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What is HHC?

Updated: Feb 20

At Top Shelf Hemp Co. educating our customers is a large part of our mission. HHC is on the radar today. Let's take a closer look at what exactly HHC is.

A Quick History

HHC or Hexahydrocannabinol is what's called a hydrogenated derivative of ∆9 THC. HHC was first synthesized in 1947. Roger Adams used natural ∆9 THC found in Cannabis sativa in the process. Since its discovery, HHC has been synthesized from several different chemical compounds. In 2020, the de Las Heras group discovered HHC is a naturally forming cannabinoid, if exceedingly rare. Since it is a naturally occurring compound in Cannabis sativa, humans have been ingesting trace amounts of HHC for hundreds of years.

Is HHC Legal?

HHC offers more legal promise and appeal than its counterpart ∆8 THC for several reasons. First and foremost, it's not a THC compound. According to the 2018 Farm Bill, as long as HHC is derived from hemp, it's considered legal. It may also elude drug tests, more research is needed into this claim though. 12 states currently ban HHC.

The Science

HHC is a rare phytocannabinoid, found in extremely rare cases in nature. HHC can be synthesized from other similar chemical compounds including citronellal and olivetol. HHC is typically made from CBD. There are no double bonds in the cyclohexyl ring of HHC. Hydrogen molecules have been added to the compound. HHC has been shown to bind with CB1 receptors. Its bond has a much weaker affinity than ∆9 THC. This is typically an indication that it is not as intoxicating.

How is HHC Different from Marijuana?

Because of its weak affinity with CB1 receptors, HHC has a more mild impact on the endocannabinoid system when compared to ∆9 THC. Its effect is similar to ∆8 THC with a decreased sedative effect. The inclusion of hydrogen stabilizes the HHC compound increasing its shelf life.

Wrap Up

HHC was discovered almost 100 years ago. Humans have been consuming HHC in trace amounts for centuries. It has relatively mild effects when compared to ∆9 THC. It's advisable to check your local and state law for any new developments. Continue educating yourself on cannabinoids, and check out when you're ready for a more first-hand experience.


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