Newsgroup: alt.folklore.herbs
From: (Torrey Peacock)
Date: 05 Feb 1996 01:31:38 -08
Subject: Re: Valarian

> Does anyone know how much Valarian is safe to take for nervousness or insomnia?

IMHO, valerian is quite a safe herb - it is very unlikely that you could ingest enough of it to be at all dangerous. A common error with this herb, though, is not taking *enough* to have a really therapeutic effect. I have tried a variety of ways to take Valerian, and have had the best results with the fresh root liquid extract - the alcohol extract - which is easily obtainable from a natural food store. Two or three droppers-full brings about an easy and restful sleep, with no after-effects the next day. Your mileage may vary.

For daytime stress relief, I prefer the liquid extract of kava kava. It is less sedating than valerian, yet mellows me out quite effectively.

From: Rui Soares <>

> Does anyone know how much Valarian is safe to take for nervousness or insomnia?

I use Valerian every time i feel nervous, in my opinion is very safe, for exemple when the date of some test is closer i normaly start to feel nervous; when that happens i just take two pills of 45 mg each. That is safe, it wont make me feel sleepy, it just calms me down. In my opinion, however it doesn't work for insomnia. Some months ago i have a problem of insomnia and i tried to use Valerian as indicated in the box of pills (take 3 / 4 pills), it calms me, but i can't sleep anyway.
So, if you want my opinion, if you are nervous Valarian is a natural option, it wont make you feel sleepy but it will calm you down; in case of insomnia you do not loose anything if you try it, but don't expect big results.

From: (Lizevans)

> though I still cannot find anything written on this, I understand that Valerian could be harmful to those on the antidepressant MAO Inhibitors, which I am on, and which gives me nasty insomnia... I would like to get off my sleeping pill and try valerian... but am afraid it is too risky. anyone know any scientific proff to the otherwise?

My experience with Valerian has been effective and safe and I have a long history of reoccurring depression. Valerian is widely used in Europe for relaxation and insomia. I have used it mostly to help mw sleep but it has also taken the edge off of anxiety. I have used the straight Valerian caps. and the combination relaxant herbs--presently using valerian with hops, passion flower and skullcap, which are all good for calming and sleep. I buy from a local herb company. I also take calcium-magnesium which has a natural calming effect to the nervous system as well. Calms Forte is a homeopathic relaxant and sleep remedy that I use sometimes and feel this a good safe product too. These natural sleep enhancers may not get you thru the night every night but will helpyou fall asleep and give you better rest for those restless brains. I share in your frustration over nervousness and insomnia and send you all a psychic massage and prayers for peaceful sleep. liza

P.S. fatigue from excercise gives me the best sleep, when I can get myself to do it.

From: (Torrey Peacock)

> I am an unrestful sleeper and tried valerian in the form of a capsule -- brand name Nature's Way, 530 mg capsules -- and it seemed to make my sleep more restless or did not affect me at all. Is the fresh root liquid extract that much more potent, or am I going about this the wrong way entirely? (ie is Nature's Way a good or a bad thing?)

I used the capsules (like the ones from Nature's Way) and also tea from the dried herb - tastes unbelievably strange! - for years, hoping that it would help with insomnia and nervousness. The results were very subtle or non-existent. In my experience, the fresh plant liquid extract is vastly more effective. Two droppers-full works for me.

Not dissing Nature's Way here - they are an ethical company, and produce alot of fine products. In this case, though, the dried herb capsules just don't pack the punch.

Should also keep in mind that some people have a paradoxical reaction to Valerian - that is, it makes them more hyper and restless instead of calming them down. But try a good extract before you give up on it.