Kratom has recently exploded in popularity the world over. Its use is allowed in the United States, save a few municipalities. Whether you shop online or in person, getting kratom is relatively easy today. You likely at least know someone who buys kratom. You might like kratom yourself.
That said, many people who are familiar with kratom yearn to learn more about the tree leaf. You might be interested in learning about kratom’s origins and be surprised by what’s in store. After all, kratom use dates back centuries. One place to learn more about the exciting history of kratom is through Netflix’s short documentary film entitled A Leaf of Faith.
A Leaf of Faith covers many topics, including kratom’s purported benefits, its relationship with state regulation, and its history. The film advocates for kratom and looks deeply at the plant’s biology and chemical structure. The documentary also examines its societal benefits. A Leaf of Faith is worth watching if you have the time and want to develop a deeper understanding of kratom or enjoy documentaries.
Filmmaker Chris Bell brings kratom to the big screen through the eyes of various people related to kratom. The film gets a bit heavy as it explores kratom’s use by opiate addicts. It delves into the ill effects of the widespread use of prescription opiates and considers whether kratom is a safe alternative.
Chris Bell is a kratom enthusiast himself, and he was formerly addicted to opioids. He believes kratom helped him overcome his addiction. He thinks that the United States of America has a pain epidemic and needs to learn healthier lifestyle choices. He also takes a political stance and posits that the FDA’s attempted kratom ban would have increased the incidence of drug overdoses.
People often recommend substituting unhealthy habits for healthy ones. That said, if you or someone you know suffers from a dependency issue, please get the help of a professional. Nothing in this article should be construed as advice on dealing with any health issues; this article is exclusively a review of A Leaf of Faith, the Netflix kratom documentary.
Bell explores all aspects of the plant. He starts with the tree’s basic biology. Kratom is a tree called Mitragyna speciosa. It belongs to the Rubiaceae family of flowering plants. The most popular plant in the family is coffee. Kratom is a close relative of coffee, as distinct genetically as humans are from other great apes.
Like coffee and caffeine, kratom contains an alkaloid named for it that is called mitragynine. It also has 7-hydroxy mitragynine. Like caffeine, these alkaloids are responsible for some of the effects kratom impacts on users.
Another similarity between kratom and coffee is their shared love of the tropics. While coffee is grown throughout the tropical parts of Africa, South America, and Southeast Asia, kratom mainly sticks to the lovely tropical Pacific Asian countries. It grows in Indonesia, Sumatra, Papua New Guinea, Thailand, and Malaysia. Many of these places also grow coffee. Several of these nations have banned kratom use and sale, including Thailand and Malaysia. Sadly, many kratom strain names are Thai or Malay words, yet the people of those traditions cannot carry forth with it.
The A Leaf of Faith kratom documentary also covers all the different forms of consumable kratom that exist in the world. If you have ever bought kratom, you know it comes as a powder, powder-filled capsules, crushed leaves, and many more. There are even teas and other kratom-infused beverages. You can also get kratom extracts, which tend to be distilled forms of the kratom alkaloid content. Overall, there are many forms that kratom takes, and A Leaf of Faith covers these products in an attempt to be a comprehensive kratom documentary.
A Leaf of Faith also interviews people who believe kratom destroyed their lives. A mother from Florida is suing local kratom bars because she thinks they contributed to her daughter’s deteriorating mental health. This woman has nowhere to turn, as the treatment for any sort of problem is expensive in the United States. This moment in the film is touching and a reminder that everyone has a responsibility to one another. The mother is in distress about her daughter’s anguish and loss of enjoyment. It seems she may be describing the symptoms of addiction, which many believe to be a symptom of deeper neuroses.
An unfortunate aspect of the limited scientific research on kratom is the lack of consensus on how to approach its sale. Customers deserve to know all about the products, and you should equip yourself with as much knowledge as you can. There is some research suggesting that kratom has addiction potential. If you are interested in learning more about this, you should read more about kratom after watching the A Leaf of Faith documentary.
Chris Bell posits that though kratom may be addictive, so are many other things people take daily to deal with life. Coffee and tea are some of the most addictive substances on the planet, but most agree that they are safe. Many of the problems attributed to kratom stem from a lack of knowledge and an all-or-nothing attitude. Sketchier vendors would like complete control of how kratom is sold, while better vendors advocate for lab testing and education.
Besides talking to those embroiled in lawsuits with vendors, A Leaf of Faith explores the FDA’s attempt to ban kratom. The federal agency almost listed kratom as a Schedule 1 substance, making it as illegal as heroin. The agency decided against its proposal after public backlash. Though the FDA did not enshrine kratom legality, they shelved its ban indefinitely.
A Leaf of Faith calls into question why the FDA would exert any effort banning something that is likely as unsafe as tea while letting thousands die from opiate use. In the documentary, the filmmaker goes to kratom’s native origin. He talks to locals in Southeast Asian Pacific countries about kratom use. He learns that no one has ever died from its use. The locals claim that it is used in holistic healing practices. It is also a social beverage and is used by people to unwind after a long day of work. It seems to fill a similar role to its cousin, coffee.
The kratom documentary film takes the position that legalizing kratom would make certain that people are getting high-quality, pure kratom. It will allow vendors and customers a sense of security, that the product they are taking is unadulterated. Likewise, the film posits that by allowing its use, people who come into problems while using kratom will have avenues to receive any necessary help.
A Leaf of Faith is a great watch if you have Netflix. It covers interesting history, anthropology, and current events. The documentary also provides some nuance to kratom use and the substance’s potentially addictive nature. The documentary is also shot well, impactful, and informative, with a few compelling scenes thrown in.
Kratom users may also appreciate the insights the documentary provides on the FDA regulation of the substance. It explores the controversial aspects of kratom that are rarely discussed. Also, the director goes straight to kratom’s native countries to explore how the use of the plant has affected locals.
More importantly, the documentary also features people who have a negative opinion of kratom, specifically those whose health has been affected negatively by kratom use. Likewise, the film explores the effects of a lack of standards when it comes to the sale of kratom as well as the problems that stem from an overall lack of knowledge about kratom.
The kratom documentary is honest about its biases, presenting itself as an advocate for kratom. That said, filmmaker, Chris Bell covers all the perceived negative aspects alongside the positive ones to give a complete picture of what kratom can mean to different people. Whether you enjoy documentaries, kratom, or both, you will enjoy watching A Leaf of Faith. If you do not have Netflix, you can convince a friend of yours to have a movie night and subtly suggest this great kratom documentary.