For hundreds of years, indigenous South Africans have chewed a plant they say reduces stress, relieves hunger, sedates and elevates moods. Now they have a license to study and market it, and plan to sell it over-the-counter worldwide. Researchers say the plant, called sceletium tortuosum, has great potential and could also help boost the local economy. Still, the American pharmaceutical company working on the project says it doesn’t know whether the plant has been approved by U.S. regulators or how soon it may be available to consumers.
I can’t think of a single person who knows me who thinks my Kierkegaardian moodiness doesn’t need some elevating and my stress reducing. So as soon as they market this stuff, sign me up. It looks disgusting, but I hope it tastes like licorice tea.
The plant – known within South Africa as Kanna, Channa or Kougoed – has been used by the San people to reduce hunger, thirst and fatigue and is said to have sedative, hypnotic and mood-elevating effects. It is commonly chewed, but also can be made into tea or smoked.
I’ll take mine in tea please.
Ben-Erik Van Wyk, a professor of botany and plant biotechnology at the University of Johannesburg, said he’s extensively researched the plant and found no ill effects or evidence of dependency.
Sounds like a winner. Especially since an elevated mood and reduced stress will certainly be useful in my apparently one man war on atheism (takin’ it to ya, atheists, ain’t sittin’ back and takin’ it no more!)