Kratom controversy rages over benefits, dangers

Local News

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – The debate over the controversial herbal supplement Kratom is heating up. Some want it outlawed. Others fear that would be a disaster.

“They heard Kratom couldn’t hurt you. Kratom can, in fact, kill you,” said Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi.

Bondi is waiting for guidance from the Drug Enforcement Administration before going forward to ban the supplement across the state.

“Hopefully that it will be illegal very soon. But people, just stay away from it. You’ve got to stay away from these synthetic drugs. They can hurt you. They can, not only hurt you, they can kill you,” she said.

When it comes to Kratom, Purple Haze store owner Leo Calzadilla would like people to take a chill pill. He believes the supplement can help those addicted to powerful painkillers.

“Kratom is an herbal supplement and the nice thing about that is, is that it is natural. Obviously, it’s not pharmaceutical. But it does take the edge when they’re trying to get off the opioids,” said Calzadilla.

The supplement is already banned in five states and the DEA has considered putting it in the same class as heroin.

“People have no idea how to measure it. They have no idea what they’re ingesting” said John McDonald, a pharmacist.

But Calzadilla thinks these measures are all about the profits and prescription pill makers running scared.

“It does help with the pain. But it also takes the jitters that they’re gonna be getting when they have the withdrawals,” he said.

Calzadilla claims it’s hard to overdose Kratom. He said people come by his store and thank him for helping them kick opioids.

Follow Peter Bernard on Facebook

WHAT OTHERS ARE CLICKING ON RIGHT NOW:

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Top Videos

HCSO Trailblazer: Cpl Melissa Moore makes history

Thumbnail for the video titled "HCSO Trailblazer: Cpl Melissa Moore makes history"

2 pedestrians killed in collision with semi-truck in Mulberry

Thumbnail for the video titled "2 pedestrians killed in collision with semi-truck in Mulberry"

Tampa Mayor unveils second colorful 'Crosswalks to Classroom'

Thumbnail for the video titled "Tampa Mayor unveils second colorful 'Crosswalks to Classroom'"

Man dead after stabbing in St. Pete; 1 in custody

Thumbnail for the video titled "Man dead after stabbing in St. Pete; 1 in custody"

Police: St. Pete stabbing victim has life-threatening injuries

Thumbnail for the video titled "Police: St. Pete stabbing victim has life-threatening injuries"

Tuesday Morning Forecast

Thumbnail for the video titled "Tuesday Morning Forecast"

20 dogs available for adoption in Tampa Bay following seizure from Louisana house of horrors

Thumbnail for the video titled "20 dogs available for adoption in Tampa Bay following seizure from Louisana house of horrors"

Louisiana dogs in custody at Humane Society of Tampa Bay

Thumbnail for the video titled "Louisiana dogs in custody at Humane Society of Tampa Bay"

You've Got (no) Mail: how change of address fraud can easily steal your identity

Thumbnail for the video titled "You've Got (no) Mail: how change of address fraud can easily steal your identity"

Dog used in attack

Thumbnail for the video titled "Dog used in attack"

Florida Congressmen call for more transparency on Cornoavirius

Thumbnail for the video titled "Florida Congressmen call for more transparency on Cornoavirius"
More Local News

Trending Stories

get the app

News App

Weather App

Don't Miss

More Don't Miss