Valerian is one of the most popular and used medicinal plants globally. Originally from Europe and some areas of Asia, it is predominantly used to combat sleep disorders and nervousness, effective in mild or moderate cases, which is why many people prefer to resort to it instead of drug treatment. At FastlyHealwe, explain in detail the benefits of valerian for health and in which cases it is not recommended to ingest this plant.
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How does valerian work in our body?
Valerian is a medicinal plant that can be consumed on its own and is also present in various sedative and calming products. This plant acts as a sedative on our nervous system and the brain, favoring its relaxation and helping, therefore, to reduce the impact in stressful situations or fall asleep when insomnia occurs.
Unlike many drugs used for the same purpose, valerian does not produce residual exhaustion, nor does it generate a feeling of weakness or apathy in those who consume it, as long as it is adequately ingested.
Benefits and properties of valerian
Among the properties of valerian, its power to:
- Promote sleep in mild, moderate, or sporadic insomnia due to its sedative effect.
- Reduce stress and anxiety associated with periods of nervousness thanks to its calming effects. It also favors patients with mild depression, making them feel less upset and acting as a natural antidepressant.
- These same properties make it an excellent alternative to treat common conditions like headaches or stomach pain.
- Because this medicinal plant helps stabilize the heart rate, it is beneficial for patients with arrhythmias.
- Its sedative effect is also favorable for treating muscle aches and joint conditions such as arthritis.
- Its anti-inflammatory property makes valerian an excellent option to reduce menstrual cramps and intestinal discomforts such as those caused by irritable bowel disease or Crohn’s disease.
- Being ideal for calming nerves and altered moods, it is also a good solution for the natural treatment of hyperactivity.
- It is an excellent adjunct in treating certain addictions as it reduces anxiety in people who are quitting the habit of smoking, drinking, or drugs.
How to take valerian?
There are several ways to take valerian, a medicinal plant purchased in various forms in health food stores or herbalists. The most common ways to ingest this plant are:
Although its taste can be bitter, this is an ideal alternative for days of more tension. Add a tablespoon of dry valerian herb to a cup of boiling water, let it steep for 5 minutes, strain, and drink. If the flavor is robust, it can be sweetened with honey. Take between 2 and 3 cups a day without exceeding this amount.
It is one of the simplest alternatives to taking valerian, especially for insomnia or nervousness problems. Each product has a different dosage depending on the milligrams contained in each capsule. However, it is usually recommended to take 2 tablets between 2 hours and 30 minutes before sleeping. Usually, it is not recommended to take more than six pills a day, although it is essential to consult the leaflet of the capsules you purchase.
In essential oil
This product comes from valerian root, so it is a reasonably intense presentation that should be consumed in moderation. It is recommended to take two drops of this oil 2 or 3 times a day during high tension or nervousness. Additionally, a few drops of this product can be added to the bathwater to soothe muscle aches and promote relaxation.
Contraindications of valerian
Despite being a natural plant, this alternative should not be ingested in some instances. The contraindications of valerian are:
- During pregnancy and lactation, the safety of this plant has not been tested during these stages, so it is recommended to avoid it.
- Children under 3 years old should not ingest this plant.
- The essential oil is contraindicated topically for people with respiratory allergies and children under ten.
- Valerian should never be combined with: alcohol, sedative drugs, or other plants with sedative effects, or this property could be increased.
- It is essential to suspend the consumption of valerian at least two weeks before any surgical intervention as it could intervene with the effect of anesthesia.
- If you are undergoing medical treatment, consult with your specialist about the possibility of consuming valerian.
This article is merely informative. At FastlyHeal .com, we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor if you present any condition or discomfort.
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I am a Surgeon with a diploma in comprehensive ultrasound and surgical care residency, an area I am specializing in. During the exercise of my profession, I have realized the need for patients to know the diseases they suffer, and I can tell you that a large part of their complications is due to a lack of information. Being a health web writer allows me to transmit my experience, without borders, to all those readers eager for knowledge, educate them in the prevention of diseases and promote a healthy lifestyle.