Please help keep, Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa) and/or its constituents Mitragynine and 7-hydroxy-mitragynine, legal in your state. Arizona , Oklahoma, Illinois, Louisiana and Florida have all choose to not ban kratom. Florida and Illinois have choose to regulate to those over 18 years of age. I implore you to make an informed decision by educating yourself on the relative safety of this plant compared to coffee, alcohol, tobacco, and prescription drugs, and I urge you to research the medicinal potential that this plant has ALREADY displayed. Please re-consider placing this plant in the most severe scheduling category and consider reasonable legislation that would restrict its use to 18+ like other states are already considering. The following are pertinent facts for your consideration:
- Kratom is a plant, NOT a synthetic chemical or “Street Drug”
- Kratom is in the same family as the coffee tree (Rubiaceae)
- Kratom is no more habit forming than coffee see recent article by the Cato institute, http://www.cato.org/blog/addictionproblemcasekartom
- Kratom has been safely used for thousands of years as a medicine
- No one has ever died from taking Kratom alone.
- It is impossible to overdose on Kratom
- Tens of thousands of Americans can attest to the beneficial properties of Kratom
- The state of WI may reverse their ruling to ban kratom see https://www.botanicallegaldefense.org/wisconsin-kratom-community-looking-to-deschedule-kratom/
Furthermore, Kratom and its 30+ active alkaloids show tremendous dietary supplement potential. The legislation, as it currently reads, would place Kratom and its alkaloids in the most severe scheduling category, schedule I. Making this plant and its constituents schedule I, effectively makes it impossible for legitimate researchers to discover and develop valuable medicines from Kratom that could benefit the lives of millions! This is not a sensible approach to regulating this plant.
Current peer reviewed studies on Kratom and its constituents have shown that Kratom has no acute toxicity1, displays powerful antioxidant and antibacterial properties2, assists with drug and alcohol withdrawal symptoms3, contains several oxindole alkaloids which have exhibited potent immunomodulation properties, and even contains constituents that have exhibited anti-cancer properties!4A brief search in any scholarly database will present hundreds of peer reviewed studies and clinical trials that can attest to the medical potential of this plant.
A few more facts for you to consider when making your informed decision:
- According to the CDC, cigarette smoking causes 440,000 deaths in the United States every year; about one of every five deaths in this country are caused by cigarettes!
- Alcohol causes more than 1.2 million emergency room visits and 2.7 million physician office visits due to excessive drinking each year!5
- Pharmaceutical drugs are one of the leading causes of death in this country, killing one American every 19 minutes!6
- Prescription opiate pain killers account for more than 475,000 emergency room visits annually.7
- Over the counter pain relievers such as Tylenol send over 56,000 people to the emergency room each year with liver related complications.8
- The Mayo Clinic has reported a 28% increase in overall mortality in people who drink 4 cups of coffee per day.9
In summary, the current proposed legislation places the medicinal herb Kratom and its constituents in the Schedule I category which is reserved for highly dangerous, addictive drugs that have NO medical value. The medical literature has proven Kratom and its constituents to be quite the contrary; a useful, safe, medicinal plant that has been used for thousands of years without incident. Kratom does not present a significant threat to human health or safety, when compared to legal substances such as alcohol, tobacco, Rx medications, Tylenol, or even coffee! Scheduling this plant would prohibit any future research and criminalize tax paying, productive citizens in your state as drug users, who are simply benefiting from the use of this plant.
Thank you for your consideration,
1 S.N. Harizala, b, c, ,S.M. Mansorb, , J. Hasnanc, J.K.J. Tharakana and J. Abdullaha Department of Neurosciences, School of Medical Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia,Centre for Drug Research, Universiti Sains MalaysiaDepartment of Pathology, School of Medical Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia 2010
2 Evaluation of Antioxidant and Antibacterial Activities of Aqueous, Methanolic and Alkaloid Extracts from Mitragyna Speciosa (Rubiaceae Family) Leaves. Suhanya Parthasarathy, Juzaili Bin Azizi, Surash Ramanathan, Sabariah Ismail, Sreenivasan Sasidharan, Mohd Ikram Mohd. Said and Sharif Mahsufi Mansor. Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang, MalaysiaInstitute for Research in Molecular Medicine, Malaysia Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Selangor, Malaysia2009
4 García Prado,E.,etal.”Antiproliferative effects of mitraphylline,apentacyclicoxindole alkaloid of Uncariatomentosa on h u m a n g l i o m a a n d n e u r o b l a s t o m a c e l l l i n e s . ” Ph y t o m e d i c i n e . 2 0 0 7 ; 1 4 ( 4 ) : 2 8 0 – 4 .
5 Bouchery E E,Harwood HJ,SacksJJ,Simon CJ,BrewerRD. Economic costs of excessive alcohol consumption in the United States, 2006.Am J Prev Med 2011;41:516–24.
7 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Drug Abuse Warning Network: selected tables of national estimates of drug-related emergency department visits. Rockville, MD: Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, SAMHSA; 2010.
8 Pharmacoepidemiol Drug Saf. 2006 Jun;15(6):398-405. Estimates of acetaminophen (Paracetomal)-associated overdoses in the United States. Nourjah P,Ahmad SR,Karwoski C,Willy M.
9 Association of Coffee Consumption With All-Cause and Cardiovascular Disease Mortality Junxiu Liu, MD Xuemei Sui, MD, PhD, Carl J. Lavie, MD, James R. Hebert, ScD, Conrad P. Earnest, PhD, Jiajia Zhang, PhD, Steven N. Blair, PED Published online 19 August 2013.
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