Kratom and its products are popular herbal alternatives available legally across some states in the US. Consumers of Kratom use its products as a means to relieve discomfort, improve their mood, and boost energy.
However, there have been growing concerns recently regarding Kratom’s effects on the heart. But is this the case or is it another area where confusion and misinformation stir panic? Let’s find out.
Important Disclaimer: Kratom remains unregulated by the FDA, the authors of this text would like you to note that although this article contains many points regarding the use of Kratom, they should only serve as a piece of information - not medical advice.
Kratom is not intended to cure, diagnose, treat, or prevent any disease or condition.
Make sure to speak to a physician if you have questions before using Kratom.
What is Kratom?
Kratom or Mitragyna Speciosa is an evergreen tree indigenous to the jungles of Southeast Asia such as Indonesia and Malaysia. It is part of the Rubiaceae family of plants that can grow massively; averaging 10 meters or 30 feet in height and as much as 0.9m or 3 ft in diameter.
While the indigenous folk in Southeast Asia have been consuming Kratom for centuries, its growth in popularity in the U.S. is a fairly recent phenomenon. And like the locals, the western market has been using it as an alternative for pain relief.
The leaves are the primary source of Kratom products that can be found in the market today. Its leaves can be chopped up and chewed raw or dried and brewed into teas. In more modern times, these leaves are ground into a fine powder and sold as is or packaged into capsules or pills.
What Are Kratom’s Effects?
There are still too few studies that fully paint the picture of the effects of Kratom. A lot of its effects are often described anecdotally by the many users of Kratom across the US and the rest of the world.
Some of the effects of Kratom have been described as:
- Improves mood
- Boosts focus and concentration
- Increases energy levels
- Relieves chronic physical discomfort
- Alleviates uneasiness
- Encourages restful sleep
Kratom Heart Effects and Blood Pressure
Kratom was primarily used by the indigenous people of Southeast Asia as a stimulant to increase their productivity while working. Anecdotally, the effects of Kratom energized the farmers and laborers who took Kratom as part of their break routine. University Sains Malaysia took an in-depth look at the reasoning behind this.
What researchers discovered was that Kratom may affect the cardiac rhythm in a serving-dependent manner. Meaning that this side effect is more likely to happen as the serving size increases. While many consumers of Kratom may not experience any issues or side effects such as increased heart rate or blood pressure, people with an underlying heart condition were more likely to experience it. More so, people with underlying heart conditions may be more susceptible to strain and damage due to an already pre-existing condition.
If you have heart problems or are unsure of your medical condition and decide to use Kratom, please consult a health professional or a doctor first before using Kratom. Likewise, consult a professional if you are taking any type of prescription medication as Kratom may affect these as well.
Is Kratom Safe to Use?
Kratom is currently undergoing a lot of scientific scrutiny to determine the full extent of its effects, side effects, and overall safety. The problem now is there are too few studies to give a solid foundation for these answers.
However, that doesn’t mean nothing can be done to keep the average Kratom user safe. For example, some solid foundations are present concerning other legal substances.
Pregnancy and Breastfeeding –
- There are little to no studies done concerning the effects of Kratom on pregnant women or their breast milk. Similar to alcohol and other substance consumption, it is better to stay on the safe side and avoid consuming Kratom while pregnant.
Prescription and Maintenance Drug Use –
- One important thing to note about the consumption of maintenance drugs such as Aspirin or Atorvastatin is that they follow a complex pathway to create effects within the body. Kratom interactions on this complex pathway are poorly understood. Meaning that using Kratom may affect these drugs and prevent them from doing their job. Therefore, you should always consult with your physician before using Kratom.
Managing your Serving Size –
- The main way to keep safe while consuming Kratom is to take note of the serving size needed to elicit the effect you want on your body. It’s super helpful to take notes of how much Kratom you consumed, what it did, and how long it stayed in effect. Knowing this helps prevent adverse reactions as it allows you to see the upper and lower limits of your Kratom consumption.
Finding Your Kratom Serving Size
As mentioned earlier, monitoring your serving size is a great and easy way to keep yourself safe while getting the buzz you want from Kratom. Taking notes and observing the effects of Kratom on your body helps set the boundaries of how little and how much your body can take to get the effect you need.
To start, it’s best to understand how to find the best Kratom serving size for you.
Let it be known, however, that figuring out the right serving size can be a bit difficult as it involves a lot of factors such as weight, height, gender, metabolic rate, overall health, and more. Do not think that just because you read somewhere on Reddit, that X grams worked for them, that it will work the same for you.
The best advice given by Kratom enthusiasts is to always start small especially if you’re trying Kratom out for the first time. The proper mindset is to be conservative with your serving.
Trying out a small serving size of 1 to 4 grams and waiting 20 to 30 minutes for the effects to kick in would be a good start. Observe these effects, especially the side effects, over a few days or a week.
Afterward, if you think that the effects are not yet up to your liking, then you can start to increase the serving size. But again, always think small and conservatively – increase the serving by a gram or two. Then, like last time, observe over a few days or a week before trying to increase the serving again.
How Does Kratom Affect the Heart?
Kratom is believed by many to produce stimulating effects. But, like so many things in life, too much Kratom or prolonged use can increase the likelihood of having side effects. Moreover, people with pre-existing heart conditions or who are predisposed to heart disease are more likely to experience these side effects.
Kratom heart effects can also be exacerbated by other outside factors. One of these factors is consuming Kratom with other substances such as alcohol or drugs that have a direct effect on the heart. Signs and symptoms of an adverse reaction to Kratom may include:
- Agitation or irritability
If you or another person is experiencing these signs and symptoms, do not hesitate to call a professional for help.
Wrapping it All Up
Kratom can be useful for many folks as an alternative option to staying energized throughout the day. Although Kratom is noted as having side effects, it’s possible to stay clear of these so long as proper and safe practices are observed. Kratom per se is not bad for the heart but there are situations and factors that could increase the risk of negative side effects.
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