Mitragyna speciosa, or kratom, is an herb from Southeast Asia and belongs to the same family as the coffee plant. It has generated controversy around the world, though many of its benefits are undeniable.
It remains federally legal, but several states have banned it. In many others, it’s unregulated, meaning there are no laws regarding it, and the state doesn’t oversee its production, consumption, or sale.
Why is there so much controversy surrounding kratom? What are Arkansas’ laws? In this article, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about kratom, including its legal status in Arkansas, its effects, and much more.
Unfortunately, kratom is illegal in Arkansas. In 2015, authorities added mitragynine and 7- hydroxymitragynine — the two main alkaloids in kratom — to Arkansas’ list of controlled substances.
This classifies kratom as a Schedule 1 Drug, alongside meth and cocaine.
Unfortunately, if you live in Arkansas, you cannot buy, sell, or use kratom. However, we’ll tell you how to buy kratom in legal states just in case you travel or move.
There are two ways to buy kratom, just like most other things. You can buy it online and have it delivered or go to a physical store.
This is the most common method, and for a good reason: buying kratom from a reputable online vendor is safer and cheaper. Even though those are reasons enough, it goes beyond that.
Benefits of Buying Kratom Online:
- More discretion: You receive your kratom in an unmarked package in the comfort of your home. That is, of course, if you live in a legal state — no reliable vendor ships kratom to illegal states like Arkansas.
- Access to lab results and certifications: The best suppliers test products with third-party labs and are certified by the American Kratom Association. Physical stores rarely carry tested and certified kratom.
- Greater selection: Online vendors have a wider variety. This is an essential factor in finding kratom that benefits you.
However, not all online vendors are good. There are certain criteria they need to meet (we explain that later). You must find a trustworthy source, and vendors like VIP Kratom, Star Kratom, and Kona Kratom won’t disappoint you if you live in a legal state.
Buying kratom in-store is also an option, but it’s usually inferior to buying online. This is because the quality of kratom from these vendors is generally lower, they tend to have fewer varieties available, and it typically costs way more.
In addition, in-store vendors treat kratom as just another product on their shelves. It’s better to buy kratom from a company that’s dedicated to it and gives it specialized care. Kratom that’s been sitting on a dusty shelf isn’t near as good as fresh kratom.
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What to Look for When Buying Kratom
There are several factors to keep in mind when buying kratom. First, the kratom market is young, and even in most legal states, the lack of regulations puts kratom users at risk.
Here are three critical factors to keep in mind when buying kratom.
1. AKA Certification
The American Kratom Association (AKA) is a highly influential non-profit organization. Its purpose is to educate others about kratom, offer quality control programs ensuring the safety of kratom, and protect the consumer’s right to use it.
By registering with the AKA, vendors annually submit kratom for third-party lab testing. The vendor loses the AKA certification if the kratom does not meet set standards.
The AKA is also the creator of the Kratom Consumer Protection Act (KCPA), a bill that regulates the manufacturing and sales of kratom, helping users stay safe. Many states have already passed the KCPA.
Consider the reputation of a company before buying from it. A quick internet search is enough to find reviews on its products and ethics. However, our vendor reviews page has essential information on many different companies and can help you quickly find one worth trying.
There are many variations, so kratom is categorized by the color of its vein. Vein color is visible on the fresh leaves but isn’t noticeable when it’s in powder form. There are three colors of kratom vein: red, green, and white.
Kratom strains have varying effects, so it’s important to know why you’re using kratom and which strain is best.
Red vein kratom is the most sedative option. It provides relaxation and is ideal for those who suffer from anxiety or daily stress. These strains carry a high mitragynine content, a mu-opioid alkaloid responsible for its mellow effects.
White vein kratom provides stimulation similar to a strong cup of coffee. It acts as a nootropic, especially in lower doses, because of its high 7-hydroxymitragynine content, a serotoninergic alkaloid responsible for euphoria and stimulation.
Finally, green vein kratom is the most balanced option. These strains are less extreme than red and white ones and can be ideal for those new to kratom. However, beware that some green strains lean more towards the stimulation side, while others can be more sedative.
When it comes to using kratom, there is no right or wrong. However, there are some common reasons people turn to kratom, and we’ll talk about them in this section.
Energy & Focus
Mental sharpness, stimulation, and concentration are some of kratom’s most desired effects. Luckily, kratom can increase energy and focus.
White kratom is ideal for this — a low dose (2 – 3 g) tends to be the sweet spot for these types of effects.
White kratom can help you feel more sociable, happier, and active, making it ideal for studying, working, and doing chores.
Anxiety & Depression
If you’re using kratom for anxiety and depression, you’re not alone; this is one of the most common uses of the herb. While kratom won’t cure anxiety or depression, it can be a great complement to appropriate treatment.
If you suffer from depression, white kratom strains can boost your energy and mood.
On the other hand, red kratom is best for anxiety. These strains are calming and have fewer adverse effects than conventional treatments (benzodiazepines).
Opioid addiction is common and can be hard to overcome. Withdrawal is miserable, causing anxiety, involuntary muscle movements, and seizures — just to name a few.
High doses or red strains best mimick opioids. In fact, this is the reason people are concerned about kratom. Its effects are so potent that people assume it’s just as dangerous and addictive as opioids.
However, while it is slightly addictive, the addiction isn’t as strong, and kratom has far fewer side effects.
Because of its similarities to opioids, many people use kratom for pain relief without the potential for dependence and side effects of these drugs.
High mitragynine levels in red kratom make it a potent pain reliever. However, don’t self-medicate with kratom until you know the source of the pain.
Kratom is safe if you consume it responsibly. That said, there are side effects associated with kratom, though they’re usually not serious. If you take as little as possible and don’t use it too often, these effects should be minimal.
It’s best to take occasional breaks from kratom; use it four or five days a week, and keep doses small.
If you’re feeling undesirable effects, ask yourself if you could be taking less.
Any active substance will have side effects, though kratom is very forgiving when it comes to this. Overdoing it can be unpleasant, but serious complications are extremely rare.
Usually, too much kratom leads to the following:
- Low blood pressure
Unfortunately, kratom is illegal in Arkansas, and this hasn’t changed since 2015. Kratom remains banned, and there is no sign that the authorities want to reverse it.
However, there is hope. The AKA works hard where kratom is illegal, and hopefully, the voice of kratom consumers isn’t silenced for much longer.