When brewed properly, kratom tea  can provide an energy boost and promote relaxation or sleep. It’s available as a powder, capsules and raw leaves (mostly dried) and in concentrated extract forms that contain varying amounts of ethanol. It’s typically consumed orally and taken at recommended doses based on dosage form recommendations.

The exact mechanism of action for kratom isn’t known, but scientists believe that it binds to opioid receptors in the brain and changes their physiological response to pain medicines such as morphine. It also reduces withdrawal symptoms in people who use heroin and other opioids to get high. In a study in rat models, researchers at the University of Florida found that the alkaloid mitragynine — and its metabolite 7-OH-mitragynine — produced significant pain-relieving effects in animals when administered as a single drug or in combination with morphine.

Brewing Wellness: A Step-by-Step Guide to Making Kratom Tea

But despite its benefits, the lack of oversight and quality control in the production and sale of kratom makes it risky. And with the DEA poised to classify it as a Schedule 1 controlled substance along with heroin and methamphetamine, that risk will likely increase. It’s important to buy kratom only from a reputable seller and to check the lab results for bacteria, mold, heavy metals and other pathogens on the way from Southeast Asia to your cupboard.

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