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May 16, 2016 8:45 AM

Indica and Sativa Edibles: Can You Tell the Difference?

It is a common belief that the effects of indica and sativa cannabis strains differ greatly. Yet, some scientists and taxonomists start to challenge this strict division. Can you tell the difference from your own experience?

Scientists have established that there are many cannabinoids in marijuana that influence the properties of a strain. Another factor that may change the way cannabinoids influence you are terpenes—aromatic oils that give the plant its characteristic smell. Each strain has its own terpene and cannabinoid profile thus causing a unique effect in our bodies.

Considering all these differences, there is still no consensus on the question of what makes indica and sativa have almost a diametrically opposite effect. In general, indica strains are believed to be more relaxing and calming. Sativa strains, in turn, act like little energizing batteries. No matter what exactly influences the effects of these two major cannabis types, the question is whether the difference between them is discernible in weed edibles.

Let us look at both home-made and professionally-crafted weed edibles and compare the results. The biggest problem with identifying the effects of weed in home-made edibles is the fact that you cannot homogenize them thoroughly. Because of it, one piece of your brownies or cookies can contain more cannabinoids than another. So, the results can vary widely. However, in general, even home-made edibles preserve the difference between indica and sativa cannabis strains. Five out of eight people can differentiate the type.

With professionally-made edibles, the answer is still not 100 percent clear. Since all people respond to cannabis differently, some manufacturers refrain from claiming that their sativa will be uplifting, and indica will be sedating. In addition to the dosage you have taken, the time of the day seems to influence your perception of edibles as well.

However, one of the most interesting questions is whether the way our bodies react to cannabis is simply psychosomatic. What will we actually feel if we do not know what strain we are consuming? Does it matter if we are expecting some specific effect to occur or not?

There is copious anecdotal evidence that not all people respond to sativa and indica strains the way they stereotypically should. It should be an interesting study to conduct. Until then, we just have to rely on our own experience and come to our own conclusions.