First let me start off by saying, that I am a scientist at heart. I will try almost anything twice, and that often includes items of questionable legality.
That’s why I eagerly accepted when I got an offer from SoulSpeciosa to give a few of their kratom strains a try. I’d heard a lot about kratom from some of my “weirder” Facebook groups, and was interested in finding out more about the herb’s pain-relieving and sedative properties.
I don’t necessarily condone anyone else living this kind of reckless lifestyle. I’m simply sharing my experience with this supplement that was provided for my review by SoulSpeciosa.
My take is this – if the government was able to lie about the risks and benefits of cannabis for about a century, I’m willing to bet they labeled a few other substances completely wrong, too. As long as it came out of the ground, and it’s not crystal meth or heroin, I’m probably game to give it a try. That’s the truth. Moving on…
Kratom is an herbal supplement derived from the Asian Mitragyna speciosa evergreen tree. It’s still legal in most states, though usually sold as an “incense” product, marked “not for human consumption.” That’s because kratom interacts with opioid receptors in the brain, similarly to heroin, but in a much more safe and natural way. Still, due to FDA regulations they’re not exactly allowed to say, “eat this.”
Unfortunately a recent wave of crackdowns has brought kratom back into the public eye, as the herb has been lumped in with deadly garbage like K2 and Spice. There are typical scare tactics being used, saying that kratom can cause hallucinations, aggression, psychotic delusions and other health issues, while indie media and drug forums tell a very different story. Stories of addicts using kratom to help them stay clean, individuals with anxiety and chronic pain using kratom to get off benzos and other harmful prescriptions.
Well, I’m here to tell you that those psychosis scares are pretty far off-base! I experimented with three unique strains of kratom powder, in multiple doses. After mixing with some iced sweet tea, I experienced only really pleasant effects at all dosage levels, and the “high,” in my opinion, was far less pronounced than, say, what you’d feel after smoking a bowl of weed. I definitely didn’t have any delusions, just a pleasant body high and energy.
There are a couple different ways that kratom is sold, but what I received was the raw powdered version. It has to be mixed into a beverage and drunk quickly like a shot. The average “dose” could be anywhere from 2 to 7 grams of powder. Effects start in about 30 minutes and fade off over a long period of time.
Red strains of kratom are typically compared to opiates, because of their sedative and pain-relieving effects. Red kratom has even been said to aid people who are going through opioid withdrawal because it mimics many of the feelings the addict is craving.
White and green strains provide a mild stimulant effect, along with some pain-relieving properties. My favorite of the two was the green Malaysian powder, because I could feel the stimulant effect a bit more, but the white strain would be absolutely perfect for someone who wants the same feeling, but doesn’t want to feel jittery.
Kratom isn’t something that should be taken every day, as it can be habit forming just like anything else. It’s more of a once-a-week or every-few-days practice, as there’s a tolerance that can build up in the body. At higher doses, the “afterglow” effects of kratom may be felt for a day or two after ingestion. Seriously a powerful herb!
Besides red, white, and green, there are several other strains of kratom to learn about and try, all with their own unique effect profiles.
While I wouldn’t generally recommend this for everyone, if you’re trying to lessen your dependence on something else, this could be an herbal alternative to look into. Living with depression, anxiety, insomnia or chronic fatigue, or weaning yourself off of pills, cannabis, alcohol, or another substance can be tough. Kratom, as a supplement, can provide that special relief and grounding energy that many people are looking for.