Head high vs body high - Differences and effects

Published Jan 29, 2019 01:48 p.m. ET

 Cannabis can affect you in a multitude of ways, from the most notorious euphoric, psychedelic effects to the lightest high energy buzz. Each strain of marijuana produces its own chemical concoction made up of hundreds of cannabinoids. The cannabinoids we look at the most are CBD, THC, and terpenes. All of these will change the individual plant’s effects on a person when it is consumed. CBD for its medicinal effects, THC for its psychoactive benefits and terpenes are responsible for not only the smell but also the taste of a marijuana plant. While there is no way to say precisely how each strain will affect you, each strain does have specific qualities its known for which can give you a bit of predictability when selecting one to suit your needs.

What Is A Body High?

The Indica variety is most widely known for its body buzz. A body high is described as a relaxed and calming feeling. This is the one that will put you to sleep for the night and is recommended for those who suffer from sleep issues such as insomnia. Most sought after by those looking for an intense more stereotypical experience when using cannabis and commonly found among strains prescribed for chronic pain and inflammation. It could make you tingle all over or feel nothing at all, but one thing is for sure, a body high is the most sought-after effect.

What Is A Head High?

Sativa is usually the one responsible for the lighter, more uplifting head high. A head high will allow you to keep a clear mind and stay active. A head high is most known for its incredibly positive mood-altering effects and often recommended to those who suffer from depression or anxiety. A head buzz may be most enjoyable for those who want to stay active while still partaking. A head high is sought after by most outdoor enthusiasts to relax while remaining alert.

Different Types of Weed Highs


An incredible thing about marijuana plants is how unique each plant is. While for the most part strains will have an average production of certain chemicals, what is produced depends on the health of the plant and the nutrients it was provided with during essential growth stages. While we can separate the two most well-known “types” of high, there are a variety of strains that can offer both effects to a user. Strains such as Indica/Sativa hybrids are usually bred for unique parent qualities that result in a higher quality designer bud.


The most important determining factor of how a specific strain will affect you is the chemical compounds. However, it seems dosage plays just as big of a role in the overall effects a user may feel. Consuming any cannabis in large quantities is most likely to end in a body high. One that makes you feel groggy, thirsty, hungry, and tired. If you want to stay more alert than rather than trying a different strain, simply scaling back the amount you consume may be enough to produce the desired effects.

Why Does Cannabis Get You High?

In its natural raw state marijuana will not get you high, despite what some people think. This is because the chemical compound THC-A needs to be converted into THC through the decarboxylation process. Decarboxylating is done when the dried herb is heated to a temperature of at least 220F. Once cooked the cannabis can produce the psychoactive effects users expect. In the late 1980’s a cannabinoid receptor in the brain was first discovered. This was the first evidence to suggest that our brains have a naturally occurring neurotransmitter very similar to those we see in marijuana. The neurotransmitter Anandamide is responsible for making people feel good and controls the body’s natural pain management, appetite, memory, and fertility. Cannabinoids in cannabis bind our receptors which in turn gets us high. The buzz produced by the cannabis plant is not yet an exact science and requires much more extensive research. While we do know that Indica plants have their known effects as do Sativa, we do not understand why that is, or why some people report feeling differently. Personal sensitivities cannot be measured, and beyond knowing our receptors interact with weed to get us high, not much else is understood. The best way right now to find out for sure how a plant will affect you will be through personal experience and experimentation.



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