TL; DR: Kratom Therapy Superior Malaysian Powder can be bitter stuff to swallow (even by powdered kratom standards), but if you’re willing and able to ingest enough of it, it can be nicely relaxing and as effective as an analgesic.
Kratom Therapy is clearly a company that’s confident in the quality of their products: I received 3 bottles of kratom capsules (Superior Malaysian, Superior Red Dragon, and White-Veined Thai varieties), 3 packets of kratom powder (same variety as the aforementioned capsules), 1 packet of kratom tea, and a small bag containing 5 30x kratom capsules in a box sent directly from the manufacturer. Even better, they included a well-designed informational brochure on kratom and the different strains and extracts the company offered. I had read about different types of kratom on the market, but thus far I’d only tried Bali and Maeng Da. I recalled several message board posts that mentioned that White-Veined Thai and Malaysian kratom were the bee’s knees, and here was a golden opportunity to try these strains for myself. Admittedly, I was pretty stoked.
I figured I’d sample one of the bags of powdered kratom first, as my right bicep (likely from moving a mouse around all day, at a less-than-ergonomically-ideal angle) was a throbbing knot of pain, and powdered extracts are generally the strongest option. The brochure mentioned that Kratom Therapy Superior Malaysian Powder kratom has “Very strong pain killing properties, and (is) nicely sedating at higher doses”. To paraphrase a popular 70s ad campaign: kratom, take me away.
The first thing I’d noticed about Kratom Therapy’s products was that they used the same basic label for both their capsules and powders. All of the different strains the company offers are listed on the label, as well as the different forms they’re sold in. Each product is neatly denoted by a green highlight next to the product name and delivery method (e.g., 15 caps, 30 caps, 50 caps, powder). The logo was also somewhat interesting. It features a large blue K with its upper tine replaced with a green kratom leaf, juxtaposed above a blue-and-green caduceus (i.e., the symbol of a winged rod with two snakes intertwined around it, often used in the US in a medical/pharmacological context). I’ve noticed that kratom companies take one of two approaches in marketing their wares: they’re either positioned as the latest “herbal high” party product (anyone with first-hand kratom experience knows better), or as a new age dietary supplement and alternative medicine. Clearly, Kratom Therapy takes the latter approach. On a side note, the caduceus has been misused in the West as a symbol of medicine due to some confusion that likely occurred at some point during the 19th century. Someone probably mixed up the Rod of Asclepius (a Greek symbol of healing arts dating back to antiquity, featuring a snake wrapped around a staff) with Hermes’ Rod (ironically, a symbol of commerce, eloquence, trickery, and negotiation). Would Kratom Therapy Superior Malaysian Powder cure my ills, or turn out to be another slickly-marketed quack remedy? Only one way to find out…
The directions on kratom packaging always seem to specify dosage amounts in grams (weight) rather than, say, tablespoons or teaspoons (volume). Considering that few people I know keep scales handy, it’s a mystery to me why kratom manufacturers insist on specifying dosage in this manner. I figured I’d just wing it, so I poured about a tablespoon of Superior Malaysian Powder into a 1/3 cup measuring spoon, and quickly choked it down with some water. This stuff was pretty bitter, even by powdered kratom standards—I kept chugging water until the last of it was washed out of my gums. Within about five minutes I felt slightly more relaxed, and the pain radiating from my upper arm was diminished, though a far cry from being gone entirely. Further, there really wasn’t any noticeable stimulant effect to speak of.
From what I had read, there’s little adverse risk to taking too much kratom. I had yet to experience the nausea that some kratom users complained about, so I resolved to try again later with a larger amount. The next day, after a filling lunch, I ingested two tablespoons of Kratom Therapy Superior Malaysian Powder kratom, and washed it down with a large glass of skim milk instead (this seems to work much better than water, to offset kratom’s bitterness). The relaxing effects hit me almost instantaneously, and I wasn’t feeling any pain whatsoever. I was slightly concerned that gulping down a considerable amount of kratom powder would result in a stomach ache, but this fear proved unfounded; I felt fine for a good three hours. Whether this is due to product quality or my own iron constitution, I can’t say.
In short, Kratom Therapy Superior Malaysian powdered kratom seemed to do the job pretty nicely, though the amounts necessary to achieve desired effects may be too much for some kratom users to stomach. Maybe the White-Veined Thai or Superior Red Dragon are a better bet for the money, and thanks to Kratom Therapy’s generosity, I’ll be happy to let you know if this is the case in future reviews.
Difficulty determining dosage