There has been a lot of interest in botanical supplements in recent years, especially within the health and wellness community. That interest has led many consumers to two fascinating plants: kratom and kava kava.

While kratom and kava kava share some similar effects, the two supplements come from different plants. Read just one kratom capsules review, and it will become clear that kratom is the better health and wellness supplement. It’s more versatile, more potent, and easier for consumers to fit into their daily routines.

Kava Plant
Kava Plant

If you’re trying either of these supplements for the first time, you should do your research before purchasing either of them. You can find out everything you need to know about Kava Kava vs Kratom below.

  1. What Is Kava Kava?

Kava kava comes from a shrub native to the South Pacific islands. Also known by the scientific name Piper methyscticum, kava has a long history of use in this part of the world as both a folk remedy and a recreational substance. It’s traditionally consumed in drink form, but can also be taken as a powder, capsule, or extract.

  1. What Is Kratom?

Kratom comes from the Mitragyna speciosa tree, which is native to Southeast Asia. It also has a centuries-long history of use as a folk remedy and recreational substance. However, its dose-dependent effects are far more varied. While kava is a depressant, kratom may act as either a stimulant or a sedative, depending on how much you take.

  1. Similarities Between Kava and Kratom

Aside from being herbal supplements, kratom and kava have a few other things in common. They have similar preparation, though kava comes from a root, and kratom consists of dried and powdered leaves. They also share at least one similar effect. Both kava tea and kratom tea could help you relax and promote a sense of overall wellbeing.

  1. Key Differences

Beyond the similar preparation and potential to induce feelings of relaxation, these two herbal supplements are very different. They act on other areas of the brain, have extra potency, and produce different side effects when taken in excess.

  1. Pharmacology of Kratom vs Kava

Kratom and kava have different active ingredients. The active compounds found in kratom are known as alkaloids, and they act primarily on your brain’s opioid receptors.

Kratom’s main alkaloids include:

  • Mitragynine
  • 7-hydroxymitragynine
  • Paynantheine
  • Speciogynine
  • And dozens more

Kava’s active ingredients are known as kavalactones. They interact with your limbic system.

  1. Effects of Kratom vs Kava

Kava acts as a depressant no matter how much you take. It slows the speed at which messages can travel between your body and brain. This action is what induces mild feelings of relaxation and relief. No matter how much kava you use, you are unlikely to experience anything beyond a mild mood boost. 

Kavalactones act only on the part of your brain responsible for processing emotions.

Kratom is a far more versatile supplement when it comes to physical, mental, and emotional effects. Red kratom strains may induce relaxation, relief from discomfort, and a pleasant sense of euphoria. When you use kratom powder, these effects should become noticeable almost immediately, and they will last for hours.

White and green kratom strains have different effects. When taken in low doses, users report that they provide a mood boost but don’t make you feel sedated. Instead, kratom lovers claim that they feel more energized, focused, and productive.

  1. Side Effects of Kava vs Kratom

Both kava kava and kratom can induce unpleasant side effects, especially when taken in large amounts. The most common side effects of kratom are nausea, dry mouth, constipation, and an increased need to urinate. 

Using too much kava can lead to nausea, dizziness, confusion, and shortness of breath. Both supplements could also cause liver damage when taken over long periods.

  1. Legality of Kava vs Kratom

Kratom has gotten a bad rap in some areas of the world. People assume that because it acts on the brain’s opioid receptors, it must be an opiate. Although kratom is not an opiate, this association has caused many countries to ban the herb out of fear. Currently, kratom remains legal in the United States, at least on a federal level. However, some states have enacted local restrictions and regulations.

Since kava does not act on your opioid receptors, it hasn’t gotten the same bad reputation. It remains legal almost everywhere, even though less research exists studying its short-term and long-term effects.

  1. Taking Kratom with Kava

Want the best of both worlds? That’s fine. You can take kava with kratom as long as you stick to low doses of both supplements and do not simultaneously use drugs or alcohol. Since the two herbs have different pharmacological actions, they can intensify each others’ effects. Avoid using either of these supplements with alcohol, which can amplify your risk of liver damage. 

  1. What Does Kratom Do?

Kratom is an herbal supplement that provides a wide range of beneficial effects. In low doses, users report that it gives them extra energy. In higher amounts, kratom may induce feelings of relaxation, euphoria, and sedation.

  1. Kratom Wins Out

If you’re looking for a powerful, versatile herbal supplement that provides more than mild kava effects, try kratom. Just make sure you buy it from a reputable vendor that lab tests its products.