Seductive and Hypnotic
Valerian root has been used for centuries in Europe and Asia as a sedative/hypnotic agent. However, there are many other purported uses for this plant; however, most of these do not have any scientifically proven merit.
The liquid extract (click image to the right to view more information) ingests faster, but some say there is a bitter taste. However, to combat this, you can mix a bit into a strong-tasting herbal tea, like Celestial Seasonings Holiday Tea Gingerbread Spice Herb Tea, or even a hot toddy or hot chocolate bedtime beverage. A similar comment from many goes as follows: I sleep a nice, peaceful night's sleep and have never woken up with a 'drugged' feeling using valerian".
Valerian Root is a good short-term sedative that works quickly, offering a healthy, nontoxic alternative to prescription drugs. It is claimed that Valerian root decreases the time it takes for a person to fall asleep and that it also improves sleep quality. Two-thirds of American women complain of frequent sleep problems; this herb may be just what many need.
Studies show that valerian helps to bring on sleep with no side effects, plus it is NOT addictive. If you try valerian for sleep problems, be sure you do not take it with other sedatives like muscle relaxants or antihistamines.
For insomnia, valerian works best when taken right at bedtime to help induce sleep quickly.
Valerian root has a distinctive unpleasant odor which is only present in the dried form. The fresh root has no odor. In the drying process, components in the root hydrolyze to form isovaleric acid. It is this compound that causes the offensive odor. This odor is said to be attractive to rats.
In the United States, valerian is sold as a dietary supplement, and dietary supplements are regulated as foods, not drugs. Therefore, premarket evaluation and approval by the Food and Drug Administration are not required unless claims are made for specific disease prevention or treatment.
Because dietary supplements are not always tested for manufacturing consistency, the composition may vary considerably between manufacturing lots.
Valerian Root is helpful as a sleeping aid for those with insomnia and other mild sleep disorders. Used as a stress reducer and anxiety relief.
According to legend, the Pied Piper used Valerian root to lure rats from the village of Hamlin.
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