Is Kratom A Viable Antidepressant And Antipsychotic?
Unless you’ve been living on the moon for the past decade, you’ve likely heard of Kratom. You’ve likely even already learned that it is from the coffee family and native to Southeast Asia and Thailand. You’ve probably already heard people say that it is the leaves of the plants that cause opioid-like and stimulant responses upon ingestion. You likely know these things or have at least heard them because they have been the major talking points for the past couple of months now regarding the substance. Any time a discussion regarding the substance comes up, these talking points are thrown out there. On top of this, there are currently all kinds of research trails involving the substance. People want to know more about the substance. People have to know more about the substance because it is now so widely used and so.
One potential that is currently up in the air right now is whether or not the substance is a suitable and viable replacement for current antidepressant and antipsychotic medications on the market. If this is happened to be the case, it would be a major game-changer. Not just for the patients suffering from these ailments, but for the entire medical industry. What do we know so far?
The Major Compounds
It is true that it is the leaves of the plant that contain all the potential healing properties. However, it is the compounds within those leaves that deserve the credit for these potentials. And, these active compounds would be the mitragynine and the 7-hydroxymitragynine (7-HMG). These are both indole alkaloids and responsible for creating the opioid-like effects upon ingestion. Up until this point, most of the research around the substance has shown that when ingested, it interacts with the mu-opioid receptors. Too much of some people’s surprise, these are some of the very same receptors that a lot of today’s antipsychotic medications interact with when ingested.
In addition to this, it has also been shown that when ingested, Kratom’s active compounds bind to dopamine, serotonin, and alpha-2 adrenergic receptors. This all but leads to the conclusion that Kratom would not only make a viable antipsychotic solution, but it would make a viable antidepressant as well, given that most of the receptors are mood receptors.
What The Results Say
Unfortunately, as of right now, studies to evaluate such claims as described above are still lacking. However, there have been several online and in-person surveys conducted that do note a high relief of depression and anxiety symptoms in individuals partaking in the substance. In fact, it has been identified that these are two of the most common reason for the consumption of the substance and related products in the first place. People are only buying the substance because they are seeking real, viable solutions for depression and anxiety.
What Does This Say About Kratom?
If most people are taking Kratom and related products as a means to an end for depression and anxiety with positive results, what does this say about the substance? It obviously says that it works, but, understandably, the government and scientific community can’t go off these claims alone. If anything, this only shows how dire the need for further research and studies are. More money needs to set aside and reserved so that this substance can be tested with viable patients in a controlled environment.