What Exactly is Kratom?



Mitragyna speciosa is a tropical evergreen tree in the coffee family native to Southeast Asia. It is indigenous to Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, and Papua New Guinea. 


The rise of kratom as a herbal supplement in the United States has attracted stakeholders and the populace likewise. But little do many know that kratom has a rich history that stretches centuries back.

Kratom leaves, derived from the Mitragyna speciosa tree are native to Southeast Asia, specifically in Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Burma, and Papua New Guinea. Kratom, which belongs to the coffee family, has featured in the traditions of the indigenous peoples of these locations since the nineteenth century.

Fast forward to two centuries later and kratom has become a sort of global phenomenon. And with its new famed status has come a variety of forms such as powder, tea, capsules, etc. Kratom is now more than just a recreational herb because of this versatility. 


Chemical Composition

Kratom is the subject of growing research and has an interesting chemical composition. Kratom is composed of up to 40 different alkaloids. The most abundant alkaloid in kratom mitragynine, an indole-based alkaloid. Depending on the plant strain and other factors, mitragynine could make up to 60% of the total alkaloid content in kratom leaf.  A minor constituent alkaloid is 7-hydroxy mitragynine. 

Other less-known alkaloids include paynantheine and speciogynine, among others. In general, the alkaloids content in kratom can vary greatly, based on different factors, such as environmental factors, planting season, harvest time, etc. It is noteworthy that these are the same factors by which kratom strains are categorized.

Kratom Strains

Kratom is generally classed into three or four categories, depending on which source you turn to. These categories are named according to the color of the veins of the leaves at different stages of the plant’s maturity during planting. The main colors are red, white, and green. 

  • White Kratom. Kratom leaves have white veins at the early stages of maturity. Once harvested, white kratom leaves are dried indoors, without any light. 
  • Red Kratom. Red kratom leaves must have matured fully. In addition, the leaves are usually dried using sunlight or artificial UV light. Red strains of kratom are some of the most widely available strains.
  • Green Kratom. Green-veined kratom leaves must have been harvested mid-way towards maturity. Hence, their effects are usually a balance between red-veined leaves and white-veined leaves. Green-veined leaves have a two-stage drying process that begins indoors and ends outdoors.

In addition to these three strains, there is also a new, fast-growing strain, known by the color yellow or gold. Yellow kratom strains are thought to be hybrid strains that must have emerged by the blending of the other strains. Others think the yellow veins appear later in the lifespan of the kratom leaves, post-maturity. In any case, they are the rarest kratom strains, but the popularity is growing. 

Besides these major classifications, you may also observe the categorization of kratom strains according to their native locations. Such strains include Bali, Borneo, Indo, Vietnam, Maeng Da, Elephant, Dragon, etc. Therefore, kratom strains have names such as ‘Red Bali’, ‘White Vietnam’, ‘Green Indo’, etc. when the color of the veins and the origin of the leaves are merged. 


Kratom acceptance keeps growing in the United States. And while it is federally legal throughout the country, a few states and certain cities ban it. However, advocacy groups continue to aspire to make kratom truly legal everywhere in the country. Whenever you want to buy kratom, you must confirm its legal status in your location.

Finally, kratom is most effective when it is pure. And this is an aspect you must pay due diligence when shopping for kratom products online. Ensure that you purchase kratom from a reputable company, one of the foremost of which is Way More Naturals. At Way More Naturals, we advocate natural wellness and thus keep our kratom organic and pure. We ensure this by presenting our kratom products for testing by a third-party laboratory. At Way More Naturals, we prioritize safety and customer satisfaction.


WARNING! This product has not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and therefore, is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. See Import Alert 54-15 issued by the FDA for more information.

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