A medicinal herb called Kanna 1

How To Use Kanna For Improving Focus And Concentration?

Ethnobotanical in nature, Kanna is a traditional South African herb that has been used for centuries to enhance mood, relieve stress, and improve cognitive function. Modern research supports these traditional uses, showing that kanna can indeed help improve focus and concentration. Here’s how to use this remarkable herb to enhance your mental clarity and productivity.

Kanna leaves made as traditional medicinal herbs

Understanding Kanna

Kanna, scientifically known as Sceletium tortuosum, contains alkaloids that interact with the brain's serotonin system. This interaction can lead to increased levels of serotonin, which helps regulate mood, anxiety, and cognitive functions. Unlike synthetic stimulants, kanna offers a natural way to boost mental performance without the risk of addiction or severe side effects.

Chemical Composition of Kanna

Kanna (Sceletium tortuosum) contains several active alkaloids, including mesembrine, mesembrenone, mesembrenol, and tortuosamine. These compounds interact with the brain’s receptors to produce various mental and physical benefits. Mesembrine, for instance, is known for its mood-enhancing properties, while mesembrenone has anxiolytic (anxiety-reducing) effects.

How Does Kanna Work?

Kanna works primarily by inhibiting the reuptake of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that plays a key role in mood regulation. By preventing serotonin from being reabsorbed too quickly, Kanna helps maintain higher levels of this "feel-good" chemical in the brain. This results in a lifted mood, increased energy, and improved cognitive abilities.

Lifted Mood and Energy: Kanna's ability to elevate mood and energy levels makes it an excellent choice for those seeking to improve focus. When your mood is elevated, you're more likely to feel motivated and energized, which can significantly enhance your concentration.

Heightened Cognitive Ability and Better Sleep: Regular use of Kanna has been associated with improved cognitive functions, such as better memory and quicker information processing. Additionally, Kanna can help regulate sleep patterns, ensuring you get restful sleep, which is crucial for maintaining focus during the day.

Intimacy, Connection, and More: Beyond its cognitive benefits, Kanna also enhances social interactions by reducing social anxiety and increasing feelings of empathy and connection. This can lead to more meaningful relationships and a more positive overall outlook on life.

Different ways of consuming Medicinal herb Kanna

Methods of Consumption

There are several ways to consume kanna, each offering different benefits and levels of effectiveness:

  1. Chewing: One of the traditional methods is to chew the dried leaves. This method allows the alkaloids to be absorbed directly into the bloodstream through the mucous membranes in the mouth, providing a quick and efficient boost to concentration.
  2. Tea: Brewing kanna leaves into a tea is another popular method. This approach is gentle on the stomach and provides a steady release of the herb’s beneficial compounds. Drinking kanna tea can be a relaxing ritual that helps prepare your mind for focused work.
  3. Capsules: For those who prefer a more convenient option, kanna is available in capsule form. This method ensures precise dosing and is perfect for incorporating into a daily supplement routine. Capsules are particularly useful for individuals who need a reliable way to maintain focus throughout the day.
  4. Tinctures: Kanna tinctures offer a potent and fast-acting option. A few drops under the tongue can quickly enhance mental clarity and concentration, making tinctures ideal for those who need immediate effects.

Dosage and Safety

When starting with kanna, it's important to begin with a low dose to assess your tolerance. Typical doses range from 50 to 200 mg of the extract. For dried leaves, starting with 100 mg is generally safe. Gradually increase the dosage until you find the amount that works best for you. It's advisable to consult with a healthcare provider before adding kanna to your routine, especially if you are taking other medications.

A man starting to feel the relaxing effect after taking kanna tinctures

How Long Does It Take to Effect?

The onset of Kanna's effects can vary depending on the methods of consumption. Here’s a breakdown of the different methods:

Sublingual Tincture: When taken as a sublingual tincture (placed under the tongue), Kanna can start working within 5 to 15 minutes. This method is fast-acting and allows for precise dosage control.

Chews: Kanna chews, or gummies, are another popular method. Chewing Kanna releases the active compounds slowly, providing a steady and prolonged effect. You can expect to feel the effects within 30 minutes to an hour.

Insufflation of Powder: Insufflating (snorting) Kanna powder results in a rapid onset of effects, typically within a few minutes. This method delivers the active compounds directly to the bloodstream via the nasal mucosa, providing quick relief and enhanced focus.

Smoking: Smoking Kanna is another fast-acting method, with effects felt almost immediately. However, smoking may not be suitable for everyone, especially those with respiratory conditions.

Oral Ingestion: Consuming Kanna orally, whether in capsule form or mixed into food and beverages, provides a slower onset of effects, usually taking about 1 to 2 hours to manifest, but offers a longer-lasting impact on focus and concentration.

Combining Kanna with Other Supplements

Kanna can be combined with other nootropic supplements to enhance its effects. For example, pairing kanna with caffeine can provide a balanced boost to both energy and focus. Additionally, combining kanna with L-theanine, an amino acid found in green tea, can help smooth out the stimulating effects and promote a calm, focused state.

Lifestyle Considerations

While kanna can significantly enhance focus and concentration, it's important to support its effects with healthy lifestyle choices. Ensure you get adequate sleep, maintain a balanced diet, and engage in regular physical activity. Mindfulness practices such as meditation and deep breathing exercises can also complement the cognitive benefits of kanna.


Kanna is a powerful, natural herb that can significantly improve focus and concentration through its unique interaction with the brain's serotonin system. By understanding how kanna works and the best methods of consumption, you can effectively incorporate it into your daily routine to enhance mental clarity and productivity. Whether you choose to chew, brew, or take it in capsule form, kanna offers a versatile and safe way to boost cognitive function. Remember to start with a low dose and gradually increase it to find your optimal level. Complementing kanna use with healthy lifestyle choices will maximize its benefits, helping you achieve better focus and overall well-being.


Is Kanna safe for daily use?

Yes, kanna is generally safe for daily use when taken in recommended doses. However, it's advisable to start with a low dose to assess your tolerance and consult with a healthcare provider if you have any underlying health conditions.

Can I use Kanna with other medications?

If you are taking other medications, especially those affecting serotonin levels, consult with a healthcare provider before using kanna to avoid any potential interactions.

What is the best method to consume Kanna for quick effects?

Sublingual tinctures and insufflation (snorting) are the fastest methods, providing effects within minutes. These methods allow kanna to enter the bloodstream quickly, offering rapid enhancement of focus and mood.

Are there any side effects associated with Kanna?

Some users may experience mild side effects such as nausea, dizziness, or headaches. These are typically temporary and subside with regular use. Starting with a low dose can help minimize these effects.

Where can I purchase high-quality Kanna?

High-quality kanna can be purchased from reputable online ethnobotanical stores and specialty health shops. Ensure the source is reliable and offers third-party lab testing for purity and potency.

Back to blog