Mitragyna Speciosa is an evergreen tree that is primarily grown in the Southeast Asian region. This plant is indigenous to the tropical climates of Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, and Papua New Guinea. The natives of the Southeast Region have used the kratom leaf for hundreds of years as a mood enhancer, energy provider when working in the fields, and as a general pain reliever.
In Thailand, the leaf is used for intestinal disorders, such as infections, or as a deworming agent. The leaf is also used in Thailand as an herbal medicine to heal wounds, and as a local anesthetic. The makeup of a particular kratom strain relies on many factors, such as the soil the plant is grown in, the weather it encounters while growing, the region it is grown in, and the drying process the plant goes through after it has been harvested. The Mitragyna Speciosa tree can grow to a height of over 80 ft. It’s trunk can grow up to 3 ft in diameter. The leaves of the mitragyna tree can grow to over 8 inches in length and up to 5 inches in width. The leaves are ovate-acuminate in shape and have up to 17 pairs of veins. The different color veins are where the various kratom strain names are derived from; Green Vein, Red Vein, and White Vein.
Since being introduced to the United States, most kratom users take Kratom in the capsule, powder or extract form. In recent years, some people have used kratom as an herbal alternative to medical treatment in attempts to control withdrawal symptoms and cravings caused by addiction to opioids or to other addictive substances such as alcohol. The two main compounds in kratom leaves, Mitragynine and 7-Hydroxymitragynine, are responsible for the effects when taking kratom. This is said to include sedation, pleasure, and decreased pain. Depending upon the strain the user consumes, one can also report effects of increased energy, sociability, and alertness. Varying effects are reported by users with factors such as tolerance, strain taken, serving size, and biology all playing roles when determining one’s reaction to the leaf.