Kratom, a botanical substance derived from the leaves of the Mitragyna speciosa tree native to Southeast Asia, has gained significant attention in recent years. It is an herbal substance that is known for its opioid- and stimulant-like effects. 

Kratom is famous for its potential medicinal properties and controversial status, and it has sparked both curiosity and debate among users, researchers, and policymakers alike. However, it is essential to note that there are safety concerns and potential risks associated with kratom use. 

This guide aims to provide a comprehensive overview of kratom, delving into its definition, potential benefits, side effects, and much more. Whether you are a curious newcomer seeking to understand what kratom is or an experienced user looking for in-depth information, this guide will serve as a valuable resource to navigate the complexities surrounding this unique botanical substance.

What is Kratom?

Kratom is an herbal substance derived from the leaves of a tree called Mitragyna speciosa, which is native to Southeast Asia, including countries like Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Papua New Guinea. It has been used for centuries in traditional medicine in these regions to treat various conditions, such as pain, diarrhea, opioid and alcohol withdrawal symptoms, and fatigue.

Some people use kratom to manage pain, alleviate opioid withdrawal symptoms, improve mood, or increase energy levels. However, it is essential to note that the U.S. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has warned consumers about the potential dangers of using kratom, and it is currently illegal in some states.

What are the Types of Kratom?

Kratom comes in various types or strains, which are typically categorized based on the color of the veins on the leaves. The main types of kratom strains are:

1. Red Vein Kratom

Red vein kratom is known for its calming and relaxing effects. People who are looking for relief from pain, anxiety, and stress frequently use it. It is thought that red vein kratom’s sedative qualities stem from a higher concentration of 7-hydroxy mitragynine.

2. White Vein Kratom

White vein kratom is generally more stimulating and energizing compared to other strains. It is often used by individuals looking for increased focus, mental clarity, and energy levels. White vein kratom is believed to have a higher concentration of mitragynine, which contributes to its stimulating effects.

3. Green Vein Kratom

Green vein kratom is considered to have a balanced effect, combining both the energizing properties of white vein kratom and the calming properties of red vein kratom. It is often used for mood enhancement, relaxation, and mild pain relief. Green vein kratom is believed to have a moderate concentration of both mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine.

4. Yellow Vein Kratom

Yellow vein kratom is a rarer type of kratom that is thought to be a cross between red and green vein kratom. It is known for its potential mood-enhancing and energizing effects. Yellow vein kratom is believed to have a unique alkaloid profile, which may contribute to its distinct properties.

What are the Health Benefits of Kratom?

Kratom is believed to have several potential health benefits, although it is essential to note that more research is needed to understand its effects fully. Here are some of the reported health benefits associated with kratom:

1. Increased Energy Levels

At lower doses, kratom acts as a stimulant, providing a natural boost in energy levels, increased alertness, and enhanced focus. This can be especially helpful for those who need an energy boost to increase productivity or fight fatigue. Kratom’s stimulating properties are attributed to its interaction with adrenergic receptors in the brain, resulting in increased energy and motivation.

2. Relieve Pain

Kratom has a long history of traditional use for its analgesic properties. It may lessen pain by interacting with the brain’s opioid receptors. Kratom’s active compounds, such as mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine, bind to the mu-opioid receptors, leading to a reduction in pain sensations. Some individuals use kratom to manage chronic pain conditions, with some studies suggesting its efficacy in alleviating pain.

3. Improve Mental Health Conditions

Kratom may help alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression, promoting a more positive mood and calming your nerves. Kratom may be helpful for people looking to reduce their stress and depressive symptoms because it has been shown to have mood-enhancing qualities. It is believed to interact with the brain’s opioid receptors, which can influence mood and emotions. However, it’s important to note that kratom should not be considered a substitute for evidence-based treatments for mental health conditions. Further research is needed to understand its potential effects and safety.

4. Opioid Craving Reduction

Some people have used kratom to help manage withdrawal symptoms and lessen cravings related to opioid use. Kratom’s interaction with opioid receptors in the brain, similar to opioids themselves, may contribute to its potential for reducing opioid cravings. However, caution should be exercised as kratom itself can be addictive and may have its risks. More research is needed to fully understand the potential benefits and risks of using kratom for opioid craving reduction.

5. Provide Feelings of Pleasure or Euphoria

Kratom, particularly at higher doses, has been reported to induce feelings of pleasure or euphoria. This effect is believed to be due to the interaction of kratom’s active compounds with opioid receptors in the brain. Mitragynine, one of kratom’s primary alkaloids, activates the brain’s reward system, leading to the release of dopamine and the experience of pleasure. However, it’s important to note that the euphoric effects of kratom can vary among individuals, and there is a risk of dependence and addiction with regular and high-dose use.

What are the Negative Side Effects of Kratom?

Kratom is associated with several adverse side effects, although the severity and frequency of these effects can vary among individuals. Here are the reported negative side effects of kratom:

1. Dry Mouth

Dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, is a common side effect of kratom use. It occurs due to inhibiting saliva production, leading to a dry sensation in the mouth. This can cause discomfort and an increased risk of dental issues such as tooth decay and gum disease. Eliminating saliva production can also lead to a higher risk of oral infections and difficulties in speaking and swallowing.

2. Constipation

Kratom use can lead to constipation, where bowel movements become infrequent and difficult to pass. This side effect is more commonly experienced with long-term and high dose use. Constipation can cause discomfort, bloating, and abdominal pain. It can also lead to complications such as hemorrhoids and fecal impaction if not managed properly.

3. Muscle Pain

Some individuals have reported experiencing muscle pain or discomfort after using kratom. The exact mechanism behind this side effect is not well understood. Tense or strained muscles probably result from kratom’s effects on the central nervous system. Muscle pain can impact mobility and overall physical well-being, affecting daily activities and quality of life.

4. Itchiness

Itchiness, also known as pruritus, is another reported side effect of kratom use. Itchy skin can cause redness or irritation, which can be bothersome. The cause of this side effect is not fully understood, but it may be related to the release of histamine or other inflammatory mediators. Persistent itching can lead to skin damage and discomfort.

5. Sweating

Sweating, including excessive sweating or night sweats, has been reported as a side effect of kratom use. This can be uncomfortable and may disrupt sleep patterns. Excessive sweating can lead to dehydration, electrolyte imbalances, and skin irritation, impacting overall well-being and comfort.

6. Weight Loss

There is a link between long-term, high-dose kratom use and weight reduction. This may be due to a combination of factors, including decreased appetite, increased metabolism, and potential gastrointestinal effects such as constipation. Significant weight loss can lead to nutritional deficiencies, weakened immune function, and other health complications.

7. Loss of Appetite

Kratom use has been reported to cause a loss of appetite in some individuals. This can lead to reduced food intake and subsequent weight loss. Anorexia nervosa, an eating disorder characterized by severe restriction of caloric information, has also been associated with long-term kratom use in some cases. Loss of appetite can lead to malnutrition and related health issues.

How to Consume Kratom: Methods of Use

There are many ways to consume kratom, and each one offers a different experience. Traditionally, people have consumed kratom by drinking it as a tea or by chewing its leaves. However, as the popularity of kratom has grown, new methods of consumption have emerged. 

1. Tea and Chewing

Historically, kratom has been ingested as a tea or by chewing its leaves. In Southeast Asia, where kratom is native, this age-old technique has been used for generations to enable the direct ingestion of the plant’s natural compounds.

2. Resins, Extracts, and Tinctures

Additionally, concentrated forms of kratom, such as tinctures, extracts, and resins, are available. These vital preparations provide a quick and effective way to feel the benefits of kratom.

3. Pills, Capsules, and Powders

In modern times, kratom is available in convenient forms such as pills, capsules, and powders. These forms provide a measured and consistent dosage, making it easier for users to control their intake.

4. Drinks and Concoctions

Kratom has been incorporated into various drinks and concoctions. For example, in Thailand, a popular concoction is made with kratom leaves, cough syrup, cola, and ice. Additionally, kratom bars have emerged in the U.S., offering kratom-infused beverages as alternatives to traditional cocktails.

5. Other Traditional Uses

In addition to the methods above, kratom has historically been used as a source of medicine and for recreational purposes in Southeast Asian countries. Fishermen, farmers, and other laborers chew the fresh leaves of the kratom plant to get its stimulant effects and ease fatigue from hard work. The dried leaves are rarely used for smoking or making a water decoction.

What to Do Before Buying the Kratom?

When choosing kratom, there are several factors to consider to ensure a safe and satisfactory experience. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

1. Research Reputable Suppliers

Due to the lack of standardization and quality control surrounding kratom products, it’s crucial to research and choose reputable suppliers. Look for companies that prioritize quality, transparency, and third-party testing to ensure the purity and potency of their products. Reading customer reviews and seeking recommendations from trusted sources can help identify reliable suppliers.

2. Consult a Healthcare Professional

Before using kratom, it’s advisable to consult with a healthcare professional, especially if you have underlying health conditions or are taking medications. They can provide personalized guidance and help determine if kratom is suitable for you. It’s important to consider potential interactions and specific risks based on your health profile.

3. Quality and Reputation

When purchasing kratom, prioritize quality and reputation. Look for suppliers who adhere to good manufacturing practices and provide detailed information about their products, including the source, quality, and purity. Reputable suppliers often conduct third-party lab testing to ensure the absence of contaminants and verify the potency of their kratom products.

4. Method of Consumption

Consider the method of consumption that aligns with your preferences and needs. Kratom can be consumed as a tea, in capsules or pills, as powders, or in other forms such as resins or extracts. Each method may have different onset times and durations of effects. Choose the way that suits your desired experience and convenience.

5. Reviews and Recommendations

Reading customer reviews and seeking recommendations from trusted sources or communities can provide insights into the quality and effects of different kratom products and brands. However, it’s essential to consider a range of opinions and experiences to make an informed decision.


Kratom is a fascinating botanical substance derived from the leaves of the Mitragyna speciosa tree native to Southeast Asia. While kratom may offer potential benefits, it’s crucial to approach its use with caution and moderation, keeping in mind the potential risks associated with its consumption. 

As research continues to evolve, our understanding of kratom will deepen, and more precise guidelines for its safe and responsible use may emerge. Ultimately, deciding to investigate the world of kratom should be done after giving considerable thought to one’s unique situation and making a commitment to responsible use.


What is Kratom?

Kratom is a substance derived from the leaves of a plant native to Southeast Asia. It is made into a powder that can be taken as a pill or made into a tea. Kratom has pain-relieving effects similar to opioid drugs. 

Why Do People Use Kratom?

People use kratom for various reasons. Some take it to relieve pain or manage opioid withdrawal symptoms. Others use it for relaxation or to boost energy levels.

Is Kratom Legal?

The legal status of kratom varies by country and even within different states or regions. In the United States, kratom is not lawfully marketed as a drug product, dietary supplement, or food additive in conventional food.

Is Kratom Addictive?

Kratom can be addictive due to its opiate-like qualities. Some users may develop a dependence on kratom and require addiction treatment.

Is It Safe?

The safety of kratom is a topic of debate. While some people believe that kratom is natural and safe, it’s important to note that the amount of active ingredients in kratom plants can vary greatly, making it difficult to gauge the effect of a given dose.