Mitragyna Speciosa is a botanical name for kratom, a tropical deciduous and evergreen tree with a long history of medicinal use. It grows wild in marshy areas in southern and central Thailand, Myanmar, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Papua New Guinea. The tree has been used for hundreds of years in Southeast Asian countries and was not until a few years back when it was introduced to the western countries. If you’ve been hearing about Mitragyna speciosa but don’t have any idea what it might be, this article is for you, and we will tell you everything you need to know about it.
Kratom is a part of the coffee family and distinguished with its height that reaches up to 13 meters (42 feet) and hanging deep yellow flowers. Kratom was first documented from a historical perspective by a Dutch botanist, Peter Korthals, who gave it a scientific name Mitragyna speciosa. The tree is peculiar and thrives in specific climates such as hot and humid temperatures. Besides, it requires rich fertile soil and excessive water to have potent leaves that are desirable to the users.
Traditionally, the broad green leaves were plucked by hand and sun-dried for the moisture to evaporate, then brewed as a tea or powdered to be swallowed with water. The use of kratom has been found to aid physical and mental health, and some users enjoy its stimulating or sedating effects depending on the dose. Mitragyna speciosa also goes by other names such as kakuam, kedemba, katawn, krton, ithang, ketum, thom, madat, and mambog among others.
How to use Mitragyna speciosa
Fresh kratom leaves can be chewed to increase energy levels. Also, dried leaves can be ingested as a tea or crushed into powder for ingestion in foods or drinks to mask its bitter taste. It is also commonly taken as capsules, pills, liquid tinctures or extracts depending on a person’s preferences.
Mitragyna Speciosa Chemistry
The chemistry of Mitragyna speciosa began to be identified in the early 19th century. Experts believed that the alkaloid mitragynine was the primary active ingredient in Mitragyna speciosa but after further research, they isolated 25 from this magical plant. 7-Hydroxymitragynine was identified as the second of Mitragyna speciosa’s primary active compound. Mitragynine is the most abundant alkaloid in the leaves of kratom, but alkaloid 7-Hydroxymitraginine is a more potent alkaloid of the two.
What does Mitragyna speciosa do?
Mitragyna speciosa produces both depressant and stimulant effects in the (CNS) central nervous system. At low doses, it has stimulant effects that can ease fatigue, while at higher dosages, it may have sedative-narcotic effects and interact with opioid receptors. Traditionally, Mitragyna speciosa has been used as herbal medicine, and it’s currently used as an opium substitute to treat withdrawal of opioid.
Mitragynine is a partial agonist of δ (delta) and μ (mu) opioid receptors, and because it’s responsible for the opioid-like effects of Mitragyna speciosa, it is successfully used to treat opiate withdrawal. The μ receptor mediates euphoria, respiratory depression, and analgesia that account for the analgesic effects of mitragynine.
The stimulant level
At stimulant level, the physical energy is increased, the mind is more alert, motivation is increased, monotonous physical work is improved, the mood is elevated, and one becomes more talkative and sociable. It is worth understanding that Mitragyna speciosa is more of a cognitive stimulant as opposed to the physical stimulant.
The sedative-euphoric-analgesic level
At this level, you will look and feel calm, be less sensitive to emotional or physical pain, and have a general feeling of pleasure.
Mitragyna speciosa is an herbal supplement which has been used for its medicinal benefits for hundreds of years. The leaves of this magical tree are rich in alkaloids mitragynine and 7-Hydroxymiytagynine which interact with opioid receptors in your brain to produce sedation, pleasure and decreased pain among others. There are different forms to take Mitragyna speciosa, and regardless of your preferred form of intake, effects come on within 15-20 minutes and can last for several hours.