Indica Vs Sativa

Cannabis has two main strains that each give a different set of effects. These strains are known as Indica and Sativa. There is also a third category of cannabis, called hybrid strains. These are a combination of both Sativa and Indica genetics. 

A strain is a subspecies of a plant, and there are thousands of different subspecies of both Sativa and Indica plants. Different countries have strains that are unique to their environment. 

Each strain of cannabis has different therapeutic effects. However, the line between Indica and Sativa is beginning to become less noticeable. 

As crossbreeding between the species becomes more prevalent, true Sativa or Indica is becoming quite rare. 

The effects of the two strains can overlap due to a range of factors. Due to this, you shouldn’t base your decision on which to use on whether it is Indica or Sativa. 

What Is Cannabis?

Cannabis is probably the best known psychoactive substance in the world. This plant and its flowers are known by many names, including marijuana, weed, pot, ganja, reefer, bud, greens, and marihuana

The cannabis plant has been a part of human society for a long time and has a long history. It’s believed that cannabis was cultivated as early as one thousand years ago in Southern Asia. Since then, cannabis has been grown and used all over the world. Growing in new climates has forced the plant to adapt. 

This adaption is why we have so many strains of cannabis today. Each strain has its own characteristics of appearance, aroma, taste, and effect.

Cannabis with less than0.33% THC is called Hemp, and anything higher is called Marijuana. Cannabis can also break down into photoperiod and ruderalis strains. 

Photoperiod strains are grown on a set light schedule. If grown indoors, the flowering process induces with 12 hours of darkness a day. When grown outdoors, flowering usually starts at the end of summer and continues into the Fall. 

A ruderalis strain (sometimes known as an Autoflower strain) is grown over a set period of time. If an autoflower strain has an expected 150 day period, it will finish in around 150 days, regardless of how many hours of light it receives.

What Is An Indica Strain?

Indica is believed to be native to Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, and Turkey. It’s thought these strains got started in the Hindu Kush Mountains

This is where the term kush comes from. A kush strain of cannabis likely has dominant features of the Indica strain. 

Indica Weed (genus Cannabis Indica) is a subset of cannabis that is known best for its relaxing effects. Sometimes known as Indica flower, it is often used for its deeply relaxing sensations. Relaxing sensations means that Indica is famous for use at night, and is commonly used by those looking for help with sleep problems or insomnia. If you want a strain to help you sleep, check that the Indica you have chosen has sleep-inducing effects, as not all Indica strains do. 

Indica is also famous in medicine, as it has properties that ease the symptoms of anxiety, stress, and depression. Indica is also popular with those seeking relief from pain, aches, spasms, or inflammation. It can also be used to induce appetite. 

However, if you are selecting a strain of cannabis for a specific purpose like this, you must be careful. Do thorough research into the strain to make sure it will give the result you are looking for. Just choosing any old Indica strain won’t help you, as the results can vary enormously. 

What are the characteristics of the Indica plant?

Indica Weed strains are identified by their broad, fat leaves, and short, bushy plants. Their stocky stature and thick leaves make Indica plants easy to identify. Indica also commonly has fewer tips on each leaf than Sativa does. 

Indica plants flower much quicker than Sativa plants. The average duration of an Indica flower is 8 to 9 weeks, although there are some exceptions. This is due to the cold, harsh environment of the Hindu Kush Mountains, where Indica was first grown. 

This means that Indica is ideal to be grown in cooler environments with short summers. However, during cold and wet months, mould can become a problem. Mould is on the biggest threats to a cannabis plant, and if you grow your own, you must be aware of it. With Indica, the shorter flowering time helps keep the growing period free from the mould when the weather turns cold and wet. 

Cannabis indica buds are usually medium-sized, round, and dense in comparison to the Sativa bud. The advantage of the smaller bud is that there is more room for them to grow. It is also common for Indica plants to produce more buds on average than a Sativa strain. 

Many Indica strains also contain higher CBD levels and lower THC levels compared to Sativa plants. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. 

The physical features are the main difference between Indica and Sativa. However, to the untrained eye, it can sometimes be hard to tell the difference between them. 

What are the effects of Indica weed?

The effects associated with Indica strains are often wide-ranging and can overlap with the known effects of Sativa. However, you can still use this as a guide as many strains of Indica do have these effects. 

The most common effects that user of Indica report include:

  • Relaxation of the mind and body
  • Euphoria
  • Couchlocking effects
  • Sedation of the mind and body
  • Hunger (known as munchies)

What are the common medical uses of Indica weed?

It’s always wise to be careful when taking cannabis for a particular desired medical purpose. You should pick a strain that is known to provide the effects that you want. Indica strains have many medicinal uses that are an excellent place to start. 

Some of the best uses of Indica for medical purposes include:

  • Aches and pains
  • Muscle spasms
  • Inflammation
  • Insomnia
  • Lack of appetite
  • Addiction suppression
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Psychiatric symptoms
  • Glaucoma
  • Epilepsy

However, you must remember that there isn’t much scientific research to back up many of these claims, as many of the effects of Indica are dependent on other factors. 

There are thousands of Indica cannabis strains found around the world. This means it can be hard to know which ones are worth you trying.

What are the best strains of Indica?

There are many strains of Indica available, but these are the best and most popular strains available on the Canadian market. 

Ace of Spades Strain

Afghani Strain

Berries & Creme Strain

Big Bud Strain

Black Diamond Strain

Black Domina Strain

Black Gas Strain

Black Mamba Strain

Blue Cheese Strain

Blue God Strain

Bubba Kush Strain

Chemdawg Strain

Chronic Kush Strain

Critical Kush Strain

Critical Mass Strain

Dank Sinatra Strain

Darth Vader Strain

Death Bubba Strain

Death Star Strain

Dr. Funk Strain

El Chapo Strain

El Jefe Strain

Gelato Strain

Gorilla Glue Strain

Grand Daddy Purple Strain

Grease Monkey Strain

Hashplant Strain

Headband Strain

Hindu Kush Strain

Island Pink Strain

King Louis XIII Strain

Kosher Kush Strain

LA Confidential Strain

LSD Strain

Master Kush Strain

Northern Lights Strain

Nuken Strain

OG Kush Strain

Pink Kush Strain

Platinum Kush Strain

Purple Candy Strain

Purple Kush Strain

Purple Space Cookies Strain

Purple Urkle Strain

Rockstar Strain

Sherbet Cake Strain

Snow White Strain

Star Killer Strain

Tangerine Dream Strain

Tom Ford Strain

Violator Kush Strain

Walter White Strain

What Is A Sativa Strain?

Sativa Weed (genus Cannabis Sativa) is a subset of cannabis that is most often used for uplifting, creative, and energetic effects. The nature of Sativa makes it ideal for use during the day. Some strains encourage the user to be more social. However, some strains of Sativa can cause the kind of effects generally associated with Indica strains. 

Unlike Cannabis Indica, Cannabis sativa has origins in hot, dry climates with long summers. Sativa does best in locations close to the equator, including Southeast Asia, Africa, and Central America. 

What are the characteristics of the Sativa strain?

Sativa weed is known for helping people to manage anxiety, stress, and depression. It can also encourage appetite and ease aches and pains. It can also be used to reduce inflammation. Sativa strains differ from Indica because some strains are better suited for those who lack focus, creativity, and energy. 

Sativa strains are usually tall, lanky plants with long, thin leaves. Sativa plants also commonly have leaves with more points than Indica plants, although this is not always the case. 

Sativa is also known for needing a much longer time to finish flowering the strains of Indica. Most Sativa strains usually take around ten weeks to flower, and some can go on even longer. 

Sativa Cannabis flowers are usually large and shaped like a cone. They are less dense than Indica nuggets in most cases. 

What are the effects of Sativa Weed?

The effects associated with strains of cannabis can be extensive, and they often overlap. The information here can be used as a guideline, as many Sativa strains commonly induce these effects. 

The most common effects reported by users of Sativa strains include:

  • Upliftedness
  • Happiness
  • Energy
  • Focus
  • Creativity
  • Euphoria
  • Giggles
  • Talkative spells
  • Liveliness

Some of the effects and medical uses of Sativa strains are the same as Indica strains. This makes sense due to how wide-ranging the effects of Cannabis can be.

What are the common medical uses of Indica weed?

Sativa strains are often used for their energetic, creative, and uplifting properties. However, the effects of cannabis can be broad. Many Sativa strains usually have the same impact that they are known for.  

Sativa strains are suitable for many different conditions. Sativa strains also have energetic properties that make them well suited to use during the day. This is very helpful for many who take cannabis for medical reasons but wish to remain productive. 

Here are some of the most common medical uses of Sativa strains:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Stress
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • PTSD
  • Spasticity
  • Movement disorders
  • Glaucoma
  • Epilepsy
  • Addiction suppression
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Psychiatric symptoms
  • Aches and pains
  • Lack of appetite

What are the best strains of Sativa?

There are many different strains of Sativa, but these are the most popular available on the market in Canada.

Amnesia Haze Strain

Blue Dream Strain

Duke Nukem Strain

Durban Poison Strain

Jet Fuel Strain

Grapefruit Strain

King Tut Strain

Lemon Skunk Strain

Love Potion Strain

Maui Wowie Strain

Mimosa Strain

Moby Dick Strain

Pineapple Express Strain

Purple Haze Strain

Red Congo Strain

Scout Master Strain

Sour Diesel Strain

Sour Tangie Strain

Strawberry Cough Strain

Super Lemon Haze Strain

Trainwreck Strain

Wedding Cake Strain

Wifi Strain

What Are Cannabis Hybrid Strains?

Now we know what Indica and Sativa strains of cannabis are, what happens when the two are combined together? Is combining them even possible?

Hybrid Strains

Hybrid Weed is the byproduct of crossbreeding Indica and Sativa strains together. Hybrid Cannabis is what happens when the genetics of Indica and Sativa are mixed together. This is done by extracting the pollen from a male cannabis plant and using that pollen to pollinate a female plant. 

Female cannabis plants are the ones that produce the smoked buds. Male cannabis plants don’t produce buds and produce pollen instead. 

When the female has been pollinated, it will cease to produce flowers and produce cannabis seeds. Weed seeds will possess genetics from father and mother plants. 

Farmers and breeders of cannabis have crossbred cannabis for a very long time. Over this time, the practice has been perfected, and the best traits from each strain are bred into new strains. Many of the best hybrid strains weren’t created by mixing only one plant with another. 

Proper crossbreeding takes a long time, and many cycles of breeding to get the characteristics that you want. This kind of cannabis breeding is very high level and needs a lot of expertise and patience to do successfully. The result of this hard work is the many hybrid strains that many people use today. 

Hybrid cannabis strains are made to induce a balanced set of effects from both Sativa and Indica strains. One of the main benefits of hybrid strains is that they have a wide variety of beneficial effects. Many hybrid strains are ideal for use in the daytime, for this reason. The results vary widely, so you should carefully research different hybrids before choosing one for you. 

What are the characteristics of hybrid strains?

Hybrid cannabis can be grown in a few different ways, depending on various factors. The main element, other than the growing environment, is the specific strain. 

Hybrid strains of cannabis can look, smell, taste, and have effects that span across a full spectrum. This is due to the thousands of hybrid strains available, each with very different results. 

Like a human child, a hybrid plant could end up with genes that mostly resemble the mother. The second child could be more similar to the father. The same is true from cannabis seeds that are grown from the same mother plant. 

This means that cannabis seeds from the same mother plant could have different characteristics. Despite their differences, much like human families, they will share a large number of similar traits. 

The flower buds of hybrid strains work in the same way. Some buds may more closely resemble Sativa, whereas others may look a lot more like Indica. 

The percentage of Indica vs Sativa genes can also have a real effect on the bud’s makeup. For example, hybrids could have a higher percentage of Indica genetics than Sativa. 

What are the best hybrid strains?

There is a vast range of hybrid strains available, but these are some of the most sought after and most popular strains of hybrid cannabis available in Canada.

Alien OG Strain

Atomic Bomb Strain

Black Tuna Strain

Blueberry Strain

Bruce Banner Strain

Charlotte’s Web Strain

Gas Mask Strain

Ghost Train Strain

Girl Scout Cookies Strain

God Bud Strain

Green Crack Strain

Ice Wreck Strain

Kushberry Strain

Mango Haze Strain

Master Bubba Strain

Mataro Blue Strain

MK Ultra Strain

Peanut Butter Breath Strain

Phantom OG Strain

Pineapple Strain

Pink Star Strain

Purple Candy Strain

Sensi Star Strain

Skywalker Strain

White Castle Strain

White Widow Strain

Indica vs Sativa Chart







Fat Leaves




Thin Leaves


























Muscle Spasms


Lack of Appetite







Muscle Spasms

Lack of Appetite

Lack of Focus

Lack of Creativity

Lack of Energy


8-9 weeks flowering time

Shorter Summers (outdoor)

10+ weeks flowering

Longer Summers (outdoor)

The effects of Indica and Sativa strains can often overlap with one another. This can make trying to find a particular weed strain with a specific set of results complicated and very confusing. 

For example, a cannabis user might want only Sativas so that they can use their weed during the day. However, if this person accidentally chooses a Sativa with substantial couchlocking properties, they would achieve the opposite of what they were hoping for. The same mistake could be made with India strains that have more traits in common with traditional Sativa strains. 

If you bought an Indica strain because you thought all Indica strains make people feel tired. You might then find out that the strain you bought does the opposite and gives you a boost of energy, making your mind much more active. The weed you bought to help you to sleep will end up just keeping you awake instead. 

This is the best reason for picking a strain for its properties. Don’t decide on which strain to buy purely based on whether the strain is Indica or Sativa.

What are the main factors that decide the effects?

Instead of thinking that Indica strains produce one set of effects and Sativa strains produce another, you should consider other factors. For instance, cannabinoids and terpenes play a large part in what effects will be felt. As well as these, outcomes are also impacted by how often a strain is used, the body makeup of the user, and how the strain is consumed.


Cannabis plants have over 480 natural components. Of these, 66 are classified as cannabinoids. THC (Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) is the best known and is what causes the intoxicating effects often associated with cannabis use. 

The levels of cannabinoid found in a particular strain will determine the effects that the strain has. You can use the cannabinoid percentages alongside your knowledge of Indica vs Sativa strains to make a more informed choice about what to take. 

Other cannabinoids can help to moderate the effect of THC. Cannabinoids interact with receptors in the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS) to produce the results of marijuana. Cannabinoids attach to the receptors of the brain and cause responses throughout the body.

The most common cannabinoids found in cannabis are: 

  • Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)
  • Tetrahydrocannabinol Acid (THCA)
  • Cannabidiol (CBD)
  • Cannabinol (CBN)
  • Cannabichromene (CBC)
  • Cannabidiol (CBDL)
  • Cannabigerol (CBG)
  • Cannabicyclol (CBL)
  • Cannabielsoin (CBE)
  • Cannabitriol (CBT)


Is CBD or THC better? Can this question even be answered clearly? Do the different cannabinoids work in unison to provide the desired effects?


Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the primary compound found in Cannabis that induces the psychoactive effects. Essentially, THC is why people get high when using weeds. THC is the best-known cannabinoid and the one that is the most researched. 

THC should not be confused with THCA. THCA is a cannabinoid that is found in freshly cut marijuana buds. THCA is not psychoactive, so that it won’t cause intoxication. This is why you won’t feel much in the way of effects if you try to eat a raw bud. 

For THCA to get someone high, it needs to be converted into THC. This happens during a process called decarboxylation. Heat or light can induce a chemical reaction that breaks down THCA into THC. 

Sativa strains commonly are believed to be higher in THC than most strains of Indica. This is why Sativa strains are generally accepted to give a more heady high. 

Tetrahydrocannabinol is a lipid-soluble chemical that binds to fat in the body. Once the THC binds to the receptors in the brain, the intoxicating effects are felt. Once attached, the THC effects are sent through the body. This causes a euphoric sensation that is commonly associated with smoking marijuana. 


Cannabidiol (CBD) is a non-psychoactive compound that is found on marijuana and hemp. CBD is also well-known and well-researched. Unlike THC, CBD does not cause intoxication. It can, however, moderate the way other cannabinoids react with the body. 

CBD can act as a moderator of THC and control how it interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system. Cannabidiol limits the likelihood of adverse effects caused by using THC. CBD is also useful in reducing the inflammation caused by THC use. 

CBD can be taken alone but is known to work best when taken with THC. Taken alone, CBD is ideal for someone who doesn’t want to get high. The effects won’t be those that you would typically associate with THC intoxication. 

Indica strains are thought to contain more CBD than most strains of Sativa, although this is usually a general rule, and not always the case. 


Cannabinol (CBN) is another non-psychoactive chemical compound found in weed. CBN is known as the cannabinoid that is produced as THC degrades. THC breaks down into CBN when it is exposed to heat and light. 

This cannabinoid is only ¼ the potency of THC. Strains with high CBN can be more potent than you might expect. High CBN strains can produce substantial couchlocking effects and feel very potent. 

CBN is known best for its ability to induce sleep. Thus, many growers of weed who want to produce pot with a couchlocking effect will allow their plants to flower for longer. This lets the THC break down into CBN. 


Terpenes are compounds found in cannabis responsible for the scents associated with Indica and Sativa strains. There are over 100 terpenes that work alongside cannabinoids to create a variety of effects. 

  • Myrcene: This is the terpene that is found most in weed. Almost every strain has a large amount of myrcene. It has a musky, fruity scent and can induce sedating relaxing effects. 
  • Limonene: This is almost as plentiful as myrcene. Limonene is found in citrus fruits, and ios the reason why some strains of cannabis have a strong scent and flavour of citrus. Limonene is thought to reduce stress and improve mood. 
  • Pinene: Pinene is commonly found in pine trees, and is what gives the strong, sharp smell of pine. It is said to increase alertness and improve memory retention. 
  • Caryophyllene: This is what gives some marijuana flowers undertones of spice and pepper. Caryophyllene is found in cinnamon, cloves, basil, and rosemary. This is the only terpene that meets some of the same purposes as a cannabinoid. It is most often used for stress relief. 
  • Linalool: when you think of the way that weed smells, it is linalool that you are thinking of. This smell is what tells people that weed is being smoked nearby. Linalool has a floral scent and is famous for it’s mood-enhancing and sedative effects. 
  • Terpinolene: This terpene is most commonly found in things, including lilacs and nutmeg. It has a fruity smell and gives uplifting, energizing effects. 
  • Bisabolol: Bisabolo also has a floral scent. It is most commonly used in cosmetics and perfumes, thanks to the pleasant odours. It also has strong analgesic properties and can be used to treat wounds and infections. 

Terpenes give different sets of effects. When mixed with some levels of Cannabinoids, terpenes can give Indica and Sativa strains different results. Knowing which terpenes are present in the strain you’re considering will provide you with a good idea of what effects you can expect to experience. 


The effects felt will also depend on how often an individual uses Indica vs Sativa strains of cannabis. For example, a daily user of marijuana will have a different level of effects than someone using weed for the first time. This is because a heavy user will have a much higher tolerance for cannabis than newer users. This is why it is crucial to understand that you might not experience the same effects as someone else. Don’t assume you can handle a strain just because your friend can.


One of the biggest influences of how cannabis affects the user is their body. Cannabis will affect people in different ways, as everyone’s body is diverse. 

A heavier person will experience different effects than someone much lighter than them. A larger person will usually need more Indica or Sativa to achieve the same results as someone smaller than them. 

The metabolic rate will also change what effects are felt and how long the consequences will be felt. Someone who has a higher metabolism will break down cannabinoids much faster and produce a more intense experience of the effects. A higher metabolism will also leave the body quicker will result in feeling high for a shorter period of time.


Another variable that should be considered is the way cannabis is consumed. For example, a smoked or vaped weed will cause the THC to get into and leave the body faster than taking edibles. 

Edibles will take a lot longer to break down and take a lot longer to metabolize. Edibles also interact with the body differently and can produce a more robust set of effects. Some users find that edibles give the substantial couchlocking effect that you usually associate with Indica strains. Before consuming edibles, it is essential to know which strain has been used, what effects are expected, and how to consume them safely. Otherwise, you could be in a for a surprise and accidentally consume much too strong for you to handle. 

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