It’s only since the early 2000s that kratom has made its way with any regularity into the US and European markets, mainly via online and offline headshops supplied from Thailand and Bali. It is sold dried as a loose-leaf tea, as a powder (loose and in capsules), which is raw or fortified with leaf extract.
It is generally taken orally, the leaves chewed and held as a quid in the mouth for at least 10 minutes, or the dry powder simmered for 30-40 minutes to make a tea.
It’s kratom’s opioid receptor agonists that give the plant the psychoactive effects that have put it on the radar of fans of plant-based altered states the world over in recent years.
Like most herbal highs, the experience kratom can vary from individual to individual and from occasion to occasion, making a shopping list of expected effects difficult. There are also differences in batches of the herb and potency of different brands. Plus its effects differ depending on whether the dose taken was low or high.
Our advice is to read what it says on your particular pack, start at the low end of the dosage spectrum and work up depending on your own experience. That said, the effects are felt both mentally and bodily, and include:
A sense of inner warmth and happiness, pleasant thoughts, a slowing of breathing and the mind’s chatter, slight disconnection from the body (though nothing bordering on an out of body experience), very relaxed whether in social interactions or by oneself. Some advocates report an increased ability to focus, and calm but intense mental stimulation. At higher doses it becomes progressively more soporific, with closed eye visuals.
Though it slows breathing down, unlike morphine kratom does not actually suppress it and so does not pose the risk of overdose and death. At worst, some users experience mild nausea. Some report a groggy hangover, others don’t. Some people love it and others find it pretty ‘meh’.
Kratom is a versatile drug with a plethora of benefits. There is much more to it that just the stimulating effect of small doses and the weary head sleepiness after ingesting a large amount. Traditionally, Thai laborers and farmers mostly used Kratom on a daily basis (3 to up to 10 times per day) as a stimulant to overcome the burdens of their hard work and scanty existences, as an analgesic, as a substitute in opiate or heroin withdrawal, as a anti-diarrheal and even as an aphrodisiac to intensify or prolong sexual intercourse. The effects of Kratom will come on within five to ten minutes after ingestion and can last for several hours.
Kratom and more specifically mitragynine is known to stimulate the body and increases the activity of the user, giving him an energy-boost energetic enough to feel a strong desire to do work, while still functioning completely normal with a calm mind. Depending on the users body chemistry, metabolism, weight, tolerance and many other natural factors, the effects can last for up to several hours.
Traditional use of Kratom includes treatment of (chronic) pain and nowadays it is becoming more widely known among patients who beforehand relied on prescription pain medications such as Oxycodone or Hydrocodone, but could no longer deal with the severe side-effects or had build up a tolerance. Besides, Kratom is a very cheap alternative to the high-priced prescription drugs and appears to have way less side-effects and a low addiction potential. In most cases, Kratom does not cause nausea or vomiting (Other than many prescription opiates).
Several sources mention the positive effects of Kratom as a means to enhance the mood and to lower anxiety, but long-term studies are still pending. Don't medicate yourself if you suffer from chronic depression or anxiety; those are serious illnesses and you should definitely consult your doctor prior to the use of Kratom to alleviate your symptoms.
In traditional medicine and lately in modern curative medicine, Kratom is used as a substitute to wean patients off of their addiction to prescription opiates, opium, Heroin and most recently it has been used in New Zealand in a methadone addiction detoxification program. Kratom has proven to aid in withdrawals.
Recreational users mostly enjoy the narcotic-like effects of Kratom and its popularity has increased significantly over the past recent years, very likely also due to its legal status (Kratom is illicit in only 9 countries of the world) and availability. Depending on individual preferences the users take a relatively low dose if they seek a stimulating effect for the body and happy, euphoric state of mind, while some enjoy the relaxing and analgesic effects of higher doses and yet others utilize small to moderate doses to get a boost of energy to get their homework done. And those who want to call it a day early, take a heavy dose to prolong their sleep.
Kratom has an amazing effect for people suffering from diarrhea and is an effective natural substitute that rivals over the counter or prescription medication.
Since Kratom cranks up the body activity, it is only natural that some users feel an increased sex drive after ingestion of Kratom. It is said to increase the female libido and allegedly helps with erectile dysfunction.
Rumors are, that Kratom could be used to treat symptoms of Adult Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), but scientific proof is still pending.