Ever wonder why the effects of Indica vs Sativa cannabis strains can be so different? It’s because they’re actually different subspecies of the cannabis plant. Cannabis strains are split into three classifying groups: Indica, Sativa, and Hybrid.
The Basics of Indica vs Sativa Cannabis Strains
In the most understanding of terms, Indicas tend to leave you in a relaxed and sedated state- perfect for a bowl before bed or when ready to cozy up on the couch for a movie. Sativas, on the other hand, tend to leave you in an uplifted and cerebral state – perfect for social gatherings or creative projects.
The general effects of Indica and Sativa strains don’t necessarily affect all consumers the same way. The origins of the two strains are defined by the physical description of the plant rather than the consumable effects. In simpler terms, each consumer’s body is different, hence each person is going to experience a different high.
You may be asking, ‘Then how do I know what effects to expect when I consume an Indica or Sativa strain?’. It’s a great question, and it comes down to the cannabinoids and terpenes makeup. These chemical compounds lead to the ‘high’ effect you receive when you consume.
Cannabinoids and Terpenes
Cannabinoids are chemical compounds that create a unique high – the most common two being CBD and THC. CBD and THC are the top drivers of cannabis’ recreational and medical effects.
Terpenes are aromatic compounds that are commonly produced in plants and fruit. Yep, you read that right, terpenes are found in other plants besides cannabis (like lavender, oranges, and peppers to name a few)! Terpenes are what make cannabis smell of citrus, fuel, earth, berries, etc. While there are several variations of terpenes, the four most common are: Myrcene, Caryophyllene, Limonene and Terpinolene.
Above is just a brief breakdown of what to expect when choosing between an Indica or Sativa strain.
Here are a few other things to consider before consuming:
- Method. The way you choose to smoke will alter your experience. Meaning, if you choose to dab you will be hit with immediate intense effects (recommended for experienced users) rather than if you take a puff of a joint.
- Tolerance. A novice consumer is going to have a much lower tolerance than that of an experienced one. If you are new to cannabis, we encourage you to start at a lower dosage level and go slower – ease your way into it rather than diving in head first.
- Dosage. Dosage essentially means the potency percentage of a strain – this goes back to THC. When looking at packaging you will see numbers ranging between 16% to 25% (some will be lower or higher than this). 16% will be a lower THC potency whereas 25% will be higher.
We hope this alleviates some of your questions when taking the next steps in your ‘high’ journey. Just remember:
Indica strains tend to have a more relaxing, sedating and stronger physical effect when consumed. An easy way to remember Indica is ‘in da couch’.
Sativa strains tend to have a more energizing, uplifting, cerebral effect when consumed. Just think ‘Sativa = cerebral’ and you’re set!
PSA: These are generalized terms. You may have a different experience when consuming either of the two. Regardless of what you choose, just sit back, relax and enjoy.
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