First, it was and still is, Cannabis. Now, it’s another plant. A natural medicine – not artificially-produced, addictive, pain killers and human killers, known as “opioids,” by Big Pharma.
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency has filed a notice of intent (PDF) to place the southeast Asian plant called kratom to the most restrictive classification of the Controlled Substances Act. The plant, Mitragyna speciosa, and its two primary constituents, mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine, will be temporarily placed onto Schedule I on September 30, according to a filing by the DEA today.
Mr. Kroll also states:
Various forms of kratom and teas made from the plant’s leaves are sold in cafes and on the internet. Their primary effect is to provide a short-lived peaceful and calm feeling that is described as pleasant. Consistent with this effect being opioid-like, anecdotal reports indicate that some users have used kratom to successfully recover from physical and psychological dependence on prescription opioids and heroin. Comments on my last report on kratom have also indicated the successful use of teas made from the plant in managing chronic pain without the side effects and addictive potential of prescription opioids like oxycodone, hydrocodone and morphine.
Research has shown why kratom might be a useful and safer alternative to prescription opioids: its inherent alkaloids, metabolite and an oxidation product in the plant, minimize the opioid receptors in the body. If the opioid receptors in the body’s cells were not reduced by not consuming kratom, you would have normal body’s “tolerance and dose escalation commonly seen with prescription opioids.”
Thank the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Its main goal is to protect public health and safety through the control and prevention of disease, injury, and disability) for “protecting public health” in this case; (as in the case of Cannabis – Marijuana) as well.
Last month, the CDC came out with a report that kratom “can be abused and that poison control centers have received over 660 calls between 2010 and 2015 regarding kratom intoxication.” The report stated the plant kratom, had a “stimulant effect” and was “an opioid substitute.” Opioids are suppressants. How can kratom be an “opioid substitute” when it has a “stimulant effect”? How can a plant be an opioid substitute when it actually lessens the effect of an opioid? The plant lessens the dependency on opioids.
No scientific testing was done. The DEA has acted only on CDC’s reports of use of kratom which showed:
- Medical outcomes associated with kratom exposure were reported as: minor (minimal signs or symptoms, which resolved rapidly with no residual disability) for 162 (24.5%) exposures;
- Moderate (non-life threatening, with no residual disability, but requiring some form of treatment) for 275 (41.7%) exposures; and
- Major (life-threatening signs or symptoms, with some residual disability) for 49 (7.4%) exposures;
- For 173 (26.2%) exposure calls, no effects were reported, or poison center staff members were unable to follow up again regarding effects.
- One death was reported in a person who was exposed to the medications paroxetine (an antidepressant) and lamotrigine (an anticonvulsant and mood stabilizer) in addition to kratom.
The Drug Enforcement Administration includes kratom on its Drugs of Concern list (substances that are not currently regulated by the Controlled Substances Act, but that pose risks to persons who abuse them), and the National Institute of Drug Abuse has identified kratom as an emerging drug of abuse.
Among calls reporting use of kratom in combination with other substances (multiple exposures), the most commonly reported other substances were ethanol, other botanicals, benzodiazepines, narcotics, and acetaminophen.
Aspirin is a drug that could be abused; Tylenol (acetaminophen), Naproxen and Ibuprofen are drugs that could be abused. Anything taken in huge doses, which are now “safe drugs” could turn into abusive drugs. If a person’s intent is to inflict harm, it can be accomplished.
The last sentences of the CDC report are:
Kratom use appears to be increasing in the United States, and the reported medical outcomes and health effects suggest an emerging public health threat. Members of the public and health care providers should be aware that the use of kratom can lead to severe adverse effects, especially when consumed in combination with alcohol or other drugs.
The CDC report was based on 660 reports between 2010 and 2015 across the 50 states; more than half of which showed no harm or very little harm to those who consumed kratom. I believe this is going “a little” overboard.
It is plain to me that the DEA and CDC are doing everything they can, to protect Big Pharma, even when it makes sense to only the DEA and CDC, for which we, with our tax dollars, are paying through the nose. Again. Yet. Still.
[Image of Kratom plant from Forbes.com]
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