Cannabinoids are the chemicals found in marijuana and their derivatives. A single molecule of this chemical is enough to intoxicate anyone, making cannabis a very popular recreational drug. There are two species of cannabis; cannabis sativa, which produce the famous “pot” variety of marijuana and cannabis indica which produce the cannabis type known as weed.
Cannabinoids are grown and genetically manipulated into other various strains. Two of the more popular strains are cannabis sativa, which are often used in the production of marijuana cigarettes, and cannabis indica, which are often used as a recreational substance. While there have been many claims by enthusiasts about the differences between these two strains, most experts and researchers agree that they most likely only contain a slight difference of a chemical composition. But which one is better for you?
Both plants contain cannabidiol, the active ingredient in marijuana that causes the “high”. The differences come from the way they are harvested, dried and processed. cannabis sativa is picked, cured and smoked while marijuana indica is processed differently. Harvesting the plant at a later stage causes a more natural product, which is why some users report a more potent high when using marijuana indica than when using cannabis sativa.
The two plants can be used interchangeably but there are some major differences between them. Sativa is slightly more potent than cannabis. It contains fewer naturally occurring cannabidiol than cannabis. Although it is less potent, it has less harmful side effects than cannabis, and it has been found to be more beneficial in helping people who suffer from debilitating medical conditions such as cancer and glaucoma. However, some strains of cannabis sativa have been known to cause a rare type of side effect that can be fatal.
Some countries have legalised the recreational use of cannabis sativa, while other countries criminalise it. For example, in the United Kingdom, cannabis is considered to be a form of illegal drug paraphernalia. However, cannabis use is often tolerated in the home among adults, especially in public places such as bars and nightclubs. This form of personal use is often regulated by private citizens through the use of cannabis possession laws, which allow for a certain amount of cannabis leaf to be possessed by an adult without penalty. The same applies to those who grow cannabis plants inside their homes.
Scientists are beginning to understand more about the healing properties of cannabis sativa. It appears that although cannabidiol, the main component in the plant, is the active ingredient, other compounds in the plant may help the body fight off certain diseases. Some plants, including the Indian rhubarb, appear to aid in chemotherapy by reducing lung inflammation. While the exact mechanisms by which the plant helps combat disease is not known, one thing is clear: there are far fewer side effects from using or consuming cannabis than there are from taking prescription or over-the-counter medications.
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