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The Natural Herb for Connection: Kanna

Published On: 10 December 20231.1 min read

Most of us are familiar, either from personal experience or the grapevine, with party drugs. Synthetic drugs like MDMA are known for their euphoric effects, whether used in a controlled space for therapeutic purposes or for straight rolling at a music festival—we aren’t condoning the latter, but we know it happens. Word on the herbalist’s street is that we can biohack our way to euphoria with totally natural and botanical SSRIs, namely a plant known as kanna.

Because that’s a hard pill to swallow (the effects of rage rolling, from a safe and natural herb?), we ran it by Rachelle Robinett, herbalist, natural health advocate, and founder of Pharmakon Supernatural, as well as Stephanie Wang, founder of KA! Empathogenics, a kanna herbal company. Both gave us all the deets about this small succulent plant native to South Africa.

First of all, the whole plant and especially the leaves are used as medicine by the San and Khoikhoi tribes, Robinett tells us. She credits a combination of factors for kanna’s quickly trending status: “The popularization of the term ‘empathogen’ by the psychedelic community; kanna’s seemingly similar, albeit milder effects and growing enthusiasm from people in general for functional plants (led also by cannabis, adaptogens, and mushrooms).”

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