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Kratom 101: Your Comprehensive Guide

Introduction

For centuries, a tropical evergreen tree found in the rainforests of Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia has been enjoyed and respected for its myriad uses. This tree features distinctive leaf varieties identified by veins of white, green, and red coloring, each of which yield unique effects on both the body and the mind. 

This tree is known as kratom – a name spoken more and more often in recent years. Whether you’ve just heard of kratom or want to learn more details about its origins and uses, we’ve written this comprehensive kratom primer with your interests in mind.  Now, let’s take a closer look at kratom’s history, various strains and consumption methods, along with some great tips for beginners!

Kratom Origins & History

Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa) is an evergreen tree indigenous to the tropical regions of Southeast Asia, found in countries like Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar, and Papua New Guinea. The peoples of these areas have used the leaves of the kratom tree in their traditional practices, incorporating it into their lives by either consuming the raw leaves or brewing them into teas and other beverages. 

Kratom’s unique properties have become better understood over the centuries, and it’s popularity has gradually spread throughout the region. Farmers cultivate and harvest kratom crops to meet rising demand from local consumers looking to enjoy its use. 

While kratom has maintained a niche presence in these regions, the product has gained more worldwide exposure and interest in recent decades as global markets have expanded. Now, kratom communities are international – its commercialization has spread across the world in the 21st century. 

Yet, despite its traditional heritage and widespread usage, kratom still maintains an air of mystery and misinformation, especially in Western cultures. Fortunately, increasing research efforts and open discussions have brought a deeper, science-based understanding of kratom and its uses. 

The Kratom Plant 

The kratom tree is a member of the Rubiaceae family and is closely related to other plants like coffee and gardenia. One of its key botanical connections is the presence of alkaloid compounds, including mitragynine, which is primarily responsible for kratom’s unique properties. 

The leaves of the kratom tree contain dozens of additional alkaloids and compounds that contribute to the varied effects consumers report. 

One of the more recognizable characteristics people use for identifying kratom’s different varieties is the color of the veins on the leaf stems and undersides. This vein color is most often used to categorize the most popular kratom strains:

  • White Vein: Kratom strains with white-colored stem veins are known for their stimulating, uplifting effects. 
  • Green Vein: Green vein kratom has a rich alkaloid profile that users report induces strong, yet mild effects like better focus and calmness. 
  • Red Vein: Kratom strains from red-colored vein stems are used for pain relief, stress relief, relaxation, and more. Users also report enhanced energy from red strains. 

Vein color provides a basic visual identifier for strain types, but there’s a lot more going on inside the complex alkaloid chemistry of kratom. A range of factors like growing conditions, techniques for harvesting, and how the leaves are processed play major roles in the effects of any given kratom batch. 

Consumption Methods

Kratom users consume its leaves in a number of ways after they’ve been harvested from kratom trees. Native cultures from the Southeast Asian countries mentioned above commonly chew the unprepared leaves to experience their effects. More popular internationally, kratom leaves go through a drying process before consumption, which allows them to be preserved for longer periods. 

The dried kratom leaves can be brewed into a kratom tea similar to how ordinary tea leaves are prepared. Additionally, dried kratom leaves can be ground into a fine powder that is far more versatile for consumption. This powder is often packaged into capsules for convenient ingestion or mixed into various foods and beverages. 

As kratom consumption has grown in popularity over the years, users have found a huge range of ways to ingest and enjoy it. At KratomGala.com, we proudly provide kratom products in numerous forms, including:

In other words, however you want to experience kratom, there’s a product out there to suit your needs. And remember, no matter the type of kratom product you come across – whether it’s leaves, powders, capsules, teas, concentrates, etc. – do some research on the product’s specific composition and potency before you decide the appropriate servings for personal use. 

Popular Kratom Strains 

While kratom strains are often broken down by vein coloring (white, green, and red), they’re also known by the region they’re cultivated. Some of the more popular examples you’ll encounter include:

  • Maeng Da: This kratom strain gets its name from the slang Thai term “pimp grade,” referring to its supposed potency. Maeng Da kratom strains come in red, white, and green vein varieties.
  • Bali: Bali kratom is named after the Indonesian island from which it is cultivated. Bali kratom is widely available, and most commonly found as a red strain.
  • Thai: Thailand is home to a wide range of kratom strains across its many regions that include Red Thai, Green Thai, and White Thai.
  • Borneo: As the name suggests, this strain originates from Borneo and is cultivated in regions like West Kalimantan. White Borneo is one of more popular types of kratom you’ll find in stores. 
  • Malaysian: Green Malay and Red Malay strains of kratom are planted and harvested across Malaysia. 

It’s important to note that cultivation, drying methods, and other specific techniques in processing have more impact on specific strains than the locations they’re grown in. Always do your research!

The Worldwide Kratom Community

As kratom has reached more mainstream visibility, large communities of kratom consumers have emerged both on the Internet and in local markets. 

Social media groups, online forums, as well as in-person meetings allow kratom enthusiasts to discuss their personal usage experiences and share advice. Stores are opening in even the most unexpected rural markets that specialize in kratom sales. 

It’s clear that kratom continues to grow in popularity worldwide. This is particularly beneficial both for users and for the scientific community researching its viability and effectiveness. 

Beginner Tips

For anyone intrigued by kratom and wants to try it themselves, there are some general tips that can help newcomers get started:

  1. Start Low

If you’re just starting or want to sample a brand new strain of kratom, be sure to start with a lower dosage amount first. Everybody’s metabolism handles compounds differently, so it’s important to gauge your personal response at milder levels before increasing your intake. 

  1. Go Slow

More experienced kratom consumers recommend you explore a single strain at a time rather than blending multiple varieties and taking larger amounts when first starting out. This way, you’ll isolate the distinct effects of each type of kratom and determine for yourself what works best. 

  1. Keep Notes

Take care to track your experiences with different strains and dosage levels to reveal and record critical insights about your own response to kratom over time. A wise consumer of any product can make more informed decisions over time based on how they respond to the product at different intervals of use. 

  1. Be Patient

Deciding on your ideal kratom regimen requires a good deal of personal experimentation. What works for your friends and neighbors may create different effects for you, so it’s important to keep an open mindset when it comes to your kratom journey. 

Ultimately, you should approach kratom like you would anything else: with wisdom, moderation, and a commitment to safely learning your own complementary relationship with the product. Whatever effects it may or may not have can truly only be revealed through your own intentional experience. 

Kratom & You

Hopefully, this guide has provided a thorough introduction to kratom’s origins, history, varieties, and popularity. With this knowledge in mind, you should be able to understand kratom and its uses from a more balanced, responsible perspective. 

Whether you want to consume it as a raw leaf, dried powder, capsule, tea, concentrate, or otherwise, you should have a better grasp on how to accomplish it. If you want to develop a responsible relationship with kratom, you’ll need to craft your own open-minded yet disciplined approach of self-discovery.

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.

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Disclaimer: 7-OH: Our products are not for use by or sale to persons under the age of 21. Arizona, Oklahoma, Texas and Utah prohibit sale of products in which 7-hydroxymitragynine is greater than 2% of the total alkaloid content. We do not ship internationally. Tennessee bans 7-OH as it is a processed product. 7-hydroxymitragynine is NOT used to treat, cure, or mitigate any disease, illness, ailment, and/or condition. Please consult your doctor before consuming any new products. 7-OH is also banned in states that ban Kratom: ALABAMA, ARKANSAS, INDIANA, RHODE ISLAND, VERMONT, CONCORDIA PARISH LA, and WISCONSIN. SARASOTA COUNTY, UNION COUNTY, MALHEUR COUNTY, DENVER CO, SAN DIEGO CA, CITY OF OCEANSIDE CA, JERSEYVILLE IL, ALTON IL, EDWARDSVILLE IL, FRANKLIN LA, RAPIDES LA, PARKER AND MONUMENT (COLORADO), ASCENSION AND GRANT PARISH (LOUISIANA), FRANKLIN (NEW HAMPSHIRE). WASHINGTON D.C., AND SEVERAL COUNTIES IN MISSISSIPPI. ID verification is required for the following states: Florida, Virginia, West Virginia. Merchants may not ship to military bases.
- Kratom: Our products are not for use by or sale to persons under the age of 18 and 21 where applicable. Kratom is banned in the following areas: ALABAMA, ARKANSAS, INDIANA, RHODE ISLAND, VERMONT, CONCORDIA PARISH LA, and WISCONSIN. SARASOTA COUNTY, UNION COUNTY, MALHEUR COUNTY, DENVER CO, SAN DIEGO CA, CITY OF OCEANSIDE CA, JERSEYVILLE IL, ALTON IL, EDWARDSVILLE IL, FRANKLIN LA, RAPIDES LA, PARKER AND MONUMENT (COLORADO), ASCENSION AND GRANT PARISH (LOUISIANA), FRANKLIN (NEW HAMPSHIRE). WASHINGTON D.C., AND SEVERAL COUNTIES IN MISSISSIPPI. We do not ship internationally. ID verification is required for the following states: Florida, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia. Kratom is NOT used to treat, cure, or mitigate any disease, illness, ailment, and/or condition. Please consult your doctor before consuming any new products. Merchants may not ship to military bases.
 

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