Fresh or Dried Kratom Leaves?
Updated: May 22, 2019
Kratom has been used traditionally in Thailand for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. It is indigenous to Thailand, Malaysia, Myanmar, Papua New Guinea, and Indonesia ---- the latter of which has developed a bustling economy thanks to western demands for the products of kratom agrobusiness. (There are other locations where kratom grows, but that is another blog all together.)
Although Americans generally ingest dried powder or capsules containing the same material, the traditional method of administration has long been to form a "quid" from the fresh leaves, then chew it, ingesting the juice of the alkaloid rich leaves. The leaves of the tree are known to be a mild stimulant, traditionally chewed by farmers and laborers needing a boost or some light pain relief.
Brewing tea from fresh or dried leaves is another traditional use. The leaves are pulverized then brewed in water, with lemon juice often added to facilitate the extraction of plant alkaloids.
According to the Bangkok Post, "Kratom has a long history of household use. Chewing the fresh leaves is a remedy for stomach aches or diarrhoea, while others grill kratom leaves and eat them with chilli paste for a pick-me-up snack. The herb has also been used to ease withdrawal from opium addiction."
According to the Brain Research Bulletin, it was "part of the ritual worship of ancestors and gods" in Thailand, and has been used throughout southeast Asia as a "snack to receive guests."
🌿 How do they make quids?
The traditional quid is made by rolling up the leaf and chewing it, then swallowing the juice and spitting out the leaf. Some chewers only chew for a few seconds before spitting out the masticated leaf material. This is repeated with several more leaves until the desired effect is achieved. The entire ritual is then repeated throughout the day as needed.
Some people chew much longer before spitting out the leaf material, and yet others enjoy eating and swallowing the entire leaf, and have no problem stomaching it. Not everyone enjoys this, however, for the bitterness can be overwhelming to some.
🌿 how to make tea
Tea can be made from fresh or dried leaves. The drying process, also known as curing, can alter the alkaloid profile by oxidizing a portion of the alkaloids. In the case of mitragynine, for example, exposure to sunlight (and other oxidizing conditions including heat and humidity) yields some conversion of mitragynine to the oxidized form, 7hydroxymitragynine.
There are numerous other active alkaloids present in mitragyna speciosa ---- as well as flavonoids and other beneficial compounds ---- and while these components have received less attention than mitragynine and its oxidized counterpart 7hydroxymitragynine, they all work together to create the full-spectrum of magick so many have come to associate with kratom.
To prepare enough tea for several adults, traditionally 30 leaves are taken. These can be fresh or dried. They are steamed in water and lime juice for 15-30 minutes until the alkaloids have extracted into the hot water. Potent leaves will bleed a dark red color as the alkaloids release. The tea is then ingested.
🌿 how to preserve tea
Modern users of kratom tea can store the liquid in a mason jar in the refrigerator.
Disclaimer: this article is for entertainment purposes only. Magick Powers Potions does not condone use of this species for any purpose other than ornament or research where prohibited by law.