Kratom leaf

Kratom powder
Credit: Larry Angell

Who is trying to ban kratom?

What can we do to stop the ban?

Firstoff, Kratom[2] is a natural remedy for many ailments. It serves well to control pain, acts efficiently to help fatigue, works for some as an anti-depressant and anti-anxiety remedy and it helps addicts recover from harder drugs and alcohol.

It is grown in the jungles of Asia and the leaves are harvested and dried. The leaves are usually ground into a powder that can be mixed with liquids or taken in capsules. It brings pain relief and mild euphoric effects within minutes and it lasts for several hours.

Kratom powder

The controversy

Because Kratom has similar effects to prescription painkillers it is becoming a popular painkiller and street drug. Those of us who need it to control pain use it as intended, but those who are using it to get a cheap buzz are throwing it into the light of scrutiny of the Drug Enforcement Administration or the DEA, in short.

Recreational  Kratom users are plastering the Internet with "dealers and buyers", making it seem like a drug that should be controlled. This is not helping anyone except the DEA.


The DEA is really the part of the government intervention that holds the power to ban Kratom. The FDA is really slow to ban products and in my opinion, is controlled by wealthy businesses who care little about public health. Big businesses are constantly lobbying against the FDA to keep controversial products available that should probably be banned.

The fact that even though Kratom has no documented cases of overdose, the DEA still has it on it's watchlist. More people have overdosed on Vitamins or damaged thier organs from multi-level-marketing supplements than have Kratom users and yet those products are still readily available without so much as one raised eyebrow from the FDA.


Bali Kratom

Even though Kratom has many medicinal qualities, it's not entirely a safe drug to use for some people. Every person is different and how each one responds to Kratom will also be different. It's important to use common sense if you need to use Kratom for its medicinal properties. Some people have a propensity for addiction of even the mildest of drugs. If you are one of these types, I would suggest you stay away from Kratom.

I use Kratom to deal with the pain and lethargy of a bone-marrow condition and chronic pain. I used to take prescription painkillers, but the toxicity levels from these caused my liver enzymes to raise after taking them for twenty years or more. Kratom, so far has not caused this problem and I've been taking it for about five years.

What can we do to keep Kratom legal?

We can make our voices heard as a popular vote[1] in support of choice when it comes to herbal remedies. An important point is that we need to support public campaigns that educate the masses about the medicinal effects of Kratom and also to refute the myths about it. Many people who know nothing about Kratom will post things on the Internet such as, "I don't want my children on the streets where Kratom users are driving under an impaired condition."

This is a common myth. Kratom actually acts more like a stimulant that increases awareness and reduces pain at the same time. False reports of addiction from junkies at the ER wanting to score Methadone because they claim to be addicted to Kratom, yet don't want to divulge the fact that they are actually addicted to illegal drugs, makes it hard for us.

This is a hard-earned lesson by the American people about controlling choices of the masses. The battle of the Alcohol Prophibition and its repeal opened the doors early. I'm not sure that was a good choice in the end because we have a lot of problems with drunk drivers that involve innocent people. Kratom is not like that.


Marijuana as a choice

We as a nation are slowly learning from the lessons of marijuana as a controlled substance. The DEA has thrown its hands in the air in many areas because the voice of the people is being heard. The effects of pot have been exxagerated and fabricated in many cases by those who didn't know anything about it. Now we are being forced to deal with it again in a different light.

This gives us hope for Kratom. I truly believe the DEA will consider the voices of the masses if the voices are loud enough. The problem is that the masses are often those who know nothing about the substance, but want to ban it anyway because they don't use it and don't see a need for other people to use it. We need to make others aware of the need and gain a loud voice in favor of choice.