy-THC, a typical metabolite of THC. According to some studies, HHC does not convert into 11-hydroxy-THC and will therefore pass the majority of marijuana drug tests.

Employing HHC products still requires using common sense and caution. Since there is little reliable data on HHC metabolites, 11-hydroxy-THC may well be present after using HHC products. Drug testing will probably eventually start to incorporate HHC metabolites as well. It is best to avoid any kind of cannabinoid product, including HHC, if you know you have a drug test coming up.

Is HHC Safe?

One of the most important factors to think about when searching for safe substitutes for Delta-9 THC is the safety of any new cannabinoid. Little is currently known about HHC’s safe dosage, potential side effects, or other potential issues as a result of its new development.

Because HHC is not controlled for adult use, there are no guidelines for purity or potency. The best course of action is to purchase HHC goods that confirm the contents in your vape or consumable through independent testing.

These unbiased laboratories examine the efficacy and quality of HHC products. This third-party information is typically disclosed on the packaging or manufacturer’s website. For your benefit, ATLRx tests each of its products by a third party to verify that they are of the highest caliber. COAs (certificates of analysis) for each of our products are available for review on our website.

However if you have any questions or concerns regarding how this will effect your health or any medication you may be currently on, it is best to check with your doctor or a medical professional before taking any kind of cannabinoid product.

Is HHC Legal?

The same legal limbo that other cannabinoids experience applies to HHC. To determine precisely how lawful HHC is, let’s review some basic hemp law.

The 2018 agriculture bill is where it all begins. Hemp derivatives were made legal by the 2018 agricultural bill as long as the THC content was less than 0.3 percent. Everything from CBD to HHC might now reach the market legally as a result of this.

There was a catch, though. When it came to what constituted a “legal hemp derivative,” many of these Delta 9 THC substitutes violated the law. At both the federal and state levels, there was a great deal of confusion regarding these matters.

When the US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals decided that Delta-8 THC was legitimate under the 2018 agricultural bill, the situation underwent another change in May 2022.

Legally speaking, HHC is also referred to as a “semi-synthetic” molecule. The federal government takes “synthetic” medicines far more seriously than it does naturally occurring substances.

HHC has not been specifically referenced in the 9th Circuit Court’s ruling, and because it is a “semi-synthetic,” its legal position is still ambiguous. Although it is currently legal on a federal level, it may not be in your state or neighborhood.

Why Is HHC Expensive?

You must identify the source of the THC in order to comprehend why HHC, also known as hexahydrocannabinol, is so expensive.

  1. HHC can be naturally extracted from hemp and cannabis plants. However, it won’t produce a lot of product to satisfy a global market.
  2. To transform THC into HHC, most firms combine semi-synthetic techniques with other components and equipment.

The first approach is typically more cost-effective because it uses hemp or cannabis as a natural supply of HHC. However, this method only yields a modest amount of HHC.

The method that is used most frequently is to separate HHC from THC by utilizing external chemicals and catalysts. This approach is both time- and money-consuming.

A protracted and intricate mixing and extraction process is required for the manufacturing of HHC. To break down the double bonds in THC and alter the molecular structure, chemicals like formic acid, nickel, or platinum are utilized. The cost of the external chemicals employed as catalysts in the manufacturing of HHC increases the final cost.

Additionally, the extract must pass through high-pressure chambers before being given to hydrogen. The procedure aids in releasing THC double bonds and generating fresh hydrogen atoms. A highly skilled scientist or chemist will eventually be needed for this process.

Costly machinery must also be added in order to start the extraction and manufacturing processes.

Hexahydrocannabinol, also known as HHC, is more expensive than its normal CBD and THC equivalents for this reason.

Can You Vape HHC?

Yes, HHC can be vaped. At ATLRx, you have many options with HHC and a popular choice for HHC is vaping since it has effects that are comparable to THC’s Delta-8 and Delta-9. HHC is also available as edibles, oils, and other substances. 

How Does HHC Compare To THC?

HHC and THC comparison is a little challenging. The parent cannabinoid of all others is THC, specifically Delta-9 THC, which serves as the benchmark against which all other hemp derivatives are measured.

HHC has a little less potency than THC. Even though they are not as strong, many of the same effects can be created. Because HHC dosage is also poorly understood, it might be difficult to determine how much HHC is necessary to achieve an experience that is comparable to that of THC.

Some people who experience the HHC effect also report feeling more invigorated. Similar to how they would describe a very light Sativa strain THC product, people discuss HHC. While HHC’s potency varies significantly from batch to batch, you may anticipate feeling somewhere between a light and mild THC high.

Related Article: HHC vs THC: Which is Better?

Is HHC Better Than Delta 8?

Many seasoned Delta 8 users are currently searching for something with a little more punch. Consumers can get the extra kick they want from HHC distillate, HHC shatter, HHC dabs, and HHC flower. HHC is the ideal product to provide the desired experience for those who want something that is less than Delta 9 but a little more than Delta 8.

Related Article: HHC VS Delta 8 – Key Difference Between 2 Cannabinoids

What Does HHC Feel Like?

HHC’s effects, such as altered hearing and vision, are strikingly similar to those of THC. HHC causes a comparable result as THC and Delta-8. This is so that they can swiftly connect to your cannabinoid receptors, which is made possible by the three cannabinoids’ shared five-carbon side chains. In comparison to other products, most users claim it results in a gradually improving attitude, changed states of consciousness, and greater activity. Given how similar HHC and THC are, it may offer many of THC’s perks, but there hasn’t been enough research to investigate this.

Related Article: What Does An HHC High Feel Like?

How Strong Is HHC?

Any kind of THC’s psychoactive properties are correlated with the number of carbons. In other words, up to a certain degree, more carbon generally equates to more psychoactive strength. Therefore, when compared to other products like Delta-8 THC and Delta-9 THC, HHC tends to have a strength that is in the middle. The potency of HHC is roughly 70–80% that of THC, making it generally stronger than Delta-8 and Delta-9 THC.

What’s the Dose of HHC?

Any psychoactive substance has a recommended dose that depends on a number of variables, including age, weight, and tolerance levels.

As a novice HHC user, you may not be aware of your tolerance levels, but as a general rule, its potency falls somewhere between the more relaxed Delta 8 (D8) and the more strong Delta 9 THC highs (D9).

Always begin on the low end until you are familiar with the situation and how your body will react. HHC dosage will be similar to that of Delta 8 (D8) and Delta 9 THC.

Related Article: HHC Dosage Guide: How Much Should You Take?

Standard Delta 8 dosage:

  • 10 to 20 mg per serving, a small dose
  • 20–50 mg per serving, which is a moderate dose.
  • 50–100 mg of a heavy dose per serving

A similar or somewhat lower dose of HHC may be a decent place to start if you’re a very seasoned user of either one.

If you are totally unaccustomed to THC and other cannabinoids, it is preferable, to begin with a very small dose, or even a microdose (1-2 mg), before gradually increasing it to higher doses.

Where Can I Buy The Best HHC?

You can find the best HHC products at ATLRx, the home of high-quality hemp-derived products. We are a wholesale supplier offering bulk products in a variety of forms. We source all of our hemp products from natural, organic sources from the best growers in the United States. 

We are pleased to provide hemp-derived products that have passed independent testing for potency, purity, and quality. The safety and contentment of our clients are important to us at ATLRx, which is why we think openness is essential. With the COAs (certificate of analysis), we make the lab results of all of our products available to all consumers. The COA will list any pollutants that may or may not be present, including potency, residuals, heavy metals, pesticides, and others.

At ATLRx, we have a variety of different HHC products that include HHC dabs, HHC distillate, HHC flower, HHC shatter, HHCo distillate, and HHCp distillate. With this wide versatility of HHC products, you have the chance to find the perfect product for your needs.

Related Article: Where Can I Buy HHC Online In The USA?

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