Chewing qat is in Yemen extremely popular and not only done in leisure time, but also when working. Qat is in our Western countries considered as a drug and prohibited.
Used for chewing are the fresh leaves of the shrub. they are chewed but not swallowed. The chewed leaves are placed in the cheek pouch and let there for several hours. , The psychoactive ingredients are thus absorbed by the mucous membrane.
Qat has a slightly bitter taste and makes thirsty. Therefore you will always see, that it is accompanied with fresh pure water to rinse the mouth and refresh the body
PHOTO COURTESY OF: Dr. Olga Engelhardt