Beginners Guide to Kratom
THE PRODIGIOUS PLANT
Kratom is legitimate, yet surprisingly a still bit unknown. For some, this will be something enjoyable to relax with or treat pain and for others, it can change your life.
In short, Kratom is a safe, inexpensive and legal plant you can take to treat anxiety, pain, create a sense of well-being, improve productivity/motivation, and more. There’s a lot we can tell you about kratom, but this article will cover the basics.
WHAT IS KRATOM?
Kratom is a deciduous plant native to Southeast Asia (mostly Indonesia). Kratom (also known as Mitragyna Speciosa) hits mainly on the delta receptors in the brain and although it behaves similar to a μ-opioid receptor, it’s not an opiate. This means although it has much milder effects than any opioid, it is also much safer.
I’m not going to hide the fact that you can become addicted to kratom. It’s certainly possible. The good thing is it can be easily avoided and there are things like rotating and other accessible options like washouts to avoid this.
DIFFERENT EFFECTS OF KRATOM
Kratom effects fall into three major categories:
FAST: Energetic – Workout- Productivity- Focus- Sociable- Motivation
MODERATE: Mix of both Fast & Slow. Some are a bit slower, others are a bit faster. Effects can have a range of any number of qualities.
SLOW: Kills Anxiety- Calming- Relaxing- Good For Sleep
WHICH STRAINS ARE FAST, MODERATE & SLOW?
The main way is the country or province the strain is from. Bali and Borneo strains are slow, Thai strains or ones called ‘Maeng Da’ are fast, and Indonesian strains are generally moderate.
Another indication is what color of the vein of the leaf of that strain(usually shows in the name). The colors can be Red (Slow), Green (Moderate), or White (Fast). So a strain like ‘Green Kalimantan’ is a moderate strain from Kalimantan (Indonesia). This indicator isn’t always correct, but in most cases it is.
BENEFITS OF ALL KRATOM VEINS
- Has been used to help anxiety & depression
- Helps people get off suboxone, tramadol, etc.
- Creates a positive attitude/mood
- Kills pain
- Lowers blood pressure
- Suppresses appetite
- Treats Premature Ejaculation
HOW TO TAKE KRATOM
Although Kratom is legal to buy, possess, and sell- it can’t legally be sold for human consumption since it’s not approved by the FDA. It has to be sold as an incense. Therefore, when talking about ingesting kratom online, people will say ‘burning kratom’ instead of ‘drinking’ or ‘ingesting kratom’. Another word is ‘aroma’ which is the effects that kratom produces when used.
Toss n’Wash – Toss the powder (it’s just the leaf blended up) in your mouth, take a big sip of water, mix it around in your mouth and then swallow. Efficient but tricky the first few times (this is how I do it- it takes me 5 seconds). Two grams (a teaspoon) is a good start.
Mix with Water or Juice – Put the powder in a cup, mix it with water/juice (stir well since it doesn’t dissolve easily), then drink it down.
Make Tea Out of it – This is the most time-consuming way but a lot of people stand by it. Basically, you boil the powder in a pot for several minutes, strain the water to remove the powder, and then drink the water (tea). Coffee filters can work.
Mix it with Protein Powder – Decent option to help mask the taste.
THE DO’S AND DON’TS
Stay Hydrated – This is a crucial step to always take when burning. Kratom dehydrates so make sure you drink plenty of water. Hydration increases the quality of the aroma as well as prolonging its effect.
Empty Stomach – Best to burn at least 3 hours after eating. If you plan to burn sooner than that, you may need to add an extra gram to make up for the loss in aroma quality. On the other hand, if it’s first thing in the morning before breakfast, you may want to take a gram less so kratom doesn’t hit you too hard and fast.
Sweet Spot – There’s a sweet spot for kratom on the perfect amount of grams that works best for you. You’ll learn it after a bit of experience with burning. What you’ll often find is that fewer grams can often produce a better aroma than a larger dose.
Burning 2+ times/day – If you burn more than once per day be aware that there is ‘same day tolerance’. For instance if it’s your 2nd burn of the day, you may need to add an extra gram than usual. Then possibly another extra gram if it’s your 3rd burn of the day.
Don’t overdo it – Sometimes the aromas take more than 30 minutes to kick in. Other times, it’s because your tolerance is too high. Instead of keep adding many more grams after a dud burn; just wait a couple hours to try again. Taking too much kratom can make you a bit drowsy.
- If you burn more than 5 times/week, you should rotate your kratom
- Only burn one strain per day. You can burn that one strain as many times as you want, just don’t change it until the next day.
- Rotating kratom means alternating types each day. If Monday you have a Slow type, then Tuesday you should either have a Fast or Moderate type. There’s an example in a schedule below
- If your tolerance gets too high, you can use a ‘wash-out’ (article coming soon) to reduce it. Basically you take a break from kratom, but there’s ways I will talk about soon that makes this easy and more efficient
- If you plan to burn regularly, plan out what strains will be used on what days. So this way fast strains will be used on gym days, and slow strain will be used on a day like a Sunday where you just chill out. Use the table below to get an idea
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
The most important thing you need to know is that the quality in kratom can vary so much. I’ve tried around a dozen different vendors and only two of them could produce the effects described in this guide. Most kratom out there barely works, and even some I’ve tried can give you anxiety (often from smokeshops). The better vendors remove the stems & veins from the leaf before they blend it; to make sure it’s potent and not full of ‘fillers’. Another concern is the cleanliness. Kratom is picked by workers in Indonesia and other parts of Southeast Asia then put in a bag sit. You never know how well of a cleaning process there is (if any) and if it just sat in a warehouse for months on end.
So often people will try kratom from some less than reputable vendor, then write it off as nothing special from a very sub-par experience.
The difference is really night and day from the bad stuff. Whether you use my recommendation or not, it’s a good idea to just order a small amount first to make sure you respond well to it and you find which types work best for you. Then, you can decide after to get more and/or start rotating.
Avoid extracts – Skyrockets your tolerance. Regular kratom is a powder while extracts are sold in a liquid form.
Avoid kratom capsules – It’s not that bad but you’ll likely have to pay more for the kratom (the caps) and need to take up to a dozen caps at once.
Side Effects – If you burn too much, there is potential for nausea. Most often burning too much means you’ll become a bit drowsy.
Avoid crushed leaf – Crushed leaf is, as you probably guessed, the kratom leaf crushed down instead of being blended into a powder. To be honest I’ve never actually tried it, but the overall consensus is that it’s not as great. If you like making tea out of kratom, it may not be a bad option.