Why Kava Works for Sleep & Social Anxiety

The Science of Kava
The Pacific Islands have been home to various ancient traditions, one of which is the consumption of kava, a drink derived from the Piper methysticum plant. Historically valued for its psychoactive properties, kava is gradually making its mark on Western cultures. The reason behind this growing popularity is its potential benefits for sleep and social anxiety, a topic that deserves exploration.
A primary mechanism behind kava’s effects on the brain involves the modulation of neurotransmitters. One of the pivotal neurotransmitters in this context is GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid). GABA stands as the brain’s main inhibitory neurotransmitter. Its role is pivotal in suppressing neuronal activity, paving the way for relaxation and calmness.

Kavalactones, which are the active components in kava, are believed to enhance the activity of GABA. This enhancement can translate to a reduced sense of anxiety, potentially making it easier for individuals to fall asleep. Further supporting kava’s calming effects is its purported interference with glutamate uptake, an excitatory neurotransmitter.

By potentially reducing the overactivity linked to glutamate, kava accentuates its tranquillizing properties.In addition to its impact on neurotransmitters, kava also exerts physical effects on the body, most notably muscle relaxation. This effect is especially beneficial for those who harbor tension in their muscles due to stress or anxiety, a common precursor to sleep disturbances. Such a muscle-relaxant effect can indeed be a boon for those seeking a restful night’s sleep.

Another intriguing aspect of kava is its classification as an adaptogen. In the realm of biology, adaptogens are substances known to aid the body in adapting to stress and restoring physiological equilibrium. This characteristic of kava suggests potential benefits for individuals who grapple with social anxiety or those whose sleep patterns are disrupted by stress.

Kava has also been observed to reduce excitability in the amygdala, a region integral to emotional processing. The amygdala plays a particularly significant role in processing emotions associated with fear and anxiety. A reduction in its activity, as influenced by kava, can pave the way for diminished feelings of anxiety.

Lastly, kava’s interaction with other neurotransmitters, namely norepinephrine and dopamine, cannot be overlooked. Both these neurotransmitters are intricately linked with mood regulation, alertness, and the body’s stress response. Kava’s potential to balance these neurotransmitters underscores its anxiolytic properties.Not everyone may find relief with kava, and concerns about liver toxicity with the raw tea are still of concern. We have created an extract that uses pure waka kava roots, removing the bitterness, and making it a portable gummy form.For many people, kava can be a great solution for sleep or social anxiety- we believe in it so much we created is a core offering for Radiant Farms. 

We made this short 6 minute film on it- check it out. 

All love,Christine
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