A plant native to Europe and Asia, Valerian grows up to 4 feet in height, and has trumpet-shaped flowers. The roots of this plant are believed to contain valuable medicinal properties, and have been in use since the ancient times, particularly in Rome and Greece.
Valerian extracts are used as a home remedy for many problems, particularly sleep disorders. It is also marketed as a dietary supplement in the form of a capsule or a tablet, and is known to have sedative properties.
The ancient medicinal expert Galen used to prescribe this herb as a remedy for insomnia, and the various chemical components present in this herb are thought to be very effective in dealing with a wide range of disorders.
Now let’s understand more about how valerian is being used today as a remedy
- Valerian is known to possess a good number of different compounds which work together and help treat conditions like insomnia. One of the best uses of this herb is its efficiency in helping promote sleep, without having the ‘hangover’ effect associated with the use of sleep medications
- Valerian extracts may also be used to deal with anxiety thanks to its mild sedative activity.
- Several studies have also found the extracts of this herb to be effective in dealing with disorders of the psychological origin including migraine, headache, hysteria, excitability, fear and nervousness.
- Some herbal medicinal practitioners believe that valerian may also be helpful in dealing with stomach upset and other gastrointestinal disorders.
- In some regions of the world, valerian is also used to deal with muscle and joint pain.
- Several other conditions related to the psychology, including depression, ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder), epilepsy and mild tremors can be dealt with by taking the extracts of valerian root.
- Valerian extracts, when added to bath water, can help curb restlessness and promote good sleep.
- In many manufacturing industries, valerian extracts and oil are added to foods and beverages as a flavoring agent.