What Is HHC? (Hexahydrocannabinol) – All The Facts 

What is HHC?

HHC was discovered when the Godfather of hemp, organic chemist Roger Adams, added Hydrogen molecules to delta-9. This process, known as hydrogenation, converts THC to hexahydrocannabinol (HHC). Hydrogenation is frequently used in the scientific community; it’s how we get vegetable oil into margarine. While Adams created HHC from conventional cannabis-derived THC, these days, the cannabinoid is typically derived through a process that begins with hemp. This low-THC cannabis plant was made federally legal by Congress in the 2018 farm bill. Consuming HHC is a great way to feel the euphoric effects of hemp without feeling as paranoid as one would on regular weed.

How is HHC different from THC or delta-8?

Besides differing from an apparent chemical standpoint, HHC vs THC provides less of a psychoactive effect than THC. From my experience with both the edibles and the vape, I also find it to have less of a psychoactive effect than delta-8. Think of it like this:

  • THC is probably the equivalent of drinking shots out at the bar.
  • Delta-8 is similar to knocking back some beers while watching a game with friends.
  • HHC is the class of wine you have at the end of a long day. 

How will HHC affect me?

HHC is a little tricky to determine because the high potency differs from person to person. It’s made in a lab after CBD is extracted from raw hemp, distilled and isolated in a powder form. When the cannabinoid is manufactured, the end result is a mixture of two different kinds of HHC molecules: 9R HHC actively binds to the body’s natural endocannabinoid receptors, while 9S HHC, because of its slightly different molecular structure, doesn’t do so nearly as well. Basically, a whole lot of nerd talk for saying that it’s less potent than delta-8. In order to get a THC-like high when consuming HHC, you will have to consume more than you would other hemp-derived products. This is a good thing for someone like me who likes to pace himself. Rather than going from zero to sixty-five, I can just cruise. I can take HHC while I do things like cleaning my dishes, scheduling my day tomorrow, and walking my dog, but when I want my favorite show to be a little bit funnier, I’ll take extra hits from my HHC vape.

Will HHC Show Up On My Drug Test?

Keep in mind, that this is all anecdotal as my research points to no definitive answer, but word on the street is that HHC usually does not show up on drug tests, unlike delta-8 and THC. That being said, there is no hard evidence that HHC does not appear on a drug test for marijuana. Don’t bet your job or career on anecdotal evidence, and it’s better to be safe than sorry. 

Is HHC Legal?

HHC is hemp-derived, so federally technically, yes, but *record scratch* you should do research on a state level. Lobbyists and activists are always protesting on a state level, and these laws change rapidly. HHC is found in hemp plants’ seeds and pollen, making it non-synthetic. For the moment, HHC products exist (and thrive) in the murky legal zone between hemp (which is legal nationwide) and cannabis (which is not).

Will I Build A Tolerance To HHC?

As we learned in middle school health class, marijuana has a tolerance rate, and HHC is no exception. So, if you’re the type of person who likes to smoke weed from the time you wake up to the time you’re sitting on the couch with one hand in your pants and the other in a bag of Doritos, you might want to take regular “tolerance breaks” with HHC to budget your money. HHC, unfortunately, has a high tolerance rate, and smoking it regularly for four weeks will most likely lead to an increase in the required dosage.

What are the Benefits of HHC? 

While there still isn’t an abundance of research on the positive effects of consuming HHC, marketing claims of pain relief and anxiety have been cited. From personal experience, I can tell you that these claims have materialized through my experiences consuming HHC products. As somebody that began to grow anxious using delta-9 as I got older, HHC has given me a chance to enter a realm of relaxation while still being able to complete menial tasks like folding laundry, emptying the dishwasher, and on occasion, responding to a work email. 

What Are The Potential Risks To HHC?

The research will continue to develop about HHC and other cannabinoids that have recently become mainstream. Obviously, anything psychoactive comes with some potential risks. Some of the following are as follows:

  • Anxiousness
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Increased appetite
  • Insomnia
  • Paranoia
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Red eyes

The Future of HHC

The HHC industry is beginning to boom. If you were unfamiliar with the product before this article, you will most likely experience a first-hand HHC testimonial from a friend pretty soon. In my opinion, HHC is a game-changer in the cannabis industry. HHC is also typically consumed in the form of HHC carts or HHC gummies

How Much Should I Take?

Like I said before, my favorite part about HHC is that it’s easier to pace than delta-8 and delta-9. It’s tough to recommend dosage for a few reasons: I don’t know your experience with hemp products, some HHC products are stronger than others, and everybody reacts to psychoactive products differently. With that in mind, here is a rough estimate of dosing HHC:

  • Low dose: 10 – 20 mg per serving
  • Moderate dose: 20 – 50 mg per serving
  • Heavy dose: 50 – 100 mg per serving

If you are new to cannabinoids, do not take this amount off the bat. In fact, I would even recommend microdosing. Even though both delta-8 and HHC are not delta-9, I once underestimated an HHC edible and took one in the middle of my work day. Safe to say, I was about as productive as Jim from The Office. 

Is There an Alternative To HHC? 

CBD does not have a psychoactive effect, but it does have all the benefits of weed interacting with your endocannabinoid system. Properties of CBD oil have been known to have beneficial effects in treating migraines, inflammation, epilepsy, autoimmune diseases, depression, and anxiety. Research has shown that CBD positively affects athletes, the elderly, and people who engage in manual labor at their jobs. 


I’ve struggled with anxiety my entire life. I would always force myself to smoke weed in social situations and then leave because “I was tired” half an hour later, only to wrestle with my thoughts in bed until three in the morning. With HHC, I just have a few beers, take two to three rips, listen to music and relax. The pitch lies within yourself. I don’t know you or your habits, I just know that a record-breaking amount of people deal with anxiety daily, and a more moderate version of marijuana might help with that. This product isn’t for everyone, but if you’re someone like my buddy Kevin, who struggles to sleep without Melatonin, HHC can help you get the eight hours of rest your body deserves. If you’re a college kid (over the age of twenty-one) who wants to partake in getting high without feeling brain dead, HHC is a great option. 

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