Kratom, also known as mitrogyna speciosa, and kava (Piper methysticum) are somewhat similar in the feeling they give you which is the reason kratom is seen as harmless to some - this comparison is held so loosely that it can be dangerous. To know the effects of Kratom, first you must know what in the world it is? We got you.
Kratom is a herbal extract that comes from the leaves of an evermore tree, a relative of the coffee family. Like Kava, it is consumed as a social and medicinal practice but it is most popular in Southeast Asia where its nativity resides. Whereas Kava is used both socially AND as integral parts of traditional ceremonies, residing in the South Pacific where it is an intrinsic part of their tribal traditions. Kratom lovers enjoy the substance for the way it makes them feel: energetic and euphoric. But this depends on the dosage. At low doses, it acts as a mild stimulant, making fans feel awake. At high doses it actually changes to a more euphoric and sedating experience. It's commonly used as treatment for panic attacks because of it's mood-enhancing effects.
Both plants have multiple strains used for different purposes.
Kratom has strains that split into three colors: white-vein, green-vein, and red-vein.
- The green strain is said to be the strongest, boosting concentration, and offering pain relief. It is purported to last up to 8 hours.
- The red strain offers a different kind of energy boosting effect that is used to treat insomnia and depression. It's usually a much shorter run lasting anywhere between 3-5 hours.
- The white strain is the most popular, offering relaxation and pain-killing effects. It lasts up to 5 hours.
Kava has hundreds of strains across different countries in the South Pacific. All of them have differing effects dependent on their chemotypes (which we go into more detail here). But they generally fall into two classes. Noble and Tudei.
- Noble kava, which is the most popular in the US, is known for every day drinking and relaxing. This is when the plant has fully developed over a period of 4-5+ years, and the flavokavain levels have lowered. Generally you will see much higher levels of Kavain.
- Tudei kava is a younger kava that has not "fully ripened" to be used. The effects tend to be less on the euphoria side and more on the sedating side with the muscle relaxing effects known to be more intense and last much longer. Tudei also is known to have higher concentrations of flavokavains in their roots. Some ceremonies and medicinal situations utilize tudei but in general it is not recommended to drink often.
Both plants give consumers that euphoric feeling you might be familiar with as a fellow kava pioneer. *wink wink* However, they are dosage dependent.