What is Kratom?

Kratom is a substance derived from the leaves of a tropical tree (mitragyna speciosa) that grows naturally in Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and other parts of Southeast Asia. There are many different varieties of kratom leaves, and consequently there is a wide-ranging list of properties associated with consumption of the leaf – from an energizing, stimulant-like effect to a euphoric, narcotic-like effect – and everything in between. People living in the areas where kratom is grown have used the plant product medicinally for hundreds of years, primarily as a treatment for pain relief, diarrhea, coughing, and other maladies. In recent years, kratom has made its way to other parts of the world, including the United States, and is often used to mitigate problems associated with opiate withdrawal.