Will HHC fail a drug test?

HHC products are rare in the market and are manufactured by limited hemp-based brands. However, they are gaining more popularity as replacements or alternatives for THC and CBD. A major concern is whether HHC is detected in a drug test. Herein are factors that make HHC show in a drug test, including secondary exposure, cross-contamination, mislabelling of products, and using marijuana-based HHC.

HHC is a chemical compound from organic hemp plants, cannabis sativa, or marijuana. Hemp-based HHC is considered safer than marijuana because its THC levels are below 0.3%, unlike marijuana which exceeds 2.5%. Although HHC has limited research regarding its effectiveness and potential effects, the existing clinical trials are yet to be approved as a new element. Also, the legality of HHC is yet to be determined-meaning users should bear the responsibility for potential risks. One of the major concerns on HHC is whether it will fail you in a drug test. But before finding out the effects of HHC on drug tests, let us learn more about HHC.

What is HHC?

HHC is one of the chemical compounds of the hemp plant that has been recently established to be useful. Hexahydrocannabinol (HHC is a THC-derived chemical compound. HHC is obtained through hydrogenation of THC, a similar process used in deriving margarine from vegetable oil. (Morales et al., 2015) This process involves the addition of hydrogen atoms for the stabilization of the chemical structure.

Obtaining HHC is a sophisticated process involving the saturation of THC using hydrogen atoms under high pressure to obtain usable amounts. HHC is considered a natural element of hemp, only in traces of high concentrations. The processing results in the division of THC in duo chemical bond structure, replacing it with hydrogen and maintaining the cannabinoid’s effect and sustenance of potency levels. Notably, the saturation of THC involves using either palladium or nickel as catalysts. HHC is infused into products such a vapes and gummies.

Is HHC Legal?

There have been various debates regarding the legality and safety of hemp-based products in the USA and globally. HHC is a new element of the hemp plant in the market, and you should understand its legality before buying or moving it from one state or country to another. Notably, there are no specific laws on HHC. Unlike CBD and THC, whose laws were well-articulated by the 2018 Farm Bill and the FDA, nothing was said about HHC. However, general hemp-based regulations can be applied to HHC to avoid conflicts with state or federal laws.

The 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp-based products, although under the federal government as suggested by Abernety (2019). Therefore, US states are mandated to determine whether hemp products are legal within their territories. As a result, 35 states legalized hemp-based products, and 15 are yet to, meaning HHC is legal within the 35 states.

Besides, the 2018 Farm Bill regulates THC levels of all hemp-based products to 0.3%, the amount found in cannabis sativa and the hemp plant. Therefore, according to this regulation, HHC products are only legal if their THC levels are below 0.3%. However, until a court rules or provides its opinion on HHC’s legality, it is difficult to determine whether it is legal, meaning users should take personal responsibility in case of any risks.

What can Make HHC Show In a Drug Test?

Various possibilities would make HHC show in a drug test that should be avoided. Some include;

Marijuana HHC

Schilling et al. (2020) noted that marijuana is a more psychoactive plant, unlike hemp, although they both belong to the cannabis sativa family. Before taking any HHC product, it is important to confirm that it is derived from an organic hemp plant since its low THC levels. Marijuana HHC will result in a drug test failure. Also, check on the brand’s reputation to ensure it has no history of misinforming the customers since some mislabel their products. Taking marijuana-based HHC will put you at a higher risk of intoxication.

Secondary Exposure to THC

Being in the same room with people smoking marijuana for long hours will likely make you fail a drug test after taking HHC. This makes you a passive smoker of THC and heightens the psychoactive side effects of HHC. If you are exposed to a hair drug test, and marijuana smoke was directed to your hair, the chances of failing the test are extremely high. Therefore, if you are scheduled for a drug test, it is important to avoid staying around people smoking drug substances such as marijuana or cocaine.

Cross Contamination

Abusing other substances and using HHC product will make you fail a drug test. If you are using HHC, it is important to void using other drugs to be safe during a drug test. Brinkman et al. (2013) noted that other drugs heighten the psychoactive side effects, making you fail a drug test. Besides, before using any medication alongside HHC, check for possible side effects. Avoid drugs with psychoactive side effects such as HHC since you are likely to get “high” and fail a drug test. Notably, avoid using HHC products with other intoxicating substances, including alcohol.

Mislabeling

Mislabeling is also one reason you fail a drug test after using HHC. If the brand is manufacturing HHC from marijuana, yet it is labeled hemp, its THC levels are overboard, making you fail a drug test. Also, misinformation on potency levels of HHC will put you at risk of failing a drug test. Therefore, always confirm on potency and purity levels of the HHC product you are about to buy alongside the brand’s reputation. If the brand has been receiving warnings from the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) regarding mislabeling and the safety of its products, it is wise to seek a better alternative.

Conclusion

HHC is not likely to show in a drug test, especially if it is from an organic hemp plant. However, various factors can make you fail a drug test after using HHC. Some of the factors include cross-contamination, secondary exposure to THC, and using high potency levels. It is always important to affirm the actual potency levels to avoid overdosing. Also, avoid brands that have received warnings from the FDA regarding the safety of their products and failing to be transparent to their customers. You should pay attention to two parts of the COA’s report: potency and purity levels. Besides, other elements used are also important in helping to determine the best HHC gummies.

References

Abernethy, A. (2019). Hemp Production & 2018 Farm Bill. US Food And Drug Administration.

Brinkman, T. M., Ullrich, N. J., Zhang, N., Green, D. M., Zeltzer, L. K., Lommel, K. M., … & Krull, K. R. (2013). Prevalence And Predictors Of Prescription Psychoactive Medication Use In Adult Survivors Of Childhood Cancer: A Report From The Childhood Cancer Survivor Study. Journal Of Cancer Survivorship, 7(1), 104-114.

Morales, N. P., Sirijaroonwong, S., Yamanont, P., & Phisalaphong, C. (2015). Electron Paramagnetic Resonance Study Of The Free Radical Scavenging Capacity Of Curcumin And Its Demethoxy And Hydrogenated Derivatives. Biological And Pharmaceutical Bulletin, 38(10), 1478-1483.

Schilling, S., Melzer, R., & McCabe, P. F. (2020). Cannabis sativa. Current Biology, 30(1), R8-R9.

 

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