Noose Tightens Around Kratom

Noose Tightens Around Kratom

FDA Attacks Mount and DEA Moves Closer to Schedule I Designation.

Kratom has been under attack for quite some time now. As FDA and DEA realize We the People have found a replacement for their opioid peddling, they soon realized they had to move quickly to keep their cash cow safe.

So what does this mean? Well, MedPage wrote this article last week and found it worthy of syndicating it.

In April, we reported on an FDA order to remove some kratom products from the market because of Salmonella contamination. That turned out to be the opening shot in a war that the federal government has declared on the herbal product — or, at least, that’s how kratom’s advocates see it. In this story, we review what has happened since with the opioid mimic and the government’s efforts to discourage its use.

Kratom comes from an Asian plant, Mitragyna speciosa, that has long been a mild recreational drug and part of folk remedies. In recent years, it has gained a following in North America with claims that it can relieve pain that conventional drugs can’t touch, and that it can also relieve symptoms of opioid withdrawal. It’s sold in smoke shops, “alternative medicine” storefronts, and, of course, online from countless vendors.

Its mechanism of action isn’t entirely clear. That’s partly because it’s an herbal product with dozens of possible active compounds. However, attention has focused on two alkaloids that bind to mu-opioid receptors, which are also the target for conventional opioids. But its activity is also different from opium derivatives, earning it the moniker “atypical opioid.”

The FDA has made no secret of its wish that kratom would simply go away. The agency’s ability to regulate herbal products is limited to ensuring safety and to prevent vendors from making overt unapproved health claims. But when it comes to kratom, the agency has pulled both of those levers as hard as it can.

The online science-and-culture publication Inverse reported in November that the DEA appears to have made up its mind to take the step, but is still crafting an announcement. When the publication asked a DEA spokesman how the agency will rule, the response was: “I think that there’s a good indication based on what we already heard from [Health and Human Services], what they’ve provided, and what Dr. Gottlieb has been saying… That should have given everybody a good idea.”

There really isn’t anything too revealing here. But make no bones about it, we kratom users, are in the fight of our lives to keep kratom legal. Many states have already banned it.

American Kratom Association is doing its best to man the legal front to prevent the power-mongering entities of our government from going too far.  FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, MD, seems to have made it his life’s mission to end the best thing to have happened to people that struggle with addictions and pain management.


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