Marijuana is legal in many states, but according to federal laws in the US, it is still a controlled substance and illegal. But, it helps many people deal with a variety of health problems, and it keeps them from having to use addictive painkillers.
What if there was another drug that was all natural, and that could help with everything from pain relief to calming anxiety? What if that drug was legal, even though it is considered to be a controlled substance? There is such a drug, and it is known as kratom. But, even though it is legal in most states, can you get into trouble, lose your job, etc., because it shows up in a random drug test? That is what we are going to discuss today.
Kratom, or Mitragyna Speciosa, is an evergreen tree that is found in Southeast Asia, mainly in Thailand, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, and Malaysia. Low doses of kratom have been used for centuries to help treat muscle pain, anxiety, opiate withdrawal symptoms, anxiety, and more.
It has also been used to relieve diarrhea, and it can be used as an anti-inflammatory, a cough suppressant, to lower blood pressure, to lower blood sugar levels, to lower fevers, and more. It is even used as a sexual stimulant. Too much of this drug can produce feelings of euphoria, but it can also lead to nausea when one is not used to taking it. Kratom leaves are chewed or smoked, and they can also be made into pill form, or made into a tea.
Does Kratom Show Up in Drug Tests?
Unlike marijuana, kratom will not show up on many drug tests. It is not part of the standard drug screens in the US. There are tests to screen for kratom, but they are few and far between, and not widely available. If you use kratom, and you work for a company that regularly makes employees submit to random drug testing, you don’t have to worry about kratom showing up. Even if it did, it wouldn’t matter in most states, since it is legal to use.
Most drug tests screen for use of the more common drugs, including marijuana (technically, not a drug, but still a controlled substance), opiates, etc. The plant source of kratom doesn’t have the chemical structure found in other drugs, including marijuana, cocaine, and heroin, so it is not going to show up on a standard drug test. The only thing you have to worry about is ending up with a false positive for opiate use, but these results are few and far between.
Is there a Drug Test for Kratom?
It is a sad thing to think about, but pharmaceutical companies do not want us to have access to natural treatments for our health issues. After all, that would put the manufacturers of chemical medications out of business, or at least put a pretty big dent in their bottom line. So, they are working feverishly to come up with a test for kratom.
Rather than doing real research about this drug, they continue to perpetuate the myth that this, marijuana, and other natural remedies are dangerous drugs. They want the public to be afraid, so they will use pharmaceuticals rather than natural remedies such as kratom. Thankfully, because kratom is not yet an illegal substance, even if there were a test for it, there is little anyone can do if you are using it, even your employer, because it is as legal as beer.
What about False Positives for Opioids?
It is highly unlikely that a user of kratom will have a false positive for opioids when tested for drugs. In fact, it is pretty much impossible that this is ever going to happen, whether blood or urine is tested. Kratom is not an opiate. But, once it is in the body, it can interact with the cell receptors that opiates interact with.
So, because it can influence the sympathetic nervous system, those who do not know what they are looking for could mistake kratom alkaloids for opiates. The big difference is that kratom does not do the damage that opioids do, and it is non-addictive. It is impossible to become physically addicted to kratom, much like marijuana, and there are no horrible, long-term effects from using this drug, unlike the effects from opioids.
All of this does not mean that it is impossible for a false positive for opioids to occur. But, it is something that is so rare that you really shouldn’t worry yourself over it. Even if there is a false positive, a subsequent test, such as a gas chromatography-mass spectrometry would confirm the fact that the person tested is not using any illegal drugs.
Is Kratom a Legal Substance in the US?
Kratom is actually legal in most countries in the world. The only exceptions are Australia, Burma, Thailand, and Malaysia, where it is a banned substance. But, the bans are not necessarily because this is a drug. For instance, in Thailand, the ban was created in the 1940’s, to eliminate competition to the opium trade.
Other countries that are trying to ban kratom are only doing so because they do not have all of the right information, and they are not basing their findings on actual research. Currently, this is not an illegal substance in the US, but of course, the FDA is putting out plenty of warnings, likely with the encouragement of pharmaceutical companies that don’t want to lose money because people have found a natural alternative to opioids.
If you suffer from muscle pain, diarrhea, anxiety, depression, etc., and you don’t want to take prescription medications, you might be interested in learning more about what kratom has to offer. This is a natural remedy for a variety of health problems, and it comes with very few negative side effects. Yes, it can cause nausea, but this usually only happens when the user takes too much of this drug. For the most part, kratom is perfectly safe to use, and it is legal in most US states.
Until next time,