Strain Type: Indica (90%)
Dominant Terpenes: Myrcene, Caryophyllene, Pinene
Cannabinoid Content: THC: 15-21%| CBD: 4-6% / CBN: 1% / CBG 1%
Popular for Treating: Stress, Anxiety, Depression, Insomnia, Pain, PTSD, Migraines
Positive Effects: Euphoric, Giggly, Relaxed,
Negative Effects: Dry Mouth, Dry Eyes, Dizzy
Overall 4.6/5: If you’re looking for a strong body high, clear-headed euphoria, and total relaxation, you can’t go wrong with this classic indica strain.
Afghan Kush is a classic, 90% indica strain beloved for its ultra-relaxing, euphoric effects and pronounced body high. With predominantly sedating effects, Afghan Kush is popular for nighttime or evening use, whether you’re seeking a good night’s rest or hoping to unwind from the day’s worries, kick back, and relax. Recreationally, Afghan Kush is a favorite among consumers seeking a relaxing, long-lasting body high combined with euphoria and a sense of overall contentment.
And medically, Afghan Kush is beloved for a wide variety of physical and mental health benefits. With 4-6% CBD, CBN, and CBG, Afghan Kush is popular for managing symptoms of pain, insomnia, depression, anxiety, and much more.
Below, we discuss the full range of effects and benefits associated with Afghan Kush, providing everything you need to know about this sativa hybrid. In collecting this information, we’ve combined hundreds of reviews from real consumers, with scientific studies on its dominant terpenes, to help patients decide whether this strain is right for them.
By synthesizing the scientifically-backed benefits of this strain’s compounds with feedback from real consumers, we aim to offer a more holistic, informative strain review than others available online.
Strain Characteristics & Cannabinoid Content
Afghan Kush is a 90% indica strain known for its thick, blunt-tipped flowers and heavy trichome coating. With THC as well as CBD, CBN, and CBG, Afghan Kush offers recreational effects as well as a wide variety of medical benefits.
Afghan Kush Genetics
Afghan Kush originates from the Hindu mountain range near the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, where its flowers have developed heavy trichome coatings to protect its flowers under harsh, mountainous growing conditions. Originally grown in the wild, this strain and its genetics has been perfected over centuries, and seeds are now available for growers to produce Afghan Kush nationwide.
Smell, Taste, and Appearance
Due to its mountainous origins, Afghan Kush’s appearance is marked by a thick, heavy trichome coating that covers its buds in resinous crystals packed with cannabinoids and terpenes. Its buds are dense with blunted tips, and have a dark green appearance with hints of orange due to its fiery red pistils.
Afghan Kush’s effects are consistent with the benefits of its dominant terpenes: myrcene, caryophyllene, and pinene. Terpenes are naturally-occurring compounds that give cannabis strains and other plants their distinctive aromas, while offering therapeutic benefits often harnessed in essential oils.
Why Terpenes Matter
Alongside cannabinoids, terpenes are key contributors to the distinctive characteristics of each strain. Different cannabis strains have different terpene profiles, which is why the high you experience from marijuana may differ from one strain to the next. The terpenes in Afghan Kush are known predominantly for their relaxing, stress-relieving, mood-boosting, and pain-reducing effects.
When selecting the right strain for you, it’s important to pay attention to terpene content. Most cannabis terpenes have been widely studied for their unique effects and benefits, and are linked to various therapeutic properties. By keeping track of the terpenes in your favorite strains, you can make an educated guess on which options will deliver both the recreational effects, and medicinal benefits, that are best-suited to your unique needs and desires.
Myrcene is the predominant terpene in all cannabis strains–including Afghan Kush. Myrcene facilitates a pleasant body high by acting as a muscle relaxant, while providing relief from pain–possibly by acting upon opiate receptors--and easing inflammation and arthritis. Like this strain’s other terpenes, myrcene is also an antioxidant that may exhibit antitumor and anticancer effects. In Afghan Kush, myrcene acts as a sedative while supporting the full-body comfort and relaxation that this indica delivers.
Afghan Kush is also rich in caryophyllene, another terpene with significant mental health benefits. Caryophyllene has been shown to reduce depression and anxiety by regulating the brain’s emotional responses to stress. It also reduces pain and inflammation, including difficult-to-manage forms of pain such as neuropathy. Caryophyllene is an antioxidant with neuroprotective benefits, and some studies suggest that it may exhibit anticancer activity.
Pinene is an uplifting, mood-boosting terpene that contributes to Afghan Kush’s euphoric, stress-reducing properties. Though Afghan Kush is an indica known largely for its sedating effects, it is also purported to deliver a clean, uplifting head high, and pinene may play a central role in creating this effect. This terpene has been shown to enhance focus, alertness, and mood, while enhancing memory and cognition, enhancing mental clarity while inducing a state of mind that researchers describe as calm, content, and alert. Pinene is suggested to combat anxiety and depression, while alleviating mental fatigue; pinene may support long-term cognitive health as an antioxidant and neuroprotective.
What Consumers are Saying:
A strain’s terpenes and their associated effects are always a good way to get a sense of the experience it may deliver. But what do consumers say about Afghan Kush? Here at Nationwide Dispensaries, we’ve gathered hundreds of reviews from real consumers who have tried this strain, and below, we’ve included some of the most frequently reported benefits and effects that patients have reported firsthand.
Pain Relief. Afghan Kush is great for pain relief, with patients reporting turning to this strain for everything from chronic pain to back pain, fibromyalgia, migraines, and digestive pain. In fact, several patients even describe this strain as “numbing” because it’s so effective in stopping pain in it’s tracks.
Great for Stress, Depression, Anxiety & Mental Health. In addition to a pleasurable body high, Afghan Kush reportedly delivers excellent benefits for mental health. Countless patients report using this strain for depression, anxiety, and even PTSD.
Good for Sleep & Evening Use. Many patients report using Afghan Kush for insomnia, and this strain’s sedating effects–balanced with its ability to provide full-body comfort and relaxation–make it a great option for those looking to achieve better sleep. In lesser quantities, Afghan Kush is also perfect for evening use, before bedtime, if you’re looking to unwind, relax, and get comfortable.
Relaxing, Pleasurable Body High. Afghan Kush is beloved for its body high, and reported by many patients to offer full muscle relaxation along with pleasurable, “tingly” sensations. Some have described the body high this strain delivers as “clean,” and report that with effects that are almost entirely body-based, Afghan Kush is great for getting comfortable whenever and wherever you need it most.
Euphoric, Stress-Free, and Giggly. Though Afghan Kush is best known for delivering a strong body high, patients report that it also delivers a euphoric, relaxed head high that makes this strain perfect for boosting mood, reducing stress, and socializing. Consumers report feeling happy, giggly, and sociable after smoking Afghan Kush, and note that indulging in this strain truly lets stress melt away.
Appetite Stimulant & Reduced Nausea. All marijuana strains stimulate appetite to some extent, but consumers have noted that Afghan Kush is especially effective in this area. This makes Afghan Kush perfect for those struggling with reduced appetite, nausea, or other issues.
Good for Inflammation and Sore or Achy Muscles. Afghan Kush is packed with anti-inflammatory compounds such as THC, CBD, and myrcene, all of which have been studied for their anti-inflammatory capabilities. Unsurprisingly, then, Afghan Kush is a favorite among patients looking to soothe sore or strained muscles and joints, and to reduce inflammation more generally–and, in turn, reduce the symptoms of inflammatory conditions (such as IBS or arthritis).
Potential Medical Benefits
Below are a list of conditions that Afghan Kush may be helpful in managing. We have selected these conditions based upon two sources: reviews from consumers who report using the strain to manage these symptoms, and/or substantial scientific evidence suggesting that its dominant terpenes may help manage the conditions listed below.
Though this strain’s popularity is largely due to its positive effects, this strain may not be ideal for everyone. Ultimately, whether Afghan Kush is right for you depends on the effects and benefits you’re looking for. Consumers who aren’t crazy about Afghan Kush often point to dry mouth, dry eyes, or dizziness.
Dry Mouth, Dry Eyes. Like many cannabis strains, Afghan Kush can cause dry mouth and dry eyes. Contrary to popular belief, these effects are not caused by exposure to smoke while consuming marijuana. Instead, scientists believe that this is the result of THC binding to endocannabinoid receptors in the eyes and salivary glands, which may alter ocular pressure and saliva production. If you encounter these issues when you consume cannabis, we suggest keeping your favorite eye drops, gum, or mouthwash handy when you kick back and relax with this strain.
Dizziness. Afghan Kush is extremely sedating, and some report that after overindulging in this strain, they feel dizzy when they get up too quickly–which is why it’s always a good idea to start with a small dose, and increase from there, as you get comfortable with this classic indica strain.