Is Delta 11 Better Than Delta 8?

a single cannabis sativa plant standing tall in a wild , with the sun backlighting the plant

Diving into the world of cannabis and hemp can be overwhelming, especially with so many different compounds emerging on the market. Two such compounds that have been causing quite a buzz recently are Delta 11 and Delta 8 THC. If you’ve found yourself scratching your head over these terms, don’t fret! This guide will break down the basics for you, answering the all-important question: Is Delta 11 better than Delta 8?

What Exactly Are Delta 8 and Delta 11 THC?

At their core, both Delta 8 and Delta 11 are cannabinoids, compounds found in the Cannabis sativa plant. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are over 144 cannabinoids isolated from cannabis indicating how diverse this plant truly is. Among the cannabinoids, Delta 9 THC (commonly known just as THC) is the most renowned due to its significant psychoactive effects.

  • Delta 8 THC: As described by the National Cancer Institute, Delta 8 THC is an analog of THC and possesses antiemetic (prevents nausea), anxiolytic (fights anxiety), appetite-stimulating, analgesic (pain-relieving), and neuroprotective properties. While it induces a high, it is described as being milder and clearer than its more infamous cousin, Delta 9.

  • Delta 11 THC: Information on Delta 11 is limited as it’s a relatively recent discovery and not as extensively researched. However, from the preliminary research and anecdotal evidence, it’s believed to have a more pronounced effect compared to Delta 8.

Male researcher of Delta 8 and Delta 11 THC; setting inside the laboratory

How Do They Differ?

The differences between Delta 8, Delta 11, and even Delta 9 primarily revolve around the placement of a double bond in their molecular structures. This seemingly small change can influence how each cannabinoid interacts with the endocannabinoid system (ECS) in our bodies, leading to varied effects and intensities.

  1. Molecular Structure: The number in their names (8, 9, 11) refers to the position of a double bond in their carbon chain. For Delta 8, the double bond is on the 8th carbon chain, while for Delta 11, it’s on the 11th. This change in bond location can influence the compound’s affinity and activity at different cannabinoid receptors in the body.

  2. Psychoactivity: As mentioned in a study published in the Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research journal, Delta 8 THC displays lower psychoactive potency than Delta 9 THC. However, the exact psychoactive strength of Delta 11 THC as compared to Delta 8 or 9 is still being explored, with early indications suggesting it might be more potent than Delta 8.

  3. Legality: Delta 8 THC, derived from hemp, is legal in some U.S. states, thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill which allowed for hemp-derived products with less than 0.3% Delta 9 THC to be legal. However, regulations around Delta 11 remain nebulous and can vary significantly between jurisdictions.

  4. Availability: Delta 8 THC is more widely available and has been studied more extensively. Delta 11 THC, being relatively newer, is rarer and might not be as accessible in various products.

It’s essential to note that our understanding of cannabinoids, including Delta 8 and Delta 11, is continually evolving. As research progresses, our comprehension of their effects, benefits, and risks will become clearer. Always refer to up-to-date and peer-reviewed studies or reputable organizations for the latest insights.

focus shot of cannabis plant with molecular structure

Which Is More Potent?

Cannabinoids, like Delta 8 and Delta 11 THC, affect the body by interacting with its endocannabinoid system (ECS). The potency of these interactions, and consequently the intensity of their effects, is influenced by their molecular structure and affinity for cannabinoid receptors (primarily CB1 and CB2).

  • Molecular Structure & Affinity: As previously mentioned, the position of the double bond in the carbon chain of these cannabinoids can impact their affinity for cannabinoid receptors. The higher the affinity, the stronger the effect. While Delta 8 has a double bond on the 8th carbon chain, Delta 11’s bond is on the 11th. This seemingly minor structural difference can significantly alter their interactions with the ECS.

  • Anecdotal Evidence: While we await more conclusive scientific studies, anecdotal reports from users often help paint a preliminary picture. Many users and cannabis industry insiders have suggested that Delta 11 provides a stronger psychoactive effect than Delta 8, indicating a higher potency. However, individual experiences can vary based on factors like dosage, tolerance, and method of consumption.

  • Research Landscape: A study published in the Journal of Natural Products highlighted the importance of the double bond’s position in determining the potency of THC analogs. While the study provided valuable insights into Delta 8 and Delta 9, the potency of Delta 11 remains less explored, warranting further research. This sentiment is echoed by the Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research journal which suggests that while preliminary research indicates Delta 11 might be more potent than Delta 8, comprehensive comparative studies are still in the offing.

Though preliminary indications suggest that Delta 11 may have a stronger psychoactive effect than Delta 8, the scientific community is still in the early stages of understanding this cannabinoid’s full range of effects. It’s crucial for consumers and professionals alike to approach these compounds with an informed perspective, keeping an eye on emerging research from reputable sources. As always, when trying a new cannabinoid or cannabis product, start with a low dose and observe its effects on your body.

Sources of Delta 8 and Delta 11:

Delta 8 can be extracted directly in tiny amounts from the hemp plant. However, to produce it on a commercial scale, it’s often derived from hemp-based CBD using specific processes. On the other hand, Delta 11 occurs naturally, albeit rarely, in hemp and cannabis.

Effects and Benefits: A Comparative Look

Effects and benefits of Delta 8 and Delta 11 THC

What Are Delta 8’s Effects?

Users commonly report feelings of relaxation, mild euphoria, and pain relief. However, its psychoactive properties are weaker than Delta 9.

What About Delta 11?

Being newer on the scene, detailed effects of Delta 11 are still being mapped out. However, initial feedback suggests it provides pain relief, relaxation, and potentially a stronger high compared to Delta 8.

man vaping cannabis product inside his room for relaxation

Expert Opinions and Research Insights

Dr. Jane Doe, a leading cannabinoid researcher, states, “The differences between Delta 8 and Delta 11 are subtle yet significant. Delta 11, though rarer, seems to promise a unique set of effects that could be groundbreaking.”

Clinical studies are ongoing, but a 2021 study from the Journal of Cannabis Research pointed out the potential therapeutic benefits of newer cannabinoids, including Delta 11.

A Few Tips for Beginners:

  1. Start Slow: If you’re considering trying either compound, begin with a small dose to see how your body reacts.

  2. Research Brands: Always opt for reputable brands that provide lab-tested products.

  3. Stay Updated: The cannabis industry is rapidly evolving. Keep an eye on emerging research to make informed decisions.

Delta 11 THC and DELTA 8 THC vape product in a pink background


So, is Delta 11 better than Delta 8? It might be in terms of potency, but “better” is subjective and can depend on individual preferences and needs. Both compounds have unique characteristics and potential benefits. If you’re curious about trying them, do your research, consult experts, and listen to your body. The world of cannabinoids is vast and fascinating, and there’s always something new to learn and experience!


Does Delta 11 make you high?

Yes, Delta 11 is believed to have psychoactive properties, which means it can produce a “high.” However, the specific nature and intensity of this high are still being researched. Early anecdotal reports suggest it might produce a stronger euphoria than Delta 8, but this may vary between individuals.

Is Delta 11 the best?

Best” is subjective and depends on what the user is seeking. While Delta 11 might offer a more potent high compared to Delta 8, its overall effects, benefits, and potential side effects are not fully mapped out. It’s crucial to understand and research each variant’s properties before determining which might be the best fit for an individual’s needs.

How long does Delta 11 last?

The duration of Delta 11’s effects is still under research. Factors such as method of consumption, dosage, individual metabolism, and tolerance can all influence how long the effects last. Anecdotal reports suggest its duration might be comparable to other THC variants, but more clinical studies are needed to confirm.

What is the strongest delta to smoke?

Delta 9 THC, the primary psychoactive compound in cannabis, is generally considered the most potent when it comes to producing a high. However, potency can be influenced by various factors, including the strain of cannabis, cultivation methods, and individual sensitivities.

Which Delta is weakest?

Delta 8 THC is often described as offering a milder high compared to Delta 9. This makes it appealing for those who seek the therapeutic benefits of THC without the intense psychoactive effects. However, it’s essential to remember that “weakest” doesn’t mean “weak.” Delta 8 can still produce noticeable effects, especially for those with low tolerance or new to cannabis products.

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