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Is there a difference between sativa vs indica edibles? The short answer is yes. Cannabis sativa and indica plants may produce different psychoactive effects depending on the product and your tolerance.

In this edibles guide, we’ll go in-depth on the difference between indica and sativa edibles and show you a better way to choose or make your cannabis edibles instead of focusing on outdated sativa or indica classifications.

Do Indica and Sativa Labels Matter?

Sativa and indica labels are part of an age-old categorization that continues to help cannabis producers market their products and first-time consumers find a suitable product. However, consumers now base their purchasing decisions on the product's chemical profile.

Scientific research has shown that the effects of cannabis are due to the plant’s entire spectrum of compounds (cannabinoids, terpenes, etc.). Indica and sativa labels do not provide sufficient information for consumers to make an informed purchase.

Although most cannabis producers don’t separate sativa and indica strains when making edibles, anyway, some create sativa and indica varieties, or you can make them yourself at home by using a specific strain. This allows you to experience the full effects of the strain.

It’s All About the Terpenes

Sativa and indica strains differ in the types of terpenes that are present in their trichomes. However, the edible production method can destroy many of these terpenes due to the high heat and pressures used to make them.

Without terpenes, all that’s left are the cannabinoids, making it difficult to tell between edibles made from indica or sativa plants. 

The most common cannabinoids include delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). Cannabigerol (CBG), cannabinol (CBN), and other minor cannabinoids are found in trace amounts and may play an essential role in how THC and CBD interact with the body.

In some cases, manufacturers can use gentle processes to preserve as many of the cannabinoids and terpenes from the cannabis plant and introduce them into the end product. Terpenes can add flavor and enhance the effects of a THC or CBD edible product.


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What Are Sativa Edibles?

sativa vs. indica edibles

Sativa strains tend to produce energizing and blissful effects. You may feel a boost of creativity and concentration, perfect for starting your day, hanging out with friends, or engaging in an artistic activity. Medical users use sativa edibles to treat depression and fatigue.

Popular sativa strains in edibles:

What Are Indica Edibles?

Indica edibles are known for their relaxing and couch-locking effects. Edibles from cannabis indica plants may reduce stress and minor aches and pains. They are the perfect treat in the afternoon or evening when the day ends, as they may make you sleepy. Medical users use indica edibles to relieve pain, appetite loss, anxiety, and muscle spasms.

Popular indica strains in edibles:

  • Gorilla Glue #4 (GG #4)
  • OG Kush
  • Skywalker
  • Granddaddy Purple
  • Grape Ape
  • Blueberry

What Are Hybrid Edibles?

Most modern cannabis strains are hybrid strains of pure sativa or indica. As a result, hybrid edibles may produce sativa- or indica-like effects. Hybrids are usually described as either indica-dominant or sativa-dominant, depending on their effects.

Sativa vs Indica Edibles: What’s the Difference?

Ultimately, the difference between indica and sativa strains is the effects they produce. Generally, sativa edibles will produce an energetic and euphoric high, while indica edibles tend to produce a mellow and sedative high.

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How to Buy the Right Edibles for You

With so many edible options out there, it can be challenging to find the right one for your desired effects. Most cannabis edible producers don’t make indica- or sativa-specific edibles. In the legal cannabis market, most edibles are made using cannabis trim containing a blend of cannabis plants.

If you want to choose a good edible product for you, here are a few tips to consider:

  • Consider the terpenes: Terpenes are the plant’s aromatic compounds, found in small amounts. Common terpenes include myrcene, pinene, caryophyllene, and limonene. Although the research is limited, some studies have shown that terpenes play an essential role in how cannabinoids interact with the body.
  • Cannabinoid ratios matter: Many edible products will feature a ratio of CBD, THC, CBN, and other cannabinoids. Edible products like 1:1 THC:CBD are more balanced, with higher CBD ratios providing a more mellow and clear-headed experience than a high-THC product. A broad range of novel cannabinoids is now being found in edibles, such as CBG, THCV, and CBC.
  • Everyone reacts differently: How cannabis edibles affect you can depend on many factors, including your genetics, metabolism, your environment, and the time of day you consume cannabis. 
  • Start low and go slow: Even if you are an experienced smoker, cannabis edibles have different onset and duration of effects. Edibles take 60-90 minutes to take effect, and effects can last up to 8 hours. We recommend starting with the lowest dose possible and slowly building up toward your desired effects.
  • Homogenization: If making edibles at home, it’s critical to properly blend ingredients throughout to ensure the cannabis is evenly distributed. 

Final Thoughts on Sativa vs Indica Edibles

Choosing between different edible products doesn’t have to be challenging. If you can’t find the right solution at dispensaries, you can make them yourself. Enroll in CTU’s Master of Cannabis Certification Program to learn how to grow, cook, and extract cannabis!

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