Monday, February 26, 2024

Kratom Vs. Cannabis: What You Should Know

Even though kratom and cannabis come from natural plants, both have a long history of prohibition primarily driven by misinformation.

Kratom and cannabis are two substances that have been used for centuries by indigenous cultures as herbal allies. Although they both come from plants, there are many differences between these two products.

There are the active ingredients and the locations where the plants are grown. Another significant difference is the legality of these products throughout the United States.

Learning the similarities and differences between kratom and cannabis is vital. It will help you understand the benefits of both products and which one you should consider adding to your daily wellness routine.

The Kratom and Cannabis Active Ingredients

Despite coming from plants, the active ingredients of kratom and cannabis are significantly different.

Alkaloids are the primary active ingredients in kratom. The two you might be aware of are 7-hydroxy mitragynine and mitragynine. But it’s important to note that alkaloids occur in tiny concentrations compared to CBD and THC. Mitragynine is below 2%, and 7-hydroxy mitragynine is even lower.

As for cannabis, its active ingredient is cannabinoids. It is a natural chemical that can affect the body in multiple ways. The most prominent cannabinoid Is THC which is intoxicating, and CBD, which is non-intoxicating.

Where Are Kratom and Cannabis Legal?

Cannabis and kratom have different federal, state, and city legal statuses. For example, kratom is legal at a federal level, and cannabis isn’t. However, cannabis is legal for medicinal and recreational purposes in 38 states, whereas kratom products are banned in six states.

Due to these conflicting legal statuses, certain stigmas have formed around both products. As such, some prohibitionists are making it their mission to reduce access to kratom and cannabis. Thankfully, advocacy groups and movements, such as the Kratom Consumer Protection Act, are doing their part to ensure safe and legal access for adults across the country.

legal illegal marijuana
Photo by Prostock-Studio/Getty Images

Where Are Kratom and Cannabis Prohibited?

Even though kratom and cannabis come from natural plants, both have a long history of prohibition primarily driven by misinformation.

Detractors of cannabis would often exaggerate the potential side effects, much like kratom. Due to unscientific arguments and misconceptions, users of these products have faced discrimination.

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The lack of regulation hasn’t helped the situation. For decades, both products were largely unregulated. It made it difficult for the average person to know what kratom and cannabis products were safe to use and of a high quality. Thankfully, change is occurring, and it’s become easier to understand where to purchase items.

Comparing the Two Industries

Kratom doesn’t quite have the same following as cannabis, but it has begun to grow. Thanks to the legalization of both substances being supported by underground movements, the benefits of using the plants beyond ritual and recreation are coming to light. As such, it’s leading to more products getting created, such as:

  • Gummies
  • Capsules
  • Chewable Tablets
  • Powder
  • Soft gels
  • Leaf
  • Tinctures

The good news is that studies into kratom are ongoing. While it’s known that the plant is safe to consume, as further advantages are made available, it’s expected to grow the industry even further.

Where Are Cannabis and Kratom Grown?

Cannabis is known to be cultivated in countries around the world. Within the US, it’s primarily grown in highly sophisticated indoor operations.

As for kratom, the plant is native to Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, Thailand, Myanmar, and Malaysia. But most of the world’s supply comes from ancient-growth forests within Southeast Asia.

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House Approves Bill To Enhance Medical Marijuana Research
Photo by CasarsaGuru/Getty Images

What the Research Says About Cannabis and Kratom

Due to decades of prohibition, research into cannabis and kratom is still in its infancy. Studies are getting funded and conducted thanks to the interest in both plants and the growing industries.

Some of the research targets how kratom and cannabis could be used, the risks of consuming the products, and the safest way to utilize both ingredients. The hope is that it will continue to empower users to make informed decisions on how kratom and cannabis can support wellbeing.

How to Choose Between Kratom and Cannabis?

Understanding the similarities and differences between kratom and cannabis is just the first step. Much like using any herbal ingredients, it’s vital to know how to use them safely and responsibly. That means speaking to a medical professional, especially if you’re taking prescription medication.

You should also consider where you purchase your products from. Choose businesses that are doing their part to legitimize the industry. Look at where they source their products and how they test them. This will ensure you’re getting high-quality and safe items.

This article originally appeared on and has been reposted with permission.


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