Indica Vs Sativa – Anatomy, Origin, THC, CBD, Qualities, & Side-Effects

While choosing a cannabis product, there is always a mind war on Indica vs Sativa. Both are rich in THC and CBD content. So, how do you choose the best product according to your needs?

Have patience!!! We get you there. In this post, we are going to give detailed information on Indica vs Sativa. So, stick to us till last, and we help you in choosing the best product for you.

Overview of Indica vs Sativa

Overview of Indica vs Sativa

There is a wide application of cannabis in medication. Like its wide application, there are also various types of cannabis such as Indica, Sativa, Ruderalis, hybrid, etc. All these have rich THC and CBD content. But, due to the difference in anatomy, CBD, and THC content, they can easily be differentiated.

In general, Indica is a cannabis plant that has short, bushy, and widens leaves. Though it is an annual plant, it yields higher than cannabis Sativa. This is because it grows at a faster rate. Additionally, Indica plants have higher CBD content and lower THC content.

While Cannabis Sativa poses lower CBD and higher THC content. They are tall with narrow leaves that have lighter green shades. The growth and development of Sativa are slower and also require more sunlight.

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Physical Difference Between Indica Vs Sativa

Physical Difference Between Indica Vs Sativa

To define whether a leaf is from Cannabis Indica or Sativa, you don’t need to be an expert. Just acknowledge the following pointers to differentiate between the two:


Indica plants usually have shorter stature which usually grows with a height of 3 to 6 feet. On the other hand, Sativa plants are tall, with a tops height of 20 feet. 

Branching Patterns

The branches of cannabis Indica are woodier with vertically aligned branches. Hence, all the branches originated in the same line to the plant’s height i.e. have sider branches. That’s why they look wider and bushier.

While Sativa has not woodier branches but more fibrous one. And also their branching patterns follow the gliding symmetry approach.


Even just from studying cannabis leaf’s anatomy, you can easily comment on Indica vs Sativa. Indica has a deep green color, thicker and broader leaves while Sativa has a lighter color with slender leaves.

Growth and Flowering Cycle: Cannabis Indica vs Sativa

Growth and Flowering Cycle: Cannabis Indica vs Sativa

Both of the Cannabis have two distinct phases of growth, one is vegetation and the other is flowering.


The vegetation period of Indica is seen in long photoperiods (long days) and at this time, plants tend to grow at a faster rate and become bushier, and also achieve its max height.

While Sativa is majorly grown near the equator where days and nights almost have the same length. Therefore, they get an ample amount of light throughout their season. That’s why constant growth is seen in them which makes them achieve a maximum height of 20 feet. 


When the days become shorter, it is a flowering phase for Indica plants.  In this phase, Indica plants switch the nutrition for the development of flowers and their height growth stops. Plants have now started developing reproductive parts such as male pollen flowers and female flowers. And, generally, the flowering phase lasts for about 8 weeks.  

However, Sativa flowering has a uniform photoperiod, and their flowers grow along with their height. The flowers, especially the female flowers, start from the formation on the node in between the stem and branches. The flowering phase takes around 8 to 12 weeks to develop fully.

Indica vs Sativa: Geographical Origin

Indica vs Sativa: Geographical Origin

Before Indica was discovered, there was only one cannabis species— Sativa. Sativa was first discovered in the 1600s by Western Society in the hotter regions, especially near the equator. At that time, the most common cultivated regions for Sativa were Mexico, Columbia, Thailand, and Southeast Asia. But nowadays, they can be grown in any (most) area of the world. 

On the other hand, Indica was discovered by a western explorer on their visit to India and this is the reason why it was named “Indica”. They were generally found in the Hindu Kush mountain ranges of India. And with time, like Sativa, they are now cultivated in the majority of the countries that are on the world’s map.

THC Content in Indica vs Sativa 

THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) is the psychoactive compound that eventually gets you “high”. In addition, they are also used in medication for the treatment of pain, depression, anxiety, headaches, etc. 

In general, Sativa has a higher TCH content than Indica. 

CBD Content in Indica vs Sativa

Unlike THC, CBD (cannabidiol) does not have many psychoactive properties, which means it doesn’t make you high. Yet they have a lot of benefits such as preventing seizures, reducing pain, treating migraines, etc. CBD is also effective for those patients that are highly sensitive to THC medication.

Generally, Cannabis Indica has higher CBD content than Sativa.

Terpenes in Indica vs Sativa

Terpenes are the aromatic compounds that facilitate relaxation and freshness to your mind. In the cannabis plant, they are secreted by the same glands that secrete CBD and THC. However, other common sources of Terpenes are lavender flowers, berries, oranges, hops, and pepper.

No slight difference between Indica vs Sativa terpenes content. But the majority of cannabis Sativa has lesser terpenes concentration. 

Effects of Indica and Sativa

Effects of Indica and Sativa

Major Effects of Cannabis Indica

These are the following major effects of Indica on the human body:

  • Increased mental relaxation
  • Muscle relaxation 
  • Decreases nausea and acute pain 
  • Increases appetite 
  • Increases dopamine

Major Effects of Cannabis Sativa

These are the following major effects of Sativa:

  • Anti-anxiety
  • Anti-depressant
  • Treats chronic pain
  • Increases focus and creativity
  • Increases serotonin

How to Choose Between Indica and Sativa?

How to Choose Between

While choosing a cannabis product, what’s the most important thing? It’s your consumption mode, and also your mood. To ease you with this, these are the few questions that you should ask before buying a product. 

  1. What do you want to achieve from it?
  2. Is it for medical use, just for fun, or some home remedies?
  3. What experience do you want to seek from them?
  4. Did you ever try cannabis or it is your first time?
  5. For how long do you want the experience? 6-7 hrs or 24 hrs. 
  6. Do you have any other serious medical problems, especially lungs and heart disease? 

Combined Side-Effects of Indica and Sativa

Although, Indica and Sativa are different cannabis plants. But, it shares some common side effects that are listed below:

  • Dry mouth and eyes
  • Dizziness and vertigo
  • Increased heart rate
  • Decreased blood pressure
  • Anxiety and fears
  • Lethargy and sluggishness

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Tabulated Summary: Indica Vs Sativa

S.No.PropertiesCannabis IndicaCannabis Sativa
1.Height3 to 4 feetUp to 20 feet
2.Branching PatternSidewaysIrregular branched
3.Leaves Structuredeep green color & broaderlighter green color & slender
4.Flowering Weeklasts up to 8 weeks8 to 12 weeks
5.Regionany hot humid climatenear the equator
6.THC DominantNoYes
7.CBD DominantYesNo

General FAQ

Which has higher CBD— Indica or Sativa?

Ans. Indica has higher Cannabidiol (CBD) levels than cannabis Sativa.

Why does Indica is known as the body high?

Ans. Because Indica can make your body calm and feeling relaxed because they have a low amount of THC and higher amount CBD.

Will Sativa keep me awake?

Ans. Not definitely sure. But, it can fill you with energy and also facilitates your creativity. 

Is Indica a depressant?

Ans. No, Indica is not likely to be depressant because it produces physical relaxation such as sedation. However, there is no definite evidence of it.

What is the perfect time for smoking Indica and Sativa?

Ans. You should smoke Sativa in the daytime because it produces mild psychoactive effects which will also help you to do your daily chaos. While due to the higher CBD, Indica is a more physical sedative, and hence make you sluggish and relaxant. Therefore, it is better to use Indica at night.

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