Kratom and delta 8 are naturally-occurring plant-derived substances often mentioned in the same breath. They have been gaining popularity over the recent years due to their supposed health benefits. But how similar are they? And is this combination a match made in heaven or a match made in hell?
Read on as we compare and contrast the two substances to help you decide if both or either are right for you. We’ll also recommend some of the top-rated vendors from where you can buy quality products.
What is Kratom?
Kratom is an herbal extract derived from the leaves of an evergreen tree known as Mitragyna speciosa. The tree grows naturally in Southeast Asia, used in traditional medicine. Its leaves can be chewed, ground into powder, or brewed into tea.
Kratom has two main alkaloids: mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine. The alkaloids are said to attach themselves to the same part of the brain as opioids, but there hasn’t been detailed research into how it works.
What is Delta 8?
If you’re a cannabis enthusiast, you may have already seen delta-8 THC appear in pharmacies and convenience stores alongside CBD oils, gummies, and lotions. But what exactly is it, and how is it different from delta-9 THC?
Delta-8 THC is a naturally occurring chemical compound found in small traces in cannabis and hemp plants. It’s somewhat similar to delta-9 THC, but it has a slightly different chemical structure. So when you hear people talk about THC, they’re referring to delta-9 THC, the cannabis compound that produces a ‘high.’
Due to its low potency, delta 8 is perfect for users who don’t want to experience a pronounced high. It is considered a legal substitute to delta 9 since it’s available for use in many places where delta 9 is not. And just like garden variety marijuana, delta 8 can be eaten or vaped. But it’s rarely smoked. Some of its common effects include calmness and relaxation.
Kratom vs. Delta 8
Kratom and delta 8 produce different effects, so these substances appeal to different user groups. Think of delta 8 as a less powerful version of delta 9. As such, it appeals to people looking for a more intense experience. Its effects range from better focus and concentration to a clear-headed high and relaxation. Many users report feeling relaxed without being overly sedated. Others say that it offers them peace of mind without making them feel asleep.
On the other hand, the effects of kratom are less straightforward than delta 8’s. Kratom’s effects are highly dependent on the dose and strain. There are three main kratom strains based on the color of their roots: green, red, and white.
The white-vein kratom is highly stimulating and is often used to enhance productivity and focus. Red-vein kratom is sedating, so it’s commonly used by people who have a hard time falling asleep. Meanwhile, green-vein kratom is the perfect middle ground between the two strains. It offers stimulation at low doses and gets more sedating as the dosage increases.
Unlike delta 8, the effects of kratom change character at different dosage levels. At low doses, you are likely to experience a substantial energy boost. Meanwhile, high doses are likely to get you sedated. This unique property of kratom cuts across all the strains.
Both substances come with some side effects that you need to know before indulging in either of them. The most common side effects of delta 8 include:
- Dry mouth
- Muscle fatigue
Kratom, on the other hand, causes the following side effects:
Unlike delta 8, kratom’s side effects are harder to manage. In fact, you can more easily get hooked on kratom compared to delta 8. For this reason, experts recommend that you limit your weekly intake of kratom to less than five days. This will reduce your chances of becoming dependent on the substance.
- Kratom over delta 8: Since delta 8 is a chemical analog of delta-9 THC, you’d expect them to produce the same side effects. These include trouble with coordination and slowed reaction times. Kratom does not have these mind-altering effects. If kratom is taken in the right proportions, you may enjoy the benefits of improved attentiveness and energy.
- Delta 8 over kratom: Delta 8 is a more stable form of delta-9. Although their effects are comparable, delta 8 is about half as strong as its famous cousin. This makes it a safer form of cannabis consumption. And unlike kratom, there have been no cases of overdosage reported over the consumption of delta 8. So it’s safe to conclude that delta 8 has the upper hand because it’s mild and has minimal long-term effects.
Just like any other health supplement, you’ll have to go through trial and error before you can finally find your sweet spot when it comes to the dosage for these two substances. This is because their effects are largely dependent on many factors, including your experience, how much you consume, your metabolism, and your desired effects.
Experts recommend a dose of 10 to 30 mg of delta-8 THC, depending on your tolerance levels and desired effects. If you’re a beginner, it’s advisable to start with low doses since they’re less likely to cause side effects. And since delta 8 is not as powerful as delta 9, experienced users can take higher doses without feeling overwhelmed.
The recommended dose for kratom largely depends on your desired effects and method of ingestion. For example, kratom extract is considered to be significantly stronger than kratom powder. Therefore, you might need to consume more kratom powder to achieve the same effects as kratom extracts.
Here are some general guidelines that you should keep in mind when dosing your kratom.
|1 to 5 grams||Low to moderate||Increased focus and energy|
|5 to 15 grams||High||Increased risk of side effects|
|More than 15 grams||Risky||Sedation, highly likely to cause serious side effects|
Kratom is legal at the federal level, but there are states that restrict its use. These include:
- Rhode Island
Delta 8 also falls under the same regulation as kratom. Hence it’s legal in most states and regulated in others. Here are some of the states that restrict the use of delta 8:
- Rhode Island
That said, it’s important to first familiarize yourself with local laws before buying or consuming delta 8 or kratom. This will help you avoid unintended legal consequences.
Is it Safe to Mix Delta 8 with Kratom?
There are no known chemical interactions between the two substances that would make them a lethal combination or would render them inactive. In fact, consumers report enjoying the combination when used in the right proportions.
However, limited studies back the health effects of combining these two substances. So if you do consider taking them together, remember to be careful with your dosage and always source your products from a reputable vendor.
How to Take Kratom and Delta-8
Since it’s an herb derived from tree leaves, you can safely chew on kratom leaves after removing the veins. You can also dry and crush the leaves into a powder that you can consume or use to make kratom tea.
If you purchase kratom commercially, you’ll most likely find it in powder or capsule form. The capsules are typically a powdered version of the leaf put in capsules. They are easier to dose since they come in standard doses. However, you’ll have to take more of it to equal what you would take in powder form.
Most people like to vape or take delta 8 in the form of gummies and tinctures. Vape carts are easy to use, and their effects are almost instant. Gummies are also quite convenient. But, unlike vapes, their effects take longer to kick in. They also come in pre-set sizes, making it harder to adjust the dosing.
Since tinctures come in a dropper, they are easy to dose. Also, you’ll need a lesser amount since they are easily assimilated by the body and offer a stronger concentration than vapes and gummies.
Do They Show Up on a Drug Test?
Kratom is not detectable on many standard drug identification tests such as a 5-panel test. However, some alkaloids may appear in urine or blood tests. There are also some drug tests meant exclusively for kratom identification. An example is a 10-panel test, which detects kratom for up to 7 days after use.
Delta 8, on the other hand, can easily be detected in saliva, hair, and urine tests for up to 30 days after use. However, the tests cannot distinguish between different cannabinoids such as delta-8 THC and delta-9 THC. This is because cannabinoids produce the same metabolites when processed by our bodies.
Many factors influence how long a drug can be detected in your system. These include:
- Age: Younger people metabolize drugs faster than older people.
- Body Weight and Fat Percentage: Overweight people tend to retain drugs in their system longer than slim people do.
- Liver function: A person with liver disease may metabolize drugs more slowly
- Metabolic rate
- Amount of drugs used
- Health problems
How to Safely Purchase Kratom and Delta 8
Delta 8 and kratom have become increasingly popular due to their health benefits. So it’s only natural to see a number of brands investing and launching research projects around these substances.
However, since these substances are not properly regulated, it might be difficult to find high-quality products on the market. So if you’re interested in buying any of these substances, you should look for brands that are highly rated and positively reviewed by their customers.
Here are some of the best kratom brands that have been vetted and verified by the American Kratom Association (AKA):
- Devine Botanicals
- Ketum Superior
- Naya Kratom
- Kraken Kratom
- Spectrum Kratom
- Urban Ice Organics
- Left Coast Kratom, among others
Similarly, here are some of the top-rated delta 8 vendors with high-quality products and transparent and reliable practices:
- Diamond CBD
- Blue Moon Hemp
- Premium Jane
- Delta Effex
- Area 52, among others
The Bottom Line
At a glance, kratom and delta 8 seem to have similar effects and uses. But a closer look at the two substances reveals that they are quite different from each other. Delta 8 is a legal, less powerful version of delta 9, so it’s ideal for people looking for more intense effects.
On the other hand, kratom has different effects depending on the dosage and the strain you choose. Using it can be daunting for beginners, and sometimes it isn’t the right choice for people interested in recreational use. In many cases, it’s used by people looking to have a clear mind.
While some users report great results from combining the two, it isn’t a certain recipe for success. This is because what worked well for others doesn’t mean it’s going to work well for you. That said, it’s always a good idea tread to carefully when using either or both of these substances.