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The new hot button debate is all about Kratom. It is currently taking over headlines causing concern for healthcare professionals, law enforcement, the FDA, and the average consumer. Is it poised to join the ranks of other drugs in the opioid crisis? Are the fears blown out of proportion over an herbal substance? In our opinions, it is a safe supplement, but we value differing opinions and won’t outright dismiss them without fair trial and discussion. Today, let’s take a deeper look at why Kratom is currently wildly divisive and what you need to know.

For starters, let’s take a look at what Kratom is and its uses, and its current misuses. Kratom comes from a tree found in Southeast Asia, predominantly Indonesia, Thailand, and Malaysia. Originally, it was used in sacred religious rituals for its healing properties. Each strain of Kratom has slightly different effects from each other, some providing relaxing and calming effects, while some help produce and increase energy. The two main products you will find are Kratom capsules and Kratom powder with each option coming in the several different strains. You can use Kratom to reduce body pain and headaches, as an anti-inflammatory aid, and as a mood elevator. Additionally, it can be used to treat opioid addiction, a terrible epidemic currently ravaging the United States. However, this treatment aspect of Kratom is where the debate over the supplement begins.

The FDA believes that Kratom is an under the radar, addictive substance similar to opioids and that it belongs in the same drug classification as heroin and LSD as it carries the same risks, or so they say. It has also been linked to 91 deaths out of 27,000 overdose deaths in an 18-month study from 2016-2017; however, in all but seven (7) of those cases was Kratom the only substance found in the victim’s systems, though coroners admit that there could have been trace amounts of other substances, only that they weren’t able to detect them. Many deaths included one, or a combination of, the following chemicals: heroin, cocaine, alcohol, and fentanyl. Before this study, only 44 U.S. national deaths were reported to have Kratom in the victim’s system.

So, the current 3-5 million users and advocates of Kratom say it helps with mood, body pains and aches, and more. The FDA, believes it is a terribly dangerous substance, even though there are very few cases to support that assertion. Should it be banned? Scientists and politicians believe that outright banning the substance and putting it on the Schedule I list alongside heroin would hinder research into the substance as an opioid alternative and treatment to deal with opioid withdrawal, which is considered a harrowing and painful experience. Many believe that by banning it, opioid addiction sufferers who likely would have found it an aide in their withdrawals will likely turn to far more dangerous drugs as their options are limited.

Kratom is currently unregulated and alongside the FDA’s fears, the Drug Enforcement Agency, otherwise known as the DEA lists it as a “Drug and Chemical of Concern.” However, many foods, drinks, and supplements we take day to day can be extremely harmful if taken in large, frequent, and unhealthy quantities. Too much fast food will lead to high blood pressure, heart failure, obesity, diabetes, and greatly increases the risk of heart attacks. Too much soda and sweets will likely result in diabetes. Too much alcohol can lead to heart and liver failure as well as alcohol poisoning. All things considered, nutmeg can be dangerous taken in large quantities. American human and civil rights activist Malcolm X discovered that ingesting large amounts of nutmeg can result in a high comparable to smoking several marijuana joints as he discusses in his autobiography. Have you heard about people looking to ban nutmeg?

Mississippi is not taking any chance with Kratom. The state believes the substance is linked to 12 deaths, but as noted earlier in the study, other substances were found in the victim’s reports. Mississippi is citing the FDA’s claim that Kratom is highly addictive as it affects the same opioid receptors in the brain as morphine. However, with so few cases reported of addiction, is that really to be believed?

Tampa Bay is also weary of the substance and say there are too many unknown variables and risks that pose threats to residents who take it. One mother is calling for warning labels on Kratom products after her son died of a Kratom overdose, according to his death certificate. It has been reported that anti-depressants and muscle relaxers were also in his system, yet not listed on the death report. Research being conducted at the University of Florida on Kratom believes that it could be a saving grace for opioid addicts as more deaths are added to the long list of opioid overdoses.

In any report regarding Kratom, there are people praising the supplement for its benefits and how it has helped them. Anxiety and pain reduction and mood elevation and an option to battle depression are common arguments for its continued use. How can we strike a middle ground where one side says it’s as bad as heroin, despite being used as a treatment for addiction and withdrawals, and the other side saying it helps with mental and physical ailments? The simple answer is regulation and further study to ensure that only pure and safe Kratom is sold.

We at Green Hippo only offer top quality, organic, and safe Kratom and promote safe and responsible use for mental and physical stressors. To learn more about Kratom, its safety, why we believe that the naysayers aren’t quite right with their assumptions and assessments, and the effects of the different strains we carry, give us a call, send us an email, or connect with us on social media so we can remove any shadow of doubt about the efficacy and benefits of Kratom. We’re always happy to help inform the public of how our Kratom capsules can help you day to day as we fight to keep Kratom legal so it can continue to aid consumers.