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Kratom: Strains, Doses, And Consumption Methods Explained

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Kratom is a plant consumed for both its stimulating and sedating effects. These effects depend primarily on the strain of kratom used, the dose, and how it's consumed. Read on for a guide that explores all of these factors in depth.

A staple of traditional herbal medicine, kratom is a tree native to Southeast Asia. Used for hundreds of years for its potent and uniquely biphasic effects, and officially known by the botanical name Mitragyna speciosa, kratom is actually in the same family as the coffee tree.

However, not all kinds of kratom are the same. There are actually many different strains that display different characteristics. Moreover, there are many different ways to consume kratom, all of which affect how it is experienced. Keep reading to find out more about the different kinds of kratom you can consume, different methods of consumption, and how much you should take.

KRATOM STRAINS AND THEIR INTENSITY

Kratom Strains And Their Intensity

There are several different kratom strains, however, they can almost all be placed into one of three general categories: red vein kratom, green vein kratom, and white vein kratom. This is because the veins (stems) of the kratom plant are usually one of three colours: red, green, or white. The colour of the vein has a substantial impact on the effects the plant produces, and the doses required to produce them.

RED VEIN KRATOM

Red vein kratom strains are some of the most popular and accessible. Many people prefer these strains for their relaxing, sedative effects. If you are looking for mild effects, it is best to consume about 2–4g of red vein kratom. However, for stronger sedative effects, or for pain-relieving effects, 6–8g is more appropriate. Red vein kratom can also be used as a sleep aid, but beginners are cautioned to be careful as its sedative effects can be quite intense.

Red Vein Kratomview Red vein kratom

GREEN VEIN KRATOM

Green vein kratom strains are known for producing a mix of stimulating and sedative effects. Generally speaking, the effects produced by green vein strains are more subtle and can’t always be felt immediately. However, many people prefer these milder effects, especially when it comes to using kratom as a mild pain-reliever. At smaller doses, green vein kratom strains can be quite stimulating, acting as effective mood enhancers. Because of this, some people also feel that green vein kratom makes them more social and talkative. In order to enjoy these subtle yet stimulating effects, it is recommended to consume between 2–4g of green vein kratom.

Green Vein Kratomview green vein kratom

WHITE VEIN KRATOM

White vein kratom strains are primarily known for their stimulating, energising, and invigorating effects. Many people rely on the energy boost derived from these kratom strains in order to work, concentrate, or stay awake for extremely long periods of time. However, they can also function as an effective pick-me-up at the end of the day when feeling drained. Additionally, these strains can help stabilise "low-energy" individuals by giving them a long-lasting energy boost throughout the day. To achieve these effects, it is recommended to consume a dose of roughly 3–4g.

White Vein Kratomview white vein kratom

DIFFERENT DOSES FOR DIFFERENT EFFECTS

Different Doses For Different Effects

While it’s true that kratom’s effects primarily depend on strain, they are also heavily dose-dependent. Different amounts of kratom are known to produce vastly different effects. Typically speaking, the less kratom consumed, the more stimulating and energising the effects are likely to be. The more kratom consumed, the more likely you are to experience relaxing and sedating effects. For instance, while just 1g of potent kratom extract can be enough to stimulate most people, 5g is usually enough to sedate them into a state of relaxed euphoria.

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This means that consuming kratom at precise doses can influence specific effects. For those seeking an energy boost or a stimulating pick-me-up, a smaller dose is more appropriate (no more than 4g). For those looking to escape the negative effects of anxiety or stress, a moderate dose may be more helpful. Those wishing to experience relaxing, sedative, or even pain-relieving effects may be better suited to a larger dose of kratom (6–8g or more).

However, it is very important that beginners remember to start low and go slow when experimenting with kratom. Beginner or inexperienced users are never advised to consume more than 2–3g of kratom at a time.

DIFFERENT FORMS OF KRATOM

From crushed leaves to liquid extracts, kratom can also be prepared and consumed in several different ways. Here are some of the most common forms of kratom you will come across, and how to effectively use them.

KRATOM LEAVES

Kratom Leaves

Chewing kratom leaves is one of the most common ways to consume kratom in its natural form. For thousands of years, people have chewed both fresh and dried kratom leaves in order to experience the plant’s therapeutic effects. Dried kratom leaves can also be used to brew kratom tea.

DOSE

There is no recommended dose for chewing kratom leaves, as the exact amount of mitragynine (kratom's primary psychoactive alkaloid) contained in each leaf is hard to determine. Instead, finding your ideal dose of kratom leaves is more of a "feeling-out", trial-and-error kind of process. In certain parts of the world, kratom leaves are chewed all day long. Your ideal dose will depend on many different factors, such as the strain of kratom being chewed, your personal tolerance to kratom, and the effects you are looking for, among others.

HOW TO USE

In order to properly enjoy kratom leaves, the stringy central vein must be removed before chewing. Kratom is chewed very similarly to tobacco, with many people preferring to slide it in between their cheek and gums. This allows for quick absorption into the bloodstream, especially under the tongue. The resulting saliva is typically swallowed for maximum effect, although some people who dislike the taste of kratom tend to spit it out. When the quid of kratom loses its flavour and is reduced to a dry, flavourless pulp, it’s time to spit it out.

SHREDDED KRATOM

Shredded Kratom

While kratom leaves can easily be chewed, many people instead prefer to shred them into smaller pieces that are easier to work with. Shredding kratom allows it to be used in more ways than whole leaf kratom.

DOSE

When it comes to shredded kratom, it is believed that a dose of roughly 3–6g can promote stimulating effects that improve energy and focus, while a dose of 7–9g can produce sedative effects good for managing anxiety and pain.

HOW TO USE

There are three common ways to use shredded kratom. If you don’t mind the taste of kratom, it can be chewed similarly to whole leaves (after cleaning) in order to produce immediate effects. Sometimes, it is added to other foods so as to mask its natural taste. Lastly, it can be brewed into kratom tea.

POWDER EXTRACTS

Powder Extracts

Kratom powder is the most common form of kratom on the market today as it is very easy to both package and consume. For thousands of years, kratom leaves have been crushed into powder using a variety of handheld tools. Nowadays, this can be done in your own kitchen using a coffee grinder.

DOSE

The recommended dose for powder extracts will vary based on the specific product and concentration; in general, a mild dose is considered to be 0.5g. This can be increased up to 1.5g for maximum effect.

HOW TO USE

Powdered kratom is typically added to different liquids. It is most commonly added to water, but can also be added to numerous other liquids such as coffee, milk, kefir, or juice. Many people find that mixing powdered kratom into a milkshake (especially chocolate) is a great way to mask its bitter taste. It can also be mixed into a paste that can be quickly swallowed alongside water so as to get it down quicker. And for those who really can’t stand the taste of kratom, powder can be stuffed into a gelatine capsule to be consumed like a pill.

LIQUID EXTRACTS

Liquid Extracts

Liquid extracts are effectively liquids infused with kratom. They tend to be super-concentrated, containing large amounts of kratom in small amounts of liquid. They are also very quick and easy to use, and can be flavoured to mask some of kratom’s naturally bitter taste. Liquid extracts are an excellent choice for using kratom on the go, or for using it discreetly without alerting others. It’s important to understand that these liquid extracts are often much stronger than powdered extracts made from the crushed leaves, so proceed with caution.

DOSE

Kratom extract tends to be very potent. Oftentimes, just 1–2g of it can be enough to experience mild psychoactive effects, while just 5g can be enough to induce extremely sedating, pain-relieving effects. However, the potency of a liquid extract may differ from bottle to bottle. For instance, while some extracts may contain 50–55mg/ml of mitragynine (the active compound in kratom), others can contain 80mg/ml or more.

HOW TO USE

Typically, liquid extracts are administered sublingually, ingested orally, or added to other foods or liquids.

TEA

Tea

Kratom tea is produced by crushing kratom leaves into a powder and brewing it. Alternatively, some users simply add whole leaves to boiling water and allow the brew to steep unaided. Although kratom tea has been enjoyed for hundreds, if not thousands, of years, many people find it to have a bitter taste and choose to sweeten it with sugar, or drink it quickly to avoid the taste altogether.

DOSE

As a rule of thumb, add roughly 55g of (crushed or whole) kratom leaves to about a litre of water when brewing tea. If using premium-quality kratom, this is enough to brew about eight doses of strong kratom tea. Exactly how much tea you end up with is up to you. The more water in your tea, the less potent it will be. It’s a good idea to go slow with kratom tea as it is quite easy to drink too much, too quickly.

HOW TO USE

To make kratom tea, simply take your dried and crushed kratom leaves, place them in a cup, and dash with boiling water. Let steep for 2–3 minutes, stirring constantly. Optionally, you can strain your tea before enjoying it. It is very possible that your kratom leaves can be used to brew more than one batch of tea. After straining them, many people prefer to set them aside before brewing another cup. However, be aware that subsequent batches will be less potent as the leaves will have lost most of their chemical constituents the first time around.

To save you some time and effort, kratom tea bags can be purchased directly. Jetpackkratom tea is prepared in readymade tea bags, taking much of the work and mess out of the process. Each tea bag contains 65mg of mitragynine. Simply drop a bag in a cup of boiling water and allow to steep for 15 minutes.

David AB

Written by: David AB
Writer and cannabis enthusiast from Western Canada. When he's not writing, you can probably find him on the slopes of the Rockies or kicking back with a cold one!

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