Millions of people are turning to kratom looking for a natural alternative to cope with their health issues. But even though kratom is helping them reduce and manage the symptoms of many conditions, kratom users often report that they experience digestive issues as a side effect of this herb. In this post, you will find some useful tips to protect your stomach when taking kratom.
What Does Kratom Do? Kratom’s Effects
Kratom is a tree in the coffee family indigenous to Southeastern Asia. Its leaves are picked from the tree, dried, and finally turned into a fine powder that many of people use to make tea, toss and wash, or even to add it to some cooking recipes.
Kratom’s leaves (and, therefore, the powder made from these leaves) contain a large number of alkaloids, flavonoids, and other elements that act on your system. To be more specific, kratom’s active compounds act mostly on the opioid receptors in your nervous system. When an opiate or another substance (for example, kratom) binds to these receptors, the brain responds by controlling pain, stress, mood, and other processes. Therefore, the effects of kratom in your body include:
As you can see, kratom is very versatile. At low doses is more stimulating, while at higher doses it can be more sedating. In any case, it has pain-relieving properties at all doses and even though it can boost your energy, it will also provide with a sense of calm and relaxation.
Side Effects of Kratom
While kratom is a safe substance, it can have unpleasant side effects, especially at high or inappropriate doses. The list of kratom’s side effects include:
- Dizziness and headaches
- Eye wobbles
Keeping a moderate approach when using kratom is the best way to avoid its side effects. Use low to moderate doses and avoid consuming kratom every day will not only help you avoid side effects but will also prevent kratom tolerance. When you have been taking kratom for a while regularly (that is, every day), chances are that you need higher dosages to feel its effects.
Kratom Digestive Issues
Kratom’s side effects include nausea, stomach upset, and constipation. Unfortunately, many kratom users report these side effects. Of course, that doesn’t mean you are going to experience them as well. Each person is different, thus kratom’s effects and side effects will affect each individual differently.
Some medications and other substances can damage and irritate the mucous lining that protects your stomach. As a result, you will likely feel nausea or stomach upset. And yet, this doesn’t mean that kratom will harm your stomach lining. The causes of kratom nausea are not fully clear, but they may be related to the activation of the opioid receptors. Some of these receptors are located in an area called the chemoreceptor trigger zone (CTZ). When chemicals are detected in this area, it is common that the CTZ causes vomiting and nausea.
But kratom also slows down your digestive system and bowel movements. Nausea and stomach upset are also consequences of this process, which is also responsible for another common side effect of kratom: constipation. Many kratom users experience constipation as a result of the prolonged use of kratom or high doses.
But also, some people have higher risks of suffering from stomach issues. These people should be very careful when taking kratom or other products that could affect their stomach and digestive system.
How to Protect Your Stomach when Taking Kratom
If your stomach suffers when consuming kratom, these tips will help you protect your stomach and digestive system. And even if you have never suffered any digestive issues when taking kratom, being cautious and following these tips will do you no harm. Remember: better safe than sorry.
Don’t Take Kratom on an Empty Stomach
When you take kratom on an empty stomach, your body metabolizes and absorbs it much faster. As a result, the effects will kick in more quickly. Also, some users report that the effects are more potent, while this is something that not all kratom consumers agree on. But if you suffer from nausea, stomach upset or any other digestive problem, you should eat something before consuming kratom. You don’t need to eat a heavy meal (in fact, heavy meals could actually worsen your symptoms).
Eat a Balanced Diet
Eating well is crucial to keep your stomach and your digestive system healthy. Add rich-fiber foods (such as legumes, fruits, and vegetables) to your diet in order to prevent and fight constipation. Also, avoid too processed foods, refined carbs, saturated fats, and fried foods. And, of course, you should not drink alcohol.
It is no wonder that probiotics have become so popular in the last few years. But what are they and how do they work? Let’s begin by explaining that in your body there are a lot of bacteria, both good and bad bacteria. Good bacteria live mostly in your intestines and help protect your gut from harmful bacteria and other microbes. Probiotics are bacteria (“good” bacteria) that replace damaged good bacteria and restore the bacteria damage in your gut.
Some fermented foods, such as yogurt, miso or chucrut contain probiotics naturally. But you can also buy them, as probiotics supplements are available at many stores. Additionally, you can grow your own probiotics using kefir or kombucha.
Use Healing Herbs
There are herbs that can help you protect your stomach from kratom. Using them will help you prevent nausea, stomach upset or vomiting. Plus, some of them may have other benefits that will add up to the properties of kratom.
- Chamomile: When you think of a natural remedy to protect your stomach and treat nausea, chamomile is quite likely the first word that comes to your mind. Chamomile has protective properties that will help you alleviate digestive issues such as nausea, indigestion, bloating or even IBS (irritable bowel syndrome). But it also has analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and relaxing effects. Therefore, the combination of kratom and chamomile is an excellent idea to protect your stomach.
- Ginger: This plant for South Asia is another great natural remedy to relieve nausea and, thanks to its mild laxative effects, it can also help you fight constipation. Moreover, ginger also has energizing properties and can even boost your libido.
- Peppermint: Peppermint helps relieve nausea, digestive issues, and also constipation. Furthermore, its freshness and potent flavor will make your kratom tea much nicer.
Don’t Take High Doses of Kratom
Large doses of kratom increase the risks of side effects. So, if you want to avoid stomach issues when taking kratom, avoid using high doses. If you’re new to kratom, a dosage of 1-2 grams should be enough. Wait for 30 minutes, and if you don’t feel any effects (or they are too mild) you can add 0.5 grams to your dose. Also, doses lower than 5 grams are generally considered moderate, so you should not consume more than 5 grams of kratom in a dose (and never more than once per day, ideally not every day).
Use the Right Consumption Method
When you toss and wash kratom or take kratom capsules, your stomach needs to work harder to digest its compounds. But for many users, kratom tea is much milder to their stomach.
Drinking enough water can alleviate the symptoms of constipation, as it will help your digestive system to take less water and make your stool softer.
Should I Always Take These Precautions?
There are many kratom users who claim that they have never experienced not only nausea but any side effects of kratom. However, if you have ever suffered from kratom nausea, constipation, or any other digestive problems while taking kratom, following the tips above could help you. Furthermore, if you are new to kratom, using this guide will help you avoid future side effects.