Known as the social cannabis strain, sativa is famous for its energizing effects on the user, as it delivers a “high” that promotes creativity, activity and sociability. The sativa strain continues to be favored by most growers for its uplifting effects, and it is often most popular among those who consume cannabis on a social basis and to get “high,” rather than for medicinal purposes (it usually contains much higher levels of THC than CBD).
If you’re interested in learning more about sativa – specifically which sativa strains come up the strongest in terms of potency – then you’ve certainly come to the right place! Below, you’ll find the top 5 best sativa strains ever!
What Is a Sativa Strain?
First, though, before we jump straight into the top 5, let’s get a better idea of what “strains” actually are, and specifically what a sativa strain is.
Basically, a marijuana strain is some slight variation of the cannabis plant, which goes by the scientific name Cannabis sativa L. Traditionally, there are three recognized cannabis strains: indica, sativa and hybrid. The sativa strain is believed to have originated from Africa, Asia, and South and Central America, and can be found naturally in a wide range of countries such as Mexico, Brazil, Thailand, and Cambodia.
The sativa strain, like the other cannabis strains, has been developed and genetically bred over the centuries to promote specific characteristics of the plant. While indica is generally known for its sedative high and potentially couch-locking side effects, sativa works to promote energy, a high level of self –worth, and is even known to increase focus and creativity. Hybrid strains, as you might guess, contain a mix of both indica and sativa traits – they’re often the most popular amongst regular users, as they tend to provide the best of both worlds!
The sativa strain produces many benefits, and is often associated with the treatment of mental health conditions such as depression, as it creates an energetic and uplifting effect for the user. The sativa strain has also been historically great for boosting appetite, in addition to providing an often spacey and cerebral high.
What medical conditions are the sativa strain commonly used to treat?
Depression is the most common mental disorder in the world, and to combat this there are thousands of treatments to choose from, from cognitive therapy treatment to heavy-duty prescription drugs. The vast majority of prescribed medications come with a lengthy list of side effects, though, as well as high risks for addiction and severe withdrawal symptoms if the user chooses to stop taking them abruptly.
However, there is a solution — cannabis! As we know, CBD has huge benefits on a user’s mental health, and in particular, the sativa strain has been used to combat many conditions, one of which is depression. While sativa does contain THC (which produces a “high” and can promote negative side effects like paranoia and anxiety in heavy doses), the high level of CBD in some strains has been recognized to help control psychoactivity, and thus provide the user with a mellow, uplifting experience.
A study done in 2015, for example, has shown that when stressed, depressed or anxious, our brain is less able to produce the chemical that combats feelings of depression. As we know, the many compounds that makeup marijuana work with our body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS) to promote the production of these chemicals, thus combating feelings of depression when consumed.
Perhaps a less obvious condition when we consider the proven health benefits of marijuana, sativa strains have been known to for years to be excellent at increasing appetite. Anorexia, believe it or not, is much more prevalent in today’s society than one would initially think. It’s been shown, in fact, that an estimated 91% of women will attempt to control their weight with a diet at least once in their lifetime. Of this 91%, a massive 25% of them will go on to develop some sort of eating disorder.
Of course, anorexia affects both men and women and is usually treated with psychological therapy in conjunction with a regimented food plan. However, if medication is prescribed, it tends to be in the form of dangerous anti-depressants. When anorexia becomes debilitating or severe enough to the point where the victim puts their health at risk, this often the only practical solution, even if the medications are dangerously addictive.
Fortunately, this is another area where sativa marijuana strains have been shown to be highly effective and therapeutic; in most instances, the user will feel like they might be able to eat anything and everything in sight, even with just a puff or two of a joint!
While this is of course referred to as “the munchies,” historical data and clinical studies has shown that there actually is a science behind it!
Essentially, increased appetite due to marijuana consumption all comes down to our ECS, which is responsible for controlling so many aspects of our body. When consumed, the cannabinoids in cannabis attach to our CB1 and CB2 receptors, boosting levels of dopamine and leading to an increase in appetite.
Research done in 2012 showed that anorexic behavior can actually cause the ECS to malfunction temporarily, however when cannabis is consumed it not only increases appetite, but it also is believed to actually alter the mind’s response to food. This, of course, could have a huge positive impact on anorexia sufferers, as a major part of the condition stems from the brain’s negative response to food.
In short, these are just two of the conditions that sativa strains have been known to combat. However, many other positive effects on our bodies can come from the frequent use of sativa as a therapeutic medication.
What is the difference between an Indica strain and a Sativa strain?
There are many differences between indica and sativa strains. From their appearance to the effects they have on the body, it wouldn’t be far off to say that the two are actually quite opposite in their nature! Marijuana strains can range on a spectrum from ‘pure’ sativa to ‘pure’ indica (in addition of course to hybrid strains), and depending on the desired effects, people can choose a specific strain that will provide certain health benefits. While we know Sativa strains are great for promoting productivity, movement and creativity (making them a great “daytime” marijuana strain), indica strains boast an immensely sedative body high which is perfect for inducing sleep and taking in the evening before bed.
Like sativa, indica strains come with a long list of medicinal benefits, including the relief of spasms, seizures, anxiety, stress, chronic pain, headaches, and even menstrual cramps! The main reason behind indica’s portfolio of health benefits is largely down to its often-high CBD content.
In appearance the plants are actually quite different, with indica typically being no taller than 4 feet, and sativa towering to a massive 20+ feet high! Also, the leaves on indica strains tend to be much shorter and stubbier than those on sativa, which are usually long and narrow.
Like we said earlier, even though indica and sativa strains both have their unique characteristics, it’s actually the hybrid strains that tend to be most popular among average users, as they provide the best benefits from both these different strains and ultimately filter out the undesired side-effects of each!
The 5 Best Sativa Cannabis Strains Ever!!!
Okay – so now that the background information is done with, let’s get down to the main event. Below, you’ll find a roundup of the 5 best sativa strains on the market! It was a difficult task to narrow it all down to just 5, but without further ado, here they are:
#1 – The World Famous Strain: Jack Herer
The multi-award winning Jack Herer is a sativa-dominant hybrid strain that’s actually traditionally only about 55% sativa. It leaves you in a state of blissful happiness and, given that it contains on average around 15-24% THC with a low level of CBD (around 1-2%), is a strain that’s guaranteed to deliver!
The strain’s namesake was actually an advocate for the legalization of cannabis, and in honor of his life, Mr. Herer has been immortalized forever in this insanely popular strain!
It boasts a super spicy aroma and delivers a sensory treat with cold tones that will definitely cool you down, making it highly desired by those suffering from lung problems, as the cooling sensation can be incredibly relieving.
If you’re looking for a buzz that won’t result in a heavy comedown, then Jack Herer is your man!
#2 – The Espresso Strain: Durban Poison
This super-potent strain is known as a pure sativa, and offers a hard-hitting high that will be sure to energize you! If you are looking for a high that could be compared to having dozens of espresso shots all at once, then this is the strain for you!
Incredibly energizing, Durban Poison is best known for its creative boost that is perfect for daytime consumption and getting you off to a productive start! THC levels in this strain have been known to reach a whopping 24%, which makes it one of the stronger strains on the market.
Also, with a distinctive sweet and spicy aroma that has some fruity notes, Durban Poison is renowned for its happy head high, and also comes with a few medicinal benefits such as migraine-relief, increased appetite, and anti-emetic properties!
#3 – The Comical Strain: Hawaiian Snow
Hawaiian Snow is 80% sativa to 20% indica, so the effects on offer range from uplifting and cerebral to incredibly energizing! This strain is regularly suggested to those who suffer from anxiety and depression, and is renowned for its ability to elevate moods.
With up to 24% THC levels, it’s another strong one and users can expect to feel a rush of energy and creativity when consuming this strain. With scents often compared to incense, the rich eucalyptus aroma delivers an underlying citrusy note that’s appealing in more ways than one.
Also, it’s most famous for its ability to send the user into a state of uncontrollable giggles, so proceed with caution for this particular strain! All in all though the results speak for themselves, as Hawaiian Snow has won 4 awards over the past few years – definitely a famous sativa worth trying!
#4 – The Hard Hitter Strain: Moby Dick
Designed specifically to provide a strong medicinal benefit, Moby Dick scores high on the THC front with levels up to 27%. This makes for one hell of a high that will leave users feeling spaced out and euphoric at the same time!
At 75% sativa, Moby Dick promises a focused and creative high. However, the high levels of THC have been known to promote a level of laziness, as this strain delivers a pleasant body numbing sensation with a strong – and sometimes trippy – vibe.
In terms of therapeutic relief, Moby Dick has been used to help with stress, anxiety and depression, and is excellent for those who suffer from anorexia – it delivers an insatiable appetite!
With citrusy aromas and a pleasant vanilla flavour, this strain is ideal if you’re looking for a high that packs a punch!
#5 – The Smooth Strain: Amnesia Haze
Newbies, approach with caution: Amnesia haze is an incredibly strong strain that offers around 24% THC and effects taking place almost immediately!
Being 70% sativa-dominant, this strain provides feelings of sharpened focus and motivation, but also comes with a powerful body and head high that leads to some intense psychotropic effects.
Great for daytime consumption, Amnesia Haze often leads to feelings of euphoria and provides an energetic, uplifted mood. Sufferers of depression, stress or anxiety may look to this strain for relief as it is guaranteed to brighten up their day!
Choosing the right strain for you is an incredibly personal process, but there’s no doubt that you can expect positive energy from almost all the sativa strains out there. If motivation and a drive to achieve is what you need, then any of the above would be fantastic options! Likewise, anyone looking for relief from depression or something to improve their overall mood can expect great results when using sativa and sativa dominant strains.