8 Valerian Root Tea Benefits

Posted: 01/19/2022

Valerian root, scientifically known as Valeriana officinalis, comes from the flowering valerian plant native to Europe and China. While the plant famously has a smell akin to stinky socks, the better-smelling root of the plant has a long history of being used as an herbal remedy. This use of herbal tea can be traced as far back as ancient Greece and Rome—Hippocrates even wrote about the root being used to treat ailments, such as headaches and nervousness.

Today, valerian root extract can be found in capsules, tinctures, tablets, essential oils, and even teas. However, you will not find valerian root in a wake-up, morning tea blend. Instead, valerian root tea is often used as a natural sedative, promoting relaxation and sleep, as well as a variety of other health benefits, including relief from indigestion and menstrual cramps.

To find out more about this powerful natural ingredient, keep reading. In this guide, we will explore the top 8 benefits of drinking valerian root tea and discuss how valerian extract works to provide these benefits.

#1 Promotes Better Sleep

One of the most well-known valerian root tea benefits is its promotion of a better night’s rest. The sleep aid of valerian root has long been used as a natural sedative, promoting sleep for those who struggle to fall asleep, as well as for those who struggle to stay asleep.

It is estimated that around 30 percent of people struggle to fall asleep at night. If you are one of the many who cannot seem to get to sleep, drinking a cup of tea containing valerian root before bed may help reduce the amount of time it takes for you to fall asleep.* Plus, valerian root may also improve your overall sleep quality and promote a healthier sleep cycle.

This is because when you sleep, you enter a stage known as deep sleep—a period when your brain waves slow and your body recharges. The better the quality of your deep sleep, the better and more rested you will feel during the day.

In fact, studies have shown that drinking valerian root tea increases the number of times individuals enter deep sleep and the amount of time they stay in a deep sleep.

#2 Encourages Relaxation

Whether it is due to work, relationships, or day-to-day anxiety, we all deal with stress from time to time. However, if we do not find healthy ways to deal with our stress, our minds and bodies both suffer.

To alleviate stress and encourage relaxation, reach for a cup of relaxing tea from a valerian root. Due to its sedative properties, valerian extract can help:*

  • Ease anxious feelings
  • Calm your mind
  • Relax anxiety-related behaviors and compulsions

Pair valerian root tea with other stress reducers—like exercise and meditation—and you will find yourself able to kick back at the end of each day, and head into the next feeling recharged and ready to go.

#3 Helps Manage Symptoms of Menopause

Those undergoing menopause will be pleased to learn that the properties of valerian root may help combat and provide relief from common menopausal symptoms—specifically, menopausal hot flashes.

Hot flashes are one of the top complaints of women going through menopause. Because hot flashes often occur at night, they can also lead to other issues, such as sleeplessness and fatigue. If you are prone to hot flashes, valerian root might be just what you need to find relief from this uncomfortable symptom.

In fact, one study found that, when compared to a placebo, subjects who ingested valerian root extract over the course of 8 weeks saw their bouts of hot flashes diminish. So, drinking a nightly cup of valerian root tea may help promote better sleep by encouraging relaxation and reducing uncomfortable menopausal symptoms.*

#4 Curbs Hyperactivity

Due to valerian root’s interaction with Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) molecules in the brain, those who commonly experience hyperactivity, or associated behaviors, might benefit from periodic cups of valerian root tea. This is because the valerenic acid that’s found in the root can help regulate GABA levels, which in turn, creates a calming sensation.

If you find yourself struggling to study for a test or focus on a task at work, try a cup of valerian tea and see if it helps with your focus. The improvement of GABA levels over time may help you concentrate while also reducing any stresses you might feel on a day-to-day basis.*

#5 Alleviates Indigestion

Do you frequently have difficulties with upset stomach, constipation, bloating, or cramps? Fortunately, with valerian root tea, you can work toward conquering these gut spasms. This is because the antioxidants found in valerian roots help to ease the muscles of the gut. This, in turn, can promote:

  • Healthier muscle function during digestion
  • Normal bowel function during digestion
  • Less irritation from problem foods

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