Skip to main content

According to the National Institute of Health, there are currently at least 144 known cannabinoids that have been isolated from the cannabis plant.

The most popular among them is THC and CBD, the primary psychoactive compound known to provide all the stereotypical effects of getting high.

Yet a lesser-known cannabinoid, HHC, seems poised to challenge its dominance.

But what is HHC, and how does it differ from CBD and THC?

CBD does not cause the psychoactive effects that HHC does, while HHC carries most, if not all benefits of CBD, with the euphoric feeling many people associate with THC.

This cannabis compound is gaining popularity in the wake of increasing cannabis and hemp product legalization.

Here is everything you need to know about HHC.

What is CBD?

If you are here, you probably have at least heard of CBD, but what does CBD stand for?

Cannabidiol has made great strides over the past few years in earning the praise of health and wellness enthusiasts, as well as members of the medical community. 

CBD is the second most prevalent active ingredient in cannabis. While CBD is an essential component of medical marijuana, it is derived directly from the hemp plant, a cousin of marijuana, or manufactured in a laboratory.

A common question people might wonder is if CBD is psychoactive? The answer is no.

One of the hundreds of components in marijuana, CBD does not cause a “high” by itself.

According to a report from the World Health Organization, “In humans, CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential…. To date, there is no evidence of public health related problems associated with the use of pure CBD.”

What is HHC?

You may be wondering, what is HHC’s meaning? Well, it’s quite a mouthful.

HHC stands for hexahydrocannabinol.

It is a cannabinoid that was first synthesized by a researcher named Roger Adams in 1944. Adams synthesized HHC by adding hydrogen atoms to regular THC, so unsurprisingly, HHC and THC are nearly structurally identical to one another.

THC normally has one double bond in its top ring structure, which is absent in HHC. This makes HHC more stable than THC long-term and alters its ability to bind with various receptors in the body,

Overall, HHC is considered about 80% as potent as THC (some suggest it is stronger) but otherwise shares virtually identical traits.

What Are The Effects of HHC?

HHC has very similar effects as THC. It has been said to produce feelings of euphoria and stimulation, changes in heart rate and body temperature, and even altered headspace and cognition.

Many users also report that the effects of HHC are similar to that of delta 8 THC in terms of being more heavily weighted towards relaxation than stimulation. HHC is more potent than delta 8 but slightly less potent than delta 9 THC.

HHC is still very new to the cannabis scene, so there are not many studies available to evaluate its potential therapeutic effects — but so far, it seems this cannabinoid offers most of the same therapeutic effect profile as other forms of THC. 

The potential benefits of HHC include:

  • Help manage chronic pain
  • Reduce inflammation
  • Promote deeper, more restorative sleep
  • Alleviate nausea or vomiting
  • Alleviate anxiety (may also increase anxiousness)

Is HHC Legal? 

HHC currently exists in a legal gray area.

Some companies argue that HHC is perfectly legal because it’s also naturally found in seeds of some hemp plants.

However, there are others who argue that this is speculative and HHC legality may not be as clear-cut as other products like CBD.

Currently, the legality of the entire alternate cannabinoid market is a big question mark.

While some interpretations make these compounds appear legal, there are other laws that could make these compounds illegal already — such as the Federal Analog Act.

This law makes any analog of a listed Schedule I drug (such as delta 9 THC) illegal by proxy.

Most countries have similar laws and also list THC as a prohibited substance.

Use these products at your own risk!


All HHC products are produced using chemically hydrogenated HHC from THC.

Based on present research, HHC itself is not dangerous or harmful, but note that how it is produced can be dangerous.

Hence, the HHC product you buy can have plenty of impurities and contaminants due to poor hydrogenation procedures.

To this end, make sure you purchase your HHC products from reputable and credible HHC vendors that have third parties test their products.

Leave a Reply