Indica or Sativa for Stress – Which Works Best?


When it comes to reducing stress, cannabis can be a great ally. But which strain should you choose? Indica or Sativa? Whether Indica-dominant, Sativa-dominant, or hybrid, each type has its own set of benefits and drawbacks, so it’s essential to know which one is best for you.

This blog post will explore the differences between Indica and Sativa strains and discuss which one is best for reducing stress. We’ll also show you the best ways to use them whenever you feel tense. Keep reading to learn more!

Indica and Sativa: An overview

Indica and Sativa are the two most popular subtypes of subspecies of the cannabis plant, though other types exist. Knowing the difference between these two types is essential in getting the proper stress relief that suits your needs and lifestyle.

The Sativa cannabis plant is taller and has narrower leaves. The buds are also usually longer and skinnier. Sativa strains of cannabis tend to give users a more energizing high that can be helpful for daytime use.

Indica plants are shorter and have broader leaves. Buds from Indica plants are typically fatter and rounder. Indica Strains are known for providing a more relaxing, sedating high that can be helpful in the evening or before bed.

Indica and Sativa can both be helpful when it comes to reducing stress. However, if you are looking for a more specific type of high that will help with your stress, understanding strain differences will go a long way.

What is cannabis indica?

Cannabis indica is the most used of the three main classes of cannabis out there, the other two being Cannabis sativa and Cannabis ruderalis. This type is known for its sedative and calming effects. It is believed to be the original cannabis strain used since ancient times in treating anxiety and various physical ailments.

Indicas are typically associated with physical sensations, such as heaviness in the body and mind. Nugs from Indica strains are best used for nighttime, thanks to their profoundly relaxing qualities.

What is cannabis Sativa?

Cannabis sativa refers to a subspecies of marijuana is known for its energizing and uplifting effects. It is often used to treat conditions like depression and ADHD because it helps to improve focus and creativity. Cannabis sativa is typically associated with mental sensations, such as euphoria and feelings of happiness. It can also increase heart rate and energy levels.

Sativas are best used during the daytime to help reduce fatigue and stress. They are also known for their ability to increase appetite, which can benefit those struggling with eating disorders or cancer-related treatments.

Indica versus Sativa: What’s the difference?

Knowing the key differences between an Indica and a Sativa is one of the first few prerequisites before diving into the world of marijuana. Different strains offer different benefits, just as one species may be more appropriate than another for a particular disease or ailment. If you want the best possible effects (as you should), then having a grasp of the canna-basics can go a long way.

Cannabis refers to a genus of flowering plants under the family Cannabaceae, the same group consisting of hops and hackberries. This peculiar herb is split into three classified subspecies: Indica, Sativa, and ruderalis. Though all three have some CBD-to-THC ratio, the third subspecies – ruderalis – offer little to no medicinal value. Hence, cannabis growers and breeders tend to avoid cultivating Cannabis ruderalis plants.

For both medical and recreational uses, the indicas and sativas reign supreme. These two have great potential in stress relief thanks to their high cannabinoid content, as well as the terpenes they come with. These aromatic chemical compounds work together to produce the therapeutic and medicinal qualities that we know and love about weed today.

But though they yield significant quantities of potent medicine, these two potency-packing strains differ in more ways than one. The most glaring contrast between them is their effects – the kind of high they produce – mainly due to their differing botanical properties. Indicas are known for their relaxing effects, while sativas are more energizing and uplifting (more on this later).

Because they differ in their effects, sativas and indicas have varying uses. If you’re looking to reduce stress with cannabis, it helps to know which type of plant you should consume. After all, harnessing the true potential of cannabis hinges on your knowledge of the plethora of strains.

Indicas and sativas also vary in their physical properties, including leaf patterns, branching, height, and more. Their nugs are distinguishable from one another (though nuances are more strain-specific). Lastly, they have varying growth requirements: sativas tend to be harder to grow due to their need to be in a constantly hot and humid environment — don’t worry, we’ve got this covered as well.


When it comes to the effects they produce, the Indica and Sativa widely contrast each other. To put it simply: the indica species is known for its strong body effects, while the Sativa is associated with cerebral simulation. But what do “body highs” and “head highs” mean (and feel like) in the first place? Let’s find out.

Indica: As mentioned earlier, Indica strains are known for their “couch-locking” effects. This kind of high is known as a “body high” as it induces a sense of relaxation and calmness that can benefit those with chronic pain, anxiety symptoms, or stress. The body high is often accompanied by feelings of hunger and sleepiness.

These strains are perfect for those who want to relax after a long day or week of work. Indica plants usually don’t grow taller than five feet and have broad leaves with short internodes (the spaces between leaves on the stem). They also tend to produce higher yields compared to sativas.

If you’re looking for a strain that can relieve pain, help you sleep better, or just take the edge off, then indicas are probably your best bet. However, some Indica strains can also cause anxiety in certain individuals because of their high THC levels. If this is true, it’s best to try a different indica plant or look into other options altogether.

Sativa: On the other hand, sativas are known for their “uplifting” and “energizing” effects, which are known as “head highs.” This kind of high is cerebral and is responsible for the euphoric sensations associated with marijuana consumption. Sativas also tend to increase energy levels, creativity, and focus. Unlike indicas, however, sativas can cause paranoia and anxiety in some people.

These marijuana strains, when dosed correctly, are perfect for daytime use as they can help increase focus and creativity. Unlike indicas, sativas grow much taller (sometimes up to 20 feet), with long leaves and thin stems. They also flower later than indicas, making them a poor choice for those who want to harvest early.

Though they’re said to have more powerful psychoactive effects than indicas, not all Sativa Strains will make you feel energetic or euphoric. Some can cause paranoia and anxiety in certain individuals. It’s essential to do your research before choosing a Sativa-dominant strain, so you know what to expect.

Physical Properties

Aside from their effects, indicas and sativas also differ in physical appearances. Indicas are usually shorter with wide leaves, while sativas are taller and have thinner leaves. Sativa cannabis plants also tend to have more branches than indicas (due to their height).

Nugs from Indica-dominant strains are typically round and dense, while Sativa-dominant strains are more elongated and lanky. Lastly, the buds of sativas tend to be covered in trichomes (the resin glands that produce THC), whereas those of indicas aren’t as frosty.

Growth Requirements

Though they produce different effects, both Indica and Sativa strains still need similar things to grow properly. Both need a lot of sunlight and water, though sativas require more of both due to their taller stature. They also both prefer humid environments with temperatures around 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

However, there are some key differences in their growth requirements. For instance, indicas can thrive in colder climates than sativas (shorter height). They also don’t need as much attention as sativas and can even tolerate being neglected for periods.

If you’re an indoor grower and just starting, your best bet is to go with an Indica-dominant strain. Sativas are better suited for experienced growers who have the time and resources to devote to them.

Flavor and aroma profile

There are also some key differences when judging the flavor and aroma of Indica and Sativa strains. Indicas tend to have a more “earthy” or “nutty” taste, while sativas are known for their “floral” or “fruity” flavors.

However, there are some exceptions to this cannabis rule. For example, the Sour Diesel strain is a Sativa-dominant strain with a diesel-like taste. And Bubba Kush, an Indica-dominant strain, has a sweet and woody flavor.

Keep in mind that the flavor and aroma of marijuana can vary depending on the growing conditions and the particular batch of cannabis. And if you’re looking for a flavor experience particularly catered to your tastes, then it helps to look up the terpene profiles of each strain. These aromatic compounds give nuance to the flavor and effects of different strains.

So which is better for reducing stress?

Now that we know the difference between Indica and Sativa strains, it’s time to answer the question: which is better for reducing stress? The answer may vary depending on who you ask, but, in general, most people would say that indicas are better for this purpose. Indica strains produce more powerful “body highs” that can help relax both the mind and body.

However, if you’re looking for a strain that will boost your mood without making you feel drowsy, then sativas might be a better option. Sativas also work great for the kind of stress that leaves you unable to work or be productive. By uplifting your spirits, sativas can help increase your motivation and energy levels.

No matter which type of cannabis you choose, make sure to start with a low dose (especially if you’re new to marijuana). This will help minimize the chances of experiencing unwanted side effects like anxiety or paranoia.

As always, it’s essential to do your research before trying any new strain of cannabis. Every person reacts differently to different strains, so finding one that works best for you is essential. Hopefully, this guide has helped you narrow down your options and start your journey to finding the perfect strain for reducing stress!

What about hybrids?

Hybrids of the two strains are bred to balance out these effects and offer a more customized experience. For example, if you want the mental clarity of a Sativa with the body relaxation of an indica, then you should try a hybrid strain. Hybrids can also be great for those who want to experience the best of both worlds.

When browsing for hybrid strains, you’ll more than likely come across ratios like 70:30, 50-50, and more. These simply indicate the percentage of Indica and Sativa in the strain. So, a 70:30 hybrid would be made up of 70% indica and 30% Sativa.

Indica-dominant hybrids

If you’re new to cannabis or just looking for a good starting point, we recommend trying an Indica-dominant hybrid. This will give you most of the benefits associated with both strains without any of the drawbacks. Indica hybrids have just the right amount of potency to help alleviate life’s stress factors while still leaving you clear-headed and functional.

Some of our favorite Indica-dominant hybrids include:

  • Granddaddy Purple
  • OG Kush
  • Blueberry

Sativa-dominant hybrids

If you’re looking for a strain that will give you an energetic, uplifting high, then we recommend trying a Sativa-dominant hybrid. These strains are perfect for when you need to get things done or when stress has left you feeling burned out. They can also be great for social gatherings or daytime use.

Some of our favorite Sativa-dominant hybrids include:

  • Sour Diesel

  • Jack Herer

  • Green Crack

50-50 hybrids

50-50 hybrids are a good option for those who want to experience the best of both worlds. These strains are made up of equal parts Indica and Sativa, so you can expect a well-rounded high that provides mental and physical relaxation.

Some of our favorite 50-50 hybrids include:

  • White Widow
  • Silver Haze
  • Super Silver Haze

If you’re looking to use cannabis strains for reducing stress, we recommend starting with Indica-dominant strains. These will provide you with the most benefits associated with both Indica and Sativa strains while minimizing the chances of experiencing any side effects.

When browsing for Indica-dominant strains, look for ones that have high levels of THC. This will ensure that you get the most out of the strain. If you’re new to cannabis or just starting, we recommend beginning with a low dose (especially if you’re using an Indica-dominant strain for the first time).

Sativa-dominant strains can also be used for reducing stress, but they may not be as effective for those who are new to cannabis. These strains are better for those who have experience with the drug and know how to control their dosage.

If you’re looking for a more well-rounded high, we recommend trying a 50-50 hybrid strain. These strains are made up of equal parts Indica and Sativa, so you can expect to experience both mental and physical relaxation.

Indica versus Sativa: Which one is right for you?

When it comes to Indica and Sativa, there are a few differences you should know about. The first is the way they make you feel. Indica strains tend to make you feel sleepy or “stoned,” while Sativa strains can make you feel more energetic and “high.” The second difference is the way they look. Indica plants are short and bushy, while Sativa plants are tall and thin. Third, Indica strains have a higher concentration of CBD, known for its medical benefits, while Sativa strains have a higher concentration of THC, which gives you the “high” feeling.

So, which one is right for you? If you’re looking to relax and de-stress, an Indica strain is probably the best choice. If you’re looking for something that will help you stay productive and energetic, a Sativa strain might be better suited for you. Keep in mind, though, that everyone’s body reacts differently to cannabis, so it’s important to experiment until you find the strain that works best for you. Happy smoking or vaping cannabis!

How to use Indica or Sativa cannabis strains for reducing stress?

There are many ways to consume cannabis – from the good ‘ol smoke to the more sophisticated methods like dabbing. And so the question remains: which method is best for reducing stress levels, especially on those extra stressful days?

The answer may not be as clear-cut as you think. Different methods of consuming cannabis can result in different kinds of highs. For example, smoking Indica buds will give you a more relaxing and sedative high, while eating an indica-infused gummy bear will provide you with a mellow and subtle high.

It all depends on your personal preference and what kind of high you’re looking for. If you want a more intense high, we recommend smoking or dabbing. These methods will deliver the THC directly to your brain, resulting in a more potent and more immediate high. If you’re looking for a more subtle high, we recommend eating edibles or using topical products. These methods take longer to work, but the effects will last for longer.

No matter which method you choose, do remember to dose correctly. A few things to know when using cannabis for stress relief:

  1. First, it’s essential to start with a low dose and increase as needed.
  2. Second, make sure to choose a strain that suits your needs. Indica strains are typically better for relaxation, while Sativa strains provide more energy.
  3. Third, pay attention to how your body reacts and stop if you start feeling uncomfortable.
  4. Lastly, remember that everyone responds differently to cannabis, so it’s important to experiment until you find what works best for you!

Why use cannabis for stress?

There are many reasons why people might choose to use cannabis for stress. Some of the most common reasons include: reducing anxiety and tension, improving sleep quality, helping improve mood, reducing inflammation, and induce antidepressant effects.

But perhaps you’re wondering: how does it fair against a traditional treatment like prescription medication?

Well, one study found that prescription medications were more effective at reducing anxiety in the short term. However, cannabis was found to be more effective at reducing anxiety in the long term when compared to prescription medication. Additionally, cannabis was also helpful for those who suffer from chronic pain, whereas prescription medications are not always as effective.

Cannabis has also been shown to be an effective treatment for depression and PTSD, both of which are often accompanied by symptoms of stress. Another great thing about medical marijuana is that it’s less likely to cause severe side effects when compared to many prescription medications. Weed isn’t addictive, unlike some prescription medications, and it doesn’t carry the same risk for overdose.

So, if you’re looking for an alternative to prescription medication or just want another option for reducing stress, cannabis might be a good choice for you!

Best Sativa strains for stress

If you’re looking for something that will help you stay productive and energetic throughout the day, a Sativa strain might be better suited for you. Some of the best Sativa Strains for stress include:

  1. Lemon Cake. Lemon Cake is a flavor sensation, with sweet vanilla and zesty citrus dancing across your tongue each time you take a hit. The scent is quite sugary and citrusy, with undertones of earthy spices as the buds are crumbled and burned.
  2. Chocolope. Chocolope has a 95 percent Sativa makeup and a five percent Indica component, resulting in a significant THC concentration. It has an appealing impact on smokers and provides them with anxiety alleviation and hunger stimulation.
  3. Power Plant. Early afternoons or, if you wake and bake, mornings are ideal with this strain since it offers a clear-headed boost of energy, a creative spark, and happy euphoria. The taste is mildly sweet with earthy tones, while the smells are lovely sweet, earthy, and woody.
  4. Purple Stardawg. With energizing effects that will get you up and off the couch in minutes after your first toke, the Purple Stardawg is a lot more eye-opening than its rich taste might indicate. Between the eyes, you’ll experience an immediate slam of effects as your mind reaches new heights of pleasure and creativity thanks to an influx of energy and soc.

Best Indica strains for stress

If you’re looking for something that will help you relax after a long day at work, an indica strain might be the best choice. Some of the best Indica Strains for stress include:

  1. Sugar Shack. Sugar Shack is a popular Indica/Sativa strain with a THC content of 19%. It has a piney and herbal scent. The flavor is pleasant, with mild fruit sweetness.
  2. Purple Punch Breath. Punch Breath is a potent, full-bodied high with a fantastic taste that you’ve discovered. The high arrives fast and robust, smashing into your mind and body with an almost frantic tingly sensation. You’ll feel your spirits lift as your aching muscles relax while you sink further into the sofa.
  3. Black Gold. This is an excellent indica made from various crosses among the classic. The enticing aromas of spiced hash and sour diesel are released as each sticky little nugget is peeled away. Your mental fog will lift, leaving you feeling a heavy sense of relaxation that washes over you and leaves you feeling profound unrestful happiness with nothing else on your mind.
  4. Pink Tom Ford. The flavor of the Tom Ford Pink is just as delicious, with long-lasting effects that are ideal for unwinding after a long and stressful day. As any bad or racing thoughts are removed, replaced by pure blissful euphoria, your mental state will experience immediate relief.

Indica and Sativa: Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to dose indicas and sativas differently?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as everyone will respond differently to different strains of medical cannabis. However, generally, it is recommended that you dose Indica strains a bit heavier than Sativa strains, as they are usually more relaxing and sedative.

Can I mix indicas and sativas?

Yes, you can mix Indica and Sativa strains. Many people enjoy mixing different strains to get the best of both worlds. Just be sure to start with a low dose if you’re doing this for the first time, as it can be easy to overdo it when mixing multiple strains.

Which is better for day use and night use?

In general, it is recommended that you dose Indica strains a bit heavier than Sativa strains during the day, as they are generally more relaxing and sedative. It is generally recommended that you switch to a heavier dose of Sativa strains at night, as they are more likely to cause euphoric and energetic effects.

Are hybrids good for stress relief?

Yes, hybrids can be good for stress relief. In general, hybrids are a mix of Indica and Sativa strains, so they offer the best of both worlds. This makes them an excellent choice for people who want the benefits of both Indica and Sativa strains. Hybrids usually begin with cerebral Sativa effects before ending on an indica-like couch lock.

The downside of hybrids is that they can sometimes be less predictable than pure Indica or Sativa strains. This is because the effects of hybrids can vary depending on the ratio of indica to sativa in the strain.


Sativa strains are known for energizing and cerebral highs. If you need a weed nug that’ll help you feel more alert and focused, Sativa is the way to go. Sativas are often recommended for daytime use, as they can help improve mood and increase productivity.

On the other hand, Indica strains are known for their relaxing and sedative effects. If you need some medicinal marijuana help you calm down and relax, indica is the way to go. Indica strains are the perfect patterns for nighttime use, as they can help relieve generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) and stress.

So, which one is best for reducing stress? It depends on your individual needs. If you are looking for a strain that will help you feel more alert and focused, Sativa is the way to go. If you are looking for a strain to help you relax and calm down, indica is the way to go. Experiment with both strains to see which one works best for you.

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