Kratom, as we’ve written about, is a plant from Southeast Asia that contains two active alkaloid compounds, mitragynine and 7-hydroxy-mitragynine (7-HMG). These alkaloids give kratom a wide array of effects, from increasing energy and focus, to decreasing stress, to managing withdrawal symptoms.
Many kratom users swear by it for helping them reduce anxiety, which makes sense on a basic level. Kratom provides the type of instant relief that will instantly soften stress.
Before we get into the specific products and where to find them, there are three different types of kratom strains. Red strains, green strains, and white strains.
We talked about this more in-depth in this article on the different types of kratom. Because of the different ratios of the alkaloids, red strains have a more sedating, calming effect, and white strains have a more stimulating effect. Green strains are in the middle, as they’re made from a combination of red and white kratom.
Therefore, white strain, which is highly stimulating, may add more stress and could worsen your anxiety. Red strains will work better if you’re trying to relieve anxiety in the evening, while green strains can still work for the daytime.
Despite what you’ll read elsewhere, different types like Borneo or Sumatra kratom, which refer to where the kratom comes from, don’t have significantly different alkaloid contents, which means their effects are similar. Yes, they might be slightly different because they come from different soil and different conditions, but these are minor adjustments.
So if somebody tells you that Borneo or Sumatra is better for anxiety, that’s just marketing. That alkaloid content is what matters.
We also know that higher doses of kratom have a sedating effect, while lower doses have a stimulating effect. This is a paradox that we’ve tackled in other articles, like this article on kratom for sleep. But depending on what you want, you’ll have to adjust the dose.
If you’re new to kratom start with a 1g dose and see how you feel, and don’t take it near bedtime, regardless of strain, the first time.
Because kratom is not regulated by the FDA, kratom sellers can put whatever crap they want into their “kratom” products.
This means kratom is often cut with other substances. And it’s susceptible to bacterial contamination. Kratom in the US has a terrible track record for safety.
That’s why you have to make sure you get kratom from a third-party tested, trusted source. Ideally, one that displays the test results of each of their batches, so you can verify that your specific kratom has exactly what it says it is.
We recommend Viable Kratom for these reasons. They’re GMP (good manufacturing practices) approved, third-party tested, and display their exact manufacturing process on their site.
As we discussed, red strains because of the different alkaloid contents have more of a sedating effect and are better to take in the evening.
Across nearly all kratom strains and companies, green maeng da is one of the most popular products. Green kratom is a mix of red and white strains, giving a stimulating boost but not an overwhelming, jittery experience.
Do not buy anything from a gas station or smoke shop, and do not buy from the internet unless it’s from a company with strict third-party approved testing standards.
Second, for anxiety specifically, it’s wise to avoid white strains of kratom because of the stimulation.
Anxiety is a complex of other factors. Kratom may not be the place to turn, especially as a first option. Steps like managing stress, learning how to change your habits, and improving sleep should all come before you discuss supplements.
Remember, they’re called supplements for a reason; their job is to supplement everything else you do.