Kava Medical Advice

Posted by on Jan 12, 2008 in Kava Information | 24 comments

Kava Medical AdviceWe’re thrilled that we’ve become one of the most popular informational places to find authoritative and useful information on Kava Kava, and as a result, we get a great many questions regarding this herbal supplement.  So, we do our best to turn as many of your Kava questions into blog entries.

Without a doubt, our #1 most-asked question is some variation of “Where to Buy Kava”, which we answer in vivid detail in our article of that same name.  The topic of this blog entry, though, answers our 2nd most-asked questions which ask us, in one way or another, to dispense medical advice.  Unfortunately, we have only one, required by law answer for every one of those questions.  If you’re reading the entry, there’s a good chance you’re one of those treasured visitors who has asked a question such as that, and have been pointed to this article.  So, we offer this in relation to the law, which is extremely clear on the position we (or anyone who offers herbal supplements or information on herbal supplements) must adhere to:

We are not medical doctors, so we do not have the authority to answer any question that relates to any medication, drug interaction, potential allergic reactions, the safety or effectiveness of Kava, or the use of Kava as a relief from any medical symptoms.  We do not offer information that is intended to diagnose, treat or cure any illness or health condition.  Any health or safety-related issues rising due to individual application of Kava should be further researched, and the advice of a medical professional requested for allergic reactions to individual ingredients to any products described on Kava dot com.

Whew. Truly, we wish we could offer more in this department, and we know how so few doctors (from the large number of e-mails we receive) know anything in relation to the use of herbal supplements in general, including their history, the clinical and/or anecdotal evidence that exists (often from thousands of years of use) in favor of an herbal supplement such as Kava that has proven to be as safe and effective as Kava has proved to be.

The only thing we can offer, from personal experience is this: We have friends who have used Kava Kava in their family for generations without a single report of medical harm.  This is also why we often find ourselves recommending the blog that we wish we wrote at Kona Kava Farm; the present spokesperson (and part owner of the family-owned farm) has a very personal, candid, and informative blog at one of the places we highly, highly recommend for any Kava purchase; Kona Kava Farm. We receive no commissions (you can tell by the fact that there’s no tag of any kind attached to any of our links), and simply hope to share our personal experiences with a plant that is so integral to our well-being.

24 Comments

  1. Is Kava safe to take if women are pregnant? I’m interested in trying this root but m pregnant so I’m not to sure if it’s safe? The last thing I want to do is put my baby in harm.

  2. Desiree,

    I wish we could offer kava medical advice, but we, even as an informational website on kava, can only offer (copied and pasted from a website that offers kava for sale) the following snippet:

    We’re sorry, but we’re required by law to inform our customers that we are not doctors and cannot offer any medical advice whatsoever. Kava is not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease, and we are not qualified to give any answers related to the effects kava kava might have with any prescription medication or effects and dangers related to consumption, even if asked for “hypothetical” situations or answers. Please ask your doctor any such questions; only they are qualified to answer any prescription medication or health-related issues you might have in relation to any kava products.

    Mahalo,
    Kava dot com

  3. Our daughter was prescribed 10mg of Prozac. She has anxiety and worries that her mom and dad will get in an accident, about storms and when staying at a friend’s house calls us to get her before bed time. We do not like what we hear about Prozac and want to use all other alternative sources first. I read about Kava and like what I read, but need further information. Our daughter is 9 and I would like to know what is the recommended amount and frequency? I would love to have our little girl grow up with a happy face and not allow her worries take over her happiness. If you do not suggest amount and frequency then who should we discuss this with? Any suggestions?

    Kim

  4. Kim,

    We have read much literature regarding the use of Kava to help reduce anxiety in children, especially in Europe. As you may have suspected, though, we’re not doctors and cannot offer any medical advice regarding this safe, natural herbal supplement. There are a growing number of naturopathic doctors around, as well as specialists in herbal supplements and nutrition. I’d do a quick search for “naturopathic doctor” with your town name.

    Mahalo,
    Kava.com

  5. Hello,

    I occasionally rake kava Kaveri root to help me sleep. How long will it stay in my system and will it show on a urine drug test? I will be taking a uds for a new job and didn’t consider that it may negatively affect the results. If so, anything I can do to flush it out beforehand?

  6. Jenna,

    Kava does not show up in a drug test at all, and it’s completely legal just about everywhere in the world! Kava only stays in your system as long as any other food or drink, and effects for each cupful of Kava Drink only lasts about an hour. In an extended evening of entertaining, I will sometimes take 6 large gulps of ‘Awa, about once per hour or so to keep the good feelings and mild euphoria throughout the evening.

    And, although it’s relevant, lots and lots of water is all it takes to flush Kava out of your system. In other words; enjoy!

    Mahalo,
    Kava.com

  7. I understand pregnancy questions are tricky. I am in no way asking for medical advice. With the lack of REAL study data (thank you big pharma!), no one can truly say if Kava is safe during pregnancy (Though I would bet on it all day, if only god could settle this debate.) What I do have data on is the horrible affect of pills on my friends and community for the sake of the almighty $. So many ruined lives. Who would have thought smack and artificial smack is bad (lol)? I also am not an MD, but I’m thinking Kava is safer (pregnant or no) for stress. No good, natural sedatives have been researched (in respect to gestation and lactation) because of, you guessed it, money. So instead of ask for medical advise, I would like to start at the point we are truly at, the ethnobotany. What does the tribal wisdom say on the matter of Kava and pregnancy (as a point of historical FACT, not advise.)? P.S Look up Opuntia Streptacantha, one of the few plants as awesome as Kava (and I’m a farmer who specializes in awesome)!

  8. Hi! I am currently on the prescription, zpack… I have also been taking 5htp for my anxiety…i got some kava capsules.recently to take on trip to calm my panic.and anxiety even more… Are these 3 ok to take together? Thanks!

  9. Ashley,

    We’re now at the point where I will simply quote both the original article you surely read as well as the numerous comments we’ve responded to regarding this very issue:

    “We are not medical doctors, so we do not have the authority to answer any question that relates to any medication, drug interaction, potential allergic reactions, the safety or effectiveness of Kava, or the use of Kava as a relief from any medical symptoms. We do not offer information that is intended to diagnose, treat or cure any illness or health condition. Any health or safety-related issues rising due to individual application of Kava should be further researched, and the advice of a medical professional requested for allergic reactions to individual ingredients to any products described on Kava dot com.”

    - Kava dot com

  10. Glen,

    We’ve danced around this delicate subject before, and I will offer the anecdotal words that Makaira from Kona Kava Farm has offered others (Reprinted With Permission):

    “My family has as long a history with ‘Awa as far back as we can trace. Throughout that history, we’ve enjoyed many generations of healthy men and women. In fact, our particular family tree doesn’t have any recoded evidence of cancers or other life-threatening diseases that caused difficult lives or deaths. We attribute this to our simple, stress-free lives here on the farm, and to our favorite, ancient sacred panacea we call ‘Aawa. A life lived in harmony with Mother Earth and with each other is what we feel is one of the true keys to a long, happy, and healthy life.

    From personal experience, I know that my grandmother enjoyed the sacred ‘Awa in both ceremony and in pleasure while she was pregnant with my mother. I know that my mother did not reduce her use of Kava when she was pregnant with me. For me, though, partly because of the modern-day media and Western medicine, I reduced my almost-daily consumption of fresh Kava Kava root to every few days. But I certainly did not stop. My children are as happy and as healthy as can be.

    Pregnancy can bring on more changes than any woman could hope to explain, and next to the love of my family, ‘Awa was always a constant for me. My children were introduced to Kava Kava at a very young age, as we all have been throughout our family historey. Kava has been used safely for over 3,000 years amongst my people, and just because a money-hungry pharmaceutical company wants to tell me that their science is better than our science of experience and history and moderation, I am confident that we will continue to live long, healthy lives despite them.”

    - Kava dot com.

  11. Dear Kava… I am not so sure people read before they ask.
    Will Kava cure my husbands dumbness? LOL Just kidding.
    I buy my Kava from the Kona Kava Farm and also recommend it to others.

  12. LOL! – I’m sure you’re not the only one who’s wished for the same thing. Thanks for the laugh…

    - Kava.com

  13. Hi I am just wondering I am going to Fiji in 3 weeks just wanting to know is it a bad thing if I have kava when i have very low platlets levels? Cheers

  14. Dear Kylie,

    I’m not a doctor, and I know very little about blood platlets. I can do some research online, but I doubt I’d find anything more than you can. Given that, I would strongly suggest you ask your doctor before drinking kava, although I have never heard of any contraindication here…

  15. I have restless less would this help. I have tried many things.

  16. Dear Rose,

    Kava is a muscle relaxant, and can also assist in sleeping soundly through the night. Many people report experiencing very beneficial results from using kava for restless leg syndrom. We’re not doctors, and I cannot provide medical advice, but considering anecdotal evidence, I would definitely say kava is worth a shot! :)

    All the best!

  17. Hi! I am interested in taking Kava to help with stress, sleep, and occasional anxiety. I as looking at my local Whole Foods at the variety of Kava supplements, tinctures, etc, and wondered if there were any other brands that seem to be good..? I didn’t see the ones from Hawaii that I saw you all recommend in the other pages…

    Thank you!
    K

  18. Dear K,

    I’m not familiar with kava supplements at Whole Foods, as I rarely shop there. I usually purchase my kava from online websites. Try searching for Hawaiian kava in Google – you’re sure to come up with several excellent sources. If you try some of the Whole Foods kava, come back and let us know what you think – we’re always interested in hearing about different types of kava products.

  19. Hi There,

    I’ve been drinking kava daily for the last two weeks with the last three days drinking about 4-5 ounces in a session. Yesterday I stoped for a break and decided to take a melatonin to get to sleep…a couple hours later i was wide awake, wired and feeling restless. Today i had a panic attack at work and have felt wired/restless all day. Please note i also take 10 mg cipralex but didn’t feel any bad effects while just taking kava. I wonder if it’s the melatonin that interacted with the kavalactones? I know you’re not a doctor, but just wondering if this is unheard of or usual…thanks

  20. Dear Brad,

    I’ve never heard of any reports of this sort of thing, but I’ve also never spoken to anyone who was using melatonin and kava simultaneously. I would definitely talk to you doctor about this combination to see if she/he has any ideas about possible interactions between the kava and melatonin and between those two and the cipralex.

    Mahalo,
    Bryan Kava
    Direct: 716-803-6427
    Email: bryan at kava dot com

  21. Thank you Kava.com,

    Just an update…last night i decided to have a drink of kava and it worked it’s magic and took the ill feeling and paranoia away that i experienced from mixing the melatonin and kava. I feel fine today, so it must have been an interaction that didn’t sit well with me.

    I thought for a minute I might have to give up my Kava! (just no more kava and melatonin at the same time)

    thanks again :)

  22. Dear Brad,

    Great news! :) Substances that work fine alone can often have odd interactions when combined, so definitely be cautious. I’m glad you can enjoy your kava again!

  23. Hi There….I have been prescribed Klonopin (a benzodiazepine) for a few years now for general anxiety and horrible insomnia. I have an upcoming drug test for clinical clearance in a little over 2 weeks. I am stopping the bezo 14 days prior to this drug screen. Even though it is prescribed to me by an MD, since they are selecting candidates….I figure this is something they do not need to know. I have just ordered kava from the kona kava website and intended to use in lieu of the benzo (and who know’s, I may not need the benzo anymore if the kava lives up to its reputation). My question is, if taken nightly, could this kava potentially show up as anything on this drug screen? It is extremely important so I cannot take any risks. Any solid info is appreciated.

  24. We don’t know of any current drug screen that looks for or is capable of detecting Kava consumption. So, fret not, and enjoy to your heart’s content.

    Mahalo,
    Bryan Kava

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