Kava kava tea is taken from the root of a tropical shrub which is native to islands in the South Pacific. A beverage made from the root is a popular social drink there, as it is non-alcoholic and non-addictive.
Kava herbal tea can be used to treat a number of disorders, but when you first begin to use it you may find you need to sweeten the tea with honey, as it can be an acquired taste.
The benefits of a kava preparation include:
- Treating the symptoms of anxiety without having a negative effect on the heart rate or breathing. It also has the added benefit of being non-addictive, which is always a consideration when taking prescription medications. It is beneficial for those who suffer from panic attacks.
- It is beneficial for treating the symptoms of depression. In a minority of users, euphoric feelings may be experienced.
- Easing insomnia. Larger doses of the herb may cause drowsiness though, so if drinking kava kava tea you should not operate machinery or drive until you are sure of how it affects you. Restful sleep will help to deal with other problems which are stress related such as irregular breathing.
- It is a natural muscle relaxant and anti-spasmodic. As a result, it may also help to reduce pain associated with conditions such as arthritis.
- Kava kava tea may have a detoxifying effect on the body and help to boost the immune system.
- It is thought to be beneficial for the health of the urinary tract, helping the body to fight off infection.
- Kava herbal tea can be used alongside a caffeinated drink to encourage mental alertness.
- It has a positive effect on pain from headaches and toothaches and may help to ease the aches of other conditions such as arthritis.
- A study has been carried out which shows that a kava preparation may help to kill cancer cells.
- The relaxing effect it has on muscles can be beneficial for menstrual cramps and symptoms of menopause.
If you buy kava, then you need to ensure that the supplement you choose has standardized kavalactone content. A dose with 210mg is enough to treat insomnia.
Kava supplements may have a negative effect on those with liver disorders, though most of the reported cases have involved people who consumed alcohol at the same time as the herb. As a result of these reported cases, a number of countries have banned the sale of the herb.
Some people have reported experiencing vivid dreams that have been linked to the herb. Its pain-killing properties may cause numbness in the mouth and throat.
Prolonged use of the herb has been linked to a scaly-type skin rash and irritation of the eyes. When consumed in excessive amounts, it may have an intoxicating effect.