Sativa, Indica, & Hybrid – USEFUL or USELESS?

Info for any new, current, or former cannabis consumer!

New or well-versed in the world of Cannabis you’re sure to have heard the terms “Sativa”, “Indica”, and “Hybrid”. Yet, the question remains: should we continue to classify Cannabis in these terms?

The terms, Cannabis Sativa (left) and Cannabis Indica (right), were first used to describe two different “types” of the Cannabis plant. One grew tall while the other short, one thrived in cooler climates, while the other couldn’t. Yet, modern research states that these labels may be misleading. Focusing on the plants physicality rather than the true determinants, Cannabinoids and Terpenes. Dr. Ethan Russo a Neurologist, Psychopharmacology researcher and Director of Research and Development for the International Cannabis and Cannabinoids Institute (ICCI) states,

 “One cannot in any way currently guess the biochemical content of a given Cannabis plant based on its height, branching, or leaf morphology.”

For example, when we buy a product labeled as an “Indica” a lot of times what we have is a product high in the terpene Myrcene.  We can also find Myrcene in lemongrass, wild thyme and mango, to name a few. Also aiding as an anti-inflammatory and anti-anxiety.

This isn’t the only terpene with “Indica” like effects.

Make sure to check terpene profiles of different strains to stay informed. Remember: a safe way to consume is to always start small and be well informed. While this can seem like a lot of information, it’s important to have a clear knowledge of what’s going into or onto your body.

Curious about where to find the terp info? Most legal flower and concentrate products will have it located on the label. My local New Jersey dispensary has it on one of the two-three stickers on the flower packaging. Dispensaries such as: Verano, Curaleaf, Curio, and Liberty Cannabis, are a few others that provide this information on their products. Some companies even have the lab results ready for you, and its’ access is as easy as scanning a QR code.

When you notice a QR code on your next box/bag, open your camera app, and snap a photo of the code. Your browser will open up to the lab results for your product!

There are quite a few studies on the vast list of terpenes out there, (some not yet studied!), and the role they play. Cannabinoids are also big players when it comes to the high you’re getting. Some of you are already very familiar with the Cannabinoids THC and CBD, but there’s also CBN, CBG and more we can discover.

In other words, if a product is only labeled by the three common terms then you may remain misguided.

With so much weed terminology out there, one thing you should know is: How will this affect me? Though the layman’s terms of Sativa, Indica and Hybrid worked back in the day it doesn’t mean it works now. There’s ongoing research happening and it’s essential that our market reflect that.

Dr. Ethan Russo, MD states,

“It is essential that future commerce allows complete and accurate cannabinoid and terpenoid profiles to be available. The Cannabis industry would be better off labeling products by the top 3 terpenes and percentages as well as cannabinoids percentages than misleading consumers and patients with generalized terms like sativa, indica and hybrid”.

So, let us know, do you still think you prefer Sativa during the day?

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