HomeKratomKratom And Liver: Is Kratom Safe For Your Liver?

Kratom And Liver: Is Kratom Safe For Your Liver?

If you are an eager kratom user, you should be knowing that how kratom interacts with the liver. You might be unaware of the liver-damaging potential of kratom.

Do you know which organ in your body deserves to win the award of “busiest organ”? It’s your LIVER! Yeah, you heard it right. Our liver is one of the vital organs. In this article, we will be reviewing kratom and liver damage.

Think of any food item you consume, your liver directly processes it the moment it enters your system. If the liver is going through a massive strain, there are chances that your health will take a toll on you, with numerous health-related concerns and complications. 

Well, now you must be wondering how hard is kratom on the liver? Is it true that your normal use of Mitragyna Speciosa may put an excessive strain on your liver? Or will it be normal to use it just like its botanical cousin coffee?

This is still unclear since research-based evidence is scarce and we cannot come up with the right conclusions. However, there stands a single study that suggests kratom may cause liver injury. But according to numerous professionals, we still need further research to be 100% sure about it.

However, being a kratom user, it is essential to prioritize your health and have an up to date knowledge about Mitragyna Speciosa. So let us go through the available research-based data about kratom and its effects on your liver, and explore whether these claims are valid.

Note: High doses of supplements, even botanical ones can initiate toxic effects on your liver, particularly when taken in combination with other medications or alcohol.

Understanding The Liver And How It Works

The liver is one of the essential organs of our body and has a major role to play. It looks after our blood just like a security guard. It processes our blood and filters out the potential toxins that can harm our bodies. In addition to this, it passes vital nutrients into the bloodstream. 

Apart from that, the liver is also responsible for the metabolism of protein, fats, and carbohydrates, and the storage of essential minerals, vitamins, and glycogen.

According to research, all the important metabolic functions would fail without the liver. It helps convert nutrients from our daily diet and stores and supplies them whenever the need comes. This vital organ converts toxic substances into less harmless substances and releases them out of the body.

Since the metabolizing and detoxifying roles of the liver are crucially important for our body, it is extremely important to look after our liver health to keep the troubles at bay.

Liver Damage – What Can Be Potential Causes?

Excessive consumption of everything comes up with some serious side effects. No matter what.

Cleveland Clinic researched the leading reasons that cause liver diseases. From genetic factors to environmental ones, and substance use to our routine diet, there are numerous factors that can damage our liver.

For instance, alcohol is one of the notorious substances that directly affect our liver. When you take it in excess, that too in unfavorable conditions, would immensely impact your liver health. Apart from that, herbal supplements like Aloe Vera and Kava Kava can also affect your liver if you do not take them in moderation. The unnecessary and excessive usage of OTC pain relievers and prescription drugs is one of the causes of liver failure. It includes antifungals, antibiotics, arthritis medications, and steroids.

However, if you follow the rule of moderation, your liver health won’t ever take a toll on you.

How Kratom Interacts With Liver: Kratom Alkaloids

According to research, Kratom contains 40 alkaloids, and the most potent ones are Mitragynine and 7-Hydroxy-Mitragynine. When we take kratom, either in the form of powder or a capsule, the liver metabolizes the alkaloids present in them. And later the elimination process is what kidneys are there for. But, what is so different about Mitragyna Speciosa that can exhaust our liver? It is the concentrated alkaloid profile folks. Since the liver has to process all the kratom alkaloids effectively, it gets in a state of overload.

Thank your luck if you have a healthy liver because moderate kratom use in people with a healthy liver does not cause any liver damage.

But, if you have any prior liver damage, genetic defect, or sensitivity to Mitragyna Speciosa, be careful, your liver may experience damage. Moreover, medications that directly affect your liver should not be taken with your regular kratom use as they can interact with kratom and cause adverse side effects.

According to research, the liver enzymes – CYP2D6, CYP3A4, and CYP2C9 work together to metabolize the most potent kratom alkaloid – Mitragynine. If by any chance you have any underlying problems with this pathway, or your medicines directly influence these enzymes, be vigilant as you are at a high risk of damaging your liver.

Kratom And Liver Health According To Research

Let’s dig deeper and explore what research says about kratom and liver problems.

An in-depth meta-analysis was conducted in 2020 about the effects of kratom on the liver.

The examination included 26 case reports, 25 cases from FDA records, 7 cases taken from Drug-Induced-Liver Injury Network, and 27 cases from online forums over the web.

According to this meta-analysis, most of the users did not experience signs and symptoms of liver damage; however kratom use can cause the risk of liver injury. Moreover, other researchers claim that symptoms take 7-21 days to appear in an individual using kratom.

Another research was carried out to have a deeper look at the adverse effects of Mitragyna Speciosa. The sample included those patients who had developed serious signs and symptoms of dysfunctional liver and were categorized as Drug-Induced Liver Injury (DILI) patients.

Only 8 patients out of 404 were regular kratom users and had a past history of using kratom before the study was initiated. Later, seven cases were separated and the researchers claimed that these were essentially due to kratom use. Their symptoms started after using kratom for 22 days. They experienced abdominal cramps and itching. Six of the users had to be admitted to the health care center for accurate treatment; however, all seven users recovered successfully.

Although according to this research kratom use did cause liver injury in a few of the cases, it is still unclear whether the pure plant matter caused these symptoms or contaminants present in products that were not lab-tested.

Must Read:  Does Kratom Help With Fentanyl Withdrawal?

Signs And Symptoms Of Kratom-Induced Liver Damage

Liver damage shows up in the form of prominent signs and symptoms. Have a look below to understand the initial and severe symptoms.

Initial symptoms of liver damage

Initially, the individual experiences strong abdominal cramps, bloating, and indigestion. Later, the headache takes a toll with nausea and faintness.

Symptoms of severe liver damage

If your liver fell prey to kratom, your skin will turn yellowish-brown, and the color of your urine will be a darker yellow. Moreover, the stool will be cola-like, reddish brown, and soft.

When to visit a hospital?

You should visit the hospital even if you are experiencing the initial symptoms. Your healthcare provider will run some essential tests to rule out signs of liver damage. The tests will check the levels of Bilirubin, Aspartate Aminotransferase (AST), and Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT).

Kratom And Liver Damage Reddit User Reviews

When we search about kratom and liver disease on Reddit, numerous subreddits pop up with extensive user reviews. Here’s what users are telling about their experiences.

When we search about kratom and liver disease on Reddit, numerous subreddits pop up with extensive user reviews. Here’s what users are telling about their experiences.

According to a subreddit in R/Kratom, users said:

  • There is a very small percentage of people who lack a certain gene expression which leaves them unable to properly process kratom and therefore vulnerable to acute liver toxicity when starting use with kratom.
  • It is extremely rare that Kratom will affect your liver. There is a very small population of people who can not process Kratom effectively and they have experienced liver toxicity within the first week or two of use
  • I have Been burning 15 to 20 grams daily for 3 years. Have liver, kidney, and blood tests every 6 months just to see if there are any negative impacts. I’m 100% healthy. Never anything abnormal.

How To Maintain a Healthy Liver While Using Kratom?

Do you know you can use kratom and still keep your liver healthy? Yes, you can bring minute changes in your kratom use and maintain a healthy liver. Check out the easy-to-follow tips below.

Do not use kratom concentrates

Kratom concentrates like (resins, tinctures, and extracts) have a concentrated amount of kratom as compared to powders, capsules, and tablets. A more concentrated product contains a potent amount of essential alkaloids and puts more strain on your liver. Hence, it is recommended to use simple powders with average potency and avoid concentrated kratom products. To reduce its potency, you can blend the kratom powders or extracts with yogurt.

Do not buy kratom from the black market

If you are buying kratom from the black market it is high time to shift to an authentic online vendor. The vendors in the black market are notorious for contaminating the products with liver-toxic substances. It would be best to buy kratom from an online vendor that sells top-quality kratom sourced directly from Southeast Asia.

Buy Lab-Tested Kratom Only

AKA-GMP-certified kratom vendors conduct third-party lab tests to ensure quality control. The lab-tested kratom products are free from any sort of contaminants and are safe to use. Hence, do not buy kratom from a gas station, head shop, or nearby store, instead order online from a reputable vendor.

Watch Your Dose

A larger dose means you are putting a huge strain on your liver. Therefore, be watchful about your dose and consume a recommended amount of 1-4grams of powdered kratom only. So, keep a check on your doses, and there you go, you can enjoy your kratom without any worries. You can even get professional help or advice to gauge your safe doses.

Do Not Use Kratom With Alcohol

Alcohol is toxic for your liver if you do not use it moderately and the combo of kratom and alcohol is extremely deadly. Hence, if you want your liver to be healthy and fit, never consume a mixture of kratom and alcohol.

Do Not Use Kratom With Medications

Do you have any underlying medical conditions? Are you taking regular medications to treat it? Do not use kratom if you are using any medications since it can be troublesome for your liver. According to kratom.org, there are 260+ medications that can interact with kratom. Have a look at the complete article here and be careful with your use. It would be wise to consult your health care professional for the best advice.

Take Breaks

If you use kratom every day, that too in high doses, it is high time to change your routine. High doses of kratom in routine can dramatically affect your liver hence follow a few important recommendations mentioned below.

  • Do not consume kratom regularly; instead, take a few days off during the week.
  • Consume a small amount of kratom powder.

Use kratom alternatives when you are taking a break, to enjoy similar health-boosting effects.

Note: Immediately visit your doctor in case you experience headache, dizziness, nausea, fatigue, dark urine, yellowing of eyes or skin, abdominal cramps, or painful urine for more than 6 hours after taking your dose.

The Bottom Line

So does kratom really cause liver problems? Can kratom cause liver damage? Yes, kratom and liver issues do exist but are rare. Moreover, if you play a little part at your end and do not use kratom frequently in high doses, you can save your health big time.

So if you want to enjoy using kratom without getting any harm to your vitals, follow our tips and save your precious life.

Frequently Asked Questions

1) Can kratom affect your liver?

Although this is rare to expect, if you take high amounts of kratom frequently it will damage your liver just like any other botanical supplement.

2) Can kratom cause fatty liver?

No, kratom alone does not cause fatty liver.

3) Does kratom elevate liver enzymes?

According to a research, in cases where the user has extremely high use of kratom, the level of essential liver enzyme Bilirubin may reach up to 20mg/dL.

4) Is kratom safe for the liver?

The safe use of kratom will not harm your liver. Do not put excessive strain on your liver by taking kratom regularly in huge amounts, or mixing it with alcohol or other medications.

Christina Earle
Christina Earle is a licensed psychologist practicing in Oakland, California since 1999. She provides counseling to people who are struggling with managing stress, and anxiety related issues. In her free time, she often writes on mental health conditions that educate the individuals to explore ways of improving their health.

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