Kratom Vs Kava – Differences & Similarities Guide – Credihealth Blog

Kava and Kratom are increasingly being offered together at kava bars and online shops. While they share a name and a similar look, they are worlds different. In this article, we will look at some of the similarities and distinctions, as well as why it is critical for buyers and customers to distinguish between the two. 

Key Differences Between Kava and Kratom

1. Comparable Preparation

The Kratom tree’s leaves may be eaten, but they are most often dried and crushed to make a powder that is combined with water to make a drink or added to another drink to disguise the flavour. Tea may also be made from dried leaves. Similarly, the traditional method of making a Kava drink is combining powdered kava root with water, then steeping and filtering to produce a murky dark tea. Both are also available in pill form.

These similarities in preparation and look are another reason why customers may mistake Kratom with Kava or believe they are of the same type. The fact that the two beverages are currently served side by side in certain Kava establishments throughout the nation adds to the confusion.

2. Similar Outcomes


Because of increased scientific study, the consequences of drinking Kava are now well known and extensively documented. Kava may be used to alleviate stress or anxiety, manage pain, relieve muscular tension, and improve overall mental and physical relaxation. Drinking Kava, like other nootropics, may decrease social inhibitions and produce feelings of pleasure and contentment. Kava is classified into three types. Heady varieties provide a clear-headed calm and a little energy boost. Heavy kavas have a sedative impact, whereas Balanced kavas have a mixed effect.


Depending on the dose, kratom has relatively comparable effects. It is a psychoactive substance that, when taken in small doses, causes individuals to become more energetic, chatty, agitated, and socially hyperactive. A larger dose, on the other hand, produces a sedative effect, pain alleviation, and a euphoric or dream-like condition.

Distinct Differences Between Kava and Kratom

There are two major distinctions between Kratom and Kava that everyone should be aware of. 

1. Pharmacological Distinctions

Where Kava and Kratom differ is in their pharmacology and how they interact with the brain.  


Alkaloids are found in kratom. Kratom’s alkaloids interact with the opioid systems in the brain, which play important roles in regulating how we react to pain. Kratom’s alkaloids function as opiate receptor agonists, much as morphine or other opiates. Though Kratom is not an opiate in and of itself, its effects are extremely similar to those of opiate medications, and it carries the same dangers of addiction.

Because of Kratom’s distinct chemical composition and effects, it has been used to help individuals who were formerly addicted to heroin or prescription opioids wean themselves off of these narcotics. It has also shown potential as a natural pain reliever due to these similar properties, although further study on the plant is required. 


While scientific study on Kratom is still in its early stages, there is an increasing amount of scientific evidence on the chemistry of Kava and its effects. The primary active components in Kava are kavalactones, with six being more significant than others and accounting for over 90% of the plant’s active natural chemicals. Active components differ based on the plant species, and they are recognised by a plant chemotype. Learn about the science behind Kava’s natural calming effect. 

The second major distinction between Kratom and Kava is one of legality. 


Kratom is presently embroiled in a contentious legal fight that may result in the plant and its active components being outlawed in the United States – Kratom Ban

Kratom has been illegal in Thailand, where it grows abundantly and is extensively used, for more than 70 years, since 1943. The initial prohibition was based on the fear that Kratom would reduce Thai government tax income from opium distribution. While there have been demands in recent years to legalise Kratom and remove it from Thailand’s list of prohibited drugs, this has yet to materialise. 


Simultaneously, Kava is gaining global recognition as a natural and healthy herbal substance.

While kava was prohibited in Germany and Switzerland for a period of years due to studies indicating that drinking kava causes liver issues. After further study showed that the liver problems were caused by other causes, the prohibition was removed in 2015. Learn about kava’s safety and negative effects.

Kava is lawful in the United States, has been accessible for more than 20 years, and is classified as a herbal supplement. For many years, it has been a component of cultural life in the state of Hawaii. It has lately gained great appeal. Across the country, a slew of kava bars have sprung up. Countless individuals are foregoing their evening glass of wine, beer, or drink in favour of this intriguing tropical root as a more natural form of relaxation.

Disclaimer: The statements, opinions, and data contained in these publications are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of Credihealth and the editor(s). 

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