Kava, also commonly known as kava kava belongs to the nightshade family of plants. The herb has a calming effect, making it great for relieving anxiety and other stress-related health conditions. This root also helps to relieve muscle spasms and other kinds of pain that are related to stress. Kava root can also help combat cancer and can build muscles.
The Health Benefits of Kava Root
Let’s talk about the health benefits of kava kava root.
Treats Erectile Dysfunction
Kava has the ability to lower stress and calm the nerves. It can also help treat erectile dysfunction often resulting from stress and anxiety. Kava is also effective for treating self-induced sexual dysfunction often caused by stress.
The herb might also help treat premature ejaculation. You can ingest 100 milligrams of the root powder before sexual intercourse. The root can help increase blood flow to the penis and encourage sexual urge.
According to some studies, kava is a potential treatment for bladder cancer. The consumption of kava has been linked to reduced risks of cancer. However, one of the components of kava has been discovered to stimulate melanoma cancer cells. Thus, check with your doctor before using the root. Some other studies suggest a link between kava consumption and reduced cancer rates.
Cures Severe Pain
Kava can cure pain, spasms, and muscle tension. Kava has shown the potency to heal back pain and other forms of severe pain too. It contains muscle-relaxing properties as well. It also contains neuroprotective properties that can help ease pain. The root also helps to treat fibromyalgia.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Some studies show that kava can lower blood pressure. As a matter of fact, it can even affect blood clotting. So it is advisable to avoid kava for about two weeks before surgery.
Owing to fact that kava contains soothing effects, it can help treat insomnia. The herb helps to induce sleep without affecting the REM sleep. According to studies, kava extract is effective for reducing sleep disturbances linked to anxiety disorders.
Kava also possesses anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and anesthetic properties that help treat a toothache. Simply chewing a small piece of dried kava root for about 15 minutes can help with a toothache. The root might also help cure gingivitis.
Even applying kava root oil to the affected part of your gums can treat any infection. The root is also used as a mouthwash to treat canker sores.
Eases Menstrual Cramps
Given its ability to treat pain, kava might also help ease menstrual symptoms. In addition, the root can help deal with hot flashes.
Alleviates Depression and Anxiety
The soothing and mood-lifting effects of kava are very popular. The root contains compounds called kavalactones, which are known to positively affect the brain and the central nervous system. The chemicals produced from the kava root also help prevent convulsions.
Soothes the Muscles
Since kava helps in the relaxation of muscles, it is of use for bodybuilders. The root cancels the symptoms associated with overtraining and relaxes the muscles.
Deals With Symptoms of Alcohol Withdrawal
Kava has been known to help people deal with symptoms of alcohol withdrawal and drug addiction. Studies have spoken about its efficacy as an anti-craving agent.
Kava can also help you deal with the symptoms of opiate and kratom withdrawals.
Treats Cough and Cold Symptoms
Eases Adrenal Fatigue
We have seen that kava eases stress and anxiety – this might have some beneficial effect on adrenal fatigue too. However, we need more research on this.
Supports Hair Growth
There isn’t enough research on this. But some sources report that kava root can help strengthen the hair follicles and prevent hair breakage. It is then advisable to talk with your hair care specialist before using kava for hair treatment.
Side Effects and Precautions
Above are the few amazing health benefits of kava root. But wait–this herb is somewhat controversial. Some people believe that its side effects might even be more than the benefits. Well, let’s take a look at the side effects of kava and what precautions to take.
- When taken orally, kava might lead to serious liver damage. Stay away from kava if you already have liver issues. And please consult your doctor if you are taking it for the first time.
- In some cases, kava might aggravate depression.
- Kava can also make Parkinson’s disease worse. Stay away from it if you already have this condition.
- Since kava affects the central nervous system, it might increase the effects of anesthesia. Hence, stop its use at least two weeks before and after surgery. Also, check with your doctor.
- Please don’t use kava if you are pregnant or breastfeeding as it can affect the uterus. Some chemicals in kava can also pass through breast milk and harm the baby.
Yes, these side effects give us an entirely different perspective on kava. Hence, we recommend you talk to your doctor before taking kava root orally. The ill effects of the root have more to do with the amount taken – the higher the concentration of the root, the more the risk.
However, the benefits of this root do not need to be negotiated. Kava is very effective as a herbal remedy.
The Bottom Line
The benefits of kava are great. Kava can also be used to treat anxiety, stress, insomnia, and other disorders. However, high doses of kava can result in liver damage and should not be consumed in combination with alcohol or other psychotropic medications. The herb has also been linked to certain health concerns, raising questions about its safety. It is recommended that you do not take kava orally until you have checked your doctor.