Genus: Mesembryanthemum (Sceletium)
Species: S. Tortuosum
Common names: Channa, Kanna, Kougoed
Sceletium, Channa or better known in Afrikaans as Kougoed (meaning: something to chew) ais a succulent herb commonly found in South Africa. The plant has been used for it's mood altering properties from pre-historic times. Van Riebeeck's written account of Sceletium is the very first found of the journals for the use of Sceletium. Back then it was just chewed, smoked or even been used as a snuff, but in the modern time it has been capsulated, made into teas and also tinctures. To whean alcoholics from alcohol, a special tea had been brewed and given to the person.
Sceletium, which has also been given the name "Nature's Prozac" are well-known to elevate mood and decrease anxiety, stress and tension. It can cause euphoria and also sedation depending on the dosage of the plant. There has been reports of increased personal insight and interpersonal ease when taking sceletium. One of the five known psychoactive compounds found in Sceletium is Mesembrine.
In addition to Sceletium's common use for the stress and mental fatigue of modern industrial living, Sceletium has been used as a natural supplement in:
* uplifts the mood
* decrease anxiety, stress and tension
* gives you energy
Sceletium has a long history in South Africa and dates back to 1662 when it was also used as a bartering currency. The alkaloids contained in S. tortuosum believed to possess psychoactivity include: mesembrine, mesembrenone, mesembrenol and tortuosamine. Mesembrine is a major alkaloid present in Sceletium tortuosum, which has been shown to be a potent serotonin reuptake inhibitor, and a PDE4-inhibitor.
Chemistry and Pharmacology
The mood-elevating action of sceletium is caused by a number of alkaloids including mesembrine, mesembrenol and tortuosamine which interact with the brain's dopamine and serotonin receptors. Mesembrine is a major alkaloid present in Sceletium. Mesembrine has been demonstrated to be a potent serotonin-uptake inhibitor.
Benefits and Uses
For the paste couple of years, tablets and capsules of Sceletium are being used successfully by a number of psychiatrists, psychologists and doctors. They have reported successful and excellent results for anxiety states and mild to moderate depression, and they can also be used by the lay public as supplements to elevate mood and for stress and tension.
Sceletium, in formulation combined with other well-known herbs has been proven safe to use and with very effective results. Sceletium is used to rebalance the brain and nervous system.