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Kratom Information

Different Kratom Strains

 

Contents:

  1. Different Kratom Strains: A Guide On Dosage And Effect
  2. Closely Related Products To Kratom
  3. Kratom Cultivation
  4. Chemistry Of Kratom
  5. Medical Potential And Controversy
  6. History Of Kratom

Different Kratom Strains: A Guide On Dosage And Effect

Kratom is an intriguing plant native to Southeast Asia that is known for its highly energetic, social, and relaxing effects. This plant is used both recreationally and medically by many individuals and groups around the world, even though it’s not prescribed by Western doctors. This is not a completely harmless drug, but it is legal in most countries. Like with all legal and illicit substances, moderation is key. But let’s dive deeper into some of the unique and versatile strains of kratom.

KRATOM THAI

Kratom Thai, one of the oldest strains consumed, has a paradox effect. While in high doses it can be quite relaxing, in low doses it’s very energetic. As a result, this strain is now commonly used as an opiate substitute and stimulant. This product can be eaten, chewed, or infused into tea or hot water.

Kratom Thai

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KRATOM THAI EFFECTS

  • Relaxing in high doses
  • Energetic in low doses
  • Makes you more focussed

KRATOM THAI DOSAGE

If you’re a novice user, you’re best consuming anywhere between 2–5g of kratom. If you’re experienced, you might consider going for 5–10g. When it comes to our Kratom Thai Resin, our 5-gram packages will be enough for 5 to 10 doses. Add around 0.75g of resin into 150ml of boiling water and allow it to steep for up to 10 minutes.

KRATOM BALI

We offer the Kratom Bali strain in both shredded and powdered form. The powder will be better if you’re planning on making gel capsules. This form has a larger surface area, and will therefore be absorbed more quickly. Crushed leaves will be perfect for a hot beverage like tea.

Kratom Bali

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KRATOM BALI EFFECTS

  • Very relaxing
  • Opiate substitute and stimulant
  • Energetic in low doses

KRATOM BALI DOSAGE

The recommended dosage for the experienced user will still be 5–10g of shredded leaf. If, on the other hand, you go for our Kratom Bali 15x Extract, the dosage will change. If it’s your first time trying the extract, add around half a gram to some hot water or juice. You can double or triple that if you feel comfortable with the experience.

KRATOM MALAYSIA

Grown in Thailand and Malaysia as the name suggests, this strain of kratom is very strong. Kratom Malaysia has an abundance of mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine, which are its main alkaloids. This strain is known to induce feelings of happiness and energy.

Kratom Malaysia

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KRATOM MALAYSIA EFFECTS

  • Relieves pain
  • Energetic in low doses
  • Sedative in high doses

KRATOM MALAYSIA DOSAGE

Again, if you’re a novice user, don’t go over 3g. Start out with 1.5g and work your way up. But if you already have experience with this strain of kratom, anywhere between 5–10g will get you there.

KRATOM MAENG DA

If you thought Kratom Malaysia was strong, you haven’t tried Kratom Maeng Da. This is the strongest strain available. It is thought that this variety has been genetically modified to better withstand harsh weather conditions.

Kratom Maeng Da

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KRATOM MAENG DA EFFECTS

  • Happiness
  • Relaxation
  • Cognitive enhancements in small doses

KRATOM MAENG DA DOSAGE

This strain becomes active at just one gram. Being a particularly potent strain, you should look to consume about ⅕ less than your normal dose. If you usually take 10g, try a maximum of 8g when dealing with Kratom Maeng Da. Be sure you’re absolutely confident with your intake. This strain can stay in your system for as long as 8 hours.

CLOSELY RELATED PRODUCTS TO KRATOM

CLOSELY RELATED PRODUCTS TO KRATOM

Mitragyna Javanica

Mitragyna javanica is similar to kratom in effect, just less intense. This will be a great entry point for someone interested in trying kratom for the first time. Mitragyna javanica will provide an idea of what the full kratom experience will feel like, but without the overwhelm. Nonetheless, there are some differences between kratom and Mitragyna javanica, so you can expect some natural variation in experiences. We recommend you include 10–20g in your tea. You can feel more comfortable playing around with dosage for Mitragyna javanica than kratom as there is more room for error.

Kra Thum Khok

Kra Thum Khok, on the other hand, acts slightly different than these other substances. It’s stronger than Mitragyna javanica, but not as strong as kratom. The effects are both stimulating and sedating, which is why it’s similar to kratom. To consume it, we advise that you prepare a hot tea with 20g of our herb and let it steep for 30 minutes. The effects should be felt quickly, and may last up to several hours.

Kratom Cultivation

Kratom originates from the warmer, humid, tropical parts of the world such as Thailand, and thus needs a similar grow environment to really thrive. For this reason, it is highly recommended that if you grow Kratom, you do so indoors or in a greenhouse.

Growing Kratom From Seed

Kratom seeds can be notoriously hard to get hold of. Because of the nature of kratom, the seeds do not stay viable for very long after harvest. This makes it hard to get kratom seeds from the tropics to your grow area fast enough. It is also worth noting that kratom seeds are very small, this combined with their rapidly diminishing window of life, means you will need quite a few seeds to even get one plant going. If you buy seeds on the internet, be wary of retailers who sell fake seeds – make sure to do a bit of research on the seller before parting with your hard earned cash.

Kratom And Container Size

Whilst kratom can grow well in small pots, giving it as big a pot as you can will allow it to bulk out to its full potential - spreading out a larger root network and up taking nutrients and water much faster. It will also mean you do not have to water your kratom as frequently, as larger pots will retain much more moisture.

The Best Soil For Kratom Cultivation

The best soil to grow kratom in is rich, wet humus with an average amount of drainage. The drainage needs to be of a consistency that your soil remains moist without becoming completely water logged, or draining too quickly, drying the soil out. If you are going to go one way or the other, it is best to go towards bad drainage – kratom can deal with swampy, damp environments, so will be better at dealing with an abundance of water than not having any at all. The main problem you will face here is that a water logged environment can greatly increase the risk of fungal infection.

Something that is essential when growing kratom is maintaining a correct soil pH. Kratom will do best in a pH of 5.5-6.5, anything outside of this range will make it hard for kratom to absorb nutrients, getting progressively worse the further away you get from this sweet spot. The effects can range from anywhere between stunted growth to the death of your kratom. You can use various pH testing tools to keep track of this.

Kratom And Artificial Lights

Many people will tell you kratom needs HPS growing lights to have a chance of surviving. This is not strictly true, kratom does not require HPS lighting to grow, but if used, you kratom can really thrive. Simple fluorescent lights can be used to obtain standard results, and cost far less cheaper to purchase and run. Even a small 18 watt fluorescent light has been shown to work with small kratom plants without any negative impacts. If you can afford it, you will get best results from exposing your kratom to a 24 hour light cycle.

Temperature And Humidity Requirements

Due to the area of the world they originate from, kratom will require high temperatures and a dense humidity.

The recommended temperature to grow kratom in is between 24-32 degrees Celsius. This equates to a Thai winter - the lowest temperature this plant will encounter in the wild. This means that you can have higher temperatures if you wish, but you do not need to – kratom will still thrive in the temperature range outlined. Anything below this range will slow your kratom's growth, whilst anything below 10 degrees Celsius will cause your kratom to die.

Humidity is also another important factor when recreating a condition that kratom can grow naturally in. In their natural condition, kratom will be exposed to humidity varying between 94% in the day, to 53% in the evenings. It is possible to recreate this within a grow room by using humidifiers. You can also purchase hygrometers quite cheaply to measure the relative humidity of your growing atmosphere. If you can maintain a humidity of 90% then your kratom should have no problems, and because of the nature of the plant, it can deal quite well with fluctuations, so don’t be alarmed if your humidity drops suddenly for a short period of time – as long as it is short!

Be On The Lookout For Fungus and Mould

Due to the high humidity and moisture required to grow kratom, you need no keep a eagle eye out for fungus and mold, especially on the tops of soil. Consider using natural fungicides to help control any potential outbreak.

RELATED STORY
The 3 Best Ways To Use Kratom Leaves

There are many ways to dose yourself up with a bit of powdered kratom, so we thought we put together three of the best ways of doing it.

Chemistry Of Kratom

Pharmaceutical Interest In Kratom's Chemistry

"The natural history of kratom use, including its clinical pharmacology and toxicology, are poorly understood," points out one of the few experts in the plant, Dr. Edward Boyer, in Addiction journal. Only a handful of scientific papers in English have been written about kratom, its effects, and its centuries-long history of use.

What we do know is over 25 alkaloids have been isolated from kratom and, until recently, mitragynine was believed to be the main one responsible for kratom’s effects, it being the most abundant alkaloid in the plant.

Then in 2002, 7-hydroxymitragynine was discovered by a group of Japanese researchers to be the most significant substance. Despite being present in much smaller amounts, this minor alkaloid of kratom was found to be even more potent than morphine. The Japanese researchers filed a patent for all possible medical uses of mitragynine with the hope of developing kratom derivatives as pharmaceutical drugs.

Later research has determined that both alkaloids act as partial opioid receptor agonists, activating supraspinal mu- and delta- opioid receptors. Hence the similar effects to morphine, and kratom’s use by chronic narcotics users to lessen opioid withdrawal symptoms.

A medical toxicologist at a Harvard Medical School teaching hospital, Dr. Boyer became interested in kratom after reading about it on mutual support websites for some of the 40 million Americans who manage their own chronic pain.

They had been buying their meds online until 2006, when the government began to shut down Internet pharmacies. All these self-medicators were left high and dry, and looking for a way to deal with opioid withdrawal, they stumbled across kratom.

Supply soon began to increase to meet the demand, and as its availability increased and word of its more recreational effects spread, so the inevitable media reports and demonization began. But this growing public attention, however ignorantly informed, also helped bring kratom to the notice of serious researchers.

Kratom's Many Chemical Compounds

Although the alkaloid structure of Kratom distantly resembles those of other psychedelic drugs such as psilocybin or LSD, no psychedelic activity has ever been reported after ingestion of Kratom. Instead, Kratom induces effects ranging from increased focus and activity to serious drowsiness and prolonged sleep. But there are vastly unknown desirable side-effects of Kratom ... and way more chemicals involved than only the so far furthest researched active substances 7-Hydroxymitragynine and Mitragynine.

During our research about the ingredients of Kratom we came across these chemical substances: Ajmalicin, 7-acetoxymitragynine, Corynantheidin, Corynoxein, Corinoxin, 3-Dehydromitragynin, (-)-Epicatechin, 3-Isocorynantheidin, 3-Isopaynanthein, Isomitraphyllin, Isospeciofolin, Isospecionoxein, Mitraciliatin, Mitrafolin, Mitragynalin , Mitraphylin, Mitraspecin, Mitraversin, Paynanthein, Speciociliatin, Speciofolin, Speciogynin, Specionoxein, Speciogynin, Speciofolin, and Stipulatin.

Kratom actually contains over 40 chemicals, but we'll limit our excursus to the most interesting compounds 7-Hydroxymitragynine, Mitragynine and (-)-Epicatechin.

7-Hydroxymitragynine

7-Hydroxymitragynine is the main ingredient in Kratom tinctures and has opioid agonistic activity. Recent research about the active substances in Kratom has shown that its potency is 30-fold higher than that of Mitragynine, which makes 7-Hydroxymitragynine the top candidate as main active substance in Kratom and puts Mitragynine, the previously assumed as main active chemical, in second place.

7-hydroxymitragynine interacts with the three major opiod sites Kappa, Delta and Mu, but it preferably binds to Mu receptors; these receptors are responsible for the enjoyable effects of opiates, analgesia and physical dependence.

Kratom_7-Hydroxymitragynine

Mitragynine

Mitragynine is an indole alkaloid and already has been isolated for the first time in 1907 by D. Hooper, so it actually took almost 100 years until it found its way to recreational use. It has been thought to be the primary active substance in Kratom, but it turned out to be only the most abundant active alkaloid (about 0.1-0.3%, depending on the plant).

A small dose of Mitragynine acts like a stimulant because it binds to the Delta receptors, but at higher doses it also binds to the Mu receptors and alleviates pain. Although the structure of Mitragynine is similar to LSD or Psilocybin it does not induce any psychedelic effects. Since Mitragynine was assumed to be the main active substance in Kratom, it is better researched than 7-Hydroxymitragynine.

Kratom_Mitragynine

(-)-Epicatechin

Epicatechin is a real all-rounder with its versatile benefits for health. It reduces the effects of free radicals1 on the body, which reduces the cancer risk2 and helps prevent fat cells from oxidizing and blocking arteries3. Moreover it helps with blood sugar levels and is beneficial to diabetics4 because it mimics endogenous insulin.

Kratom_Epicatechin

Kratom: Medical Potential And Controversy

From modern user reports and reports about traditional usage, kratom does have a wide variety of potential benefits. A growing number of academic papers and research is beginning to confirm these benefits and effects of kratom, including: use as an antidepressant5, an anti-inflammatory6 and anti-bacterial7. It is used to combat diarrhoea8, and it also has painkilling effects9, and has shown potential as a treatment for diabetes10.

Kratom was first documented as an opiate substitute in Asia11 in the early 19th century, and it is its potential as a cheap, naturally occurring aid to coming off heroin or addictive prescription opiate-based painkillers (such as Oxycontin) that is creating the most excitement in medical circles. Coming off or substituting for dangerous, addictive and very profitable drugs? Now what could possibly be wrong with that?

Well, the legal future of kratom remains on a knife-edge since the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) placed it on its Drugs and Chemicals of Concern list – one step from being scheduled. If this happens, research into kratom’s exciting potential will grind to a halt.

Controversy Around Kratom

Based on the data that is available on kratom, it appears as though the actual plant itself is pretty safe. Unlike opioids, there has never been a single report of human respiratory depression following any dose of kratom. Close reading of all accounts of hospitalization from kratom use has shown other drugs, alcohol and prescription meds to have been involved.

Nevertheless, the DEA has been putting out ill-informed scare stories about it since 2005, almost entirely based on a single report from 1975 by a Thai government researcher warning of ‘kratom psychosis,’ of users becoming dangerous lunatics and acting like modern day hashishin terrorists.

Now Thailand has a bit of history when it comes to maligning its native kratom. As we’ve heard, in Thai folk medicine, the leaf is used for the treatment of diarrhoea and as a substitute in cases of opium addiction. Nothing dodgy there, you might think. But when the Thai government began to levy duties and taxes from users and suppliers in the opium trade, prices rose dramatically and users started to take kratom to manage their withdrawal symptoms.

As World War II spread to East Asia in 1942, the decreasing income from the opium trade prompted the Thai government to suppress the competition and make kratom illegal. They passed the Kratom Act in 1943, banning the planting of new kratom trees and calling for existing ones to be cut down.

It didn't work, and after World War II, the Act was very loosely enforced. Kratom trees were still grown and their leaves chewed openly. In 1979, kratom was included under Schedule 5 (the least restrictive and punitive level) in the Thai Narcotics Act.

Kratom: The Real Threat?

So we can perhaps understand where a certain institutional dislike of kratom in Thailand comes from: the fat cats, politicians and generals hated having their dope profits cut.

And in the US, a similar process is arguably underway. The pharmaceutical firms who earn billions a year from the many addictive, liver damaging, branded opiate pain relievers don’t want competition from some natural, relatively safe and non-addictive rival. Cue the media hubbub and ignorant political kneejerk response.

Herbal alternatives to pharmaceuticals in general are under broad attack, from medicinal cannabis to established and legal herbal remedies, as part of a wider attack on public health. That’s a whole other story for another day (in the meantime, Google Codex alimentarius).

But hey, let’s not be despondent. Kratom is still widely legal and widely available for both medicinal and recreational use, and honest scientists are producing more evidence of its safety and potential usefulness. Maybe honest appraisal of the science and common sense will win out.

History Of Kratom

Kratom has only just recently (starting in late 2004 and spiking in April of 2005) stepped into the spotlight of Western scientific and medical research. Studies about its potential pharmacological applications are still pending, yet some countries consider a ban of it without even researching its pros (and cons, we don't want be biased) in the first place.

Therefore the international legal status of Kratom is uncertain, despite its possible advantages over expensive prescription drugs with their severe side-effects.

Kratom Use Goes Way Back

The use of Kratom dates back millenia and it is plain to see that Kratom users, vendors and researchers have to spread accurate information to elucidate the true value of this natural means, before some uneducated blockheads who have no idea about Kratom criminalize it and deprive users of a natural substitute for opiates. From what we have read so far there are no significant negative effects, but long-term use studies are still pending as well.

Unfortunately Kratom has no romanticized history like Cannabis, Opium or LSD, but is tied to the traditional use as a stimulant for peasants and workers who would use it to cope with their hard daily hard work and meager existence. But, let's go back in time and have a look at the history of Kratom ...

Early Descriptions Of Kratom As An Opiate Substitute

In Western literature, Kratom was (allegedly) first described in the early 19th century by Pieter Willem Korthals, a Dutch botanist who worked for the East India Company. Another source mentions Low, who described the plant in 1836. He wrote that the peasants and rural workers in Malaysia used it as a substitute when opium was unavailable or not affordable.

Opium was widely distributed in the South-East Asian region and flushed tax money into the respective state treasury (a fact that would seal Kratom's fate in Thailand in the following century). E. M. Holmes also referred to Kratom's use as an opium substitute, when he identified it as Mitragyna speciosa in 1895. Two years later H. Ridley documented that Kratom was used to wean people off of opium and its extracts.

Isolation Of Kratom's Alkaloids

L. Wray described the local methods of using Kratom, such as drinking it as a concoction, smoking and chewing in 1907. Hoping for medical use, he sent samples of both Mitragyna speciosa and its relative Mitragyna parvifolia to the University of Edinburgh, where Hooper actually isolated the Mitragynine alkaloid from Mitragyna speciosa, but without giving it a name. This was rectified in 1921, when Fray repeated the procedure and gave the alkaloid its name - Mitragynine. He also isolated Mitraversine from the leaves of Mitragyna parvifolia.

In 1930, I. H. Burkill studied the use of Kratom as a psychoactive and also described its traditional use as a medicine, mentioning it as a means for diarrhea and fever and its use as poultice and ointments. This has been confirmed in a Thai study12 from 1975, by Dr. Sangun Suwanlert. In 1940, three more alkaloids were identified and the research continued.

The Kratom Act

On August 3, 1943, the government of Thailand passed the Kratom Act 2486, which made possession and sale of Kratom illegal and even included cutting down trees in order to enforce the law. Obviously a shot from the hip, because the plant is indigenous to Thailand and the effects of eradicating a certain species always affects the whole environment in its surrounding, harming the regional biodiversity.

Don't get fooled by uneducated reports claiming it was banned due to health problems caused by Kratom; the true background is, that Kratom was used as a substitute by opium users, which in return reduced the tax income of the Thai government which profited from the distribution of opium. It was a monetary decision without any scientific background. How absurd it is, that it is classed in the same enforcement group as cocaine and heroin.

Kratom Use Persists In Spite Of Legislation

On January 28, 1993, a Ministry of Health notice declared Mitragyna speciosa a controlled narcotic drug under Section 30 (b) of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Law in Myanmar. In 1994, a study published by the country's Health Ministry indicated that many people had used it to get off of (prescription) opiates, morphine or heroin, although they continued to use Kratom after the withdrawal.

The Thai Narcotics Control Board indicated that in 2001, the second most widely abused illegal drug in the country was still Kratom, particularly in the rural and sub-urban areas of the working class society. It was estimated that 2 million people were still using Kratom and the same year, the police seized 1270 kilograms; clear evidence that the ban was contrary to the people's stance, and that the market had moved underground. This increased the price and lowered the quality of the available product and opened the market for "fake Kratom". Fake Kratom is derived from Mitragyna javanica and contains the alkaloid Mitrajavine, a chemical yet to be pharmacologically tested.

Further Crackdown On Kratom And Related Substances

In 2003, Malaysia illegalized Mitragynine and in August 2004 the ban was extended to the leaves of Mitragyna speciosa. In the same year, the authorities organized a four day operation, targeting the Kratom market in the states of Terengganu, Pahang and Kelantan. This resulted in 15 arrests and seizure of 245 kilograms of Mitragyna speciosa leaves and over 800 liters of prepared Kratom tea (locally known as "air ketum" - kratom water). Other operations are presumably ongoing.

In 2005, a Malay newspaper described unusual methods of Kratom use with one of them being "A not so palatable-sounding process in which it (Kratom) is blended it with dried cow dung and tobacco and then smoked in a kind of blunt". In early March 2006, the Attorney General issued instructions on how to expand the ban to make the consumption of Kratom a criminal offense as well. The following year Kratom was re-classified and moved from the list of "poisonous substances" to the class of "dangerous drugs", making it even more illegal than it was before.

Another recent country to ban Kratom is Australia. During the meetings of the National Drugs and Poisons Schedule Committee in February 2003, Mitragyna speciosa was considered to be added to Schedule 9 of the Standard for the Uniform Scheduling of Drugs and Poisons, and in October 2003 and February 2004 the Committee agreed. Public voices pointing out the safety, harmlessness and medical and therapeutic potential died away unheard. On January 1st, 2005, the law went into effect.

Kratom's Current Status

Almost each and every time Kratom appears in the media, it is described as an unsafe and highly addictive substance of abuse without any medical value, despite its documented use as a means for various ailments throughout centuries. It is often associated with other substances that it has absolutely nothing to do with.

It is still relatively new to the Western world and this seems to contribute to some general misunderstandings and prejudice. Comparing the natural herb to opiates, as some journalists do, or talking about its abuse and addiction potential, stigmatizes the users in a negative way and turned pain suffers who would not want to take the high-priced prescription opiates with their severe side-effects anymore into criminals.

A recent report from the Transnational Institute and Thai Narcotic control Board comes to the conclusion, that Kratom is a part of southern Thai culture and that the criminalization of Kratom is not only unnecessary, but counter-productive given centuries of non-problematic use. Kratom still ranks second in Thailand's illegally used drugs.

Attention: The legality of Kratom differs per country/state. Always check local legislation before purchasing and or consuming Kratom.

 

External Resources:

  1. https://www.semanticscholar.org/paper/Inhibitory-effects
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/869523
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11192356
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5591471/
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20869223
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19648761
  7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19924042
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18191353
  9. https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Ian_Cock/publication/316997559
  10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18846471
  11. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3670991/
  12. https://www.unodc.org/unodc/en/data-and-analysis/bulletin/bulletin
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