Natural Stimulation: Kratom Vs. Coffee

Two stimulants, one accepted as a polite morning beverage for centuries, the other less known, but slowly beginning to realize its potential among people around the world. They both can provide stimulation, making a bleary eyed, yawning face suddenly burst with energy and enthusiasm for a new day. There are differences though. For example. While coffee is known for stimulation, Kratom can have a variety of effects from stimulation to relaxation, depending on the dose and strain.


Coffees main alkaloid, caffeine, is the most widely used psychoactive drug in the world and has been since the inception of the global trade. Obviously, the unprecedented popularity of the substance hinges on far more than its dietary pros. An effective and relatively safe psycho-stimulant, a cup of coffee is an instantly recognizable staple of the modern-day breakfast.
Despite their genetic similarity, the plant boasts an entirely different set of alkaloids with their own unique and seemingly amorphous psychopharmacology. Mitragynine, 7-hydroxymitragynine and their various chemical derivatives produced by the plant have been identified as the caffeine’s counterparts. Limited basic scientific research, as well, as the anecdotal evidence collected from the community of Kratom enthusiasts suggests that their physiological and psychological effects are largely dose-dependent; although, because the powder contains more than one psychoactive ingredient, relative concentrations of the alkaloid spectrum varied by strain and cultivation conditions may also play a role, resembling the “entourage effect” observed with the active components in cannabis. Currently, it is generally accepted that central nervous system (CNS) stimulation occurs with a low dose, which can provide a boost of energy. On the other hand, high quantities produce CNS depression, reportedly, resulting in relief, relaxation, and even a feeling of happiness most commonly associated with opioids. While both, coffee and Kratom, have the capacity to be utilized for natural stimulation by the lethargically challenged, the potential suitability depends on the preferences and concerns of an individual, as they dramatically differ in their respective mechanisms of action. 


The taste of course is also different. Coffee has a unique, ‘coffee’ taste, while kratom has more of an earthy flavor. That being said, the two plants are distantly related. Each of these natural products when consumed in excess, can result in addiction due to effect desensitization.

The bottom line is that each of these products provide something that Americans like and while they can be similar in certain ways, they are far from the same.

Please note: This article was published strictly for informative purposes only. does not provide any direction for kratom use. The content of this article should not be used as a recommendation or advice. 

2 thoughts on “Natural Stimulation: Kratom Vs. Coffee”

  1. Kratom does not cause CNS depression, this is one of the main reasons it is thought to be so much ****r than other μ-op***d receptor agonists

    1. Hi Charlie,

      While Kratom alkaloids do not necessarily cause CNS depression with all serving sizes, and in fact can even stimulate it, they appear to do so past certain threshold amounts, which are specific to any given individual. You may be thinking of respiratory depression and constipation associated with the traditional CNS depressants. In that case, you are correct. The limited research has shown that mitragynine and its derivatives mostly work around the signaling pathways associated with the CNS depression in the brainstem, which regulates involuntary movements like breathing, presumably making it less dangerous. Nevertheless, what we know about Kratom’s mechanism of action remains somewhat elusive and further study is required. Thank you for contributing, in any case!

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