It seems as if there are dozens of different strains of kratom. However, while there may be several (even hundreds?) of options available today, there’s only a handful of strains that make up the whole bunch. As a matter of fact, there are only three kratom strains namely Red Vein, Green Vein, and White Vein.

It is quite interesting to note that despite being the same plant, kratom in each type of vein color varies distinctively from one another. All three vein color types provide a unique set of effects because of the difference in their alkaloid profiles. The reason behind this is that each vein color type is independently grown in a particular environmental condition. This also suggests that both the strain and vein color type determine the potency and the medicinal effects that will be produced accurately and efficiently.

The reason why there appears to be so many strains is for different reasons – one supplier may call each red, green or white a specific name in order to differentiate which farmer he got it from. Another supplier may just combine two different greens together – or a white and red and then give it another name. These so-called “sub-strains” will be discussed further in the succeeding sections.

Red Vein Kratom

The red vein is by far the most popular and best selling strain of kratom. It is sold more than the white and green vein combined. It takes precedence over all the other types of kratom, and it mostly grows in Southeast Asia and is slightly more tenacious than other Mitragyna Speciosa trees. What’s special about this plant is its ability to thrive in virtually any kind of environment. It has researchers wondering how it can grow in both arid lands and knee deep water.

The red vein is known for having potent sedation with active effects of relieving anxiety, pain, and stress. The reason behind this is that the red vein is rich in 7-Hydroxmitragynine alkaloids.

One of the best traits of the red vein, in contrast to the other two, is that it is more compatible with most consumers. This holds true regardless of the differences in receptiveness among users based on different levels of brain chemistry.

Red vein leaves from a reputable source are excellent for beginners because they provide pleasant calming effects and feelings of well-being and optimism. Moreover, red kratom is beneficial as a sleep aid for people suffering from insomnia. Physically, red vein relaxes the body and soothes pain. It can be taken as a supplement or replacement for pharmaceutical painkillers. The most powerful extracts of red kratom are used to prevent withdrawal symptoms from prolonged use of opiates.

Within the red veins, there are significant differences when it comes to the effects and properties. Some strains like the Red Vein Borneo or the Red Thai have a sedative effect while others such as the Red Sumatra produce an elated mood. Just like the other strains of kratom, the effects depend on the dose. In small amounts, the red vein produces a stimulating effect, but overall the red vein strains are used for their sedative properties.

White Vein Kratom

White vein has dominated nootropic influences of intelligence, alertness, focus, and motivation against depression and stress. It is generally known as a stimulant and positive mood enhancer.  This is the case even if it has a lower concentration of the 7-Hydroynmitragynine alkaloids. When compared to the two other vein types, the white vein spreads out cleaner, smoother and provides long-lasting effects of stimulation, making it suitable for daily use.

Of course the effect of each strain depends on multiple factors like the quality of the product, lifestyle and tolerance level of the user. But it appears that the white vein is the most euphoric and stimulating of all kratom strains. It is therefore not surprising that it has emerged as the ideal alternative to coffee or tea for starting the day with smartness and brilliance. A lot of people are now taking white vein to increase their level of focus, motivation and stamina during long working days.

For people who feel exhausted or experience gloomy periods, white vein delivers the best results. It is commonly mixed with red vein strains to achieve a more balanced energy boost. Just refrain from taking it late in the day because it can cause restless sleep.

Green Vein Kratom

The green vein is the most moderate vein color type. It can be best categorized as somewhere in between the red and white strains of kratom. It tends to deliver an experience of multiple effects at a medium level of strength. Overall, it provides modest and neutrally pleasing effects to its users. Hence, the green vein is ideal for people who don’t want to focus on the dedicated effects that the red or white vein offer – sedation and stimulation respectively.

People who have tried and tested the green vein state that it helps them stay alert and keep their focus to get in the “flow”. Overall, it can be useful in treating pain and other discomfort because it does not cause drowsiness, which is frequently the side effect of other analgesic supplements.

Green vein kratom can be mixed with the two other strains to come up with a more rounded flavor. When mixed properly, the combination prevents the excessive analgesia of the red vein and the excessive stimulation of the white vein.

Because of its balanced functioning, green vein kratom is frequently used to allay social fears. Users report having less apprehension and they are able to put less importance on other people’s opinions and impressions. The green vein is therefore commonly used during recreational activities. It makes users more cheerful, friendly, talkative, and outgoing. They are able to socialize while being comfortable in their own skin.

So…Red, White or Green Vein Kratom?

The type of kratom that‘s most appropriate depends on personal preferences and the situation that you are in. This can be complicated because the effects tend to vary within the same strain color. The efficacy will depend largely on the quality, climate, geography, harvesting method, among other factors. The attributes discussed in the preceding sections can best be regarded as general guidelines for each color and strain of kratom.

Other Popular Strains of Kratom

Bali Kratom – This is commonly referred to as ‘premium commercial’ quality kratom. It is currently the most popular strain of kratom on the internet. Just like its namesake island, Bali Kratom is a perfect balance of energy boost and pain relief, blending the different beneficial health effects of kratom into one. It is also known to promote relaxation and a subtle sense of euphoria. It is often considered as the gold standard to which other strains of kratom are measured.

Maeng Da – A high potency strain that delivers quite a punch. It offers many of the pain relieving properties of kratom, but with a significantly higher stimulating power. However, the energy boost does not come with jittery side effects. It was specifically made as a high potency red strain in the heat and humidity of the Indonesian archipelago. The production involves grafting wherein tissues of different plants are combined to create a new strain with a new set of characteristics.

Sharing similar properties with Bali Kratom, Maeng Da combines increased energy level and pain relief into one. But in order to beat the heat in Indonesia, it was produced to deliver a stronger kick in energy than Bali.

Red Vein Kali or Red Kalimantian – Sometimes referred to as the ‘original kratom’, it is perfect for relaxation and pain relief, as it provides a mild but lasting sedative effect. It is a pure strain from the region of Borneo. It is also a conventional red vein strain because it does not have the stimulant properties of Bali or Maeng Da, but provides significant pain relieving qualities

Super Green Malaysian (SGM) – Grown in the jungles of Malaysia, it combines the sedative attributes of a red strain with the euphoria and energy boost of a white strain. It does so better than other green strains because there is a real balance of effects. In addition, its potency is not burned fast, resulting in longer lasting effects.  The experience is also smooth as SGM contains high concentration of alkaloids in Malay kratom leaves. This leads to energy boost without loss of concentration.

Red Indo Kratom – It shares the same properties as Red Kali and other traditional red kratom strains. It effectively combines pain relieving and relaxing qualities. It is a long lasting, slow burn kratom strain, and while it does not have the potency of Red Kali, it offers considerable pain killing properties while reducing some of the sedative effects of the latter. This makes it a milder red strain, but with all the beneficial effects that you’d expect from a red.

Red Indo – Similar to Red Kali but offers milder sedating and relaxing properties. It is therefore a tamer red vein strain that’s ideal for relaxation and mild pain relief.

Green Indo It balances energy boosting and pain relief properties, just like other green kratom strains. However, unlike SGM that has a high concentration of alkaloids and maintains significant energy boost and pain relief, Green Indo is a milder strain. It provides more subtle yet long lasting effects than other strains of kratom.

Green Vein Kali – Blends relaxation, pain relief, and energy boost, thus offering a complete kratom experience. It is more potent than Green Indo and delivers solid boost in energy without sacrificing pain relief effects.

White Vein Indo – Just like Red Indo, it is popular for its pain relief properties, but is significantly less sedative. It provides a boost in energy along with a higher sense of euphoria, although milder than those qualities in Bali. White Vein Indo is actually rarer than other strains, but it is still highly sought after because of its long lasting dissociative and pain relief properties. It is mostly cultivated and produced in Indonesia, and its purest forms are those from the marshy forests of the country. 

White Vein Thai – Just like the other white vein kratom strains, this contains a lot of energy boosting alkaloids and it boasts euphoric attributes too. The White Thai may also be the most stimulating and it exemplifies the higher energy effects of other white vein and Thai strains. However, there is a tradeoff since it has less pain killing properties than a red vein

White Vein Kali – Although most white vein strains lack analgesic and sedation properties when compared to red strains, the White Vein Kali does possess a lot of pain killing qualities. It also provides an energy boost sans the jitters of caffeine, and it is more somber than White Vein Thai

The table below is a comparative base for the most well known strains of kratom on the market today.





Euphoria and the most opiate-like among the different strains of Kratom

½ to 3 teaspoons

Maeng Da

Analgesia; energizing and stimulating

½ to 3 teaspoons

Red Vein Kali

Sedative and more opiate-like

½ to 3 teaspoons

Red Vein Thai

Similar effects to Bali but with fewer side effects

½ to 3 teaspoons

Red Indo

Similar effects to Red Kali along with several other traditional strains

½ to 3 teaspoons

Green Indo

Balances energy boosting and pain relief properties

½ to 3 teaspoons

Green Vein Kali

Stimulating with pain killing properties

½ to 3 teaspoons

White Vein Thai

More dissociating or euphoric

½ to 3 teaspoons

White Vein Indo

Similar effects to Red Indo ; known for its pain relieving properties

½ to 3 teaspoons

White Vein Kali

More dissociating or euphoric

½ to 3 teaspoons

Super Indo

Similar effects to Bali but with less euphoria

½ to 3 teaspoons

Super Green Malaysian

Effects vary among suppliers but is usually more stimulating with little euphoria

½ to 3 teaspoons

Gold Reserve Extract

Potent extract obtained by applying concentrated kratom alakaloids  back to natural kratom leaf

1 gram or less if mixed with powdered leaf

Ultra Enhanced Indo

Most euphoric and works great for reducing social anxiety

1 gram or less if mixed with powdered leaf

ISOL-8 Extract

Caffeine like stimulation

1 gram or less if mixed with powdered leaf

Natural Enhanced White Sumatra

Produced by taking a 90 percent pure alkaloid extract of White Vein Kratom and combining it with white vein leaf

1 gram or less if mixed with powdered leaf

Natural Enhanced True Thai

Produced by taking a 90 percent pure alkaloid extract of Thai Kratom and reapplying it to a Green Vein Thai leaf

0.25 mL or more

Kratom Extracts

Plain kratom leaves are usually well balanced and sufficient in delivering their medicinal effects. On the other hand, kratom extracts are specifically produced to offer enhanced potency to help in addressing extreme conditions (i.e. chronic pain) more effectively.

There are many different varieties of kratom extracts. Each one has a unique level of potency and specificity to various distinctive effects depending on the strain, vein color, and the method used in extraction.

Water Based Extracts

These are the most common kratom extract in the market today. They are typically obtained using the following procedure:

  • Alkaloids extracted from the leaves are dissolved in water   
  • The leaves are strained and ground into powder form
  • The water is completely evaporated
  • A brownish substance is left as the residue. It is richer and concentrated in alkaloids than plain kratom leaf

The potency of water based kratom extracts is determined derivatively as ‘X’ (i.e. 5X, 20X) as shown on the package to indicate the actual quantity of kratom’s daily leaf material used in providing the mass of the resultant extract.

The Pros/Advantages

  • Water based kratom extracts can be combined with the plain leaves in order to increase the potency of the desired effects
  • Deliver better stimulating effect when compared to the base material of the plain leaf
  • Contain a higher concentration of active alkaloids
  • Fewer side effects as compared to resin or improved extracts with intensified spectrum

The Cons/Disadvantages

  • Not accurately balanced to produce the desired effects when used independently. This means water based kratom extracts have less pain relieving and sedating effects.
  • Need to be used with plain leaves in order to retain active and stronger effects needed for effective pain relief
  • More expensive per potency than plain kratom leaf

Kratom Resin

This is produced through a specialized process wherein the strongest concentrate part of kratom essence is used. The leaf concentrate is heated to be cooked then dried and condensed into a dark mixture which is considerably lower in quantity. However, the mixture is better in terms of the concentration of the active alkaloids it contains and the level of potency that it offers.

The Pros/Advantages:

  • Easier to store
  • Immediately available for use 
  • Delivers a wider range of medicinal effects
  • Higher concentration power and potency per mass

The Cons/Disadvantages:

  • More expensive than plain kratom leaves
  • A higher tendency of side effects than the pain leaves
  • Temperature sensitive – high tendency to melt at even a moderate level of heat

Kratom Tincture

This is produced by extracting the concentrated essence of alkaloids from kratom leaves and then diluting it with alcohol in order to achieve a dense liquefied solution that can be used for a variety of delivery options. If produced qualitatively, the tincture can serve highly effectual and soothing effects.

The Pros/Advantages:

  • Immediately available for use
  • Proactively responsive
  • Easy to store

The Cons/Disadvantages:

  • Potency can vary significantly
  • More expensive than other available options
  • May not yield the effects at a wider range of spectrum as it is expected to

Enhanced Kratom

As the name implies, it is an improved and refined mixture that has been perfected to deliver more robust and powerful effects. The mixture is derived by choosing a potent kratom extract, mixing it with a solution, saturating it into a powder then letting the solution dry.

If prepared properly, the resulting mixture renders a rich and potent kratom extract. By far the most sought after enhanced kratom extract is the UEI or the Ultra Enhanced Indonesia.

The Pros/Advantages:

  • Very effective as a pain reliever
  • Modified to be optimally balanced
  • Concentrated well on harnessing higher levels of active potency
  • Lower tendency to trigger side effects as compared to other available options

The Cons/Disadvantages

  • Expensive
  • May cause some adverse reactions when abruptly stopping the dose after using it for an extended period.
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