Sativa and indica may be widely used terms to describe the effects of cannabis, but modern crossbreeding has all but rendered the terms useless. If you want to buy marijuana online in Canada, then here’s what you need to know about evaluating the effects of a strain beforehand.
What are Sativa Strains?
Sativa strains are said to be energizing with uplifting cerebral effects that pair well with physical activity, social gatherings, and creative projects.
Sativa plants are best known for being tall with thin leaves along with long flowering times. Sativa genetics evolved in equatorial zones and tend to thrive in long, hot summers where winters are short. Some of the most famous pure sativa strains include Jack Herer, Durban Poison, Moby Dick, and Amnesia Haze.
What Does Indica Refer to?
Indica strains are most commonly associated with sedating and relaxing effects. The term indica is the Latin for “India,” the broad region where many pure indica strains originally evolved. Indica plants are short and bushy and are distinctly different from their sativa cousins. Indica strains grow best in harsh mountainous terrain with long, cool summers, and tend to flower much more quickly than sativa plants.
Some of the most common indica strains include Northern Light, Bubble Kush, and OG Kush.
What is a Hybrid Cannabis Strain?
Hybrid strains are the result of crossbreeding cannabis strains from both the sativa and indica families. In modern times, hybrid strains comprise the majority of strains available on the market. Careful breeding over the years has enabled growers to combine the best properties of each variety into a new strain that exhibits a mix of the properties of the parent strains.
The original genetics of many pure indica or sativa lines are now increasingly rare. In fact, many strains listed as indica or sativa are actually hybrids that contain a mix of the genetic material from both families.
Thanks to careful breeding, consumers can now enjoy many hybrid strains that often combine the traditionally sedating effects of indica strains with the uplifting and energizing effects of sativa strains.
Why Indica and Sativa Don’t Matter Anymore
The indica, sativa, and hybrid classifications may sound convenient, but the effects of the cannabis plant are infinitely more complex than can be described with a mere single word. This means that we must delve a little deeper if we are to understand what produces the subtle differences in the effects between strains.
According to the experts, there is currently no scientific basis for using the terms sativa or indica to describe the effects of different cannabis strains. One of the leading experts in the field is Dr. Ethan Russo, a neurologist and widely respected cannabis researcher.
Russo and his colleagues claim that our standardized approach to labelling the effects of cannabis strains is erroneous and that we must evaluate the concentrations of the plant compounds to properly quantify the effects of a particular strain.
What Should Replace the Indica and Sativa Terminology?
There are a host of factors that determine the effects of a particular strain, and they extend much deeper than the indica–sativa denomination. The factors influencing the effects of a strain include the chemical profile of the strain, the existing tolerance of the consumer, the dosage, and the consumption method.
If you buy cannabis flowers online, then it’s by understanding the above factors to some extent that a consumer can find the right strain to meet their specific needs.
Prioritizing Terpenes and Cannabinoids Over Indica and Sativa Terminology
The quantities and ratios of terpenes and cannabinoids are hugely influential in quantifying the effects of a particular strain.
There are over 100 different cannabinoids found in cannabis, the most common of which are THC and CBD. Rather than blindly relying on the sativa–indica denomination, a more accurate way to understand the potential effects is to evaluate how THC and CBD ratios can tailor the effects of cannabis.
- THC-dominant strains tend to produce a more potent and euphoric experience and are commonly used to treat chronic pain, anxiety, insomnia, and depression.
- CBD-dominant strains may contain only small amounts of THC and are particularly useful to those who are sensitive to THC. CBD is a non-intoxicating cannabinoid that often helps alleviate anxiety, inflammation, and pain, among other ailments.
- Balanced THC/CBD strains contain comparable levels of THC and CBD. As a result, they often offer that mild euphoria coupled with symptom relief and are often a good choice for novice consumers.
Terpenes – Buy Marijuana Online in Canada
Terpenes are the aromatic compounds that give rise to the potent scent of cannabis bud and are what makes it smell like berries, pine, or citrus. They tend to synergize strongly with the cannabinoid content of a particular strain and can elicit a variety of interesting effects.
Many claim that the term indica suggests a sedating strain, but it’s much more useful to analyze the terpene content of a particular strain to understand why.
The terpene caryophyllene exhibits many beneficial synergies that help promote anxiolytic effects, while the terpene myrcene also synergizes strongly with THC to produce a strong sedating effect.
Many indica strains will contain significant quantities of myrcene, and it’s by understanding the concentrations and how they synergize with the existing cannabinoids that will provide much greater insight into the potential effects of a particular strain.
Other well-known terpenes like linalool and limonene are potent mood boosters, and both synergize strongly with CBD and can help lift mood and lower stress to help exhibit sativa-like effects.
Buy Marijuana Online in Canada – Developing a Deeper Understanding of Cannabis
The effects of cannabis strains vary widely. In truth, the terms sativa and indica fall short in reliably describing the effects of a particular strain. If you buy cannabis flowers online why not tailor your experience?
Learn to understand the properties of a given strain, to develop an understanding of how different cannabinoid and terpene ratios interact with one another and also with your particular body and makeup. With a little research and some first-hand experimentation, you may soon develop an instinct for what combinations best serve your unique needs.