What is HHC? A Complete Guide

HHC is another federally legal up-and-coming cannabinoid gaining popularity due to it being a great legal alternative to THC. This also makes it a great option for those who live in a state that has banned Delta 8 THC or who do not have access to conventional cannabis derived THC. 


More people are becoming aware of the potential benefits these cannabinoid products such as Delta 9 THC, CBD, and Delta 8 THC give, but what about HHC?


We will take an in-depth look at HHC, its definition, uses, and potential benefits in this complete guide to HHC. You can then decide if HHC is right for you.


What is HHC?

The cannabis plant contains over 100 cannabinoids, isomers like Delta 8 THC, Delta 10, CBD, and HHC. HHC is a hydrogenated form of THC, replacing the double bonds with hydrogen atoms.  What are cannabinoids anyway?  These are naturally occurring compounds found in the cannabis plant.


Each one of these individual compounds contain their own unique function, benefits, and uses. These cannabinoids are found in trace amounts naturally, meaning that most must be made scientifically in order to be a viable commercial product.


Similar to other cannabinoids like THC and CBD, HHC reacts with the endocannabinoid system in the body. There are two types of receptors, the CB1 receptor, which is responsible for controlling the nervous system and the CB2 receptor which controls the immune system. These receptors interact with different cannabinoids to produce various physical and chemical reactions.


Another reason some of these substances are becoming popular is due to the legality surrounding them. After the popularity of Delta 8 THC continued to rise, many states responded with an outright ban on the substance. The very same can be said about CBD after its emergence to the market.


As of today, more is understood and accepted with CBD. The 2018 Farm bill cleared the way for many hemp-derived products availability, popularity, and success. This bill also set forth some clarity including definitions on allowable THC content for hemp-based products.


The History of HHC

The same chemist, Roger Adams, who is responsible for identifying and Isolating CBD in the 1940’s also created HHC or Hexadydrocannabinoil. Adams created HHC, which is essentially a hydrogenated derivative of THC. Once hydrogen molecules were added to Delta 9 THC, through a process called hydrogenation, THC converts into HHC. This process is very similar to the process used to convert vegetable oil into margarine.


Even though HHC was discovered in the 40s, there is still minimal research surrounding it and its effects. As you may imagine, one of the main chemical differences of HHC over THC is the presence of the two extra hydrogen atoms. This results in a change in how the molecule binds to the CB1 and CB2 receptors in the body.


Due to this chemical difference, HHC actually has a much longer shelf life and tends to breakdown at a much slower rate than when exposed to UV light and heat. This means HHC retains a higher amount of its potency for much longer period of time, all good news for the consumer. 


How is HHC made? 

How is HHC Made?

HHC can be made from conventional THC, but it can also be derived from hemp. HHC produced from hemp is what allows the HHC products to be sold online legally. The process of making HHC starts off with extracting cannabidiol from raw hemp. The hemp derived CBD is then distilled and isolated. The powdery end product is then sold as CBD isolate products.


CBD conversion to HHC can then be carried out through a chemical process that involves the use of artificial gastric juice. Another method commonly used is through the use of the terpenes citronellol and L-carvone via the same process. Finally, the catalyst is then removed from the mixture and the process has been completed.


Is HHC Legal?

HHC is legal at the federal level since it occurs naturally in the hemp plant. This is possible with the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, which made HHC legal as long as it is derived from industrial hemp.


This is important because the Farm Bill legalized hemp in the United States. For HHC to be considered federally legal it must be made from industrial hemp. Hemp is defined as cannabis plants that contain less than 0.3% Delta 9 THC on a dry weight basis. 


HHC is also considered legal in all 50 states so long as it is hemp-derived. HHC’s legality, however, is put to question if it is deemed a synthetic cannabinoid or not derived from hemp but instead from marijuana. 


Is HHC stronger than Delta 9 THC?

Is HHC stronger than Delta 9 THC?

The potency of HHC when compared to Delta 9 and other hemp products is difficult to articulate exactly. This is simply due to the fact that a lot of different factors come into play that are specific to the user. That said, with all factors equal HHC looks to be around 80% as potent, or intoxicating as Delta 9 THC, while HHC is around 20% more potent than Delta 8 THC.


Another interesting thing about HHC is that, although it is not considered a THC compound, it still yields psychoactive and intoxicating effects. In fact, when HHC is manufactured, only about half of the batch consists of active HHC molecules, which bind to the cannabinoid receptors in the body. While the other half of the batch is made up of inactive HHC molecules. 


Manufactures have yet to work up a way to prevent this and that is why at times you may notice a slightly higher cost to HHC products when compared to other hemp derived cannabinoid products. 


Does HHC Get You High?

The short answer is yes, although to what amount depends on a few variables.  The effects someone feels from HHC will depend on various factors, such as your previous cannabis tolerance, physical characteristics such as weight, physiology, and overall health.


As mentioned, since HHC is considered to be roughly 80% as potent as Delta 9 THC (THC most people think of or reference when talking about weed), it is more than potent enough to get you high. Keep in mind, those who do have a higher tolerance for other cannabinoids can still expect a psychoactive experience, however, it may be more mellow than some more potent compounds such as traditional cannabis.


Being as HHC has an 80% potency compared to Delta 9, those with a low tolerance should first use HHC with caution and start out using no more than 3-5mg in order to first gauge how it affects your mind and body.


HHC Effects and Benefits

HHC looks to be a promising newcomer to the market. The psychoactive effects have been said to give more of a “productive high” when compared to Delta 9.


This makes HHC a great option for those looking for something that allows them to function through the day or focus on specific tasks at hand. Aside from a potency being greater than that of Delta 8 THC, users may experience potential therapeutic and health benefits from using HHC. some of those benefits may include.


  • Anxiety Relief
  • Promote Relaxation
  • Feeling of Euphoria
  • Alleviate nausea and vomiting
  • Improve sleep quality


Is HHC Safe?

Like many other hemp-derived cannabinoids on the market, there is a lack of evidence to support their safety in one way or another. While there are no existing reports as far as side effects go, this does not mean that HHC is necessarily safe. To ensure that you are getting a safe product, be sure to get your HHC products from a reputable source so that you can not only ensure their safety but also their legality.


Remember, as mentioned earlier, HHC products must be hemp-derived, and those hemp plants are required to contain no more than 0.3% THC in order to be considered legal. Brands that provide full panel third-party testing on their products will be the ones that you want to go with if you decide to try HHC for yourself.


Rest assured, Everyday Delta only carries reputable brands and HHC products that are backed by full panel third-party testing, giving you peace of mind and confidence that you are getting a premium product free of harmful chemical and additives.  


HHC consumption methods 

HHC Consumption Methods

Like many other cannabinoids such as CBD and Delta 8 THC, there are a large number of ways you can choose to enjoy HHC. You can vape HHC, and consume HHC gummies, and some HHC tinctures have even hit the market lately. So, no matter your preferred method of consumption, there is sure to be a way that works best for you. 


Does HHC Show Up on a Drug Test?

While some indicate that HHC has the possibility of eluding a standard 5-panel drug test, the short answer is most likely yes. While there still has not been enough research completed for a definitive answer, the early evidence indicates that HHC will show up on a drug test. Although HHC is not technically considered THC, some users have reported passing drug tests whereas others have reported quite the opposite.


It is important to understand that there are a lot of different factors relating to how long HHC stays in your system. Factors include amounts of HHC consumed, method of consumption, frequency of use, overall tolerance, body mass, and your own body’s unique physiology.


All of these factors make an impact on whether or not HHC will remain in your system and if it will show up on a urine test. That said, we would not recommend taking HHC within 4 weeks or less of having to take a drug test. Until there is more research done and the legality of HHC becomes more definitive we wouldn’t recommend risking it.


To Recap

HHC is a great alternative for those looking for a product that is stronger than Delta 8 but less potent than Delta 9. It is also a great alternative for those who have limited legal access to either marijuana or Delta 8 in their area.


Lastly, HHC is a great option for anyone who is looking for the psychoactive properties that CBD does not provide If you decide to give HHC a try, be sure to start out with a small dose of around 3-5mg and properly assess your tolerance before moving onto a higher dosage.


If you're trying HHC gummies for the first time, it is even more important to remember that edibles can take much longer to kick in so start off slow to give yourself ample time to determine your tolerance before taking more. 


Find a great selection of HHC products ranging from disposable HHC vapes, HHC vape cartridges, and HHC gummies at Everyday Delta.