Kanna Coarse – Sceletium Tortuosum
Kanna Coarse known scientifically as Sceltium tortuosum is directly sent to us from a South African farm dedicated to growing Kanna and similar products. Traditionally Kanna is used as a liquid, chewed or consumed as a tea. The major alkaloids found in Kanna are Aptenia and Mesembrine.
S. tortuosum contains about 1–1.5% total alkaloids. The alkaloids contained in S. tortuosum believed to possess psychoactivity include mesembrine, mesembrenone, mesembrenol and tortuosamine. Mesembrine is a major alkaloid present in S. tortuosum. There is about 0.3% mesembrine in the leaves and 0.86% in the leaves, stems, and flowers of the plant.
Traditional and contemporary methods of preparation serve to reduce levels of potentially harmful oxalates found in S. tortuosum. An analysis indicated levels of 3.6-5.1% oxalate, which falls within the median range for crop plants, just like spinach or kale. It is speculated that physical crushing of the plant and the fermentation process reduce the potentially harmful effects of oxalic acid. In particular, free oxalic acid is likely to complex with cell wall-associated calcium salts and precipitate as calcium oxalate when plant material is crushed.
Kanna is believed to act as a Selective Serotonin Re-uptake (SSRI). In combination with common psychiatric medications including other SSRIs (such as Prozac) and MAO Inhibitors, it may cause injury if ingested.
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