Valerian Root may smell like disgustingly stinky feet, but it's great for relaxing the body and the muscles. It has been used for centuries in Europe and Asia as a sedative, and is believed to help you fall asleep faster, and improve the quality of your sleep. The Greeks also used valerian root to treat digestive problems.
It's a hardy perennial flowering plant with heads of sweetly scented pink or white flowers. It is dried and used in herbal supplements such as tablets, capsules, tinctures, teas, and liquid extracts. Many Herbalists, Naturopaths, and Chiropractors recommend taking valerian root to relieve tension headaches, insomnia, anxiety, or for muscular pain because of its ability to act as a muscle relaxer.
What else is great about this amazing herb? Although valerian root has been referred to as "nature's Valium," it is not at all addictive. It's not recommended to take more than 15g a day. Though side effects are rare, some people who use valerian root for long periods of time may develop headaches, insomnia, or feel irritable, which are similar side-effects experienced with prescription sleep-aids.
Fit's Tips: If you are taking valerian root for muscle pain, it won't knock you out and make you feel totally spacey like most prescription muscle relaxers, but it is recommended that you take it at bedtime because it'll calm you down and help you fall asleep, that is why I love Extra Sleepytime Tea - it is fortified with valerian root.