With kratom gaining more popularity each day, many brands on the market offer different forms of this wonderful botanical. With all the options out there, it’s important not to buy kratom that is stale, has been adulterated, or contains contaminants! The way to know if you’re buying high-quality kratom from an honest, reputable company is checking third-party kratom lab test results for ALL their products.
But, it doesn’t stop there. You need to be able to read these lab tests so that you know what’s acceptable and what’s not. After reading this article, you’ll (hopefully) be able to understand lab tests done on kratom and what they present, so you can enjoy the benefits of kratom in the best and safest way possible.
What kratom should not contain
To put it simply, kratom is a tropical evergreen tree that grows leaves. These leaves are harvested, dried, and then powdered. This is what companies do to make kratom powder or capsules.
When kratom is sourced ethically and treated as little as possible, it’s unlikely that it will contain any suspicious compounds, because it is clean and organic. However, even if it’s organic, kratom should still enter a third-party laboratory to ensure safety. Potential problems arise when there is no quality check on kratom products.
Because the FDA is not regulating the production of kratom, companies don’t have to check the quality of their kratom. But you, as a customer, should make sure that the kratom you’re buying is not hazardous to your health.
So, here are some things that kratom SHOULD NOT contain:
- High doses of heavy metals, such as lead, nickel, arsenic, cadmium, or mercury. Ingesting high amounts of heavy metals, as we all already know, is extremely dangerous for our bodies;
- Microorganisms, such as salmonella, mold, listeria, yeast, or escherichia coli. Same as heavy metals, kratom containing microorganisms should not be consumed;
- Very high quantities of the main alkaloids mitragynine or 7-hydroxymitragynine (abbreviated as 7-OH). When kratom is natural, it contains a higher concentration of mitragynine (between 23.6 – 24.0 μg/mg) and a lower for 7-OH (between 114-134 ng/mg) since this alkaloid is 4 times more potent than mitragynine. Higher results for these alkaloids suggests that the kratom has been adulterated and therefore should not be used.
That’s why it’s so important to educate yourself on the topic of kratom.Very few brands, like GRH Kratom, offer honest & detailed third-party tests that contain all the necessary elements. Their lab test results are located under each of their products.
Example of GRH Kratom Lab Tests:
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What to look out for in kratom lab tests
Fake kratom lab tests are more common than you might think. However, there is a way to see whether a company is lying about the quality of their kratom or not. It’s all in the test! Here’s what to look out for:
- The name of the laboratory – check if the laboratory is real, reputable, and at least somewhat accredited.
- Sample name (ID) – the name of the sample of the product the company is submitting for testing (For example, JOY Kratom Blend)
- Laboratory ID – if you cannot find the ID number anywhere in the lab test, do not buy kratom from that vendor. The ID makes sure that this really is the sample from a particular batch and that this batch is traceable.
- Method of testing – different laboratories use different reagents and solutions. Check the method that the laboratory used to get the results to ensure it’s a safe one.
- Metal, microbiological, and alkaloid profile – as we mentioned above, this is the most important part of the entire test. Look for a test result that contains all of the elements that a particular panel should contain. This means that they test kratom for all metals, not just for lead or mercury. Similarly, it should contain results for every microorganism and not just salmonella or E.coli. If you don’t check the whole panel, you might face some problems.
- QR code / Barcode – this one is maybe not that important, but if you really want to make sure that the company is being honest, then checking if the test has a barcode that you can scan might be a good idea. Scanning will take you to the lab report and you can see if the results match the ones the company has put up.
Kratom has the potential to be a safe and beneficial alternative to some synthetic options on the market, but only with proper treatment and truthful testing. Knowing how to read a kratom lab test can truly help you understand the differences between good and bad kratom and ensure that what you use is really what it should be.
Note: This article should not be taken as a form of medical advice since its authors are in no way medical professionals.
- World Health Organisation; Quality control methods for herbal materials
- Grassroots Harvest Kratom; FAQ section