Materia Medica

Herbal Medicine Resource

Kava

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Botanical Name: Piper methysticumImage

Common name: Kava

Family: Piperaceae

Parts Used: Root

Active Constituents:

Kavalactones

• methysticin, dihydromethisticin, kavain, dhihydrokavain, desmethoxyangonin

Flavonoids
• flavokavains

Qualities: Cool, grounding

Actions: 

  • Anxiolytic
  • Hypnotic
  • Anticonvulsant
  • Mild sedative
  • Skeletal muscle relaxant
  • Spasmolytic
  • Mild analgesic Topically
  • Local anaesthetic
  • Antipruritic
  • Mild analgesic
  • Antifungal

Indications: 

Nervous System

  • Anxiety / restlessness
  • Insomnia
  • Stress
    Neuralgia (toothache, earache, ocular pain) • headache

• Muscle tension Menopausal NS sx Withdrawal from benzo’s Genito-urinary

  • Inflammation and infection
  • Cystitis, urethritis, dysuria, renal colic
  • Locally

• Sore throat, tooth ache

Contraindications:

pre-existing liver disease
not recommended in pregnancy or children

Cautions:

–long-term or continuous use should be monitored –caution with Parkinson’s disease
–caution in elderly

Dosage:

250mg kavalactones per day

Combinations:

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