The word guaraná comes from the Guaraní word guara-ná, which has its origins in the Sateré-Maué word for the plant, warana, that in Guarani means “fruit like the eyes of the people.” Or “eyes of the gods”
Guaraná plays an important role in Tupi and Guarani culture. According to a myth attributed to the Sateré-Maué tribe, guaraná’s domestication originated with a deity killing a beloved village child. To console the villagers, a more benevolent god plucked the left eye from the child and planted it in the forest, resulting in the wild variety of guaraná. The god then plucked the right eye from the child and planted it in the village, giving rise to domesticated guarana.
The Guaranis make a herbal tea by shelling, washing and drying the seeds, followed by pounding them into a fine powder. The powder is kneaded into a dough and then shaped into cylinders. This product is known as guaraná bread, which is grated and then immersed into hot water along with sugar.
This plant was introduced to European colonizers and to Europe in the 16th century by Felip Betendorf, Oviedo, Hernández, Cobo and other Spaniard chroniclers. By 1958, guaraná was commercialized.
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