In this section I will be looking at recipes for medicines made from two very popular plants, cannabis and kratom. While cannabis is extremely popular, well known and increasingly legal to purchase either medically, recreationally, or both, kratom is less commonly known but is becoming increasingly popular and easier to access via the internet.
This section is for educational purposes only, should not be seen as a recommendation of any sort and only for those who can purchase and obtain these plants legally.
There are a large amount of people turning to the leaf of the South-East Asian tree Kratom (Mitrogyna speciosa). The main alkaloids in kratom adhere to opiate receptors and have a similar analgesic and euphoric property to synthetic and drug opiates such as heroin. For this reason, millions of people are turning to use kratom as a harm reduction tool to cut down or wean off of more dangerous opiates. Kratom has been connected to a handful of deaths but in these cases the individuals were taking a number of potentially lethal drugs and/or alcohol. Kratom, however, is addictive, and can cause strong complications when coming off of it. Many people find that if it is taken infrequently (no more than 2-3 times a week), that physical dependence will not result. The worst cases I have heard are of people who continually take large doses (up to 30 grams a day) for lengthy periods of time. Withdrawal effects can be similar to coming off other opiates with shakes, chills, insomnia, depression, anxiety and strong cravings. At lower doses, people weaning off kratom experience far less symptoms.
One of the main reasons people have been taking kratom is as a way to come off heroin, methadone and prescription opiates. This has proved to be so effective that people have written about it extensively on on-line chat forums and Facebook pages. Entire communities have coalesced to support each other through the withdrawal process. For folks trying to get off synthetic opiates, kratom is a godsend.
Cannabis is one of the most commonly consumed “herbs for mental health” in modern society. In the past 30 years, cannabis has been modulated greatly via hybridization to modify main constituents such as CBD and THC. High CBD varietals that are primarily anxiolytic and analgesic are being developed that can mimic the potent analgesic and anxiolytic effect of synthetic drugs without the tremendous problems associated with them. For some people, various forms of cannabis present a powerful and safer alternative when treating pain as well as anxiety, PTSD, etc. Because there is no potential of respiratory failure and death due to overdose, edible and smokable cannabis has become an understandably enormously popular alternative where one can choose dosage, time of delivery and particular strain.
There is some confusion about the main constituent CBD and whether it can be purchased legally. Sadly, the products that are sold online that say they are high in CBD are sourced from hemp leaf and contain a fraction of what one can obtain from the leaf and flower of a high potency CBD strain of marijuana. If you live in a legal recreational marijuana state, (The West Coast and Colorado at the time of this writing) or have a medical card at one of the many states that allows for medical marijuana, you can purchase pot that is high in CBD and extremely low in THC. Some of the varietals contain upwards of 25 % of CBD and less than 0.5 % THC. This is deeply useful for smoking by itself or making into edibles that are not psychoactively potent.
If you can obtain one of these high percentage varietals of pot, you can then make them into edibles that are very useful for pain and anxiety management.