In South Africa, dual healthcare systems, including traditional medical healthcare and the western medical healthcare system, are practiced. Almost 80% of the population worldwide also adopt the conventional healthcare system provided its affordable, personalized, and safe alternative to the modern healthcare clinical system, which is costly.
In this traditional practice, Kanna leaf is used as one of the very distinctive medications. They use the leaf in various ways, like chewing, crushing it in powder form, and smoking it. The most asked question about the Kanna leaf is, Can you smoke its leaf? The answer is, Yes, you can.
Kanna, sceletium tortuosum, is a herb native to South Africa. Since prehistoric times, the plant has been used commonly among the locals as a mood-altering substance. They used to ingest the herb by chewing, drying, sniffing, snorting, brewing into tea, and smoking. Kanna contains alkaloids that function the same way as serotonin does. So we can say that it’s an intense mood-altering and elevating substance.
Getting the correct dose of Kanna is essential to experience the euphoric state of mind; otherwise, it can be detrimental to health. Only healthcare experts and medics can prescribe a fixed dosage according to every person’s BMI and mental health status. Still, the dosage of Kanna depends upon the method of intake. If you smoke Kanna leaf, the dose should be between 100-250mg.
Similarly, if you are chewing and using Kanna sublingually, the dose should be 200-400mg because it takes more alkaloids to show results if you consume without burning.
Benefits Of Smoking Kanna Leaf
Traditionally, people in South Africa used Kanna to relieve anxiety, stress, burnout, fatigue, quench their thirst, and for healing and spiritual purposes. Today, Kanna leaf use has increased tenfold in this region, and people prefer smoking its leaves.
On the other hand, European colonials used to consume it as tinctures, soaking the leaves in alcohol and vinegar and then making the tincture out of it. They have also started to prefer smoking Kanna leaves due to their efficient mood-boosting properties.
Outside Europe and South Africa, Kanna leaf has begun to attract attention due to its benefits and limited side effects. The reported benefits of Smoking Kanna leaf are:
Smoking Kanna leaf relieves anxiety
Smoking Kanna leaf helps to ease anxiety and stress. Studies have shown its effects on the amygdala where Kanna extract has been given to the rats, and it showed positive results in managing their emergency situation. Another study showed the effects of Kanna reduced anxiety-related amygdala activity.
Smoking Kanna leaf helps ease the pain
Kanna Leaves are rolled and smoked to ease the physical pain. This is thought to be one of the top benefits of smoking Kanna leaf. Research shows a pain-relieving effect in rats with the controlled Kanna dose. It has also demonstrated similar results in humans, provided the amount is given according to the person’s BMI.
Smoking Kanna helps combat depression
Kanna leaf claims to boost the mood and alleviate a few of the symptoms of depression. Again, studies have shown its Antidepressant properties after experimenting. Concerning that, Smoking the Kanna leaf has also helped improve brain function. Studies have shown that it increases cognitive function and boosts memory. Another experimental trial on humans demonstrated improved executive function, mood, and sleep.
Different Ways To Consume And Smoke Kanna Leaf
Now that you are fully aware of the benefits and uses of consuming Kanna leaves. There are many ways to consume Kanna herb like;
- Chewing the processed Kanna leaves
- Brewing and making the herbal tea out of it
- Using it into the powder form
- Make tincture using alcohol, vinegar, and other solutions.
- Smoking the leaves.
For smoking, there are simple methods by which one can smoke Kanna leaves:
Smoking Kanna leaves in combination with Cannabis
It can be smoked alone and also in combination. The smoking Kanna mixture till today is Cannabis and Kanna powder of leaves. As you know that Kanna is a mild psychoactive agent, and Cannabis is also known to cause tranquillity effects, so using Kanna and Cannabis mixture is not a coincidence. With Cannabis, Kanna nullifies the adverse effects that smoking Kanna alone can cause while enhancing the mood and giving joy.
Smoking Kanna in vape
Kanna leaves are also smoked after filling Kanna in vapes. These vapes are specifically designed to burn and smoke Kanna in them. They are safe to use if the controlled dose of Kanna is used. It’s best to start with about 50 mg of Kanna dose. Its results are as quick as smoking it. It takes about half an hour to reach the high or maximum buzz, and effects last longer. After that, the effect starts to dwindle gradually.
Smoking Kanna with a mixture of weed
Kanna and weed are smoked together. There are two reasons for mixing these up. Kanna leaves do not burn alone very well, and the second is that the alkaloids are sensitive to heat. Burning Kanna leaves alone to smoke might not cause the strong effects as the mixture can do.
Risks Of Smoking Kanna
Now that you know the benefits of smoking Kanna leaf and how to smoke it, you should also know its typical side effects.
Anything you smoke, there is a danger associated with it, either short-termed or in the long run.
There are a few reported side effects in regular Kanna users, like:
- It may cause Nausea in first-time users
- May cause coughs in people who are not used to smoking.
- Can cause potentially dangerous drug interactions
- It causes appetite loss which is not healthy for skinny people
kana has not been widely studied yet, so we are unsure about its exact results for every consumer. There is not much research and evidence about its long and short-term effects. Also, there is no formal recommended dose of Kanna, and this is why we can not say that it is effective and 100% safe to use without any long-term side effects.
Moreover, it has been seen that if a substance gives short-term pleasure, there are also many long-term risks associated with it, which can not be ignored in the case of smoking Kanna.
For safety purposes, one should start using Kanna with a low dose and increase it gradually. There are a few conditions in which one should avoid smoking it, like;
- Pregnant women and lactating mothers should avoid using it
- People who are already using SSRIs.
- People who have chronic illnesses
- People who are losing a noticeable weight because Kanna is reported as an appetite suppressant.
In short, you can say that you can smoke Kanna leaf alone by mixing it with other substances. There is a range of controlled doses to consume Kanna leaf in any form according to the person’s BMI. So yes, Kanna leaves can be smoked by taking precautions.