Everything You Need To Know About Sativa

Sative is one of the two main types of cannabis, with Indica being the other. Sativa strains are known to help keep you active while working and exercising. This is something you’d hear often from dispensaries, budtenders, or online. There’s more that goes into Sativa and cannabis than what’s being said. Differences between Indica and Sativa Article

What exactly is Sativa?

Sativa or Cannabis sativa is an annual herbaceous flowering plant that is indigenous to Eastern Asia. Sativa plants have their characteristics, they are tall and skinny, with light green leaves and slim plants. The leaflets are slim, with flowers that shed pollen in the case of male plants. Sativa plants grow in warm humid climates, which gives them their physical traits to not absorb much humidity but also requires time for them to produce buds.

Sativa is a name that originated in 1785 from Jean-Baptise Lamarck, who published a description for the second species of cannabis. The reason Cannabis Sativa is a name for this species of plant specimen is due to the Latin word Sativa meaning “things that are cultivated”. The naming of the species has more to do with taxonomy (the science of naming, describing, and classifying plants, animals, and organisms), rather than the actual effects and chemical makeup of the plant.

The naming convention of the plant is still used nowadays and is a common way of describing its strains and effects of it. However, the cannabis industry wants to move away from this naming system. As it’s not accurate to the effects the plants produce. To do this you’d need to get into the chemical makeup of the plants.

sativa plant
sativa chemicals

What chemicals are in Sativa?

Being a type of cannabis plant, Sativa will have the following chemical makeup:

  • THC is the main psychoactive compound that you’ll find in cannabis plants. This is what gives you the “high”, or euphoric feeling that you get when consuming cannabis. The level of THC in a cannabis plant can vary.
  • CBD is another compound, while not considered a psychoactive, it does give a relaxing effect that aids in reducing anxiety. CBD also has the benefits of reducing pain and nausea, easing migraines, and even showing promise in preventing seizures.
  • CBN or Cannabinol is a chemical compound that helps treat symptoms and side effects from epilepsy, seizures, and uncontrolled muscle stiffness.
  • THCA or Tetrahydrocannabinol acid is like THC without the psychoactive effects. It does benefit by reducing symptoms from Parkinson’s and ALS, and also reducing inflammation from arthritis and some autoimmune diseases.
  • CBG or Cannabigerol is another chemical compound that is considered to help with anxiety, symptoms of OCD, PTSD, and depression.

Terpenes are naturally occurring compounds that are found in cannabis plants. While terpenes are first thought to affect the aroma of a plant, the terpenes present in a plant can also have effects. These can range from pain and inflammation reduction to relaxation and mood improvement.

These chemicals are present in Sativa plants, although the specific chemicals, and terpenes present and their levels can vary depending on the strain. For Sativas the THC content of the plant will be higher compared to its CBD content. Although to get more detail into the chemical profile of a strain will require lab testing. Generally, strains come with their chemical profiles for more detailed information.

sativa effects

What kind of effects does Sativa have?

    • Dry mouth
    • Dry Eyes
    • Dizziness
    • Anxiety
    • Paranoia
    • Lethargy
    • Increased heart rate
    • Decreased blood pressure.Sativa is often the type to help you get energetic and productive. You’ll often hear these effects being used to describe Sativa’s effects recreationally:
      • Sativa has an energizing effect, making it suitable for daytime use, or when you have activities planned that require attention.
      • Sativa produces a “mind high” which energizes, but also reduces anxiety. This is what helps with making you feel creative and productive.  Cannabidiol (CBD) Understanding the Benefits and Risks Article

      With that, you’d get the idea that Sativa-strains are great for when you want to get creative and busy. While it may be easy to look at the main effects. There are also side effects to consider when consuming cannabis:

It should be noted that these effects are linked to THC, rather than other chemicals. Which is much more present in Sativa-type strains. You should also consider the way you consume cannabis. Smoking and vaping will also affect your lungs and airways compared to taking cannabis orally. So it’s worth looking into which way of consuming cannabis will work best for you.

How can I consume Sativa?

There are multiple ways you can consume Sativa. The most common way is by smoking it. Smoking is one of the fastest ways to feel the effects of chemical compounds. This can be done by rolling joints, blunts, or spliffs. Using pipes such as bubbles, chillums, and dugouts. Bongs can also be another alternative for smoking cannabis.

You can also consume cannabis by cooking with it. There are a variety of recipes that you can use to consume cannabis orally, with brownies and gummies being popular. The effects will take longer to kick in, as the compounds will have to be digested first. The flip side is that the effects are likely to be much more potent.

When consuming any cannabis product, it’s important to understand these points:

  • Know what you’re looking for, whether you are looking for something specific like insomnia or anxiety relief or just recreational use. CBD Hash for Anxiety: Does it Really Work Article
  • Your medical history can play a part in how cannabis affects your body. If you’re on medication and/or have an existing medical condition. Checking with a doctor or another healthcare professional is a good way of finding out the benefits and risks.
  • Your tolerance can mean the difference between a strain being too light, or too strong. Some strains are meant for lower tolerances, starting with them will make the effects much more manageable and enjoyable.

Ultimately it’d be up to you how you would like to consume Sativa. Just remember to go about it safely and responsibly. You’re looking to enjoy the benefits, not end up regretting it.


Cannabis products aren’t legal everywhere in the United States. While some states have legalized cannabis for medical and recreational use, the laws are constantly changing. Generally states that allow medical cannabis products are specific about their THC content. You should check the laws in your state regarding the legality of cannabis products and their use. Federally, cannabis is still illegal and you can face legal consequences if you don’t know the legality of it. Keep in mind that outside of the United States, you are subject to different laws. Whats Hemp Used For Article


Sativa is one of the two main types of cannabis that you’d find on the market. While the name is synonymous with the energizing high it gives. Its chemical profile and the benefits they provide are much more complex. If you’re looking to try a Sativa strain, it’d be worth looking into the legality of the product in your area. Along with the possible health benefits and potential risks when consuming it.

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