Gut Microbiome and Kratom

A research study published in ‘Scientific Reports’ on September 30th, 2023, suggests that gut bacteria influence how individuals respond to the pain relief and side effects of kratom. This discovery opens doors for personalized medicine approaches with kratom.

Here’s a detailed breakdown of the research:

Study Design:

  • Researchers analyzed fecal samples from 65 individuals, comparing gut microbiome makeup between those who did and did not use kratom.

  • Participants also provided information on kratom dosage, consumption frequency, pain levels, and side effects experienced.

Key Findings:

  • Different gut bacteria profiles: Kratom users displayed distinct gut microbiome composition compared to non-users. Specific bacterial strains, such as Faecalibacterium and Akkermansia, were more abundant in kratom users.

  • Link to pain relief: Individuals with higher levels of Faecalibacterium reported greater pain relief from kratom. This suggests specific gut bacteria may enhance kratom’s analgesic effects.

  • Side effect association: Higher abundance of Clostridium was associated with experiencing constipation, a common side effect of kratom use. This suggests gut bacteria may also influence how individuals tolerate kratom.


This study is an important first step in understanding the role of gut bacteria in influencing kratom’s effects. It opens exciting possibilities for:

  • Personalized medicine: Identifying gut bacteria profiles associated with better pain relief or lower side effect risk could enable personalized kratom use strategies based on individual microbiome composition.

  • Probiotics for potentiation: Probiotics containing specific bacterial strains identified in the study could potentially enhance kratom’s analgesic effects or mitigate side effects.

  • Gut health optimization: Understanding the interplay between kratom and gut bacteria could inform strategies for optimizing gut health for improved kratom efficacy and overall well-being.

Limitations and Future Directions:

  • The study was observational, requiring further research to confirm causal relationships between gut bacteria and kratom effects.

  • Larger and more diverse study populations are needed to validate these findings and generalize them to broader demographics.

  • Investigating the mechanisms by which specific gut bacteria interact with kratom and its pathways will be crucial for further development of personalized medicine approaches.

This research represents a significant leap forward in understanding the complex relationship between kratom and the gut microbiome. While more research is needed to fully translate these findings into clinical applications, it paves the way for exciting possibilities in personalized kratom therapies and gut health optimization for improved therapeutic outcomes.

Kratom is not currently regulated by the FDA and can be contaminated with other substances.  FDA continues to monitor kratom and raise concerns about its safety and potential for abuse. It recently reiterated its stance that kratom is not a safe or effective dietary supplement. Consulting a healthcare professional before using kratom is essential for responsible and safe pain management.

3 thoughts on “Gut Microbiome and Kratom”

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