Can You Overdose On Kratom? In Short, No.

There seems to be a lot of misconception about people overdosing on kratom. Basically, it’s essentially impossible to actually overdose on the powdered leaf. The leaves contain a variety of alkaloids, 2 of which are primarily responsible for the plant’s opiate like effects, mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine.

But the plant also contains what are believed to be opiate antagonists that become dominant over mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine as dosage increases. This results in nausea, vomiting  and general unpleasantness. It’s almost impossible to consume more than 1 ounce of powdered leaf at a time before these negative side effects makes it undesirable to consume more.

At the one ounce level, the amount of mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine present is not anywhere near enough to cause an overdose even for someone with absolutely no tolerance. In a sense, it’s a built in safety mechanism.

Some, but not all, extracts remove the opiate antagonists, allowing for more to be consumed without the negative side effects becoming overwhelming. But with these, as dosage increases the effects level off, such that past a certain point there are diminishing returns where consuming more doesn’t really have any effect. Furthermore, to consume enough to actually get near an overdose level, it would be cost prohibitive.

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13 thoughts on “Can You Overdose On Kratom? In Short, No.

  1. I bought some Royal Krayton Bali in a pouch at a local store. The clerk said it would help with my arthritis pain, I sustained from a car wreck last year,and is supposed to be natural.
    It says 5 grams/ 5 capsules…. Is that 1 gram per capsule or is that 5 grams per capsule? There is no recommend dosage on the pouch either… How many would I take and how often? These labels need to more clarification.
    I’m 5ft tall, and 170lbs. (Had weight gain after accident)
    I’m also a grandmother, on prescription water/ blood pressure medication.

  2. I think Tom also makes the assumption that addiction is always bad. But addiction in of itself isn’t harmful, even according to the dictionary. So the assumption is that whatever adverse side effects an addictive substance may possess, when consumed in an amount or frequency to sustain the addiction those side effects will always cause harm. However I can think of at least a couple addictions that I have that aren’t unhealthy. I am addicted to caffeine. I need a few cups of coffee or an energy drink or two a day. At least I think I need it. Isn’t that was addiction is? I may even become a grouch – a form or physical withdrawal – if I don’t have my caffeine. But according to science a moderate amount of caffeine is not at all harmful, and it may even have health benefits. I am also addicted to the various chemicals my brain produces in excessive amounts when I go mountain biking. I can also say with confidence that this is a real addiction. But I don’t hear people frowning upon my activity because it can sometimes be very dangerous, such as during falls and accidents.

  3. Lisa,

    I think you’re making the assumption that many people make – that natural things are good and artificial things bad.

    Plenty of natural things are addictive – Opium is completely natural plant extract and is highly addictive, completely natural pure tobacco is highly addictive too.

    Meanwhile there are completely artificial substances that are not at all addictive, such as acetaminophen or aspirin.

    Kratom is moderately addictive because of its natural chemicals produced inside the plant, for the same reason tobacco is highly addictive because of the nicotine and MAOI chemicals produced naturally in the plant. Coffee beans are not sprayed with anything but are addictive too, and even cocaine and morphine are natural and are merely extracted from their natural plant sources.

    So there is no need for it to be sprayed with anything for it to be addictive. Having said that, a few very dodgy “Kratom extract” packets from seedy headshops have been contaminated with the addictive painkiller and anti-depressant Tramadol. However I very much doubt this is the kind of stuff your family member uses, the powder Kratom from good online kratom vendors is nearly always pure.

    As for your family member, this is my honest advice from my own experience. Firstly, you could try to work out whether it is causing any harm or not. If it isn’t doing any harm, it might be fine just to continue it, but make sure the dosage doesn’t go up significantly.

    If it is a problem, one mild option would be to reduce the dosage and just use small amounts of it.

    Another option is to taper off of it. This is the best way to stop taking it if that’s what’s desired. If they slowly reduce dosage over a fairly long time, say 10% a week for ten weeks, it will be easy. 20% for five weeks would be fairly easy if you’re in more of a rush.

    I would not recommend stopping any addictive substance ‘cold turkey’ (i.e. straight away) – it will be a nasty experience that might strengthen an addiction. Some people can do it, but I know personally that I can’t and I wouldn’t recommend it.

    Give this person some love and show them a nice time if they struggle!

    But remember, kratom is only moderately addictive. Don’t get too worried about it, doing the ten week thing will be barely noticeable in terms of pain, which is why I recommend it.

    Don’t panic, it’s safe stuff. And good luck!

  4. According to the 20/20 program the leaf as you call it is sprayed with several chemicals ..there has to be a reason for this leaf that is supposedly all natural to addictive ..any comments or help on this matter would be appreciated ..I have a family member that carries it around mixed in their bottle as a security blanket ..

    1. Lisa,

      Judging from the way you talk, you’re probably part of the reason your family member carries it around as a security blanket. I can guarantee that, if you’re planning some sort of “intervention” style thing, you will only distance yourself further from them.

      Their drug use is probably going to be a given at this point in their life. Focus on loving them for who they are, and making sure they don’t OVER dose. Maybe they’ll find the path to stop, but you’re deeefinitely not going to find it FOR them by being passive aggressive.

      When I read your comment, I immediately thought “If she spoke like this to me, I’d tune her out as soon as she started talking on a regular basis.”

      1. Haha Mister e is absolutely correct. His response is hilarious though sincere. If someone is planning on approaching this person, don’t let it be you Lisa.

      2. You cannot overdose. I was a distributor for nearly 10 years. Anyone can feel nauseated from consuming more than around an ounce per day. But that’s kind of the extent of concerns that most anyone should have about its use. Compare it to one’s use of caffeine. I consider kratom to be more benign than coffee.

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