Experienced cannabis-seekers often come into a dispensary knowing what they want. Some are looking strictly for specific strains, but many are going to lean more toward either an Indica-dominant or Sativa-dominant variety. So, what is Indica, what is Sativa, and is Sativa a better high than Indica or vice versa? In truth, this cannabis designation may matter less than what you think.
What is Indica?
Indican strains are thought to deliver a more “full-body” high. For example, a lot of people who like that sense of utter, couch-locked relaxation to help them sleep opt for an Indica-dominant strain. In general, Indica tends to have a higher level of CBD (cannabidiol) than Sativa but can have a similar THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) content.
- Dark green color
- Wide leaves
- Produces wide, bulky clusters of flowers
- The plant grows more like a short bush
- Lush foliage
What is Sativa?
Usually referred to as delivering a more “energetic” high, Sativas can sometimes have invigorating attributes that many claim even help with productivity. In general, Sativa-leaning strains don’t often have a lot of CBD.
- Long, narrow leaves
- Bright green color
- Produces elongated bundles of flowers
- The plant grows exceptionally tall
- Sparse foliage
Is there a real difference between Indica and Sativa?
Does Indica and Sativa actually matter? Yes and no. There can be a definite difference in how the plant grows, what it looks like, and possibly even cannabinoid content. Clearly, most people find that Indicas can be more relaxing while Sativas can be more energetic. But, most is the operative word here. You could very well find a good Indica that has you ready to tackle a project or a Sativa that leaves you ready for bed.
Indica or Sativa does not mean hard and fast rules about the exact effects. The best predictor of what you’ll experience is actually its cannabinoid and terpene profile. Specifically, the ratio of CBD to THC makes a huge difference in the experience, and terpenes can further alter the outcome.
For this exact reason, some dispensaries have adopted new terminology for their weed that classifies it into three distinct types:
- Type I: High-THC strain
- Type II: Good ratio of THC and CBD
- Type III: High-CBD and lower THC
Indica vs Sativa: Common FAQs
Is Sativa a better high than Indica?
It depends on what you define as “better.” And, again, whether the plant is Indica or Sativa is not as important as the full cannabinoid/terpene profile. If you want a more sedating state, high-THC and some CBD with ample myrcene terpene in the mix could be deemed as better. On the other hand, if you’re looking for more euphoria, high THC without so much CBD and a dash of limonene may be your go-to.
Does Indica make you lazy?
This goes in line with, “Is Indica an upper or downer?” Sure, some Indica-dominant strains can be more sedating, but don’t be surprised if you find one that has the opposite effect, giving you a case of motor-mouth and the sudden desire to create something amazing.
Why do Indica and Sativa feel different?
It all comes down to the exact ratio of cannabinoids and terpenes. Because Indica strains are often high in relaxing terpenes and THC, they can sometimes be perceived as more of a downer than Sativa. Again, though, there are multiple exceptions.
Final Thoughts on Indica vs Sativa
So, in reality, Indica and Sativa are terms that were initially created by botanists to classify cannabis plants by how they look and not by what they make you feel like. Does Sativa or Indica usually lead to certain effects? Absolutely. However, cannabinoids and terpenes are really the important factors to consider.
Ready to explore some premium strains with varied cannabinoid and terpene profiles? Be sure to take a look at our menu at Eskar.