The two traditional Mazatec methods are quite inefficient in that they require many more leaves than do the other methods, but they are very safe! Traditionally the leaves are taken in a semi-darkened place as part of a healing or religious ceremony. At least one person is present to watch over the people who have taken Salvia. A water-based drink made from ground-up fresh leaves is another one of the traditional Mazatec ways of using this herb. This requires a lot of leaves and tastes somewhat unpleasant, so this method is seldom used by non-Mazatecs. Salvinorin is very poorly absorbed in the stomach so it requires enormous amounts of leaves to make the drink effective. But it does work, and experiences from the drink last longer than from any other method. Chewing and swallowing a large number of fresh leaves is the other Mazatec method. When this is done the leaves are nibbled slowly for about 1/2 hour. Although the chewed-up leaves are swallowed, most of the effect is due to salvinorin that is absorbed through the tissues of the mouth during the chewing. This is a less efficient way of chewing Salvia than the quid method (see below). Most people find chewing and swallowing fresh leaves to be unpleasantly bitter, and for some it causes gagging.
MODERN METHOD – THE QUID METHOD
A ball or cylinder of rolled-up leaves is made. This is called a quid. It is chewed slowly–about one chew every 10 seconds, and the ball is kept under the tongue between chews. The quid and the juice that forms need to be held in the mouth for 30 minutes. The trick is holding it in the mouth without spitting or swallowing. Then, after the 30-minute chewing time is over, the quid is spit out. Quids could be made from either fresh leaves or dried leaves. Those made from dry leaves are said to be less bitter. To make a quid from dried leaves, one could simply weigh out 2-8 grams of dried leaves. If no scale was available, one would count out 8 to 28 large whole dried leaves instead. The leaves would be placed in a small bowl of cool water for 10 minutes. Once the leaves were soaked for about 10 minutes, they would be removed from the water, and the excess water would be squeezed from them. This wet mass would be rolled into a ball called a quid. It has been reported that the quid has been sweetened with sugar, honey, Stevia extract or an artificial sweetener like Equal®. This would make it less bitter and more pleasant to chew. If fresh leaves were used instead of dry ones, 8 to 28 large fresh leaves would be required.
The effect of Salvia quids could probably be increased by first treating the mouth in a special way to increase its ability to absorb salvinorin. To do this, one would need a toothbrush and an alcohol/menthol containing mouthwash such as Cool Mint Listerine®, (or any other brand that contains alcohol and menthol). The lining of the mouth would be gently brushed, including the tissue under the tongue, and the top surface of the tongue. This would remove the layers of dead cells normally present. Then, one would rinse with the mouthwash for at least 30 seconds. The mouthwash would be spit out and rinsed once with water.
Reportedly, one experiences very little in the first 12 to 15 minutes of chewing, with full effects are usually being felt by 30 minutes (the time the quid would be spit out). Effects stay at that level for 20 minutes or more and then start to decrease. The whole experience is said to seldom last much longer than an hour.
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