“Kratom” refers to both Mitragyna speciosa, a tree native to Southeast Asia, and to products derived from its leaves that are marketed as herbal supplements. Kratom leaves contain many chemical compounds (known as bioactive alkaloids) that can affect the body. The most well-studied compounds related to kratom are mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine.
People typically use kratom by swallowing raw plant matter in capsule or powder form, mixing kratom powder into food or drinks, brewing the leaves as a tea, or taking liquid kratom extract. People who use kratom report both stimulant-like effects (increased energy, alertness and rapid heart rate) and effects that are similar to opioids and sedatives (relaxation, pain relief and confusion).