The Health Benefits of Kava for Stress

The Health Benefits of Kava for Stress

January 20, 2021

2020 was a stressful year for everyone. Though coping with stress is a natural part of life, there are many unhealthy coping mechanisms. There are also natural ways that can help you to relieve stress, relax, and sleep better.

Kava is a plant found in the tropical regions of the South Pacific that helps relieve stress. It has been used for centuries in South Pacific cultures by grinding it into a paste. In our modern world, kava is consumed with teas and supplements. Kava helps manage stress in many ways.

Helps with Stress and Relaxation

Anxiety is a condition brought on by stress and is one of the most commonly diagnosed mental disorders. Traditional treatment for anxiety often involves taking medication, which comes with some unpleasant side effects. Kava however is a natural method that may help relieve and manage anxiety. A review of 11 studies and a total of 645 participants found that taking kava helped lower measured anxiety scores compared to taking a placebo.  Kava helps relieve stress and anxiety by helping the body relax. Kava causes a relaxed feeling by calming the central nervous system, reducing muscle tension, and can induce a more positive overall mood.

Helps with Sleep

Getting a good night’s sleep is crucial to staying healthy. There are a variety of factors that affect sleep, including stress. Because kava helps you to relax, it can also help you to sleep. Kava can act as a sedative, calming your mind and body so that you fall asleep and stay asleep, reducing insomnia.  

In a small study of 61 participants, those who used kava to help with anxiety also reported better sleep quality. Another small study found that kava helped reduce stress significantly enough to allow for longer, better quality sleep.

Stress is a normal part of life, but chronic stress can cause different health problems. Kava can help you healthily manage stress, relax, and have a more positive outlook on life.

Kava may affect the medications you are taking. If you are taking prescription medications, be sure to talk to your doctor.

Referenced Studies

Kava and Anxiety
https://www.cochranelibrary.com/cdsr/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD003383/full

Kava and sleep
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/14706720/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12404572/


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