Kava Kava


Parts used - the root


Common Uses

  • Relieves Anxiety, Tension, and Restlessness

How Kava Kava Works

Kava Kava has a relaxing effect on the central nervous system. This in turn reduces anxiety and relaxes muscles.;
Unlike other remedies, Kava Kava does not dull mental alertness, in fact it appears to do the opposite. This makes it of particular use for the relief of anxiety during the day. It also aids normal restful sleep

Side Effects

The only reported side effect at standard doses is a mild stomach upset.
Long term use can cause a temporary yellowing of the skin, if this occurs, stop taking Kava.
An allergic skin rash can also occur in rare cases.
At very high doses – several grams a day – a skin rash and loss of equilibrium has been reported.

Safety Concerns

Kava Kava should not be taken if you are pregnant or lactating.
The German Commission E Monographs warn against taking it with any substance that effects the central nervous system like barbiturates, antidepressants etc.


History of Kava Kava
Kava Kava has a very colorful history. It is thought to have been introduced to the modern world by a botanist traveling around the Pacific Islands with Captain James Cook in the Endeavor between 1768 and 1771.


The root of the Kava was made into a nonalcoholic drink and this played a very important role in the life of the people of the Pacific Islands. The Kava ceremony was a key event when welcoming royalty or honored guests, when the village elders met and, less formally, as part of social gatherings.


The Kava ceremony has been outlawed on some islands, but on others it still continues today.


Traditionally the root is scraped and cut into pieces. It is then chewed by "chewers" and spat out into a bowl – this probably horrified many European explorers! Today this part has largely been replaced by grating or pounding the root. Coconut milk is then added, it is strained and poured into another bowl. Special bowls and utensils are used for the ceremony. When handed a cup of Kava it is expected that the entire cup is drunk without stopping – the audience then claps three times and shouts "Maca", which means "It is empty".


The drink causes a temporary numbing of the mouth, this is followed by a tranquil feeling of well-being which tends to encourage socializing. Many report that it gives a heightened sense of awareness, sharpens mental activity and improves memory.
Research into the benefits of Kava started about 130 years ago, and it continues to intrigue. The fact that Kava can relieve anxiety while increasing attentiveness and concentration fascinates scientists and makes it own of a kind.

Disclaimer: The information presented is for information purposes only. It is based on scientific studies or traditional usage. Consult a health care professional before using supplements or making any changes in prescribed medications. Information and statements regarding dietary supplements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease