VALERIAN (Valeriana officinalis)
PART USED: Root
PROPERTIES: Nervine, Sedative or Stimulant—for most people Valerian is relaxing but is highly stimulating (to the point of crazy) for some
SYSTEMS AFFECTED: Nervous, Brain, Cardiovascular, Muscular, Skeletal
POSSIBLE USES: managing stress, insomnia, calming erratic heart beat, headaches, anxiety, convulsions, colic, muscle cramps, improving circulation, shoulder, neck and muscle tension, menstrual pain and cramping
Valerian was known as “all-heal” in the Middle Ages and is still referred to by that name in older herbal texts.
Valerian’s main impact is on the nerves, brain, liver, and heart. Because it heals and rebuilds in these areas, people feel calmed, strengthened, and uplifted by this herb. This is one of the best herbs in the world for helping people sleep and helping them cope with high levels of stress. Valerian reduces mental over-activity and nervous excitability, and helps people who find it hard to stop the mental chatter and get to sleep. Valerian is beneficial for almost any stress-related condition and has a calming, rather than heavy sedative, effect on the mind and body.
Valerian contains large amounts of calcium and comes with its own supply of magnesium so the calcium is readily absorbed and made available to build bones, strengthen nerves, and relax the smooth muscles.
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