Have you seen these terms bandied about while shopping for kratom? If you weren’t exactly sure what they meant, we don’t blame you. While there is a relatively simple difference, the kratom industry as a whole hasn’t done a very good job of explaining that difference. So first, a full-spectrum strong kratom extract is any concentrated form of kratom that doesn’t result in the widespread elimination of kratom alkaloids and inert botanical compounds in the plant. A kratom isolate is an extraction of one specific alkaloid found within the kratom plant.
Now, that’s the technical difference, but when it comes to finding the best kratom for you, there’s a little more you need to know.
Full-Spectrum vs Isolates? No Bad Marketing Choices, The Industry Says
One of the reasons the difference between full-spectrum and kratom isolates can be hard to understand is that kratom companies can use either characteristic to make their kratom sound stronger than the competition.
Our kratom is full-spectrum, they might say, so you know you’re getting the maximum number of alkaloids for the strongest effects. Meanwhile, another kratom company may market their kratom extract as a super-concentrated mitragynine isolate that minimizes or eliminates any inert substances as well as other alkaloids present in the natural kratom plant.
Both are technically right about the nature of the product, but that doesn’t necessarily make their kratom extract better than the rest.
More research is needed, but there is some anecdotal evidence to suggest that pure mitragynine isolates may actually deliver an inferior experience compared to most full-spectrum kratom extracts.
FAQs to Further Your Knowledge
What about Raw Leaf Kratom? Is it Full-Spectrum?
Raw leaf kratom is, by definition, full-spectrum. Yes, certain kratom cultivars will have slightly different alkaloid concentrations, but it’s fair to say all kratom plants have a wide range of alkaloids that can be accurately described as full-spectrum.
Isn’t Full-Spectrum Kratom Extract the Same as X-Times Extracts?
Not exactly. Simple kratom concentrations that are 4X or 10X or 20X raw leaf concentrates are also, by definition, full-spectrum extracts. But standardized kratom extracts that target a specific percentage of mitragynine, like the ones created by MIT45, can also be described as full-spectrum.
Which Alkaloids Create the Best Kratom Isolates?
Quite simply, we don’t have enough information to say. There are 40-50+ alkaloids in kratom and most of them are very poorly understood, along with having various degrees of difficulty being extracted as an isolate. The most common one is the aforementioned mitragynine—despite not exactly taking the kratom industry by storm. It’s also possible that certain kratom isolates have unique and starkly different effects than full-spectrum kratom. It’s also true that we don’t have much insight yet into how various kratom alkaloids may work in tandem. Again, we just really don’t know enough to say. Without a doubt, more rigorous scientific research is needed.
What Kind of Kratom Extracts Does MIT45 Carry?
Can we guarantee that every single one of our kratom extracts has maintained the exact same number of detectable alkaloids as the original raw leaf? No, but even our 65% mitragynine-dominant extracts have a sufficient range of alkaloids that, if forced to choose, we would describe them as full-spectrum kratom.
We suppose you could say that our Super K extract with a 20% mitragynine concentration is slightly more of a full-spectrum extract than the 65% mitragynine concentration in our BOOST, BOOST Bites, and GO products. But again, while we think it’s important that you know the difference between full-spectrum and isolate kratom products, you can’t immediately infer the overall quality of the product from these simple characterizations.
The Secret Sauce of Proprietary Extracts
This isn’t to say all kratom extracts are created equal or have comparable quality. Far from it. Especially given the kratom industry remains largely unregulated and especially in those states that have yet to pass a Kratom Consumer Protection Act, consumers need to remain extra diligent. Stay away from companies whose manufacturing processes aren’t GMP-compliant.
Starting with this baseline of integrity for producing kratom extracts, the difference in quality then becomes a question of trial-and-error, user reports, and a commitment to excellence before going to market. There is a reason the MIT45 kratom shot has been one of our flagship products for years.
Kratom Isolates and Cannibalized Infrastructure from Other Industries
One reason we expect to continue to see kratom isolates on the market, regardless of their true potential, comes from the decline of other isolate-producing industries (especially CBD and dietary supplements). Overinvestment in this infrastructure, including isolate-producing machinery, has led some B2B companies to look to the kratom industry to mitigate some of their losses. And so, some unscrupulous kratom companies are looking at this machinery as an inexpensive way to produce kratom that they can describe as super-concentrated with very little idea or concern about the kratom experience it delivers.
Meet the MIT45 Kratom Collection
This race to the bottom is certainly not how we do things at MIT45. In addition to the MIT45 kratom shot, our full product lineup now includes tasty gummies with a 65% mitragynine concentration (BOOST Bites), an innovative multi-extract formulation (UltraMIT), as well as some of the strongest extract capsules on the market (Black Label Capsules).
Todd, DA et al. Chemical composition and biological effects of kratom (Mitragyna speciosa). National Library of Medicine. Published November 2020.
Lermer, R. How the marijuana ‘green rush’ fell apart. The Washington Post. Published December 2022.