Lately, kratom has caused a lot of confusion—and we’re not even talking about this plant’s legality! Although this evergreen herb has been around for centuries, many people don’t know the major distinctions between various strains. Heck, some customers may not know there are different kratom cultivars.
Kratom strains aren’t as diverse as cannabis hybrids, but there are significant differences customers must know about. Believe us; ordering the “wrong” kratom variety could produce some pretty unexpected results!
When it comes to distinguishing kratom strains, the essential feature is vein color. While all kratom leaves may appear the same, they typically have one of the following three colors in their veins: red, white, or green. Interestingly, each of these colors corresponds with unique effects.
But don’t worry about breaking out your microscope when examining kratom products; usually, you don’t have to personally inspect these colors. Since vein color plays a crucial role in kratom classification, manufacturers will list the product’s primary color. All you have to know is the different effects associated with these colors.
Let’s start with what’s arguably the most popular kratom strain: red vein kratom. Strains that fall into the red category are usually taken from leaves on the top of tall plants harvested late in the season. These blood-tinged leaves are also left to dry for longer than white or green varieties.
In terms of effects, red vein kratom may have the most relaxing effect on users. This may have to do with a higher concentration of the compound 7-hydroxymitragynine, but researchers are still investigating this issue. Since most people claim red vein kratom is soothing, it’s best reserved for later in the day.
It’s best to think of white vein kratom as the total opposite of red vein kratom. Whereas red varieties are associated with soothing effects, white vein kratom is linked with enhanced wakefulness. Indeed, many people who enjoy white vein kratom rave about its supposed stimulant qualities.
Also, unlike red kratom, white vein strains are harvested from leaves that don’t receive a ton of sunlight. In some cases, white kratom strains may come from immature leaves. Some people claim this early harvest maximizes a strain’s mitragynine content, but there’s not enough science to back up this theory.
Since white vein kratom is associated with energizing qualities, customers should only experiment with it early in the day. Also, most kratom experts don’t recommend giving white vein kratom to beginners. Even at low doses, white vein kratom tends to have the most pronounced effects on users.
Green vein kratom is sometimes described as the “middle ground” between white and red kratom. While these strains often lean towards the white vein side, they may not be as intense. Indeed, many people use green vein kratom as a stepping stone from red to white vein cultivars.
Like white vein kratom, the leaves used in green vein strains often come from the middle or bottom of the plant. Green vein kratom also doesn’t go through as long of a drying procedure versus red vein variants.
Some of the most trendy green vein kratom strains include Green Cambodian, Green Indo, Green Malay, and Green Vietnam.
While the majority of kratom strains will fall into the red, white, or green categories, there are occasions when these colors could mix. Since kratom has been around for so long, it’s only natural that a few strains got jumbled around in Southeast Asian soil. In some cases, these “experiments” produced hybrid leaves with (you guessed it!) yellow veins.
In most cases, kratom connoisseurs claim yellow vein strains are similar to red vein cultivars. However, since yellow vein kratom isn’t “pure red,” they may have a milder effect. This may make yellow vein kratom strains good at providing a balance between relaxation and gentle stimulation.
A few hot yellow vein strains include Yellow Borneo, Yellow Gold, and Yellow Kapuas.
Before wrapping this post up, we should say a few words on the overwhelmingly popular strain Maeng Da. In all honesty, this kratom cultivar is still a bit of a puzzle. While most people admit Maeng Da originated in Thailand, there’s a great dispute over what makes this variety distinctive. Some people point to Maeng Da’s dark-hued leaves, while others suggest it’s the “original kratom” genotype. All that we do know is that Maeng Da is a fan favorite in the global kratom community.
Fans of Maeng Da claim this strain has more substantial effects than other red, white, or green varieties. Again, these claims aren’t scientifically verified, but users should heed this warning before buying a Maeng Da kratom product.
Now that you know how to distinguish kratom strains, you may be wondering what’s the right choice for you. Well, every kratom strain has its strengths and weaknesses. Also, everyone has a different reaction to unique kratom cultivars. Finding your ideal kratom strain will take plenty of patience and a little trial & error.
To help your “kratom quest” go a bit smoother, be sure to record each strain type and dosage level in a journal. This info will help you determine your tolerance level as well as what strain works best for your body.