Sativa vs. Indica: What You Need to Know


Sativa or Indica? Night-time relaxation or daytime focus and energy? We’re here to help you find the perfect cannabis “strain” for you. Every cannabis profile, or “strain” has a distinct flavor and aroma, and offers a unique combination of medicinal and therapeutic benefits.

With over 700 known strains or profiles of cannabis as of 2020, picking the perfect cannabis for you can be overwhelming. Our guests ask questions like these all the time:

“What strains are more effective for pain management?”

“I just want to relax after a long day, which strain is right for me?”

“Which strains have the most CBD or delta-8 THC?”

To make things a little easier, it’s best to compare profiles by three main categories: sativas,  indicas and hybrids. What makes a strain fall under one of these categories? It all comes down to terpenes. Terpenes are what give each strain its distinct smell and properties. The presence or absence of certain terpenes determines if the strain is a sativa or indica, or a hybrid of both. 

What is a Sativa?

Sativa profiles are known for their uplifting properties. They provide the user with a cerebral “head high” as opposed to the “body high” of an indica strain. Sativa profiles are known to promote productivity, creativity, and alertness. For busy parents on-the-go, creatives or anyone looking for improved focus; sativa profiles are perfect. 

For medicinal purposes, sativas are usually better suited to treat psychological ailments. Due to their uplifting properties, sativas are more effective at treating depression, PTSD, and anxiety. For those suffering from ADD or ADHD, sativas are also useful for focus and mood stabilization. 

Appearance-wise, sativa profiles are taller, thinner, and require a longer growth time. Compared to most indica profiles, sativa flowers (the buds) contain fewer medicinal cannabinoids. Because of this, indica profiles have mostly dominated the cannabis market until recent years. 

With cannabis legalization increasing rapidly across the U.S., sativa profiles now have increased demand. Why? More consumers are searching for alternative medicine. With the rise of CBD and now delta-8 THC, users who don’t want the “high” associated with delta-9 THC can still use cannabis for medicinal purposes. 

What is an Indica?

We’re sure you’ve also heard these profiles referred to as “In da couch”. Well, their properties certainly match the name. Unlike sativas, indicas give the user a relaxing “body high”. Indicas typically promote better sleep, appetite stimulation, and pain relief. 

While sativas are better suited for psychological issues, indicas work well for those with chronic pain, arthritis, GI issues, cancer, and insomnia. However, many indica profiles can be effective at treating anxiety. 

Indica profiles have higher amounts of the terpene, Myrcene. Myrcene is one of the most prominent terpenes in cannabis and is known for combating insomnia, chronic pain, and anxiety. Profiles with only a small amount of Myrcene are usually considered sativas. 

What About Hybrid profiles?

As cannabis cultivation grows more and more, breeders are crossing different profiles together to maximize their effectiveness. In some cases, hybrid profiles can be made for specific conditions like Epilepsy or Crohn’s Disease. 

Hybrid profiles also come in handy for users who want a taste of both sativa and indica effects. If you still prefer one over the other, you can choose a sativa-dominant or indica-dominant strain. 

How do I Know What’s Right for Me?

The best way to pick the perfect strain is by talking to a cannabis expert. Stop by Modern Apotheca today for all your hemp, CBD, and Delta-8 needs. We’ll help you decide which hemp strain is right for you. Not local? Shop online or contact us with any questions.

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