Kava_Kava - Kava-Kava Background Kava-kava(Piper...

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Kava-Kava Kava-Kava Background Kava-kava ( Piper methysticum ) has been used in the South Pacific for hundreds of years for its therapeutic effects as a "social lubricant". The active components are most likely Kava lactones (pyrones, such as kavain, methysticin, and others). The extracts have a calming effect, causing sedation with central muscular relaxation. The action appears to be in the limbic structures of the brain, where emotions are processed. The mechanism of action is unknown, but may be through a modification of receptors in that area. Kava is used as a sedative to enhance sleep. The first noticeable effect of kava-kava is a numbing of the mouth. Purported Health Effects It has been suggested to be an anti-anxiety agent/anxiolytic to decrease nervousness or insomnia. Several advertisements use the phrase "dare to be mellow", or suggest it as an alcohol substitute to relieve stress and anxiety without hampering memory and reaction time. Nor does it result in the typical "hang-over" seen with alcohol. In addition to its anti-anxiety effects, kava-kava has been proposed to be an aphrodisiac. It has also been proposed to be a tonic for the gastrointestinal tract due to its relaxation of smooth muscles. The first use in the West was in the 1800's as a treatment for urinary tract infections, though this function is not well supported by current literature. The lactones may have some anti- fungal effect, but does not seem as useful in treating the common yeast, Candida . Dosage and Preparations
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This note was uploaded on 06/09/2010 for the course MFC 141 taught by Professor Horvath during the Summer '10 term at SUNY Buffalo.

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Kava_Kava - Kava-Kava Background Kava-kava(Piper...

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