If you’re familiar with sativa, indica and hybrid, you understand that for the most part a sativa heavy strain will give you an energetic boost and an indica will mellow you out, but these terms are merely a classification of the region of origin. Sativa is usually grown at or near the equator, indica in the mountains or the harsh terrain, and hybrids are a man-made mix of the two. Each individual strain–whether it be a sativa, indica, or hybrid–can deliver a completely unique experience. Have you ever wondered why some strains have a more intoxicating effect than others? The answer to this does not lie in the cannabinoid content alone, it is in part, the terpenes.
Each and every cannabis strain will produce a different terpene profile, these profiles are what make up the essential oils of the plant. There have been over 200 different terpenes identified within cannabis itself, and each strain has a unique complex profile made up of several different combinations of terpenes. Terpenes are found in all plants, and their full medical benefits are still unknown to us.
Some of the most prevalent in cannabis are Pinene, Myrcene, Limonene and Linalool. Each one of these terpenes will produce a different effect on the body. One of the classifications of an indica strain is the presence of Myrcene. Myrcene is one of the more sought after terpenes for very obvious reasons: it allows the body’s blood-brain barrier to “relax” creating a cascading effect of THC flooding the bloodstream, allowing your body to fully saturate itself. This increases the intensity and length of your high and creates the couch lock indica strains are known for. It’s also commonly found in citrus fruit. You can eat some ripe mangos 30 mins beforehand to receive some additional benefits.
Limonene is also present in most sativa strains. It provides you with the energetic buzz you feel after your wake and bake sesh. It’s also the reason so many of the sativa strains smell like citrus or fruit. I love smoking anything with Limonene and Pinene throughout the day to help me stay focused and energized.
The more you dive into the benefits and effects of terpenes, the more precise and consistent your smoking experiences will be. Eventually, you will find what specific terpenes help you achieve your desired results. With all the hybridization of sativa and indica strains, more unique terpene profiles are created. You may find an indica strain that helps with breathing and inflammation, without the couch lock or sleepy side effects. Or, you’ll find a sativa strain that delivers a potent pain numbing body buzz, all the while filling you with energy. Keep an open mind–don’t limit yourself to a strain solely based on the region of its lineage. Take the time to find out what you’re consuming and what works best for you. You’ll thank yourself.