What is Valerian Root Extract powder?
Valerian is a hardy perennial flowering plant with sweet-smelling pink or white flowers. The name Valerian means “to be strong or healthy” in Latin, and this translation is generally regarded to refer to its medicinal use, though it is suggested that it also refers to the strong odor. Valerian is native to Europe, South Africa, and parts of Asia and was introduced to North America. Ancient Greeks used the plant for a variety of medical disorders ranging from liver problems, digestive ailments, and urinary tract disorders to nausea and insomnia. Valerian has also been used for centuries for nervous conditions and has been traditionally used for sleeplessness, epilepsy, nervousness, hysteria and as a diuretic. The herb was used in Germany for unruly children, as a coffee substitute by German women, and as a condiment in medieval times, and as a perfume in the 16th century. It has had many other uses across numerous cultures throughout the centuries.
Chemical constituents of Valerian Root Extract powder
Many chemical constituents of valerian have been identified, but it is not known which may be responsible for its sleep-promoting effects in animals and in in vitro studies. It is likely that there is no single active compound and that valerian’s effects result from multiple constituents acting independently or synergistically.
Known compounds detected in valerian that may contribute to its method of action are:
Alkaloids: actinidine, chatinine, shyanthine, valerianine, and valerine.
Isovaleramide may be created in the extraction process.
Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA).
Iridoids, including valepotriates: isovaltrate and valtrate.
Sesquiterpenes (contained in the Volatile oil): valerenic acid, hydroxyvalerenic acid and acetoxyvalerenic acid.
Flavanones: hesperidin,6-methylapigeninand linarin.
Benefits of taking Valerian Root Extract powder supplements:
Valerian Root and sleep
>Pharmacological classification of herbal extracts by means of comparison to spectral EEG signatures induced by synthetic drugs in the freely moving rat.
（Source-Justus-Liebig-University, Wetzlar, Germany.）
Herbal extracts targeting at the brain remain a continuous challenge to pharmacology. Usually, a number of different animal tests have to be performed in order to find a potential clinical use. Due to manifold possibly active ingredients biochemical approaches are difficult. A more holistic approach using a neurophysiological technique has been developed earlier in order to characterise synthetic drugs. Stereotactic implantation of four semi-microelectrodes into frontal cortex, hippocampus, striatum and reticular formation of rats allowed continuous wireless monitoring of field potentials (EEG) before and after drug intake. After frequency analysis (Fast Fourier Transformation) electric power was calculated for 6 ranges (delta, theta, alpha1, alpha2, beta1 and beta2). Data from 14 synthetic drugs — tested earlier and representative for different clinical indications — were taken for construction of discriminant functions showing the projection of the frequency patterns in a six-dimensional graph. Quantitative analysis of the EEG frequency pattern from the depth of the brain succeeded in discrimination of drug effects according to their known clinical indication (Dimpfel and Schober, 2003). Extracts from Valerian root, Ginkgo leaves, Paullinia seed, Hop strobile, Rhodiola rosea root and Sideritis scardica herb were tested now under identical conditions. Classification of these extracts based on the matrix from synthetic drugs revealed that Valerian root and hop induced a pattern reminiscent of physiological sleep. Ginkgo and Paullinia appeared in close neighbourhood of stimulatory drugs like caffeine or to an analgesic profile (tramadol). Rhodiola and Sideritis developed similar frequency patterns comparable to a psychostimulant drug (methylphenidate) as well to an antidepressive drug (paroxetine).
>Valeriana wallichii root extract improves sleep quality and modulates brain monoamine level in rats.（Source-Defence Institute of Physiology and Allied Sciences-DIPAS, Defence Research and Developmental Organization-DRDO, Lucknow Road, Timarpur, Delhi 54, India.）
The present study was performed to investigate the effects of Valeriana wallichi (VW) aqueous root extract on sleep-wake profile and level of brain monoamines on Sprague-Dawley rats. Electrodes and transmitters were implanted to record EEG and EMG in freely moving condition and the changes were recorded telemetrically after oral administration of VW in the doses of 100, 200 and 300 mg/kg body weight. Sleep latency was decreased and duration of non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep was increased in a dose dependent manner. A significant decrease of sleep latency and duration of wakefulness were observed with VW at doses of 200 and 300 mg/kg. Duration of NREM sleep as well as duration of total sleep was increased significantly after treatment with VW at the doses of 200 and 300 mg/kg. VW also increased EEG slow wave activity during NREM sleep at the doses of 200 and 300 mg/kg. Level of norepinephrine (NE), dopamine (DA), dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC), serotonin (5-HT) and hydroxy indole acetic acid (HIAA) were measured in frontal cortex and brain stem after VW treatment at the dose of 200mg/kg. NE and 5HT level were decreased significantly in both frontal cortex and brain stem. DA and HIAA level significantly decreased only in cortex. DOPAC level was not changed in any brain region studied. In conclusion it can be said that VW water extract has a sleep quality improving effect which may be dependent upon levels of monoamines in cortex and brainstem.
Valerian Root and Anxiolytic
Anxiolytic properties of Valeriana officinalis in the zebrafish: a possible role for metabotropic glutamate receptors.
(Source-Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, School of Medicine, University of Puerto Rico — Medical Sciences Campus, San Juan, Puerto Rico.)
Valerian extract is used in complementary and alternative medicine for its anxiolytic and sedative properties. Our previous research demonstrated valerian interactions with glutamate receptors. The purpose of this study was to determine if valerian anxiolytic properties are mediated by metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluR) such as mGluR (1/5) (mGluR I) and mGluR (2/3) (mGluR II). Adult wild-type zebrafish (Danio rerio) prefer the black compartment and avoid the white compartment in the dark/light preference task. Zebrafish exposed to 1 mg/mL of valerian extract or 0.00117 mg/mL valerenic acid increased their residence time in the white side by 84.61 ± 6.55 % and 58.30 ± 8.97 %, respectively. LAP3 (mGluR I antagonist) and EGLU (mGluR II antagonist) significantly inhibited the effects of valerian and valerenic acid. These results demonstrated that valerian and valerenic acid have anxiolytic properties in the zebrafish. Moreover, the selective interaction of valerian with mGluR I and II represent an alternative explanation for the anxiolytic properties of this plant and support the role of mGluR in anxiety.
>Valeriana officinalis root extracts have potent anxiolytic effects in laboratory rats.
(Source-Department of Psychology, Eastern Oregon University, LaGrande, OR 97850, USA.)
Valerian root (Valeriana officinalis) is a popular and widely available herbal supplement, primarily used to treat insomnia and anxiety. Until recently, its mechanism of action has remained unknown. Neurobiological research has begun to show that the herb, with its active valerenic acid, interacts with the GABA(A)-ergic system, a mechanism of action similar to the benzodiazepine drugs. This series of experiments sought to corroborate these findings with behavioral measures, compare them to the benzodiazepine diazepam, and to analyze the chemical composition of Valeriana officinalis. Rats were administered either ethanol (1 ml/kg), diazepam (1mg/kg), valerian root extract (3 ml/kg), valerenic acid (3mg/kg), or a solution of valerenic acid and exogenous GABA (75 microg/kg and 3.6 microg/kg, respectively) and assessed for the number of entries and time spent on the open arms of an elevated plus maze. Results showed that there was a significant reduction in anxious behavior when valerian extract or valerenic acid exposed subjects were compared to the ethanol control group. The evidence supports Valeriana officinalis as a potential alternative to the traditional anxiolytics as measured by the elevated plus maze.
>Increase quality and duration of sleep
>Treat panic attacks
>For increased GABA production
>Relieve muscle pain
>Relieve joint pain
>Treat nervous twitches
Side effects and safety of Valerian Root Extract powder
Possible side effects generally occur when from taking extraordinarily high amounts of valerian root. These side effects can include: nausea, headaches, dizziness, grogginess, and palpitations of the heart. Very high dosages may also impair the liver and the central nervous system. Large doses can cause some people to feel depressed, nauseous and lethargic.
Dosage of Valerian Root Extract powder supplement:
Valerian root is on the Commission E (Germany’s regulatory agency for herbs) list of approved herbs. Supplements are available in tablets, capsules, or tinctures, and it can also be brewed as a tea. When taken as a sleep aid, the usual dosage of valerian extract in tablet form is 300 to 900 milligrams to be taken an hour or two before bedtime. For stress and anxiety, the usual dose is 50 to 100 milligrams taken 2 to 3 times a day, although some recommend doses of 200 milligrams or even 400 milligrams.