Health Benefits & Uses Of Valerian Root
Health Benefits & Uses Of Valerian Root

With the evolution of conventional methods of treatment, we have started relying too much on chemicals rather than the natural options.

But, the demand of time emphasises on the dependency on herbs to purify our blood, mind, and soul! Herbs are an exquisite replacement for the chemically imbalanced bodies.

They play a major role for decades to heal diseases.

Herbs strengthen the immune system, lowers blood sugar, prevent from various types of diseases and cancer as well. Even scientists have finally proved that these effectively cure diseases.

Valerian root is one of these herbs. If you are looking for a herb which can cure all your mental as well as physical problems then, this article has utterly been written for you. Let’s take a look upon valerian root and its health benefits.

Valerian Root:

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Valerian is a flowering plant, with a head of sweetly scented white or pink flowers. These flowers generally bloom in summer. The root of valerian is dried and used as an herbal remedy.

The root of Valerian is dried and used as an herbal remedy.

Valerian Root contains Volatile oils. These oils are responsible in calming the central nervous system of a body.

The medicines are made from it as well. Valerian flower extracts were used as a perfume in the 16th century. The scientific name of valerian root is Valeriana Officinalis.

Valerian Root Origin:

Valerian Root is derived from Valerian, a perennial flowering plant from the Valerianaceae family. It is native to Europe and Asia but now grows in North America as well.

The name of valerian root is derived from the Latin verb “Valere” (to be strong, healthy). It has been used as a medical herb since the ancient time of Greece and Rome.

Health Benefits Of Valerian Root:

1. Stress Management:

Stress is a major cause of all health problems on our body. It is the nuisance of every problem. It gives birth to every disease.

Everyone finds ways to make their lives stress free, some even take medicines for it. But these medicines do nothing, only slower down your brain.

Exercise can help in managing the daily stress. But, if you don’t have time for exercise and you don’t want to take any antibiotic to manage stress then here is the solution- VALERIAN ROOT.

It is a natural way that helps you to deal with the stress.

Valerian root improves GABA (gamma-amino butyric acid) level in the brain. It relaxes both mind and the body. Valerian root helps in fighting with depression as well.

2. Sleep Disorders (Insomnia):

Sleep disorder which is also known as insomnia is very common in people due to stressed lives.

Many people use antibiotics to treat it, no doubt these antibiotics help you to fall asleep, but on another hand, the side effects of these antibiotics have also been considered.

But, don’t get tensed, we have the most commonly used herb ‘valerian root’.

Valerian root is generally used for insomnia. It helps you to fall asleep.

The extract of Valerian Root has a sedative effect, so it helps to have a sound sleep. Sedation effect can increase your brain’s inhibitory neurotransmitter level, which ultimately promotes sleep.

Medical Marijuana plant also helps in sleep disorders.

3. Anxiety Problem:

Some people are oversensitive or emotional. When they suffer from stress, their body gets anxious. Their anxiety causes them to shiver or loose motions.

This anxiety problem decreases the GABA (gamma-amino butyric acid) in the brain, which can also lead to mental problems.

Valerian root helps in increasing the GABA level in the brain, which regulates the nerve cells and calms anxiety.

Valerian Root is a herb, it has no side effects like antibiotic drugs, but it does the same job like an antibiotic, without giving you any side effect.

4. Menstrual Cramps:

Every second woman suffers from menstrual cramps. Valerian root is god’s gift to every woman, to get rid of this unbearable pain.

The natural solution prepared from the roots helps in relaxing the muscles. It aids in calming the uterine muscles which cause the pain during mensuration period. There are other yoga poses that give you relief in menstrual cramps.

5. Healthy Heart:

Heart Health is very important for our body.

Poor heart health can increase the pressure of blood, which can lead to heart stroke.

Valerian root helps in keeping your heart healthy. It calms the mind and lowers blood pressure.

GABA helps in regulating the blood pressure as well.

6. Digestive Problems:

Valerian root is used to cure the problems of the stomach and poor digestion which is the common problem faced by many. Poor digestion can cause diarrhoea, bloating, colic and many more problems.

But, this herb gives one solution for all these problems. It is easily available in the supplement form.

Please note you are advised to consult  a doctor before taking it.

7. Migraine:

Though there is no research about the healing properties of valerian root on migraine. But, some experts say that, as it has the sedative properties to calm down the anxiety, stress and blood pressure, so, it can work on migraine as well.

Being a good supplement for your health, it would certainly relax you , so give it a try.

8. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD):

OCD is a very common condition, characterized by the need to check the things again and again.

This disorder sounds not a big one, but it can have an impact on your daily routine.

Nowadays, herbal remedies are safer options for treatment, than pharmaceutical medication. A study has found that valerian root had some effects that can treat such disorders.

How To Use Valerian Root:

Valerian Root can be used as a supplement which is easily available in the medical stores.

It is sold in the form of oils, dry powder, fluid extract, and tea.

The roots of the valerian are dried first and powdered to form tablets and capsules.

There is no difference between valerian capsule and tea, as long as ingredients are the same per dose.

It may take a few weeks to show its effects on your body.

For Insomnia, it may take one to two hours before bed. The valeric acid is responsible for its sedative actions

The intake of dosage is as follows:

  • Dry powdered extract: 250 to 600 milligrams
  • Tea: boil one cup of water, use 1 teaspoon (2-3 grams) of dried root
  • Fluid Extract: ½ to 1 teaspoon
  • Capsules: 200 milligrams, 3-4 times a day

It should be taken for two to three weeks for its best results. But, you should consult a doctor before taking it. The excess taking of it can produce side effects of it.

Side Effects And Caution Of Valerian Root:

As there are pros and cons of everything. Valerian root has also some minor side effects. These meager side effects of valerian root can be ignored if you want to get rid of major problems that you suffer.

Side effects of valerian root include

  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Gastrointestinal problems.

Some people who have used valerian root over a very long period; don’t feel any side effect of it.

But, it happens with some, who have just started taking it. If you want to stop taking valerian root, then you should stop it gradually rather than stopping all at once.

Precautions While Taking Valerian Root

If you take some precautions before taking valerian root then its side effects can be reduced.

  • The herb may increase the effect of other sleeping aids. Hence, you should not combine it with other sleeping aids and as well as depressants, such as alcohol and narcotics because it can increase the sedative effects of depressants.
  • You should not take valerian root before driving and after alcohol because it promotes sleep.
  • You should also not mix it with other herbal supplements like California poppy, catnip, kava, Gotu kola, Jamaican dogwood, St. John’s wort, yerba mansa and others.
  • It is necessary for pregnant ladies to speak to a doctor before taking it. Others can take it in doses as mentioned above but if you have chronic health issues then, you must consult your doctor.

Valerian root is a natural way to deal with some common problems; it offers relief for these common problems like:

  • Menstrual cramps
  • Stress
  • Nervousness
  • High blood pressure
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia

So, try the herb out.

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Dr.M.Gopi Krishna is a renowned professor in the dept. of Rasa Shastra and Bhaishajya kalpana at Sri Jagadguru Gavisiddheshwara Ayurvedic Medical College & Post Graduate Research Center.He has personally made around 250 Ayurvedic preparations and self dispense in his own clinic for his patients.