These are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about kratom. I cover most of these in more detail in my kratom guide which you can read here.
What is kratom?
It’s a plant that grows in the wild in parts of Southeast Asia and is also harvested and sold commercially. It’s scientific name is Mitragyna speciosa. It’s in the coffee family and has been used to treat fatigue, chronic pain, and anxiety for thousands of years.
What are kratom “strains”?
This refers to different varieties of the kratom plant. There are three general strains of kratom; white vein, green vein, and red vein. These different strains provide different effects.
Is kratom legal?
It’s not scheduled under the Controlled Substances Act, but Indiana, Tennessee, Vermont, and Wisconsin have passed state laws which ban kratom in those states.
Is kratom FDA-approved?
No. The FDA has not approved it for internal use. You will see online vendors sell kratom to be used for incense, soap-making, crafts, etc.
Is kratom safe?
I’m not a medical professional. Consult your doctor for any specific medical concerns you may have. With that said, kratom has been taken for thousands of years and there are very few cases of people suffering ill effects. Excessive use of kratom over time may lead to darkening of the skin, addiction, and withdrawal symptoms when one stops using kratom.
In what forms is kratom sold?
Whole-leaf, crushed-leaf, powdered leaf (this is how I use it), resin, extracts, capsules, and liquid.
What are the ways I can take kratom?
I’ve only used the powdered-leaf form so I can’t speak for the other forms. Powdered-leaf kratom can be taken through the “toss and wash” method (my favorite method) where you put a little water in your mouth, toss in the kratom powder, and then wash it down with more water. It can also be mixed with a drink of your choice or even made into a tea.
How much kratom should I take?
It will vary from person to person. Anywhere from 1.5 grams to 5 grams (of good-quality kratom) depending on your individual response and the strain of kratom you’re taking.
What are the effects of kratom?
The effects include relaxation, a sense of calm, reduction in anxiety, decrease in appetite, increase in energy, a desire to be more social and talk to people, a positive outlook on life and a general sense of optimism, well-being, a desire to be more productive, and a pleasant body sensation.
Where can I buy kratom?
I’ve heard that headshops and gas stations may sell it but I don’t have any personal experience with those. You can buy kratom online from various vendors. I’ve tried several of them and I recommend Happy Hippo Herbals.
What does kratom taste like?
Bitter. It reminds me of matcha green tea, a little bit. Most people don’t like the taste.
How much does kratom cost?
I’ve bought kratom for as low as $0.24 per gram (and the kratom sucked) to as high as $0.63 per gram. I took up to ten grams of the cheaper stuff and still felt only a mild effect so it wasn’t even cost-effective. If you figure an average serving size of three grams and an average cost of $0.60 per gram, an average serving of kratom will cost you $1.80.
What’s the best way to get consistent results from kratom?
Find a consistent way to measure your servings. Use a scale that measures grams out to at least one decimal place, preferably two decimal places. If you don’t have access to a scale then use teaspoons.
How often should I use kratom?
As often as you want. Some people use it for special occasions such as going out or public speaking. Others use it every day, several times a day. I use it every day in the morning and often in the afternoon as well. Find what works best for you.
Is kratom addictive?
To answer a question with another question, is coffee addictive? Is alcohol addictive? There are people who become addicted to almost anything you can think of. If you have concerns about becoming addicted to kratom then think very carefully about that before deciding to try it.
Will I build up a tolerance to kratom?
Yes, if you’re not careful. Avoid this by rotating strains and not taking “enhanced” kratom or kratom extracts.
What’s the best strain of kratom?
It depends on the effects you want. Generally, white strains give more energy but last a shorter time. Red strains put you in more of a relaxed, pleasant, chill mood. Green strains can be a mix of the two but lean more toward the white strain style of effects. Personally, I prefer white strains and I especially like White Hippo and Rockstar Hippo.
Happy Hippo Herbals has a starter pack with three different kinds of kratom so you can figure out what strains you like best. This pack was the first kratom I ever bought and it gave me a good idea of the differences between white, green, and red strains.
How do I measure the amount of kratom to take?
A scale works best. Teaspoons will do if you’re careful to measure exactly each time by using “flat” spoonfuls instead of “heaping” spoonfuls.
Can kratom help me as a student?
Yes and no. It can help with anxiety if you need to interact with other students and professors or you’re too shy to ask questions and you feel that’s holding you back. If you need to learn hard maths and science it may hurt memory retention and the ability to learn complex topics. I’m currently studying Electrical Engineering so this comes from personal experience.
Can kratom help me be more social?
Yes. It reduces anxiety and some strains make you more eager to talk to people.
Can kratom help me at work?
Yes. It helps with anxiety and can make boring, repetitive tasks actually seem enjoyable.
Can kratom help me in the gym?
Yes, a lot of people use “fast” strains such as white strains for extra energy on training days.
Can kratom help me lose weight?
Yes, kratom reduces food cravings and hunger in general. I’ve lost 25 pounds over the past four months thanks to a combination of diet, exercise, and kratom.
What are the drawbacks to kratom?
There can be negative effects if you take poor quality kratom or too much kratom. Tired, dizziness, nausea, “brain fog”, lack of concentration, and anxiety are all symptoms that I’ve experienced by taking too much kratom. Avoid this by using good quality kratom and taking the right amount by finding your sweet spot.
For more detail on these questions check out my kratom guide.
Do you have other questions that weren’t covered here? Post them in the comments below.