Head High or Body High: What’s the Difference?

With cannabis becoming a staple for those who would like to medicate naturally, there are lots of questions surrounding what effects cannabis has on our bodies. The cannabis sativa plant is more than just your average weed, it’s a medicine. The indica vs sativa comparisons are a good place to start when maneuvering to a plant-based regimen. But what’s the difference between a body high and head high?



The “body high” refers to a buzzing sensation felt in the person’s body. This sensation isn’t reserved to the head nor is it reserved for the upper body.

Instead, it spreads from head to toe and is a unique feeling people mention as being exhilarating.

According to studies on this subject, the body high is often associated with indica dominant strains, which can include a number of options such as death bubba and pink death to name a few. However, a body high can come from a sativa dominant strain depending on which one it is.

The reason indica dominant strains are likelier to cause a body high has to do with their effect on the nervous system. It is not as hard-hitting, which means it’s a more spread out sensation that’s ideal for “on the go” scenarios.

For example, if a person were to prepare for the rest of the day but want to smoke for a bit, this is the strain that’s best-suited to your needs.

Otherwise, it’s not as easy to go ahead with everything else, which is why people enjoy the body high.

Body highs are better for physical ailments

Indicas deep relaxation inducing qualities are a perfect match for medical marijuana patients who suffer from chronic pain, muscle spasms, migraines, insomnia and a host of other conditions.

Mind highs work better for those who suffer from mental conditions. While indicas may be better for treating anxiety, depression, attention-deficit, and behavioral disorders benefit more from sativa use due to its ability to increase focus and stimulate creativity.



Indica dominant strains, such as Guerilla Glue, aren’t gentle when it comes to the body high. In fact, they can pack a punch with the buzzing sensation according to cannabis enthusiasts. This is why a lot of people enjoy trying these strains later in the day when they can go straight to sleep.

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There are many examples where people will go to sleep and still feel a bit of the buzz the next morning depending on how early they wake up!


On the opposite end of the spectrum would be a traditional “head high.”

The head high is something that’s not just about your head. In fact, it has to do with how the THC (see what makes it different than CBD) in a cannabis strain interacts with your body. With this type of high, you are more likely to see it in a sativa dominant strain as it often goes straight to the head.

Of course, this doesn’t mean it isn’t going to appear in different manners. For example, some people will still point to a sudden burst of paranoia where they start doubting their surroundings, while others don’t notice this at all.

The mind high produces immediate mood altering effects

Soon after one or two good hits (more for high-tolerance smokers) feelings of euphoria, energy and pleasure overwhelm the brain. Glassy, red eyes ensue as a range of psychoactive effects take place straight out the gate.

Sativas offer a higher CBD content, which produces highly-stimulating effects that result in alertness and optimism, thus making them perfect for daytime use.

A body high, however, induces primarily physical effects. Indicas offer higher concentrations of THC which have a sedative effect. Common characteristics of a body high are: feelings of lethargy (couch-locked), clumsiness, awkwardness walking/standing, tingling, heightened physical sensitivity and heightened sexual awareness.

Altered mental perception vs. heightened physical sensations

Mind highs are often accompanied by a noticeable enhancement of certain mental processes like creativity and connection-building for example. There is also an increase in aural and visual capacity that seems to breathe new life into even the most mundane activities.

Sativa users are capable of high-functioning physical and mental activities including exercise and artistic creation among many others.

Body highs however, tend to leave tokers a lot less functional. Body highs are notorious for producing bouts of incredible laziness, feelings of paralysis, heaviness, numbness and even out-of-body experiences.

Mind highs are likely to increase your heart rate

According to Webmd, “smoking pot can increase your heart rate by as much as two times for up to three hours.” This increased blood flow enhances the psychoactive effects produced by the brain. For some smokers, an elevated heart rate can cause feelings of panic and actually induce anxiety rather than provide relief.

Under the influence of a body high of a body high, it is more common to feel your heart rate slowing down and/or pounding. Indicas are generally a better option for anxiety relief than sativas as they naturally calm the body and reduce the manifestations of stress.



The best strains to get a head high would be Amnesia or Jack Herer because they pack a punch and don’t take a lot to cause a high. People that use these strains claim the best part about a head high is how euphoric it makes you feel as soon as it works.

There’s a sudden rush of energy that goes through the body, which is impossible to mimic with other variations.

There’s a certain intensity that is charming with these strains. In many cases, a lot of people end up using sativa dominant strains to sit down and study as they ignore everything else. It allows them to concentrate in a manner that is outstanding and unique.

No wonder many religions and cultures have used marijuana to meditate and connect with their inner selves for millennia.

It’s all about taking the time to try both and figure things out on your own. This is when the right decision is made based on what you prefer. In fact, sometimes it comes down to what is available to you at the moment and the situation you’re in

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