Mitragyna speciosa Korth, otherwise known as Kratom, is a tropical evergreen tree in the coffee family native to Southeast Asia in the Indochina and Malaysia phytochoria (botanical regions).
speciosa is indigenous to Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia, Myanmar, and Papua New Guinea where it has been used in traditional medicine since at least the 19th century. The Kratom leaves have some opioid- and stimulant-like properties.
Kratom was first formally described by the Dutch colonial botanist Pieter Korthals in 1839, who named it as such; it was renamed and reclassified several times before George Darby Haviland provided the final name and classification in 1859.
The leaf is usually chewed, but since its adoption in Europe, Kratom has taken many other forms. It is now possible to buy dried leaves, powder, tinctures, resin, enhanced leaves, and there is also rumor that somebody has managed to create a form of Kratom suitable for intravenous injection.
The worldwide laws revolving around the Southeast Asian tree are ever-changing. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) have attempted to combat its usage in the United States by pushing a kratom ban, while scientists and other advocates are fighting to keep it legal.
In the U.S., there are currently six states in which kratom is labeled as a controlled substance and is therefore illegal to sell, possess, use and grow. There are also a few cities and counties in legal states in which kratom use and possession is banned.
Kratom is not available to buy in a local drug or health store. This is because kratom is not approved by the FDA, so they are not allowed to sell it and it can be hard to track down reputable sources.
One thing you can be sure of, though, is that there is a wide variety of kratom strains if you know where to look for your supply. Understanding the strains is essential to making an informed decision when you do purchase it.
What’s more, if you are looking to buy it locally, here are a few regular haunts to make you aware of the risks.
Buying kratom online is by far the safest way to buy. You can do as much research as you want, looking at all the best brands and reviews left by previous buyers. While you don’t get the product in your hands before purchasing, the issue becomes irrelevant when you compare it to the benefits of buying from a trusted and respected store that’s loved by buyers already.
There are a few popular methods of using powdered leaf, but the most common are with capsules or tablets, “toss and wash”, mixing with food, and preparation as a tea. The following is a guide to help users discover their favorite way to enjoy kratom.
Kratom capsules have become one of the most common ways people now use kratom. You can find pre-capsuled kratom in almost any head shop in the US while some choose to buy empty 00 or 000 capsules and capsule their kratom for themselves.
“Toss and wash” is basically just spooning the powder directly into your mouth and washing it down with a liquid. Kratom is known as a diuretic and is associated with dehydration. It is important when using this method that you hydrate. This could be with your favorite sports drink or you can just stick with water. The word hydrate comes from the Greek word for water, so its hard to find a better hydrating beverage.
This is commonly known as the most “difficult” method but is the quickest in a pinch and arguably gives some of the strongest effects.
The downside to this method is that the powder is incredibly dry and will stick to your mouth and throat, causing many to gag or cough “blow” the dry powder out of their mouth. If using this method of consumption, it is best to spoon small amounts at a time.
Kratom Tea Preparation
Lastly, preparation as a tea is convenient and effective.
It is important to note that only powdered leaf should be used to make tea. Extracts should not be used.
Start by measuring out between 1 teaspoon of powdered leaf. Using an extract is not recommended, as the hot water may break down some of the alkaloids, there’s no added benefit, and it’s more expensive. Boil 2-4 cups of water. The more water you use, the less strong the flavor, but as long as you drink it all the effects will be exactly the same.
Put the kratom powder into a large cup or container with a pour lip, and pour the boiling water on top. Stir until it is thoroughly mixed. Be sure there aren’t any clumps of dry powder. I highly recommend adding sugar, artificial sweeter, or honey (honey works the best to cut the bitterness), and stir. If using artificial sweetener, 2 packets is a good starting amount. Let sit until cool (at least 15 minutes), stirring occasionally.
Once cooled, allow the powder to settle to the bottom. Pour the tea into a drinking cup, and enjoy! At this point you can add more sweetener to taste, or add water or ice cubes to dilute the flavor. As long as you drink all of the liquid, the effects will be the same.
As of 2020, there is no pending legislation that specifically targets it on the federal level. However, that doesn’t mean kratom is immune to a nationwide ban in the future.
Back in 2016, the DEA announced its intent to make kratom a Schedule I substance. This would have prohibited it across the entire US.
However, the intent met a major backlash from the kratom community. They organized a White House petition with over 145,000 signatures and submitted over 6,000 letters to the DEA.
More than 60 members of Congress took notice and wrote to the DEA to postpone the ban and allow for a comment period.
During this period, 23,232 comments were received. 99% of them were in favor of kratom. So, the DEA had to reverse their emergency scheduling on kratom.
It was a remarkable feat and the first time in history when an advocacy group was able to overturn a DEA emergency scheduling.
This legal fight for kratom is far from over, however. The DEA has put this into the hands of the FDA, and now it’s up to them to decide what to do next.
We all know that the FDA has a bias against supplements and natural herbs such as kratom. They recently conducted a study using their own computer programmed algorithms to get results that fit their claims of kratom being a dangerous opioid drug that should be banned.
It’s fair to say the tables are tilted. Nonetheless, we are at odds with powerful government agencies who are looking out for special interests. But, we’ve made it this far in the fight to keep kratom legal.
To determine the safety of the plant mitragyna speciosa, more commonly known as kratom, we look to existing data on toxicity. We also look at parallels and comparisons to determine reasonable safety. At some point absolutely everything (even good’ole H2O) becomes too much and can be toxic.
How Much Kratom is ‘Too Much’ (i.e. toxic)?
There are a handful of research papers that reference mitragynine or kratom alkaloid extracts which were used to determine LD50 toxicity in animals. Lethal dose (LD50) is the amount of an ingested substance that kills 50 percent of a test sample. It is expressed in mg/kg, or milligrams of substance per kilogram of body weight. In other words, how much (milligrams) of a substance does it take to potentially kill you per weight (kilogram). The higher the LD50 number, the safer the substance as it takes more of it to be harmful.
The pharmacology book, Kratom and Other Mitragynines by Raffa, cites acute liver toxicity in rats at higher doses of 1000mg/kg of mitragynine extract, but no axons or dendrites toxicity (brain cells are fine!). A comparative safety risk assessment study for alkaloid extract of Malaysian Mitragyna Speciosa, estimated acute toxicity at 477 mg/kg for mitragynine. For comparison, caffeine is 140 mg/KG and aspirin is 200 mg/KG. It takes over twice as much mitragynine to be dangerous versus aspirin and 3-4 times more mitragynine than caffeine.
For a person weighing about 150 lbs, the amount of pure kratom alkaloids where it is toxic is about 40 grams a day. Keep in mind that when you are using 100% whole-leaf kratom (like with ETHA Natural Botanicals), about 2% of the leaf is made up of alkaloids. So, the toxic amount is over 2,000 gram a day of kratom leaf. A typical person uses 2.5 to 9 grams a day…much less.
How Much Mitragynine is in Typical Use?
If typical use is 2.5-9 g kratom a day for an average 150 lbs. (68 KG) human and mitragynine is ~1% in the dried leaves (typical total alkaloids are 0.5-1.5%) this means that a typically person uses ~0.37 -to- 1.33 mg/kg, WAY, WAY below 477 mg/KG limit for mitragynine! You’d have to use over 3,000 grams of kratom (typical use is 2.5-15 grams) to be toxic!
The DEA maintains that kratom has no medical uses or benefits, but in Asia kratom has been used for hundreds of years to treat cough, diarrhea, opiate withdrawal, and chronic pain, and to boost energy and sexual desire. More recently, in the US there has been an uptick in the use of kratom by people who are self-treating chronic pain and acute withdrawal from opiates and seeking alternatives to prescription medications. Despite a vocal community of supporters, and numerous anecdotal testimonials of effectiveness, these treatment practices using kratom have not been rigorously studied as either safe or effective.
A patient wishing to use kratom for pain or to mitigate withdrawal symptoms would encounter several problems, not all of which have to do with the intrinsic properties of kratom itself.
Kratom is in high-demand right now. But it’s actually been used for centuries in the Southeast Asian countries of Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Papua New Guinea. Kratom for sale can be found primarily online so we have reviewed the best quality products from top vendors so you have the facts in Thailand, but now you can buy Kratom online and our high quality products.
Kratom is a natural herbal leaf that comes from the coffee family. The scientific name is Mitragyna speciosa. Mainly grown in Indonesia, the tree has grown farmed by local farmers in those asian countries. The leaves of the plant can be chewed, are harvested sometimes as a tea, but Kratom for sale is most commonly offered as capsules, powder and crushed leaves. One commonly used method is to mix crushed powder in juice, tea or coffee.
Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa) is a plant that grows in some parts of Southeast Asia. Its leaves are packed with powerful compounds known for producing psychotropic (mind-altering) effects.
When consumed, Kratom’s effects are normally felt within 30 to 60 minutes, and the euphoric effects last for 5 to 7 hours. However, some natural extracts like turmeric and chamomile can be combined with the Kratom powder to potentiate it.
The Kratom tree is an evergreen tropical plant belonging to the same family as coffee and gardenias. It’s indigenous to Southeast Asia, specifically in Thailand, Myanmar, Indonesia, Papua, New Guinea, and Malaysia. It goes by the street names Biak, Ketum, Kakuam, Ithang, and Thom. Two major compounds in Kratom leaves are mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine.
Kratom extracts have been used as herbal medicines since the nineteenth century to offer their stimulating effects and opioid properties. In the U.S., it was used for diarrhea, muscle pain relief, and opiate addiction and withdrawal treatment. Presently, Kratom is available in various forms, such as capsules, powders, liquids, pastes, and gum, among others. Sometimes, however, it can be smoked, chewed, or even eaten in food.
After ingestion, Kratom takes between five to ten minutes for its effects to kick in. The “high” feeling lingers from two to five hours, and its euphoric effects length is dependent on the amount of Kratom ingested. Therefore, the recommended dosage will depend on age, sex, strand ingested, and health status, among others.
kratom powder is just one common product kratom leaves are used to produce, because it is easy to store, transport, measure, and use in further preparations and extracts. In many cases, how people use kratom powder is just a matter of personal preference. There are three common ways to prepare kratom powder for further use— all of which may be preferred or avoided for various reasons.
Brewing kratom powder into a tea is a popular and easy preparation method. Additionally, kratom powder may be added into green, black, oolong, white, or herbal tea for a more balanced brew. Kratom tea can be potent or unappealing to some, and has a pretty distinctive flavor and aroma.
Kratom powder can be made into pill form, or capsules, for easy portioning and storage. Kratom in pill form is said to avoid bitterness or odor and is easier than brewing tea to achieve consistent, standard portions.
Adding kratom powder to food is another common method of preparation. In general, this works much the same way as making kratom tea, only, instead of steeping the powder, one simply blends it with fruits, or even other smoothie/shake powders. The variety of kratom smoothie recipes is even more diverse and extensive than for teas, so you can easily find (or even create your own) kratom smoothie or shake that suits your tastes and preferences.
On the molecular level, what we know in terms of interaction with the different opioid receptors is that yes, they bind to the opioid receptor. . . . But how they interact with the opioid receptor is distinctly different from classical opioids. If you look at morphine or at something like fentanyl . . . what we usually look at when we classically look at opioid receptors, these are G-protein-coupled receptors, where basically the morphine or another binding agent binds from the outside to the receptor and then you have a kind of second-messenger cascade that happens inside the cell.
Now, what we know about the opioid receptors . . . is that opioid receptors also recruit beta-arrestin. [It] has been shown to be responsible for a lot of the negative effects, especially in regards to respiratory depression and potentially even in regards to the addictive symptoms . . . that are associated with opioid use, misuse, leading to abuse. That is something that mitragynine is not doing. Mitragynine does not recruit beta-arrestin.
The science is on the same page in regards to mitragynine and 7-hydroxy mitragynine and thereby certain compounds in kratom acting on opioid receptors. My concern is . . . we’ve got roughly 5 million kratom users—roughly, it’s a very rough estimate. In my survey that was published in 2017 [I] showed that this is a distinctly different user population from what you would expect to find in opioid users.
I fear that by banning kratom, we are creating a significant issue by hindering research. I am a proponent of regulating kratom as limiting the excess, as controlling products that are entering the United States [to ensure] they show quality, that there is actually kratom inside when kratom is mentioned on the label. I support that health care providers should be serving as intermediaries to provide patients and consumers with advice on what they actually take.
But phasing it into Schedule 1 makes it very hard to further conduct research. And this is a new class of endo-alkaloids that act very distinctly different on opioid receptors. And just because the FDA hasn’t received an NDA [New Drug Application] or IND [Investigational New Drug application] to actually conduct a study with mitragynine to move it into a clinical trial, which we know costs . . . millions of dollars, doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have value for these 4 or 5 million kratom users, who I feel would have to go back to using prescription opioids or potentially going to street drugs.
Kratom powder begins as the leaves of the evergreen tree known as mitragyna speciosa (a.k.a. kratom). Once these leaves are dried, they are easily broken down and ground up into a fine powder. This powder can then be encapsulated, brewed into a tea, or made into a kratom extract.
The main active alkaloids present in kratom leaves are supposed to be 7-hydroxymitragynine and mitragynine that offer this herb all kinds of therapeutic and non-therapeutic benefits.
Some of the commonest effects of kratom depending on the variety of kratom consumed are –
A spike in energy levels
Feeling of relaxation and rejuvenation
Improvement in focus and mental clarity
May aid in sleep disorders
May reduce stress
Elimination half-life is a term used to describe the time it takes for the drug’s plasma concentration to be reduced by half.5 The drug is proportionally eliminated from the body with each additional half-life.6 For example, if a 100 mg dose of an intravenous drug with a half-life of 15 minutes was given to a patient, it would take 15 minutes for 50 mg of the drug to remain in the system; it would take 30 minutes for 25 mg to remain; 45 minutes for 12.5 mg to remain; 120 minutes for 0.39 mg to remain; and so on.6
In the case of a substance like kratom, pharmacologic studies are ongoing and there are some differences in terms of reported half-life measurements. For example, one study found the elimination half-life for mitragynine to be approximately 3.85 hours (±0.51 hours). This means it would take nearly 4 hours for the plasma concentration to be reduced by just half.7 Another study found the half-life to be somewhat longer at 9.43 hours (±1.74 hours).8 With half-life measurements in that ballpark range, the alkaloid may still be detected in the plasma after 24 hours.
Some online articles have cited the elimination half-life of mitragynine to be nearly 24 hours, due to yet another study that found the terminal half-life to be 23.24 hours (±16.07 hours).7 However, the terminal half-life is a different measurement than elimination half-life. Terminal half-life is the time it takes for the plasma concentration of a substance to be divided by 2 after reaching pseudo-equilibrium. Terminal half-life does not reflect the rate of elimination but rather how quickly and how much the drug is absorbed.9
The elimination half-life of mitragynine may be somewhat affected by the method of use. In one study, the average half-life after injection was 2.9 hours (±2.1 hours). However, after oral ingestion, the elimination half-life was 6.6 hours (±1.3 hours).8
Mitragynine can be detected in urine screens.8 While kratom users may try to determine how long kratom stays in their systems to avoid a positive drug screen, it’s important to remember that there are a multitude of variables that determine just how long a substance like kratom will be detected in the body (such as method of use, health, and age) and avoiding a positive test isn’t as simple as making a calculation based on the elimination half-life. In fact, even the age of the plant, the environment in which the plant grew, and the time of harvest can impact how much of the mitragynine alkaloid is in the plant.8
There is no definitive number you can use to know just how long you’ll be impacted by kratom. And the only way to ensure you’ll pass a drug screen is to avoid drug use.
Brewing kratom powder into a tea is a popular and easy preparation method. Additionally, kratom powder may be added into green, black, oolong, white, or herbal tea for a more balanced brew.
Blood tests are uncommon, but may be conducted and can detect kratom during the first 24 hours and for up to several days.
Hair tests are also uncommon for kratom detection, but typically hair follicle analyses have longer detection windows, sometimes up to 90 days.
Urinalysis is the most common method to detect kratom. A urine test can identify the drug’s presence after around six hours, and traces may be detected for up to nine days.
The right dosage for kratom is contingent upon numerous factors, like the health of the user, the age of the user, and other various conditions. The scientific community is still trying to determine appropriate dosage recommendations for kratom, but as of the time of writing, insufficient research had happened for general guidelines. Given that kratom is not legal in all locations, it’s not being looked at or taken as seriously as other drugs or supplements. Always be mindful of the fact that natural products aren’t always completely safe, so dosage is crucial to get right. When product labels have relevant directions, be sure you follow them. Also consult your physician, pharmacist, or healthcare professional prior to using kratom.
Further complicating things is that measurements are not consistent across all kinds of kratom or its vendors. You should buy a high-quality and precision digital scale for measuring your doses since portions of kratom of equal physical size might have very different weights. This is especially true of extracts. The following information doesn’t always yield as accurate but can serve as a general guideline for your dosing needs:
Average Powdered Leaf: 1 gram = 0.035 ounces; 50 grams = 1.75 ounces; 100 grams = 3.5 ounces
Bali Powder: 1 Tablespoon = 6.2 grams; 1 Teaspoon = 2.3 grams
Crushed Leaf: 1 Tablespoon = 2.7 grams; 1 Teaspoon = 0.9 grams
Green Malay Powder: 1 Tablespoon = 6.9 grams; 1 Teaspoon = 2.4 grams
Maeng Da Powder: 1 Tablespoon = 7 grams; 1 Teaspoon = 2.6 grams
Since you can’t know the proper efficient dosage of kratom from the start, you need to start small and then build up over time to find out what’s safe and effective for you. If you’re new to kratom, then just 2 or 3 grams is a great starting point. Be sure you ingest it on an empty stomach. Do this either right when you get up or a few hours following breakfast.
Following your first dose, you need to wait up to 40 minutes before deciding how you feel. If you think that you need more, ingest another gram or two. Wait an additional half an hour before checking it with how you feel. Typically, you won’t need more kratom after than, but if you want to, a third dose from half a gram to 2 grams can be had.
Your weight should also factor into your dosage. For instance, if you weight less than 149 pounds, then starting with a dose of 1.5 grams is a good option. Lower doses help you avoid tolerance issues.
Snorting kratom can be dangerous and cause a number of side effects. An addiction treatment program can help individuals overcome physical and psychological dependence on the drug and prevent long-term health problems.
You have to know that kratom is highly dose-dependent. Its effects also depend largely on the person consuming it.
Also, since it’s not regulated by the FDA, it’s extremely hard to zero it down to a specific time window in which the effects become apparent.
With that said, on an average, it has been noticed that kratom can take anywhere from 20 minutes to 2 hours to start exhibiting its effects.
Kratom is a natural but also very potent substance. Ingestion of either low or high dosages can cause adverse effects on the body. There is no one perfect dose for Kratom, therefore, the right dosage is dependent on various factors, such as health status, age, type of strain, among others. The following are some ways of finding the perfect Kratom dose:
Ingestion of Kratom on an empty stomach- Ingesting it on an empty stomach will help in learning how a certain amount of the extract makes you feel.
Ingesting Kratom in smaller amounts- Ingesting too much Kratom at once produces a ‘woozy and sickly’ feeling; it may even lead to vomiting.
Purchase of quality Kratom extracts- Poor quality Kratom extracts are not as potent as quality ones. They tend to be less effective and present more side effects.
Learning each Kratom strain properly- Different Kratom strains have varied “sweet spots.” Some strains may ‘hit harder’ on some people and cause harsher side effects than others do.
Ingesting more substantial amounts of fluids – Ingesting fluids helps to dilute the “harsh” Kratom effects.
Smoking kratom powder (or kratom leaves), such as through a pipe or in a cigarette, may be possible but is highly ill-advised. Smoking kratom powder or leaves is an unfavorable way of consuming kratom, as it requires an impractical amount. More importantly, there may be health risks associated with smoking any kind of substance, and more research is needed to assess the exact hazards associated with using kratom this way.
Kratom leaves were used as traditional medicine, but are currently also used for recreational purposes. If you want to potentiate it, you can add a variety of natural extracts to Kratom powder. This boosts its stimulation while at the same time, provide long lasting effects. The extracts include Cat’s Claw, Grapefruit, Chamomile Tea, Turmeric powder, Cayenne Pepper, and CBD Oil.
These potentiates can be incorporated in meals, shakes, or other food varieties during the day without affecting your diet since they are all-natural extracts. The following are some of the substances used to potentiate Kratom powder: