Sceletium Tortuosum, also known as Kanna, is a succulent herb indigenous to South Africa. It was used by the two inhabitant tribes in the area, the Khoi-Khoi and the San to cope with stressful situations, to relieve thirst and hunger, and to combat fatigue and for social and spiritual purposes.

Some accounts state that small doses of the herb mixed with a teaspoon of breast milk have been used in rural areas of Southern Africa as a remedy for children battling cholic – interestingly enough, this practice still takes place in these rural areas to this very day!

Although the plant was chewed fresh at times, it was also dried and used to make tinctures (medicines) and teas. Some less common methods of consuming Kanna included smoking or inhaling as snuff, usually alongside a host of other herbs. The age old herb was also highly valuable in ancient cultures as it was used as a form of currency in bartering communities.

About Kanna
Use kanna for mood enhancement

Kanna as mood enhancement

There is no better natural mood enhancer than Sceletium. It’s more effective than commonly used botanicals such as St. John’s Wort, Rhodiola, Ginkgo Biloba, Mucuna, Valerian, Gotu Kola, Kava, Passiflora and L-Theanine etc; and while all are usable, not all have the directness and reliability of action that Sceletium does. Sceletium greatly enhances serotonin function (more than any other herb known) and does so more effectively than L-Tryptophan, 5-HTP and Griffonia (without causing the drowsiness that is often associated with these serotonin precursors). Sceletium is primarily an SRA (Serotonin Releasing Agent) and a safer and more natural approach than using synthetic SSRI (Selective Serotonin Re-Uptake Inhibitor) drugs for dealing with depressive feelings.

Kanna for Anti-Anxiety

Sceletium is the model anxiolytic (anti-anxiety agent). Anxiety has multiple causes, but a central theme among them is a racing hyperactivity of the mind and a consequential hyperactivity of the autonomic nervous system. Sceletium works directly, in an adaptogenic way, to mediate the pace of the mind, slowing a racing mind and bringing a calm centeredness to the being.

Use kanna for anti-anxiety
Using kanna for stress reduction

Kanna for Stress Reduction

Few are exempt from the information overload, complexity, time scarcity and the multi-tasking of modern life. Managing stress is the key to not only surviving, but thriving in today’s world. Sceletium allows us to take a breath and see the world from a more spacious vantage point, and convert situations from “stressful” to exciting and inspiring.

Kanna for cognitive enhancement and neuro-protection

A calm mind is an intelligent mind. When we are relaxed, creativity springs freely and unbidden, memory performs as needed and overall cognition is improved. Mesembrenone (an alkaloid found in Kanna) is a PDE4 Inhibitor, which is known to have strongly precognitive and neuro-protective effects.

Kanna for cognitive enhancement and neuro-protection
Use kanna for intimacy enhancement

Kanna for intimacy enhancement

Sceletium, especially when used in a single high dose, opens the heart, dissolves emotional armouring, and removes relational fear. With the natural human trust opened and expanded in this state, there’s opportunity for a profound deepening of love, communication and intimacy between lovers.

Kanna for a pro-sexual Aphrodisiac

Sceletium has a profound and authentic aphrodisiac and pro-sexual effect; one based on emotional responsiveness rather than mere physically generated changes in the body. Bodily relaxation is deepened, tactile sensitivity is enhanced and mend find that they can last longer. Recent research also suggest that △7-mesembrenone, another key Sceletium alkaloid, may function as a mild PDE5 Inhibitor thereby enhancing and strengthening erection and enhancing blood flow in the pelvic area for men and women. The deep physical-emotional opening effect of Sceletium has the power to transform sexual conditions, allowing full sexual function and expression.

Use Kanna for a pro sexual aphrodisiac
Kanna to stop smoking

Kanna for stopping smoking

Significant benefits for those who wish to stop smoking come from Sceletium. Apart from reducing the severity of nicotine withdrawal, it also greatly alleviates the craving and desire to smoke. The greatest challenge that smokers attest to when giving up, is the tendency to compulsively and obsessively thing about smoking. As one of Sceletium’s central effects is to mediate the obsessive tendency of the mind, it’s been found to make a crucial difference to successfully relinquish the habit.

Kanna for deep sleep

Due to increasing melatonin levels as a consequence of enhanced serotonin function (melatonin is a serotonin metabolite), Kanna greatly supports falling asleep and remaining asleep. Reports indicate enhanced sleep quality, better morning function and a decrease in muscle cramps and night sweats.

Use Kanna for deep sleep
Using kanna with Yoga and Body Work

Kanna, Yoga and body work

For those involved in yoga, the herb is extremely useful: due it its combined actions of relaxing and releasing the fascia, as well as allowing a more body-centred awareness. Breathing is also enhanced, inviting a deeper pranayama practice. Likewise, it’s an excellent aid to various bodywork therapies, including massage, deep tissue work and fascia release therapies such as Rolfing or Structural Integration.

Read more about Kanna on WikiPedia.