You may or may not already know what the difference is between sativa and indica. If you’ve ever visited a dispensary or marijuana grow facility, you may have heard the terms tossed around, but what do these words actually mean? More importantly, how do they apply to the cannabis you’re consuming? Although cannabis strains are often divided between sativa and indica, these terms really tell us more about what to expect from their growth cycle than they do about how they will make you feel.
Still, given countless online reviews of indica vs sativa, they may be able to provide a general suggestion for a weed strain’s most common effects. Sativa and indica are two types of classification for marijuana plants, each with its own distinct characteristics. Sativa plants tend to grow taller and have narrower leaves, while indica plants are short and bushy with broad leaves. Again, these differences don’t necessarily translate to how the plant will make you feel. Rather, factors such as the strain’s specific genetics, cultivation method, and THC, CBD, or other cannabinoid content along with terpene profiles are much more significant in determining how it will affect your mind and body.
Indica is a classification of marijuana plant most commonly associated with strong stoney highs. It is shorter and bushier than its sativa counterpart, with broad leaves. The flower indica often has higher levels of certain terpenes like myrcene and linalool which can be beneficial in treating certain medical conditions. While marijuana indica typically delivers overall more mellow effects compared to its sativa marijuana, some indica strains can still offer energizing effects.
Despite having a reputation for making people sleepy, there are numerous benefits of indica strains that make them well worth the experience. In fact, indica is the preferred strain for many people who use cannabis to help with a variety of health issues, from chronic pain to anxiety to insomnia. Here are some of the most commonly reported benefits of indica:
While indica strains are typically milder than their sativa counterparts, they can still produce side effects for some users. In most cases, these side effects are mild and short-lived, but they can be more significant for users who are particularly sensitive to cannabis or who consume large doses. Some of the most common indica side effects include:
Everyone’s experience with cannabis is unique, and the effects of indica strains can vary widely. How you consume can make a difference as well. Indica vape effects may differ from flower indica.
Sativa is a classification of marijuana plant most well-known for its uplifting, cerebral effects. Unlike indica plants, which are shorter and bushier, sativa plants are tall and lanky with thinner leaves. Sativa strains are known for producing a more energetic and creative high that is often described as heady or cerebral. However, this may not always be the case for every person, as the cannabinoid content, terpene profile, and an individual’s tolerance levels are what really determine a consumer’s experience.
Sativa side effects are generally similar to indica, but there are still some potential effects to be aware of. Common side effects of sativa strains can include feeling anxious or paranoid, experiencing dry mouth or eyes, and feeling jittery or overstimulated. Here are some other potential side effects of sativa strains:
As with all strains of cannabis, the effects of sativa can vary significantly based on individual factors such as tolerance, dosage, and consumption method.
Knowing how to tell the difference between indica and sativa is easy in a dispensary. Weed strains and products in dispensaries are labeled as either sativa, indica, or hybrid strains. Dispensaries make it easy for you to differentiate between the two types of cannabis sativa classifications. Most dispensaries will have strains categorized by their dominant type and a knowledgeable staff member can assist in finding strains that match specific needs.
This is where hybrid strains come in. A hybrid strain is a combination of sativa and indica plants, bred together to create a unique blend of effects. Some hybrids are sativa-dominant, meaning that they have a higher percentage of sativa genetics. Others are indica-dominant, meaning that they have a higher percentage of indica genetics. Hybrid strains can be a good choice for those who want to experience the benefits of both sativa and indica without the effects that come with pure sativa or pure indica strains.
The answer to the question of whether indica or sativa is better really boils down to personal preference. The effects and benefits of each strain type can vary greatly depending on the individual. Some people may find that indica strains are more suited to their needs, while others may prefer the energizing effects of sativa. Still, others may find that balanced hybrid strains are the ideal choice.
All of this depends on what you're looking for in terms of effects and how your body responds to different strains. The more strains you experiment with, the better understanding you’ll have about how your body responds to different types of weed. One way to keep track of this is by using a strain journal where you write down the strains you try, and how they make you feel.
As for indica CBD vs sativa CBD, both strain types are available. Indica CBD is typically made from CBD oil indica extracted from indica plants. CBD is most often extracted from hemp plants that don’t have specific hemp sativa and hemp indica classifications because they are all still considered cannabis sativa plants. CBD products may also contain trace amounts of sativa THC. Some indica CBD and sativa CBD products do come in THC-free options.
Understanding the difference between sativa and indica strains can help you make more informed decisions about the type of cannabis you consume. Whether you're looking for pain relief, relaxation, or inspiration, there's a strain out there that's perfect for you. If you're looking to try out some different strains or to learn more about cannabis in general, be sure to check out The Health Center dispensaries in Denver and Boulder.
You can shop for indica and sativa strains online, or visit us in-store and talk to our experienced budtenders about the differences between any indica and sativa strains we have in stock. With so many strains in Colorado out there to choose from, it's never been a better time to sample different indicas and sativas!