What are Sativa and What Effects Do They Have?
A Guide to Cannabis Sativa Strains and Their Effects
Knowing the difference between Indica and Sativa strains will help cannabis users know how certain strains may make them feel. Sativa-dominant strains are known for their stimulating and uplifting effects, while Indica-dominant strains typically calm and relax the user. Understanding the differences between the two and how the strains work can help medical and recreational cannabis users control their experience.
Cannabis Sativa: What Is It?
The sativa strains are known to grow tall and thin, and this makes them ideal for outdoor growing. Sativa strains have a grass type odor and they are also known to be uplifting and energetic compared to the indica strains. Sativa originated in the equatorial countries of the world, and therefore thrives in hot humid climates and loose airy soils.
One of the traits of the sativa marijuana plant is that it has a tall scraggly looking leaf with thin and wiry stalks. They are native to the warm climates of Central America, Mexico, and South East Asia. Due to their natural equatorial habitats, the plants enjoy a lot of heat and love outdoors and this is why some of its strains grow very tall up to 12 feet in height.
How Does Sativa Effect Users?
Many users describe the effects of Sativa consumption in a unique way. Cannabis Sativa is known for its cerebral high, unlike Indica varieties, where most effects are felt in the body. Sativa-dominant strains tend to offer a hallucinogenic high that’s not found as much in Indica strains.
Some describe Sativa’s effects as a sudden burst of creativity. While an Indica strain may make a person feel relaxed and calm, Sativas make users want to get things done. Cannabis Sativa is usually recommended for daytime consumption, as such strains may affect a user’s ability to unwind and fall asleep during the night.
Those who tend to feel anxious when smoking marijuana should avoid strong Sativa strains or look for a hybrid with some Indica characteristics. If you want to feel focused and revitalized without being jittery or anxious, a Sativa-dominant hybrid is a great choice.
More effects of the sativa marijuana strains
One of the distinctive characteristics of sativa dominant marijuana strains is that they provide energetic, uplifting and a cerebral high which makes them most suited to be used during the day. A sativa high comes with a lot of creativity and energy and perhaps this is why some artist prefers taking a puff of this strain before they go for a performance or start painting. Some of the other effects characteristic of the sativa strain marijuana include:
- Enhances the stimulation of creativity and thought
- Relieves migraines and headaches
- Perfect for reducing nausea
- Suppresses depression
- Ideal for stimulating appetite
- Ideal for promoting sense of well being
What Leads to Sativa’s Effects?
While researchers haven’t quite figured out why different strains of cannabis work how they do, they’ve learned about the effects of CBD, THC, and other cannabinoids.
- THC or tetrahydrocannabinol is the compound that gives marijuana its trademark high. It is a powerful muscle relaxer and pain reliever, but it also has a few unpleasant side effects for some users. Sativa-heavy strains are often rich in THC, which is why they offer a potent cerebral high.
- CBD is also found in high concentrations in most Sativa strains. It’s non-psychoactive; in fact, it neutralizes the effects of THC. CBD is an effective treatment for insomnia and anxiety. Many Sativas have a nearly equal ratio of CBD to THC, which makes users wonder how these strains can still be uplifting and energizing. The answer to that question lies in the presence of terpenes.
- Terpenes, which are also known as terpenoids, are chemical compounds with flavonoid and aromatic properties. Like essential oils, cannabis terpenes have therapeutic properties that enhance the medicinal or recreational effects of Sativa and Indica strains. Some terpenes are great at relieving pain, while others have stimulant or sedative properties.
By evaluating a Sativa-dominant strain’s cannabinoid profile, you’ll be able to predict its effects.
All About the Entourage Effect
Along with their abilities, terpenes such as pinene, myrcene, terpinolene, limonene, and caryophyllene produce several effects when they’re combined with cannabinoids like CBD and THC. Referred to as the entourage effect, it’s an explanation of how terpenes and cannabinoids work together.
Researchers are learning more about the entourage effect to find out how cannabis components can be combined to achieve certain effects. For now, the effect may partially explain the difference between Sativa and Indica cannabis strains.
The Many Medical Benefits of Sativa Strains
Because Sativa’s effects are narrowly defined, it’s often used to treat certain medical issues. Here are some of the conditions that Sativa may treat:
- ADHD. A Sativa-dominant marijuana strain is useful to those with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder because it increases focus while providing energy. This makes Cannabis Sativa an excellent treatment for an ADHD sufferer who needs to get things done.
- Depression. Because Sativa strains elevate mood and give users the motivation to get up and do things, they’re also an effective depression treatment. Many strains are rich in CBD, which is a proven natural antidepressant.
- Appetite stimulation. Patients with anorexia, cancer, and other conditions often struggle with poor appetite and nausea. Sativa strains work naturally to increase hunger, and cannabis is known to relieve nausea. These qualities make it a powerful treatment for those undergoing chemotherapy.
- Pain relief. High concentrations of THC make many Sativa-dominant strains effective pain relievers. Because they provide an energy boost, Sativas are more useful than opioids and other prescription pain medicines that can limit a person’s function and cause drowsiness.
If you’re looking for a way to treat a certain condition, visit a local dispensary where a budtender can make recommendations.
Indica and Sativa plants don’t just have different terpene and cannabinoid profiles; they also vary in appearance. Sativa plants are usually taller than Indicas, growing up to 20 feet tall. For maximum height, these plants should be grown outdoors. Sativa leaves also look different from their Indica counterparts. While a Sativa-dominant plant has long, narrow leaves and loosely packed branches, Indica plants are thick and bushy.
Harvest schedules differ between these sub-species, with Sativa strains taking nine to 12 weeks and Indicas taking six to eight weeks before they’re ready to pick. While both varieties are grown around the world, Sativa strains originated in Thailand, Colombia, Mexico, and other warm countries. On the other hand, Indica strains first arose in the slightly cooler climates of India and the Middle East.
Apart from their geographical origins and appearance, Indica and Sativa plants vary in their aroma. Sativa flower typically has a light, sweet, and fruity scent, while Indica strains have a more pungent smell. Amongst our comprehensive menu of premium seeds you can find Sativa strains that will grow well indoors and others that will thrive in an outdoor grow.
Frequently Asked Questions About Cannabis Sativa
New and experienced users often have questions about the effects and uses of Sativa and Indica strains. Here, we’ll answer some frequently asked questions about Cannabis Sativa.
- What is it? Cannabis Sativa is a subspecies of cannabis, with low- or no-THC varieties used in the production of hemp products and higher-THC strains used for medical and recreational purposes. Sativa’s effects are generally described as uplifting, stimulating, and cerebral.
- What are Sativa strains used for? Sativa highs help users increase productivity and direct their focus. Because of their uplifting effects, Sativas are often recommended for the treatment of depression. They’re also effective in the treatment of conditions such as cancer, HIV, and ADHD.
- Will a Sativa strain put me to sleep? The opposite is true. Sativa-dominant strains are stimulating and energizing. They’re recommended for daytime consumption, so people can get things done on time. Sativa’s effects may lead to insomnia and anxiety, so they’re not recommended for use by people with those conditions.
- Do Indica and Sativa strains smell different? Sativa flower is sometimes described as having a floral, light aroma. By comparison, Indica flower usually has a musty, skunky odor. The plants look significantly different before they’re harvested, as mentioned previously in this guide.
If you’re unsure of which strain to buy, consult an expert at a local dispensary.
Choosing the Right Sativa Strain
With each Cannabis Sativa strain having a different terpene and cannabinoid profile, they all have unique effects. Finding the right cannabis strain is a matter of personal preference and medical requirements, and it often depends on experimentation with different dosages and strains.
While online research and consultations with budtenders are the best way to learn about Sativa strains, there’s a good rule to go by. Generally, any cannabis strain with the word “haze” in its name will be pure Sativa or a hybrid. A Sativa-dominant hybrid is a great way to take advantage of Sativa’s beneficial effects while balancing them with Indica’s mellower characteristics. Sativa hybrids are some of the most popular products at dispensaries, simply because they offer the best qualities of Indica and Sativa strains.
Keep in mind that a single cannabis strain’s attributes may vary from one crop to the next. Cannabis consumers should start with small dosages, especially when experimenting with new strains. With time, a user can customize his or her experience by choosing Sativa strains with characteristics that suit their medical condition or recreational requirements. From a range of strains to varying combinations of beneficial chemical compounds, Cannabis Sativa offers options for almost every user.
Popular strains of Sativa Marijuana
Some of our most popular strains of sativa marijuana include:
Amnesia Haze is one of the strongest strains of sativa marijuana and just as the name suggests, expect to have some deadly amnesia when you smoke this marijuana. It is a favorite for many marijuana growers because it has very good yields and it is extremely long lasting.
Also known as Sour D, Sour Diesel is from California’s Emerald Triangle and it got its names from its characteristic pungent diesel fragrance when being smoked. It is believed that this strain can help writers overcome writing block, and for medical patients, it is used to relieve depression, pain and stress.
If you are a brave smoker, then the strawberry cough strain of sativa marijuana is for you. It got its name from the berry taste and fragrance it has when being smoked, and additionally, it has the potent ability to make a user cough with excitement during the process of smoking. With the strawberry cough weed, you can expect extreme uplifting which is very ideal for managing anxiety or even stress.
Lambs bread is sometimes called lambs breath and it is the weed to go for if you desire some nice green and sticky marijuana. It is one of the top rated sativa strains and it is ideal for smoking in the company of friends, though you will still enjoy when you are smoking it alone. With it comes a lot of energy and it is also the weed to go for if you want to create a mood of introspection.
No matter which medicinal or recreational effects you’re seeking, there’s a cannabis strain that may help. Cannabis Sativa is a complex plant that can produce feelings of relaxation and calmness just as easily as it can lift the spirit and increase energy levels.
The next time you smoke, vape, or consume an edible, you can do so with the knowledge of the differences between Sativa and Indica strains and your body’s reaction to each. While an Indica-dominant strain is great for a relaxing night in, Sativas are a sure way to get an uplifting shot of creative energy.
And, if you want the best of both worlds, there are hundreds of hybrid strains from which to choose. By learning more about Cannabis Sativa strains like Moby Dick and Purple Haze, you can make a more informed purchase decision the next time you visit a local dispensary.