More Answers About Kava Kava
At this time, the supplement does not appear to be safe, due to concerns about liver toxicity. Some people may be more likely than others to experience problems. You may be at high risk of dangerous side effects if you:
- Have liver disease, such as liver failure, cirrhosis, or hepatitis
- Have Parkinson's disease
- Have depression
- Have any allergies, including allergies to food, dyes, or preservatives
- Are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant (see Kava and Pregnancy)
- Are breastfeeding (see Kava and Breastfeeding).
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about all other medicines you are taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
(Click Safety of Kava Kava for more information, including any available warnings and precautions.)
It is not exactly clear how it works. There are several different theories involving numerous different brain chemicals which attempt to explain how the supplement works. Kava kava seems to have the following properties:
- Anti-anxiety properties
- Sedative properties
- Anti-seizure properties
- Local anesthetic properties
- Anti-spasm properties
- Anti-inflammatory properties
- Analgesic (pain-relieving) properties.
There is some evidence that kava kava may be effective for treating anxiety, including anxiety associated with menopause. It may also be helpful in preventing or reducing withdrawal symptoms from benzodiazepines (certain medications used to treat anxiety, insomnia, and seizures).
(Click Does Kava Work? for more information.)