Kava pills vs drink: What's the Difference? | Botanic Tonics

Kava pills vs drink: What's the Difference? | Botanic Tonics

Reviewed by Erin Berthold

Headaches, dizziness, and jitters leave much to be desired following an energy boost. And while mixed drinks and double-shot espressos can certainly prime the way for good times, kava pills and drinks dominate when it comes to enhancing everyday wellness and vitality. 

Kratom is a clean energy enhancer and kava can ease you into any situation, whether you’re hunkering down for an all-night study session or setting sail on cerulean ocean waves. And it’s all thanks to the plants' active compounds—kavalactones and kratom alkaloids.

That said, kava pills and drinks differ when it comes to serving size, taste, storage, and shelf life.

What Is Kava? 

Kava kava, or kava, is a plant within the pepper family that’s native to the South Pacific islands. Traditional kava use includes consumption during social settings or using it as a type of herbal medicine. Communities in this part of the world also dry and consume the kava root and have infused the extract into tea for centuries. 

In fact, kava extract has a similar effect on the brain as alcohol (sans the hangover). It can help you feel calm, relaxed, and happy. As such, it’s most often used in social gatherings and ceremonies.[1]

The kavalactones in kava can ease feelings of occasional anxiety, too, thanks to its relaxing properties, giving you more brain power to focus on the more important things in life.[2] 

What is Kratom?

Kratom is a plant native to Southeast Asia that like kava has been used for centuries in its native land. But what is kratom used for, exactly? Kratom has been used to increase energy and productivity.

The Bountiful Benefits of Kava 

Feel Free Tonic

Regarding the various kava supplement benefits, kava products are jacks-of-all-trades when it comes to infusing you with a sense of relaxation no matter the situation. Looking to chat the night away at that holiday work party? Kava can give you the lift that makes socializing a breeze.

That said, kava touts a bounty of potential benefits, including:

  • Mood improvement – Kava consumption can elevate your mood, making social gatherings easy and blissful.
  • Energy enhancement – Compared to coffee or energy drinks, kratom can provide a clean, caffeine-free energy boost without crashes or jitters. Although caffeine can increase alertness in a similar way to kava, certain levels of caffeine can raise your adrenaline levels and may trigger feelings of occasional anxiety. Also,kava may promote feelings of relaxation.[3]
  • Social ease – Kava can give you the social lubrication and confidence you need to feel cool, calm, and collected without the head-pounding hangover the following day. 
  • Focus – Staying on task for hours on end can prove difficult, especially if you’ve got sleep on your mind. Fortunately, kratom can enhance productivity and increase focus, and it may soothe occasional day-to-day stress, too.

    What Sets Kava Pills and Drink Apart

    So, kava pills vs drink—is one more effective than the other? In short, no. Botanic Tonics crafts each of our feel free products with a 10:1 ratio of kava and leaf kratom, balancing energy, relaxation, and focus.

    Although you will achieve the same effect with either product, there are some slight differences between a kava drink and a capsule.

    Serving Size 

    Depending on the effect you desire, you can take one or two servings of either feel free tonic or  feel free capsules within a single day.

    Single servings of tonic and capsules look like:

    • feel free tonic – Half a bottle, containing 260 mg of kavalactones
    • feel free capsules – Three capsules, containing 210 mg of kavalactones  

    If you need an extra boost later in the day, you can repeat another single serving size of your preferred kava product. 


    If you’re looking for a tasteless yet tasteful kava consumption method, kava capsules will offer you that flavor-free boost you need. Take one or two servings with a bit of water or a tasty strawberry smoothie.

     Storage and Shelf-Life

    How long does kava last? Both kava drinks and capsules last for 12 months after their bottle or packet’s date of manufacture. Apart from this, there are slight differences in how you can store them:

    • Storing Kava Drinks – Store your kava beverages upright and away from sunlight at a temperature between 65 and 75°F—think pantry or cupboard. However, for the best taste, store them in the fridge. And once you open a kava beverage, store it in the fridge at around 38°F and enjoy it within 48 hours.
    • Storing Kava Capsules – Similarly to drinks, keep your kava capsules in a cool place, under 75°F. Additionally, find a humidity-free spot as they will last longer in a dry climate.

    Which One Is Right for Me? 

    Both forms of kava have their bonuses. Deciding which one is right for you depends on what type of lifestyle you lead and in what situation you’d like the extra boost.

    For When You Have the Travel Bug

    If you have places to be and people to see, opt for a pack of compact and convenient kava capsules. 

    Whereas you’ll want to toss your kava drink into the fridge once you open it and consume it within 48 hours, pill packets offer a bit more longevity upon opening. Are kava capsules effective? Absolutely! They allow you to enjoy kava in its lightest, most portable form—which is definitely worth it if you’re doing any air travel.

    For the Social Butterfly

    feel free tonic

    Consider drinking kava in social settings. While alcohol is popular for its ability to ease you into a social mood, it comes with a price. Mood swings, dulled perception, and lowered inhibitions are just some of the possible short-term effects of alcohol that you definitely didn’t order with your gin and tonic.[4]

    If you’re looking for a social beverage that makes socializing all the easier without fine print, feel free tonics will make bypassing booze a breeze. An added bonus? You can whip up a tray of kava elixir everyone can enjoy.

    For the Sweat Session

    If you’re looking for a plant-based, natural alternative to pre-workouts, energy drinks, and caffeine, both kava drinks and pills can act as your workout buddy. 

    Going to the gym? Have a quick serving of the feel free Tonic before heading out the door. Or, keep a handy pack of capsules in your car or gym bag so that you know you’re always covered.

    Enjoy High-Quality Kava with Botanic Tonics 

    Whichever form you choose to enjoy, you can expect productivity and energy without the jitters, crashes, or hangovers. 

    At Botanic Tonics, we believe in the power of ancient plants. You can put your trust in each of our feel free products that we deliver right to your door.

    Take the first step toward blissful living with our feel free kava tonic and kava capsules.

    shop feel free capsules


    [1] WebMD. What is Kava Kava? https://www.webmd.com/vitamins-and-supplements/what-is-kava-kava 

    [2] Neural Regeneration Research. Neuroprotective properties of kavalactones. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4498339/ 

    [3] San Diego Health. What Are the Negative Effects of Caffeine?  https://sandiegohealth.org/what-are-the-negative-effects-of-caffeine/ 

    [4] American Addiction Centers. Effects of Alcohol on Your Bodyhttps://alcohol.org/effects/

    About The Author

    Erin Berthold Botanic Tonic

    Erin Berthold, PhD

    Erin Berthold is the R&D Director at Botanic Tonics. She holds her PhD in Pharmaceutics from the University of Florida. There she studied the interaction potential between mitragynine and cannabidiol, two compounds from complex natural products. She is passionate about developing creative and alternative options for individuals suffering from substance use disorders.

    Erin earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2011. Prior to going back to obtain her PhD, she worked in manufacturing, quality control, engineering, and quality assurance roles across regulated industry at pharmaceutical, medical device, and dietary supplement companies.

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