Whispers of a Southeast Asian remedy, echoing through centuries, have finally reached modern ears. Kratom, once reserved for tribal healers, is now spilling into the mainstream as a potent pain reliever. But what exactly makes this botanical whisper so loud? The answer lies not in the leaves themselves, but in their potent essence – kratom extracts.
These concentrated marvels isolate the pain-soothing properties, offering a refined approach to relief. So, dive deeper with us, and unlock the secrets of kratom extracts: nature’s concentrated whisper for conquering chronic pain.
Kratom Extracts: An Overview
Kratom, scientifically known as Mitragyna speciosa, is a tropical evergreen tree native to Southeast Asia, particularly found in Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Papua New Guinea. It belongs to the Rubiaceae family, which also includes coffee and gardenia.
Kratom leaves and extracts have a surprising range of uses, acting as a stimulant, sedative, and even natural pain reliever. Low doses make you feel energetic, focused, and even a bit more social. Increasing the dosage results in a shift in effects, bringing on relaxation and a touch of euphoria. To shop kratom extracts for stronger effects, it is essential to be knowledgeable about the different types and methods of extraction available to ensure a safe and effective experience.
These diverse effects owe a debt to kratom’s main chemical players: mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine. These fancy-named molecules might act like little pain warriors, reducing inflammation and relaxing muscles. It is therefore not surprising that individuals with fibromyalgia, a chronic pain condition, often turn to kratom for relief.
Forms and Consumption
Speaking of forms, kratom’s got options! You can find it as a powder, paste, capsule, or even a tablet. In the U.S., a popular choice is brewing it into tea, a way for people to manage pain and ease the symptoms of opioid withdrawal.
Legal Status and Regulation
Kratom’s legal status is a bit of a patchwork quilt. While legal in the United States, it’s banned in places like Thailand, Australia, and parts of Europe. In the U.S., it’s considered an alternative medicine, but without strict regulations, concerns around purity and safety linger.
7 Ways Kratom Extracts Work for Pain-Relief
Kratom extracts are gaining popularity for their ability to ease pain. Ongoing studies are revealing how they work, and here are seven key ways they might help in managing pain:
1. Interacting with Various Receptors
Kratom extracts are packed with compounds like mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine. These interact with several receptors in the brain and body, mainly focusing on opioid receptors. This interaction imitates the pain relief offered by opioids but might have a lower chance of addiction and harsh side effects. Kratom also influences other receptors that play a role in how we feel pain, our mood, and inflammation, possibly boosting its pain-relief power.
2. Reducing Inflammation and Swelling
Kratom doesn’t just target pain receptors; it also shows anti-inflammatory qualities. Some alkaloids in the extract may block pathways that cause inflammation, helping reduce swelling and discomfort linked to painful conditions. This can be particularly useful for chronic pain that involves inflammation.
3. Euphoria and Pain Distraction
Kratom users sometimes feel a sense of euphoria or heightened well-being. While not everyone experiences this, it can be a plus for chronic pain management. The euphoria, combined with kratom’s possible mood-lifting effects, can draw attention away from pain, offering a break and improving general happiness.
4. Improved Mood and Reduced Pain Perception
Pain can feel worse when we’re stressed or anxious. Kratom extracts might uplift mood by affecting brain chemistry, possibly lessening the emotional aspects that make pain harder to handle. This could make chronic pain more bearable.
5. Sedative Effects for Nocturnal Pain Relief
Some types of kratom extracts have sedative qualities. This can be a boon for those who struggle to sleep because of pain. By promoting calm and lessening the feeling of pain, kratom can help in achieving a more restful sleep, which is essential for better pain management during waking hours.
6. Enhanced Blood Flow
Recent studies indicate that kratom might boost blood circulation. This could benefit people with circulation issues or conditions like Raynaud’s disease. Better blood flow can also support muscle recovery, which is good news for athletes and regular exercisers.
7. Individualized Pain Management
Pain is a complex and personal phenomenon, and what helps one person might not help another. Kratom comes in different strains and doses, each potentially affecting pain in its own way. It’s key to find the strain and dose that works best for you, to get the most out of its pain-relieving properties while keeping side effects at bay.
What are Its Possible Side Effects?
When using Kratom extracts for pain relief, there are a few important things to keep in mind. Firstly, it’s essential to start with a low dose, as it can have strong effects on the body. It’s also vital to source high-quality extracts from reputable vendors to ensure safety and efficacy.
Kratom extracts, while offering the potential for pain relief, come with important side effects to be aware of. Their powerful concentration means both their benefits and risks are heightened. Let’s go through them:
Kratom extracts work on opioid receptors in a way similar to morphine, bringing pain relief. But, they also affect other receptors, influencing various body functions:
- Mu-opioid receptors: Mainly for pain relief, but they can also cause sleepiness, constipation, and feeling sick.
- Kappa-opioid receptors: Help with pain and mood, but might lead to itching and feeling unhappy.
- N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors: Play a role in feeling pain and remembering. Blocking these might lessen pain but could also lead to problems with thinking and seeing things that aren’t there.
Possible Side Effects:
- Gastrointestinal: Feeling sick, throwing up, constipation, and diarrhea can happen, especially with larger doses.
- Neurological: Feeling dizzy, anxious, headaches, shaking, and not being able to sleep are possible.
- Addiction and Dependence: Using kratom for a long time can cause dependence and withdrawal symptoms when you stop.
- Liver Damage: There have been cases where kratom extracts are linked to liver problems, including hepatitis and cirrhosis.
- Respiratory Depression: Taking a lot can slow down breathing, which can be very dangerous.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can kratom lower testosterone?
Research on kratom's effect on testosterone levels shows mixed results. Some studies find it doesn't really change testosterone levels, but others point out it might lower them by raising prolactin, a hormone that can reduce testosterone. We need more studies to be sure.
What is kratom called in English?
"Kratom" itself is the most common English name for the plant and its leaves. Some lesser-known English names include:
• Mitragyna speciosa: Scientific name of the plant.
• Kakuam: Thai term for kratom.
• Thang: Laotian term for kratom.
• Biroko: Burmese term for kratom.
What are the main alkaloids in kratom?
Kratom contains over 50 alkaloids, but the main ones are mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine (7-HMG). Mitragynine, the most common, affects opioid receptors for pain relief and stimulation. 7-HMG, derived from mitragynine, is stronger and helps with pain relief and can cause sedation in big doses.
Does kratom affect memory?
Some studies show that taking a lot of kratom might make it harder to remember visual info and new things, especially episodes or events. This isn't as noticeable with smaller doses.
Does kratom give dopamine?
Kratom might increase dopamine, a brain chemical, but not directly. It connects to opioid receptors that can release dopamine. However, its effect is gentler and less strong compared to stimulants that cause a big dopamine rush. We need more studies for a clearer understanding.
Is kratom linked to depression?
The connection between kratom and depression isn't straightforward. Some research indicates kratom might lift mood and lessen depression signs. Other studies warn that stopping kratom could make depression and anxiety worse.
When it comes to tackling pain, Kratom extracts stand out as a powerful, natural option. They work on various pain receptors to ease short-term and long-term pain. It may produce side effects common with standard pain medications.
Kratom extracts help by boosting endorphin levels, reducing inflammation, and altering how the body perceives pain, leading to a more gentle way of dealing with discomfort. However, it’s crucial to practice safe self-care.
Before starting any new supplement like Kratom extracts, it’s essential to get advice from a healthcare expert to make sure it fits well with your health plan.
Read next: How to Make Shroom Tea
- PubMed Central, Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine (YJBM), Balasingam Vicknasingam, et al., 2020, “Kratom and Pain Tolerance: A Randomized, Placebo-Controlled, Double-Blind Study”
- PubMed Central, Pain and Therapy, Steven C. Eastlack, et al., 2020, “Kratom—Pharmacology, Clinical Implications, and Outlook: A Comprehensive Review”
- Springer Link, Current Addiction Reports, Elisabeth Prevete, et al., 2023, “Clinical Implications of Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa) Use: a Literature Review”
- Frontiers in Pharmacology, Marc T. Swogger, et al., 2022, “Understanding Kratom Use: A Guide for Healthcare Providers”
- Nature Journal, Scientific Reports, D. A. Todd, et al., 2020, “Chemical composition and biological effects of kratom (Mitragyna speciosa): In vitro studies with implications for efficacy and drug interactions”