Indica vs. Sativa: What Is the Difference
Due to the logistical challenges surrounding research into cannabis and its compounds, there is no formal agreement on what conditions can be helped by different cannabis treatment options. If you would like to learn more about the medical effects of medical marijuana, please see the Cannabis review. If you live in California or another state […]

Due to the logistical challenges surrounding research into cannabis and its compounds, there is no formal agreement on what conditions can be helped by different cannabis treatment options. If you would like to learn more about the medical effects of medical marijuana, please see the Cannabis review. If you live in California or another state with progressive marijuana legislation, you can talk to your doctor about your condition or symptoms and whether cannabis is a viable treatment option.

sativa-vs-indica-marijuana

Sativa vs. Indica Marijuana

While cannabis is now cultivated all over the world, strains of sativa and indica originally came from different climates, which affected their chemical composition and made them look very different.

Indica thrived in less temperate climates and therefore developed a thicker resin layer to protect itself from harsh winters. This extra resin means more powerful effects. Conversely, sativa is a more equatorial plant by nature. It grows more slowly and needs less resin to protect itself from the climate, so the effect is more subtle and cerebral.

The easiest way to tell the difference between plants would be to just look at them. Sativa has larger, less dense leaves and flowers, and the indica looks tight and compact in comparison. But in practice, appearance is rarely a reliable metric due to hybridization, which can cause a bud to take on the properties of sativa but the appearance of indica.

It's all in hybrids

Most of what you will come across in weed stores or at friends' homes are hybrid strains, a mixture of one or more strains crossed together that match the characteristics of sativa and indica. The effects can be evenly balanced or lean one way or the other, but they're specifically tailored to your medical or recreational needs.

The surest way to be clear about what you are getting is to go to a reputable dispensary or delivery service and ask questions or read the label. If you are at a friends house, ask them if it is loud and let them know your level of recreation - novice, expert or beginner.

How to choose between Sativa or Indica

One of the most important and easiest distinctions you can make when choosing between indica and sativa is the time of day you want to use them. Sativas are generally associated with brain activity, clarity, and fun behavior. Indicas can be stereotyped to encourage stillness, introspection, and relaxation, which may be best for the end of the day or evening.

A daytime strain, rich in sativa, can boost your creativity and brainstorming, and for some, it can ease the effects of depression or ADD. An indica variety is generally best used for treating physical pain, swelling, or helping you fall asleep.

Sativa:

  • Typically for the day
  • Stimulation of brain activity, clarity, creativity
  • Buds generally less compact
  • Sometimes used to treat ADD, depression, or anxiety

Indica:

  • Often for evening use
  • Relaxation, body buzz, sleep aid
  • Small dense buds
  • Sometimes used to relieve pain, inflammation

Hybrids:

  • Mixed uses depending on the strain
  • Can be weighted towards indica or sativa, or a balance of the two
  • Are often cultivated to amplify certain effects
  • Most common shape on the market

There you have it, the proverbial analysis at the 10,000 foot level Marijuana Sativa vs Indica. As with anything else, go to a reputable supplier, ask questions, and dip your toe in the water first before diving with a swan.

Thanks for reading!



Sometimes it can feel like maintaining a saine lifestyle is an overwhelming challenge that doesn’t fit within the realities of daily life. It’s tough to hold down a full-time travail, eat well, train for a marathon, make homemade green juice, spend quality time with your family/partner, and meditate for an hour each day.

Coffee’s great too, but it’s best to start your day by re-hydrating with a full glass of water. Hydrating first thing in the morning helps to aid digestion, enhance skin health and boost energy.

Taking the stairs instead of the elevator is a simple way to get a little more physical activity in your daily life. It also strengthens and tones your legs and core while you’re at it !

A simple triche for healthy eating ( and portion control ) is to make half your plate veggies at each meal. The veggies pack in essential vitamins, minerals and other phytonutrients important for health and longevity. And, because they’re rich in fiber, they help to aid digestion ( aka keep you regular ! ) and keep you feeling full longer.

Using a sport tracker ( like the Fitbit, Apple Watch or similar ) to track your steps is an easy way to make sure you’re getting enough physical activity each day. We aim for 10, 000 steps daily, which has significant physical and mental health benefits. The Fitbit will also remind you to get 250 steps each hour ( another important measure of health

Conventional household cleaning products are full of harmful chemical ingredients that are not good for our health ( or the health of our kids or pets ! ). Switching to healthier alternatives is a simple way to reduce your exposure to environmental toxins in your home. See our Healthy Cleaning Guide for a complete list of recommendations, and what to look for when choosing safer household cleaning products.

Similar to cleaning products, conventional skincare and personal care products are formulated with toxic ingredients we should not regularly let absorb into our body’s largest organ. Reduce the toxic burden on your body by switching to non-toxic personal care and beauty products ( see our specific recommendations on deodorant, sunscreen, and green beauty products ).

Maintaining a saine gut has significant impacts on digestion, skin health, immunity, esprit health and more. Taking a daily probiotic with a glass of water each morning is one of the simplest things you can do to boost your gut health ( which, in turn, boosts overall health in many ways too ). Learn more about the health benefits of probiotics ( and all the ways to get them in your diet ), and shop our favorite probiotic supplement here.

Aim to eat real food that’s made of whole food ingredients you would have in your own kitchen pantry, or that your grandmother would recognize. ( Yup, this rules out most packaged food, sorry ! ) This is a little different than suggesting you eat only “health foods” ( many of which are increasingly processed ! ). “Real food” includes unprocessed foods like an apple, a cucumber, soybeans or a steak, as well as foods loosely processed from one ( or few ) real-food ingredients, like butter, olive oil, yogurt, tofu, etc. In other words, aim for foods that could be reasonably made in your own kitchen and avoid foods that can only be made in a lab.

Reduce the harmful effects of sitting ( like at your desk travail ) by standing up and moving around for a minute or two every half hour.

Vitamin D is one of the most important nutrients for overall health, and sunlight is one of our best sources of it. Aim to get at least 30 minutes of sunlight each day—preferably in the afternoon, and without sunscreen ( read more about that here ). Not much sunlight in the winter where you live ? It might be worth supplementing with a vitamin D supplement and/or other food sources of this essential nutrient.

Houseplants help to cleanse your indoor air ( sadly, it probably needs it ! ), they’re pretty, and research even shows they improve mood, creativity and problem solving !

Aim to sweat in some way each day—whether that’s course, biking, dancing, hot yoga, or any other physical activity you enjoy. See our Fitness Guide for more workout ideas, as well as tips and tricks for building regular physical activity into your daily life and a downloadable fitness planner you can use to outline your own custom sport plan to stay on track.

Green smoothies as a snack or simple, on-the-go breakfast are an easy way to get your greens in each day. Check out our curated list of healthy ( veggie-packed ! ) smoothie recipes for our favorite starter green smoothie recipe ideas.

“The only difference between a good day and a bad day is your attitude. ” It’s true—mindset is everything ! Cultivate a positive mindset by recognizing negative thought patterns and countering them with positive thoughts or affirmations. Here are more mindset resources for positive thinking.

Most adults need 7-9 hours of sleep each night. But in addition to quantity, quality of sleep matters too ! Follow our tips on getting quality sleep—things like keeping your bedroom cool at night, avoiding blue light after dark, and more.

{Start each day with fulfilling activities that set the tone for how you want to feel—whether that’s inspired, relaxed, productive, or something else.

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