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The Difference between Indica and Sativa Marijuana

Which is best for medicinal patients?

Posted by: on Monday Feb 8, 2016

Cannabis is a complex plant with a wide variety of attributes. Understanding the difference between the strains you smoke can help you in different ways. In the following article I’ll go into a bit more detail about the common varieties and what they are typically used for. 


What is Indica and Sativa Mean When Talking About Marijuana? from CannabisNet on Vimeo.


Whether you are using cannabis for medical purposes or purely enjoying it for the fine plant it is, the following article should give you a deeper understanding of the different types of variations and recommended times of consumption for each one. 

Different Types of Cannabis

There are in fact three different types of cannabis on this planet classified as Sativa, Indica and Ruderalis. Ruderalis is typically not consumed and some people only use it to strengthen certain strains for specific growing conditions. Thus for the sake of this articles we’ll only be focusing on the two main types typically consumed, Sativa and Indica.

Whenever you walk into a dispensary you’ll be asked “what type of strain” you would like. Now, there are thousands of strain names so understanding the effects of each dominant strain will help you pick the right bud for you. Check out our Strain guide to fine one that is right for you.

Your options will range between Indica and Sativa and everything in between. We’ll dive into more details about the different effects below. 

Sativa Marijuana Strains

Sativa typically is your lankier plant with a more euphoric sensation that occurs in the “head.” People commonly refer to it as the “day time strain,” as it can give you energy boosts and the vigor to take on anything. 

Sativa strains are your “social buds” that will make you enjoy being involved with whatever activity you are confronted with. I typically use sativa dominant strains when I want to be creative or do some tedious work around the house. It gives me the that extra motivation to get through the drivel in life that doesn’t warrant too much attention, or unlocks my creative powers to come up with new and strange ideas. 

People who typically suffer with anxiety should be careful with Sativas as it can trigger some anxious sentiments. Your brain will be very active and you’ll want to be doing things, so remember to take it slow, especially if you’re smoking a pure Sativa. 

Most people however don’t have a problem with Sativa strains however those who are naturally “gittery” should perhaps take a hybrid or an Indica dominant. 

Indica Marijuana Strains

Indica is your short stubby plant that produces a heavy almost “narcotic feeling” in the body. It’s great for when you need to relax or go to sleep. I suffer from insomnia every now and then and a good deep Indica usually lets me drift into “la la land” without any problems. 

This is also the preferred medical strain for marijuana patients. This strain will knock you back in your seat and you’ll want to chill the rest of the day. Some people refer to it as “In-da-couch” as it can inspire you to plop on a couch and just take it easy. 

Due to the fact that it encourages “resting,” medical patients find the greatest value in it. Also, it’s a great strain for pain management. Indica dominant strains will make any pain you feel tolerable and will also inspire greater appetite which is great for people who are taking procedures like chemotherapy and so forth. 

Indicas are also easier to grow than Sativas and have a shorter grow cycle. This makes it a perfect plant for a medical patient to grow at home if they are in need of a decent stash of cannabis. 

Hybrids – Most Preferred 

Hybrids occur when you crossbreed strains. You can have either a Sativa dominant hybrid or a Indica dominant hybrid and every now and then 50/50 even split strains. Most people prefer to smoke hybrids as it isn’t as “intense” as pure Sativas or pure Indicas. 

Typically, you’ll want to start off your day with Sativa dominant strains and end off with Indica dominant strains. This will give you the boost you seek in the morning and help you to go to sleep at night. 

I don’t really advocate being stoned all day, but in the case of medical patients it is a medical necessity and thus the above suggestion could help them through the day. 

Also, eating Indica dominant brownies will knock you out. It’s my preferred medication when I lay awake at night thinking of nothing and everything at once. 

Experimentation is Key

While I can provide you general guidelines in terms of the different types of cannabis out there, it will really come down to personal experimentation for you to find the right strain. I suggest that you go to a dispensary and ask for different variations until you have discovered the right combination to satisfy your personal preferences. 

Everybody experiences cannabis differently, thus merely reading things on the internet will not be sufficient to find your ideal strain. Nonetheless, the above mentioned information should give you a baseline education in strain selection. If you’re ever not sure about what to get, ask the Budtender to help you select a strain based on your needs…that’s what they are there for. 

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