Mitragyna speciosa, better known as Kratom, is the East Asian herb and the benefits of Kratom are helping it take the West by storm.
A tropical tree in the coffee family, Kratom is increasingly popular with students and others with a busy lifestyle who want more drive and focus.
Farmworkers in Southeast Asia know of the benefits of Kratom and would commonly chew on the plant’s leaves or make it into a tea to give them more energy and focus when working.
Though people in the West are only starting to see its benefits in recent years, its medicinal properties have a long-established history in its native East Asian countries like Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia.
For people who suffer from chronic illness Kratom can provide some relief as well; this includes people with an addiction who are trying to manage withdrawal symptoms.
When opium was in short supply, people with an addiction used it as a substitute as it has a similar effect on your brain’s opioid receptors.
It’s been used in traditional medicine to treat diabetes, diarrhea, fever, and relieve pain.
This is because it contains more than 40 compounds and over 25 alkaloids, most notably mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine. These are mild analgesics, and help interferes with the effects of opioids, to alleviate some of the suffering associated with withdrawal that can be one of the most powerful benefits of Kratom.
This means Kratom offers a wide range of health benefits listed below.
Health Benefits Of Kratom
The alkaloids in Kratom give it the benefit of a similar pain-relieving effect as a mild opioid, but unlike opioids, it has not been shown to be addictive.
The alkaloids act on the opiate receptors present in the central nervous system, enhancing the release of enkephalins and endorphins which numb your body’s pain receptors.
This means Kratom offers mild to moderate pain relief for sufferers of conditions like osteoarthritis, osteomalacia, osteoporosis, chronic backache, rheumatoid arthritis, and joint pain, to name a few.
Kratom isn’t an opiate, but it activates the opiate receptors in the brain. It bonds with those receptors before an opioid would, easing the effects of addiction in some ways.
This helps curb recovering addicts cravings for the drug they’re giving up without the risk of long-term dependency.
Kratom benefits also reduce typical symptoms of opiate withdrawal:
It’s been a part of the treatment for substance abuse that has helped addicts overcome their dependency on a wide range of drugs like heroin and alcohol. This is a major benefit of Kratom for people who have struggled a long time with addiction.
Reduces Stress, Anxiety, and Depression
For people prone to stress or suffer from anxiety or depression, another Kratom benefit is that it helps soothe nerves and elevate the mood. Kratom is a psychoactive substance that releases endorphins and serotonin which enhances your overall mood.
Its calming effect eases tension which greatly helps with social anxiety, making people feel more comfortable in those situations. It’s for this reason that people take Kratom during social gatherings in villages in South East Asia.
It also alleviates other symptoms of anxiety-like insomnia, heart palpitations, sweating, hyperventilation, muscle cramps, among others. This makes the benefits of Kratom ideal for people suffering from mood swings, chronic stress, anxiety and depression, PTSD, panic attacks, and those with highly demanding jobs.
Some Kratom strains of it are stronger than others, taken in high quantities it gives users a euphoric feeling. Although this is a tempting benefit of Kratom, learn how much is necessary for you to feel the effects and do not go over that.
More Focus on Your Work or Studies
By acting on opiate receptors in the brain and periphery, the alkaloids, 7-hydroxymitragynine and mitragynine, help people work harder for longer, with a more intense focus than normal. And the release of acetylcholine calms down your ruminating mind, making you better able to focus. Taking Kratom improves your productivity.
On top of this, the relaxing neurochemicals it releases, like dopamine and serotonin, further increase focus, attention span, and motivation for the task at hand. This provides a great benefit of Kratom for people whose jobs require them to be incredibly focused or whose jobs can be monotonous at times.
Kratom Improves Your Motivation
The activation of the opioid receptors in the brain also gives some motivation and energy to get things done. It gives an “adrenaline rush” which spurs a person into action as they activate the sympathetic nerves by releasing adrenaline and noradrenaline.
And if this isn’t enough, it also induces the release of dopamine and serotonin – two important chemicals for boosting motivation but also calming and focusing. Kratom offers many unique benefits and being able to be focused and motivated yet calm and serene is but one of them.
Promotes Heart Health
The chemical components in Kratom leaves are good for the body’s hormones, arteries, and blood vessels, and it helps lower blood pressure. It also helps prevent various heart diseases by easing tension and stress, which means it helps protect against health issues like heart attacks, strokes, and atherosclerosis. Heart health is one of the best Kratom benefits.
Greater Sex Drive
Kratom is also used as an aphrodisiac and sexual enhancer which makes it great for treating sexual disorders like erectile dysfunction and low libido.
Sleep Deeper for Longer with Kratom
Kratom regulates the sleep-wake cycle and can provide relief for those who suffer from insomnia, night terrors or parasomnia. It helps people fall asleep faster and have a deeper more restorative sleep which means better functioning in the daytime.
Sleep may be one of the most underestimated health fields, and the benefits of Kratom can help with that.
Kratom is also a powerful anti-inflammatory as its primary active alkaloid (mitragynine) has been found to reduce inflammation It promotes healing and reduces pain, swelling, and redness at the site of inflammation. It is an analgesic like other over the counter pain relievers, so it has many of those same properties as well. It’s commonly used by rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis, and osteoarthritis sufferers, because of this Kratom benefit.
The gastrointestinal tract is influenced by the parasympathetic nervous system. Kratom benefits combat diarrhea by regulating the parasympathetic nervous system and slowing down peristalsis.
Together with its anti-inflammatory action, Kratom makes a great remedy for sufferers of inflammatory bowel diseases like Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Another benefit that most people do not think of, but can provide relief to millions.
Antioxidant Action of Kratom
Some researchers claim that Kratom can help protect against cancer. This is because it has a similar effect as your body’s natural antioxidants, superoxide dismutase, and glutathione, which help prevent the formation of free radicals. This is associated with a lower risk for several forms of cancer.
Kratom Aids Weight Loss
The calming and mood-enhancing effect of Kratom means it’s good for people with a sugar addiction or is prone to binge eating. It also regulates the satiety center in the hypothalamus of your brain. This means that a person using Kratom will feel full sooner, and thus eat less. Think of how much of a benefit Kratom would be to people who struggle to keep weight off for health reasons.
Kratom has been used for millennia as a remedy for chronic fatigue symptoms. This is because it promotes blood circulation and improves the oxygen levels in your blood, which, together with boosting your metabolic processes, gives you a burst of energy which can last for two to six hours. Part of the neurochemicals that Kratom releases also provide energy, focus, and motivation which combats fatigue and fatigue disorders as well.
People are more tired and stressed now than ever. Studies have shown we are getting less sleep at night. Kratom benefits can help alleviate some of this.
How to Take Kratom
People in Southeast Asia traditionally consumed Kratom by crushing its leaves and making it into a tea, chewing it, or smoking it. Today Kratom exists in capsules, pills, and powders.
In powder form, it can dissolve in hot water or mix it with herbal teas to make it more palatable. Some people find the taste quite bitter and prefer to take it with alcoholic drinks or to ingest it with food, like mixing it with yogurt or in homemade cookies to get the same benefits of Kratom.
Is Kratom Addictive?
Kratom belongs to the same plant family as coffee called Rubiaceae. And, in the same way, drinking ten cups of coffee isn’t good, taking too high a dosage of Kratom isn’t either. Taking too much of anything isn’t healthy, and any chemical substance has the potential to be abused.
There are people who abuse Kratom, taking high doses of the herb every day and on a long-term basis. However, this is usually because there is already an underlying issue causing them to take too much and become dependent on it.
For example, people who used to be addicted to drugs or alcohol who use it to curb their addiction may go overboard on their consumption and then become addicted to Kratom itself.
Taking too high a dosage could lead to a Kratom hangover which includes nausea and headaches. However, used properly, in small amounts of 1 to 3 grams a time, there are little, if any, side effects.
Long-term use studies are still pending. However, the centuries-long Thai Kratom usage shows its safety. A recent report from the country’s Transnational Institute and Narcotic Control Board stated Kratom is a part of southern Thai culture and its criminalization is counter-productive with respect to its historic use in the country. The benefits of Kratom outweigh the risks.
Why Is The FDA Trying to Ban Kratom Use?
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has labeled Kratom a potentially dangerous drug and has debated whether or not to categorize it as a schedule 1 substance like cocaine and heroin.
In response to the FDA’s actions, Kratom users have been actively campaigning against the illegalization of the herb which has been a godsend for so many of them.
They claim the FDA wants to ban Kratom for financial reasons as consumption of the cheap and widely available herb by those who’d otherwise be taking prescription drugs means less money for the government.
This is similar to what happened in Thailand in 1943 when the Thai government banned Kratom. Even going as far as cutting down the plant harvests, greatly harming the local biodiversity of the country. All because Kratom was threatening the highly profitable opium trade which was beefing up the national treasury.
Kratom clearly offers many benefits that can help with stress, energy, addiction, and several health issues. If you suffer from any of these problems, the benefits of Kratom may be able to help you!