Kratom Extracts in 2017: Types and Effects
As kratom became popular in western countries, kratom extracts quickly became the logical next step. Since that time, people have been searching high and low for quality extracts, and to good effect, they work. Because of the vast range of kratom extraction methods, there are many different products on the market, from alcohol and water extractions to high pressure CO2 and acid to base extractions.
All of these different methods lead to a large variety of different extracts, which all have unique effects based on the concentrations of specific alkaloids and the base leaf that is worked with.
However, before getting your pants in a knot about buying extracts, there are a few downsides. While kratom extracts are much more potent, they can certainly increase your tolerance to the plain leaf, as well as cause some withdrawal symptoms upon cessation. However, they seem to have no real downsides for occasional use, although we do not condone their internal use. The price of them is also a factor, as they are often more expensive per potency than plain leaf.
In order to understand whether, and what type, is the right choice for you, we have compiled a guide on different varieties as well as their effects. Some of the most popular of these extracts are:
- Water Based
- Liquid (Tinctures)
- Enhanced Leaf
Water Based Extracts
Surprisingly, some of the most common types of kratom extracts are water based. Some of these are referred to as 5x, 10x or kratom 15x extracts. However, when purchasing these from any vendor, it is a good idea to only purchase a test dose initially in order to ensure that the vendor isn’t lying about the strength of their kratom extract, or simply has a weak product.
“It is good to know that the number next to the name (5x, 10x, etc) isn’t exactly how much more potent the kratom extract is compared to the plain leaf, instead it is how much leaf was used to create it by weight in comparison to the plain leaf.”
A simple way to help discern if any extracted product is really “25x” is the price of their plain leaf, if their plain leaf is not 25x less expensive, it is obviously not a true 25x, as they would likely be losing large amounts of money from selling the product. Most extracts of this variety are performed by a very simple water extraction, which will become apparent if it dissolves almost instantly when placed in warm water.
An acid to base extraction can also yield the same results, however, the potency of this extract is typically well over 80x, making it active at around 80mg. However, in this type of extraction a lot of alkaloids (around 80 percent) are lost, making them extremely expensive and rare for anything but novelty or personal use.
In general, because of the specific alkaloids that a standard water extraction is most effective at absorbing, these forms of extracts are more stimulating than many other varieties and are typically not full-spectrum in any way.
A common extract being sold is the liquid kratom extract, also known as a kratom tincture. Anyone deciding to purchase these should be wary, as the potency is often very low in comparison to the price, as it is quite hard to create a potent kratom extract that can be dissolve in ~50ml of alcohol/water and still remain profitable without quite advanced lab equipment.
One of the most reliable form of concentrates available is the resin extract, which almost always retain the full spectrum of of alkaloids, along with plant oils and some chlorophyll, during the extraction process. Typically, the kratom resin extract is made with a simple blend of polar and non-polar solvent, such as an alcohol and water mixture. This leads to a more sedating experience, especially if made from a sedating strain.
Enhanced kratom extracts are the golden standard of kratom extracts. Several years ago, a group of great chemists found a way to extract Mitragynine and 7-HO-Mitragynine with little loss. At this point they added the kratom extract provided with whole leaf in order to make what is now referred to as UEI. Because it takes a very large, and expensive, amount of lab equipment to perform this extraction well, be cautious about whom buying from when it comes to this product and only use well-reviewed vendors.
Enhanced Extract is a potent kratom extract, but is known for wrecking tolerance — definitely one of the strongest kratom products on the market. Because of this, it can cause some kratom withdrawal symptoms over time, so anyone who consumes kratom extract frequently should be careful.
How They are Used Most Effectively
For anyone looking to get the most for their money should never use a kratom extract without plain leaf , with the exception of UEI. The alkaloids in plain leaf are very synergistic and need each other in order to create the full experience. Because of this, it is a commonly thought to be best to mix most kratom extracts products with a smaller than normal dose of plain leaf in order to get the full effects.
Finding the Best Kratom Extracts
One of the most important things when looking to buy any kratom extract is to ensure that the product being purchased fits the needs of what you want. For example, it is a good idea to know the type of leaf from which it was extracted, especially for full-spectrum extracts, in order to accurately gauge the extract. Additionally, there are plenty of kratom vendors who sell extremely weak extracts. Because of this, it is necessary to use your best judgement, this can augmented by reviews and simple common sense.
In addition to strain, any kratom extract for sale should also be accurately analyzed by extraction methods, if publicly available or verifiable by consistency or solubility, in order to understand what the effects are. For example, for someone who wants a stimulating variety should buy a water-based extraction using a Thai or Maeng Da kratom as raw material.
For someone who wants a sedating pain-killing extract, a full-spectrum resin extract made from an Indo or Bali strain will prove very effective. While this is not always possible, it is a good idea to educate oneself on the natural effects of kratom and especially extracts to learn what alkaloids they contain at highest concentrations.
Overall, any extraction can be a curse or an absolute blessing depending on how it is used. For those who have a legitimate use, such as severe breakthrough pain, an extract can certainly save the day.
For people who decide to use an extract daily for the laughs, they will soon find their tolerance is wrecked and may experience some minor kratom withdrawal effects. Because of this it is essential to moderate kratom dosage. However, remember, no withdrawal, no matter how minor, is fun. Because of this, it is necessary to use prudence.