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.