What’s the difference between indica and sativa edibles?

What’s the difference between indica and sativa edibles?

There’s quite a bit of debate over whether true indica or sativa cannabis strains even exist in their purest forms anymore. There’s also quite a bit of back and forth over which strain is best for recreational use, medicinal purposes, and overall function. However, most of the debate centers on personal belief and not much scientific evidence. If you’re still deciding which side of the argument you’re on, there are dozens of factors to consider. 

Indica, sativa, and hybrid strains of cannabis differ in some ways, and many people have very different reasons for using certain strains. 

One of the first things to consider is how and why you plan to use the product in the first place. Many people believe there are differences in these strains that help them function better for recreational purposes or medicinal purposes. Other things to consider when choosing a strain and a product include dosing, time, effects, consumption, and cost. 

You also want to factor in concentration levels of critical components in the cannabis plant, impacting how the product works, especially for each individual. The more concentrated and purer a product is, the more you can likely expect to pay. There are more than 100 different compounds in a cannabis plant, and those compounds can be removed and adjusted to create certain effects. Those compounds also tend to behave differently when they’re added to edibles instead of users smoking them in their natural form. 

These days, there are countless edibles on the market, and they come in hundreds, if not thousands of different varieties. You can find chocolates, cookies, gummy candies, and even drink mixes on the market today. When you combine all of those options with the different strains of cannabis out there today, the possibilities are practically endless. When you narrow the choices down, there is a belief that some strains function better in edible form, and others are best in flower form. 

The History of Indica

Indica plants are often grown naturally in areas of the world with subtropical climates. The origin of this strain is most likely from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Turkey, and India. The plants thrive in these warm regions because, over time, they’ve adapted to the harsh conditions of areas like the Hindu Kush mountains. 

Indica plants tend to grow faster than sativa plants, and they typically produce significantly more buds than other strains. A typical indica cannabis plant will reach maturity somewhere between 45 and 65 days. For sativa plants, the maturation process takes about 100 days. 

History of Sativa

Sativa plants have their origins in Central and South America, Africa, and Southeast Asia. These plants thrive in hot, dry climates and are distinguishable by their longer, thinner leaves and taller buds. Some sativa plants can grow taller than 12 feet, and they take about 100 days to reach full maturity compared to 45-65 days for indica plants.

Many people say they choose sativa strains of cannabis to achieve a “head high.” The common belief among growers and users is that sativa strains are more energizing than indica strains, and they are better for daytime use and getting things accomplished. 

Cannabis plants contain more than 100 compounds called cannabinoids. The two major compounds we hear about in consumer cannabis products are CBD, or cannabidiol, and THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol. As far as cultivators are concerned, indica strains will usually feature a higher level of CBD cannabinoids compared to the level of THC. Sativa plants typically have a higher level of THC compounds compared to CBD compounds, which is the opposite composition of an indica plant. 

How Edibles Are Made

Most edibles on the market today incorporate THC or CBD through a fat source, such as butter or oil, or extraction with distillate or isolate. 

The distillates infuse the majority of the cannabis candy edibles available today, like hard candies and gummies. This chemical process helps separate the cannabinoids in the plant, leaving just one main compound behind. Because this process creates an almost pure-THC or pure-CBD product, these edibles can be much more potent than those made through other methods. 

The distillates also remove the terpenes from the cannabis plant, which are the compounds that give cannabis that distinct smell and flavour. Products made with this method typically don’t have either of those features. 

Full-spectrum edibles contain a huge range of cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. These products use cannabis-infused butter or oil that has been slowly heated over a long period. The lengthy process helps protect many of the compounds in the cannabis plant. Most often, cannabutter and other similar fats like cannabis-infused oil are used in baking edibles like cookies and brownies, which you can buy pre-made or make right at home. 

If you’d rather make your own edibles with the extract of your choice, you can make cannabutter or cannasugar right at home. 

What's the difference between indica and sativa edibles

Indica Vs. Sativa Edibles: Does It Matter?

Whether your edibles are distillates or full-spectrum will likely impact the experience more than whether the product is indica or sativa. The main difference between the two strains is the THC to CBD ratio, which can affect the way you feel after consuming infused edibles. 

The common belief is that indica cannabis plants tend to give users a more relaxed and calm feeling, and sativa plants are more likely to induce feelings of euphoria and make users more energetic. There isn’t much science out there defending those beliefs or arguing against them, but each person may find they react to each strain differently. Some users also say these strains will produce those expected effects if they’re smoked rather than ingested in the form of edibles. 

The Experiment with Indica vs. Sativa Edibles

Two powerful strains with strong polarizing Indica-Sativa effects were chosen for this real trial. Durban Poison Sativa strain is famous for its productivity boost while Pineapple Kush Indica strain should produce a strong sedative effect.

First, of all, I made cannabutter from each strain using the same exact time for preparation.

Second, I chose the easiest brownies recipe from the list and made two types of brownies.

As a result, my friends were the participants of this experiment and I must say that the majority of them (4 out of 6) were able to trace Indica-Sativa difference in edibles. Yet all of them were experienced cannabis users and were able to smoke weed from an apple. The study is definitely far from being scientifically valid but at least it suggests that people feel different effects of weed strains.

Different results must be explained by various tolerance and by subjective body differences. Scientists claim that people have a different amount of endocannabinoid receptors that is why it is impossible to predict the effects of weed on some particular person.


There are many benefits to cannabis edibles that make them an attractive alternative to smoking, vaping, or dabbing.


Because cannabis edibles are broken down by the digestive system, not only do they take longer to kick in, they also offer a slower release of cannabinoids into the body. If you’re taking THC edibles, this results in a longer-lasting stone that comes on gradually.

Edibles usually contain larger doses of cannabinoids than a few puffs from a joint or vape. Also, when taking THC edibles, the compound is processed by the liver and converted into the metabolite 11-hydroxy-THC, a very potent alternative form of THC that passes the blood-brain barrier much more easily than delta-9 THC. While CBD edibles obviously won’t produce intoxicating effects, they are also processed by the liver and provide a slow release.

·         EASY DOSING

Another benefit to taking edibles is that they can be much easier to dose. When smoking or vaporizing cannabis, your best bet at dosing is controlling the number of tokes you take. But that gives you no real insight into the amount you’re consuming. Edibles, on the other hand, can make dosing a breeze.

In some legal cannabis markets cannabis edibles need to be clearly labelled with the amount of cannabinoids they contain in a single serving, ensuring consumers have a controlled and enjoyable edibles experience. Admittedly, it is a bit more difficult to dose homemade edibles, but it is still easier to do so than with, say, a joint.

·         DISCRETION

Unfortunately, cannabis users still fall victim to old stigmas and stereotypes. Even medical patients are still scrutinised for using cannabis. Luckily, edibles can help cannabis users escape that stigma by providing a simple, discreet, and smoke-free way to use cannabis both recreationally and medicinally.


Edibles can easily be made at home using infused canna-butter or oil that you can literally add to any dish. This allows cannabis users the opportunity to experiment with doses and recipes to find new ways to enjoy a high that you just don’t get from smoking.

Taking sativa and indica edibles

One of the most popular ways to take cannabis indica or sativa is by ingesting edibles. As what the word suggests, these are orally consumed cannabis products that are more like food or beverages. These are not mere tinctures or oils which are classified as oral cannabis because these are yummy, delectable treats. 

Take note that cannabis edibles are sold like real food, therefore, users are cautioned against eating or drinking these edibles near or with children or minors. Even an adult can’t resist the temptation of eating a lot of edibles because of how these look, taste, and smell! 

It takes a lot of self-control to consume edibles because eating too much can lead to very potent side effects. Edibles, especially commercially-prepared edibles are accurately dosed. Just an example would be a bar of marijuana chocolate. Usually, edible marijuana chocolates are dosed according to the smaller divisions on a chocolate bar. One small piece can have 10 mg of THC or more. 

If you are medicating using medical marijuana, this is an efficient way to dose up and works well with a lot of users who can’t tolerate smoke from joints. As long as you can maintain your composure and resist taking a lot of edibles at one time then this might be the best option for you. 

What are the most satisfying cannabis edibles?

Cannabis edibles may be homemade edibles or commercially-prepared products. There are a lot of differences between the two. Homemade edibles are mostly tastier and more preferred by consumers because they can make their edibles at home and consider their flavor preferences.

If you want to start slow

It’s natural to feel overwhelmed when you’re new to taking edibles. This is why we took the advice of a popular cannabis boutique in Denver and checked out the following low-dose edibles ideal for travelers and new users. 

Be sure to check out Sweet Grass Kitchen’s chocolate chip cookies, some Dutch Girl Stroopwaffles, Mountain High Suckers and Stillwater teas. If you’re very particular about flavor and the taste of cannabis edibles, you can consume potent and tasty cannabis edibles BUT take these in moderate doses. 

If you want to go faster

Very experienced consumers may not like cannabis edibles because the effects can take too long to happen.  Try sublingual cannabis edibles. These are taken under the tongue for fast and easy absorption. Under the tongue is a network of fine blood vessels that absorb THC fast. The natural compounds in cannabis don’t need to move to the long gastrointestinal tract to be absorbed by the GUT before traveling to the bloodstream. 

Most sublingual edibles are in the form of small candies or chocolates. These come in small sizes so these can be easily placed under the tongue. One of the most popular sublingual edibles is the L’Eagle drop that contains 100 mg of THC each. The best way to consume this is by placing it under the tongue or by dissolving this in hot coffee or tea.

What are the precautions of taking cannabis edibles?

The most common problem, especially for first-time users, is that edibles are just too irresistible. It’s hard to control yourself, especially when you love eating chocolates or you crave for gummy candies.  

But the best advice is to start slow and learn to control your dose. Before you eat any kind of edible cannabis snack, check the dose. Usually, chocolates are dosed 10 mg THC for each portion (choose chocolate bars that are specifically portioned so you won’t make a mistake) and this is easy to dose up on.

If you’re taking a brand for the first time, take half a dose and then monitor the effects. Use a timer if you can. Soon after you feel the effects, you can start with another dose. Edibles usually take from 30 to 45 minutes to take effect but some edibles can take effect after an hour or a couple of hours. 

Read the labels and how to dose up. Don’t take this advice for granted. A chocolate bar from one company may have a different dose than a similar-looking chocolate bar from another company. Also, different edibles have different effects even if these have the same appearance and ingredients. 

Your current disposition also affects the way an edible can affect you. If you feel hungry and tired, edibles may take effect fast. If you’re full or you just ate a full meal then edibles may take longer than what you expected.

You can use these factors to enjoy cannabis edibles as well. When consuming a potent edible, you can eat a light snack before taking a dose. This will ease the effects of the edible so you won’t be too high once it takes effect. And if you want to experience the best high, take the edible in an empty stomach. This way, you’ll be able to experience the best effects. 

Remember to keep your delicious stash away from children and pets. They might mistake these as candies or chocolates and eat them. If your child accidentally consumes your edibles, take him to the emergency room or to his doctor right away. Meanwhile, cannabis is not a good thing for dogs and cats. They may suffer from dangerous side effects so it’s also best to take your pet to the vet for immediate treatment. 

To protect your stash, never let anyone see where you’re hiding them. Since edibles are mostly candy or chocolate, keep these refrigerated but well covered or disguised. Some consumers stash their stash inside food packages or inside food containers to prevent these from being eaten by children. And if you need to remove your edible from their original packaging, place these inside a plastic wrap and write the date of expiry on the wrap or container. 

Remember local laws for eating and buying cannabis edibles

If cannabis is legal in your area, the age of purchase applies to buying and consuming cannabis edibles as well. The age for consuming and buying cannabis is 21 in the US but in Canada, it’s 19 years old.

The amount you must possess also varies from state to state and from one country to another. Aside from generalized laws regarding cannabis, local laws may be enforced. For instance, it might be legal to smoke and consume cannabis in a country or state but it is not allowed in your apartment building or community. You must learn all about these before you even buy cannabis edibles. 

You may opt to grow Cannabis and make your own edibles! Get authentic marijuana seeds here at Sonoma!


So what’s more satisfying, cannabis sativa or indica edibles? The answer may depend on the preference of the user but most agree that it is the combination of indica and sativa or a hybrid makes for the best and the most satisfying edible. 

And no matter what kind of edible you want to take, recreational or medicinal, sativa, indica or hybrid, learn how to take this moderately. Never overdose and always check labels before you indulge. 

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Carol Pinard

    As a Toronto Medical Marijuana patient: sativa, indica, and hybrid specific edibles are available at our local dispensary. I’ve experimented with them all in 10mg doses and have come to like the sativa option best. The results of my test were a little more blatant; indica was obvious, made me super drowsy and tired, (and kind of hungover the following day,) the hybrid option less so, and sativa became my favorite as I can take it all day long and be productive.

  2. BushRoot_420

    Sativa vs Indica never matters. This is much more of a matter of myrcene levels that tend to be higher in Indicas.

    1. DextrousGinger XIII

      It’s a matter of dose and tolerance. High enough dose and low enough tolerance and you will trip out with the right strain.

  3. Juss Smoke

    Some are saying it’s mostly body high but it could absolutely be a mind high as well if the tolerance is lower than the dosage.
    These edibles are made from concentrated oil, and not all concentrated oil are the same. If you extract the oil from indica flower, it’s going to be an indica oil, and same with sativa oil. Me personally, I would differentiate the edibles by the level of thc and/or ratio of thc to cbd.

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