Even if you’re not an expert in cannabis strains, you’ve probably heard that Indica has more of a calming, sleepy effect while sativa is stimulating and can perk you up. This is an oversimplification of the two strains and how cannabis works in general. If strain isn’t the only thing that determines how sleepy a cannabis product makes you, then what is?
Myrcene is the dominant terpene in Indica strains. Originating in Afghanistan and the Kush mountains, myrcene is known for its sedative properties. But here’s where things get tricky. Myrcene levels can vary, and sometimes sativa products will be labeled as Indica because they have more myrcene and make someone more sleepy.
THC and CBD Content
Myrcene isn’t the only chemical compound that can increase the calming and sedative effect of cannabis. Levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) also play an important role with moderate to high levels being more likely to produce a sedative effect. When it comes to THC, many Indicas contain higher levels compared to other strains. Again, there is variation, but this means consumers might prefer a higher THC level if they use cannabis to sleep. On the other hand, those users who want a more uplifting experience from their cannabis might avoid Indica products that contain more THC.
Furthermore, Indica cannabis strains that come from certain regions, including Afghan, Hindu Kush, and Tibet, are more likely to contain higher levels of cannabidiol (CBD) than comparable sativa products. Because high doses of CBD can make you tired, this further contributes to Indica’s reputation as a good option for those seeking better sleep.
Of course, cannabis contains other chemicals that can make you feel more or less energetic, and the relationship between those compounds is complex because they can each exist in different levels. To further complicate things, every person has a unique endocannabinoid system (ECS), which impacts how their body and mind will respond to different cannabis products and strains.
If you’re interested in using cannabis but don’t want to feel tired, look for strains with lower levels of THC and CBD. Avoid products with high doses of THC and tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV) because the combination could make you feel sleepier. And instead of myrcene and other sedative terpenes, consider strains and products that contain terpinolene, limonene, pinene, beta-caryophyllene, or eucalyptol, all of which are all known to be energizing.
If a product contains both sedative and stimulating terpenes, you may experience an initial boost that’s followed by sleepiness. For some people, this is the perfect mix.
No matter why you use cannabis, the experienced team at All Greens AZ is happy to find the product that best meets your needs.