If you live in a cannabis-illegal state, there are lots of other smokable options available to you. THC-O infused flower is one of those, and it’s made from a newly popular cannabinoid flooding the market right now. But, what exactly is THC-O hemp flower? And, how are the effects compared to smoking traditional cannabis?
We’re getting into all of the details of THC-O infused flower right here on the Mr. Nice Guys blog. Let’s learn some stuff!
What Is THC-O?
THC-O, or tetrahydrocannabinol-o-acetate, or THC-O-acetate, is a synthetic cannabinoid that is relatively new on the cannabis market. In cannabis-illegal states, THC-O hemp flower is gaining popularity quickly for its similarities to regular ol’ THC, as well as its potency.
THC-O is a synthetic cannabinoid — meaning it is not found in nature. However, it is also considered a classical cannabinoid. This means that although it is synthetic, it shares the same basic structure as naturally-found cannabinoids.
This is in stark contrast to synthetic cannabinoids that are not considered classical — like K2 and Spice, which are known to be dangerous, and even deadly — which have chemical structures that do not remotely resemble cannabis compounds, and their interactions with the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) are unknown.
How Is THC-O Made?
Since THC-O is a synthetic cannabinoid, the compound itself must be created before it can be made into THC-O infused flower.
The process of creating the THC-O hemp flower starts with, surprise! — hemp, which is federally legal per the 2018 Farm Bill as long as it is below 0.3% THC, from which CBD is extracted. From the CBD, delta-8 THC is created; and from the delta-8, a very dangerous process of adding acetic anhydride takes place to create THC-O.
According to board-certified neurologist Dr. Ethan Russo, a top-tier researcher who has been studying cannabis for more than 25 years, the process to make THC-O is very dangerous. In an interview with Cannabis Business Times, Russo states:
“The process of making THC-O acetate is inherently dangerous. The acetic anhydride that’s part of the process is extremely flammable and potentially explosive. This is something that’s got to be done in a technical lab with a vacuum hood [and] no exposure to humans.”
This process should never be attempted at home (or anywhere else! Unless you are a certified expert working in a controlled laboratory setting.)
How Is THC-O Infused Flower Made?
So, now you’ve got the THC-O compound, but how is THC-O hemp flower actually made? Well, it starts as a regular ol’ nug of hemp. Hemp flower, now federally legal in the US, is used as the base.
From there, there are a couple of different methods for getting the THC-O compound onto the flower itself. Some THC-O hemp flower is made by dipping the hemp flower into an oil-based distillate. This creates a potent product — but the oil never quite dries, and it creates a harsh smoke that can be harsh for inexperienced smokers.
Alternately, some THC-O infused flower is made by spraying the hemp flower with a dried version of the distillate — similar to kief. This allows the creation of a THC-O infused flower that is potent and easy to smoke.
THC-O Hemp Flower Effects
The THC-O effects are not well-studied at this time, but there is a consensus on its effects from users’ anecdotal reports.
THC-O produces an elevated psychoactive ‘high’ that can be euphoric and sedative, depending on the dose. Because of its prodrug status, the body can absorb higher levels of THC-O than regular THC (the compound has higher bioavailability), and this can be a more potent experience.
Many users report common effects, such as:
- Body high
- Intense introspection
- Spiritual sensations
- Psychedelic effects
Many users report that this cannabinoid helps increase self-awareness, diving into introspection, bolstering creativity, and gaining heightened insights.
THC-O Hemp Flower Dosing
Though THC-O has been compared to traditional THC, the way that these compounds function within the body is very different — because of this, there are a few things you need to know before dosing THC-O hemp flower.
THC-O is what’s known as a prodrug; this means that it doesn’t take effect until after it has been metabolized by the liver.
This means that, unlike a traditional THC smoke, you won’t feel the effects of THC-O right after you take it. You’ll need to wait at least 20-30 minutes, see how you feel, and evaluate from there.
As with any new cannabis product, we urge our customers to start small and work from there. You can always take more tomorrow, but there’s no going back if you have taken a large dose and start to experience unpleasant side effects. Some of our customers even find it helpful to write down their dose and its timing to better understand the particular THC-O effects.
Is THC-O Infused Flower Legal?
Well, it depends on who you ask, really.
Many claim that THC-O is legal under the 2018 Farm Bill because the cannabinoid is derived from federally legal hemp.
Others cite the 1986 Federal Analogue Act which states that any substance analogous to a Schedule I drug is illegal just the same, and can be treated as such. There is a whole group of folks who believe this law prohibits all of the new cannabinoids that are hitting the market lately.
THC-O Hemp Flower & Drug Tests
If you are someone who gets drug tested — THC-O infused flower might not be the product for you. Drug tests aren’t searching for delta 9 THC in your system, they are searching for the compound(s) that delta 9 THC metabolizes into. And, unfortunately, THC-O most likely also metabolizes into these compounds. So, even if you are smoking zero traditional cannabis, THC-O infused flower may cause you to fail a drug test.
THC-O Infused Flower: Effects & Benefits — A Final Word
THC-O infused flower is a great option for those who want to puff on something smokable, but who live in a cannabis-illegal state. THC-O hemp flower has its own set of benefits and effects, though, and is often used by those searching for a more spiritual and introspective experience.
If you’ve got questions we didn’t answer about anything THC-O infused flower, or when you’re ready to explore our wide array of products — come on into any one of our 7 Mr. Nice Guys locations throughout Corpus Christi and talk to our knowledgeable staff. And as always, have a nice daze!