Valerian (Valeriana officinalis)Powder, 50 g
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History of Valerian
Valeriana Officinalis, or Valerian, is a flowering plant native to Europe and Asia. However, it has been naturalized in North America for a long time now. In summer, a mature Valerian plant bears sweet-scented pink or white flowers that attract many fly species. Since ancient Greek and Roman times, Herbalists have been prescribing Valerian root to humans as a mild sedative and tranquilizer. Greek physician, Hippocrates first described Valerian root’s therapeutic effects.
The pungent odor of dried Valerian roots attracts rats and cats alike. It acts as a stimulant for cats and can be used instead of Catnip. There is a version of the old German folktale of the pied piper (the man who led the plague-infested rats out of the village of Hamelin with his magical pipe) in which the pied piper filled his pockets with Valerian root to draw the rats out of the Village. Although it is just a story, there is some truth to it. For centuries, rat exterminators in Europe and Asia have been using Valerian root as bait for rats.
Native Americans in parts of Canada used Valerian root as an antiseptic for wounds and it was prescribed to soldiers in World War I and II for shell shock and nervous disorder.
Effects of Valerian
When taken orally, Valerian has a relaxing and calming effect and can help;
- Induce calm
- Improve mood
Valerian Uses and Dosage
A dose of 300 to 600mg of Valerian root can be taken 30 minutes to 2 hours before bedtime.
To make Valerian tea soak 2-3 grams of Valerian root in a cup of hot water for 10 to 15 minutes.
Valerian can also be added to bathwater to help with restlessness.
Valerian acts as a cat stimulant and can be used in place of Catnip.
It is advised not to take Valerian for longer than a month, continuously. It is best to avoid mixing Valerian with alcohol, prescription sedatives, and anti-depressants. It is not advised to use Valerian during pregnancy, breastfeeding, and in children. Valerian slows down the central nervous system, similar to the effects of Anesthesia and other medications used during surgery. It is advised to stop taking medication at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery. Valerian causes drowsiness. Avoid driving or using heavy machinery after taking it.