Body High vs. Head High

by Emjay

Weed comes in both daytime and nighttime varieties.

Each variety of daytime and nighttime weed claims to boast its own specific effects. You’ll notice that most daytime weeds, or sativas, are usually associated with head highs. Most nighttime weeds, or indicas, claim to produce a body high effect. 

The sun’s position in the sky doesn’t necessarily dictate what you should be smoking and when. 

It all depends on whether you’d do better with a head high or a body high at any given moment. You might do better with a head high at night if you’re out socializing or playing music. 

A body high might be better during the day after you’ve just had a strenuous workout. 

Understanding the differences between the effects of the two highs will help you determine which is better for the goal you’re trying to achieve, and most importantly, which strains you should stock up on. 

What is a head high?

Any high that energizes you or stimulates your mind is a head high. 

Head highs are usually the result of sativa strains or sativa dominant hybrids. Cannabis users who are busy or have activities planned tend to lean towards head highs. 

A good head high might inspire you to get up and walk around more or participate in an activity that engages your passions. 

When a head high is a good choice:

  • You’re doing something creative — like playing music or painting
  • When you’re in a social situation and want to talk to people
  • When you need to do something boring that you wish was more fun
  • When you’re doing something “trippy” — like watching a surreal movie or listening to jam music. 
  • When you want to microdose for a little lift while you’re working on a project 

What is a body high?

Body highs are tied to indica strains and indica dominant hybrids.

This is the kind of high that relaxes you. Your head won’t feel busy and you may not feel as creative, and that’s exactly how you want to feel when it’s time for a nap. 

If you’re tense, anxious, or stressed, a body high will do more to help you unwind. You won’t be getting off the couch for a while. 

When a body high is a good choice:

  • When you want to go to sleep
  • When you have stress tension in your body — like after a workout or a minor injury
  • When you’re doing sedentary calming activities — like reading, meditating, or taking a long bath
photo by esteban lopez on unsplash_body high vs head high

The differences between Sativa and Indica

With over 1,000 strains of cannabis, some varieties are more appropriate for recreational use than others. Indica and sativa plants differ not only in appearance but also in their physiological effect. 

Sativa cannabis

Sativa grows incredibly tall and has thin, pointy leaves. The buds tend to be long and fluffier, covered in little orange tendrils. It’s an absolute mammoth of a plant that’s very bright in color. 

Most sativas contain a substantial amount of THC and a minor amount of CBD. CBD is what relaxes the body, and THC is what gets you high. 

This is likely the reason they’ve developed a reputation as a head-high weed. The body doesn’t feel sedated when CBD presence is minimal. 

Indica cannabis

Indica plants are very short and bushy. They tend to grow more in width than height. Their leaves are large and stubby, which is why indica is referred to as broadleaf type cannabis. 

Some indica plants are higher in CBD and lower in THC than most popular sativa strains, although this isn’t always the case.

Indica that gives you a body high is often referred to as “purple weed.” 

Any weed that references purple or grapes in the name is generally a lower THC and higher CBD content. Purple Urkle, and its child strains like Granddaddy Purps and Lavender Jones, are often revered for their ability to promote relaxation. 

These strains are purple due to the naturally occurring anthocyanin compounds within the plant. This is the same natural compound that lends blueberries their color. 

The theory is that the plant spends a lot of energy manufacturing and using anthocyanin, which reduces its energetic capacity to produce more THC. 

What about hybrids?

It’s worth noting that almost all strains are technically hybrids. 

There’s almost nothing left that’s pure in lineage since growers tended to work in clandestine conditions to produce the strains we all know and love. 

Genetics weren’t often well preserved. There’s going to be a little bit of sativa in even the hardest-hitting indicas. You’ll find a twinge of indica in highly stimulating sativas. 

The weeds we call hybrids have a genetic balance closer to the centerline of the spectrum.

Hybrids can be indica leaning (like Wedding Cake), Sativa leaning (like Blue Dream), or well-balanced (like Gelato). The idea behind a hybrid is that it shouldn’t pull you too far in one direction, either in terms of a head high or a body high. 

An indica-leaning hybrid may be more relaxing without leaving you feeling glued to the couch. A sativa-leaning hybrid might put a little more pep in your step without making you a social butterfly or an impromptu fantasy novelist. A well-balanced hybrid will give you a little bit of everything. 

The mood you’re in when you smoke and the tasks you handle or activities you participate in will do more to dictate how you actually feel. 

Finding your go-to strain

Everyone has their tried and true strain that makes them feel the effects and experience the benefits they desire. Your lifestyle, habits, and concerns will play a major role in determining whether a body high or a head high will work better for you. 

Medical cannabis patients who live with pain often report that the body high of an indica provides them with more relief. Very busy people, like active professionals, tend to gravitate towards sativas. Sativas will keep them energized and focused when they’re at work on a project or even cleaning the house. 

Before you decide on a strain, consider what you want your weed to do for you. If you’re new to weed, it might be helpful to start with an evenly balanced hybrid. Larry Bird and OG Kush are both reliable tried and true hybrids that appeal to a wide audience. 

After you assess how the hybrid makes you feel, you might find that you’re happy with what you have. 

If you wish you were a little more energetic, try a sativa leaning hybrid. If you wish you were a little more relaxed, try an indica leaning hybrid. If you want to push the effects all the way to one end of the spectrum, go all in. 

Pick a stronger indica or a stronger sativa. 

The takeaway

There’s a time and a place for every kind of high, but most people find that either head highs or body highs are more conducive to their lifestyle or reasons for using cannabis. If you’re not sure what would work best for you, experimenting is part of the fun. 

You can read reviews of strains if you’re not sure where to start. People love rating the strains they’ve tried and reporting the effects they’ve experienced. Although everyone is different, seeing what the majority of reviewers think of a strain may lead you in the right direction. 

If you’re using weed for medical purposes, your doctor may advise you on what kind of cannabis would work better for your particular concern. Most medical cannabis patients seeking relief from physical conditions tend to prefer indicas. People with mental health conditions like depression may be fond of the way that sativas make them feel uplifted. 

Emjay is here to help you find the right strain. We have hundreds of cannabis products to choose from in every form you could possibly desire. Drop a few that look appealing into your cart and place your order. 

We’ll be at your house in half an hour with your self-curated weed buffet.

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