valerian root

Valerian Root. Relieve Anxiety. Herbal Supplement for Restful Mind

Updated: 10/3/23

Are you looking for something natural to help relieve your anxiety? Valerian, an ancient herbal supplement, has been used for centuries to reduce stress and ease insomnia. Studies have shown that Valerian root can be effective in providing relief from the sleepless nights and fearful thoughts associated with anxious feelings. This powerful herb may help you return to a calmer state of mind where you can once again feel confident and secure. Keep reading to find out how this ancient remedy could improve both your physical health and emotional wellbeing!

What is Valerian Root?

For patients with stress or sleep disturbances, herbal remedies are a common place to turn to for relief. Cue valerian root extract, which is a centuries-old herbal remedy. The extract comes from a perennial plant called Valeriana officinalis or valerian. Native to North America, Europe and Asia, this plant is a common herb with sedative and hypnotic properties. 

It works by increasing the levels of GABA in the brain. GABA is a neurotransmitter that is responsible for relaxing the mind and reducing anxiety. Valerian Root also has a mild sedative effect, which helps to promote sleep. The combination of these two effects makes it a popular natural remedy for anxiety and insomnia. Medical researchers believe that the volatile oil in valerian root is responsible for these effects, which interact with neurotransmitters like GABA and amino acids like tyrosine, arginine and glutamine.

Valerian is also a common dietary supplement and its roots and stems are formed into extracts for capsules or teas. As an herbal medicine, most people use it to help remedy insomnia or anxiety.

Benefits of Valerian Root

In today’s world, where stress and anxiety seem to be part and parcel of everyday life, it is important to find natural ways to take care of ourselves. One such way is to utilize the age-old benefits of valerian root. It has been used for centuries for various health benefits, and it has become a popular natural supplement in recent years.


Insomnia is a sleep disorder in which a patient is unable to fall asleep or stay asleep. It can have a significant effect on daily life and well-being. Patients suffering from insomnia or other sleep disorders may benefit from natural sleep aids and supplements. Unlike most prescription sleeping pills, valerian root extract has few side effects and may be a great option for patients who have trouble falling or staying asleep. 

How can that be? It contains chemicals that help create a sedative and calming effect on the body. The first chemical is called linarin, which has sedative, sleep-enhancing properties. The second chemical is gamma-amino butyric acid (GABA). GABA is a neurotransmitter in the central nervous system that can also cause a sedative effect, which calms nervous system activity. Valerian root extract stimulates GABA in the brain.

A number of studies suggest that valerian may be an effective treatment for insomnia. In one study, researchers evaluated 128 people and compared 400 mg of aqueous valerian root extract to a placebo. They tested sleep latency, sleep quality, sleepiness on awakening, night awakenings and dream recall. The treatment group showed significant improvement in sleep latency and quality compared to the placebo group.

In a separate double-blind study, researchers used a wrist activity meter to study how valerian affected sleep latency on eight subjects. Participants of this study either took 450 to 900 mg of aqueous valerian root extract or a placebo. According to the results, the single dose (450 to 900 mg) of it extract significantly reduced sleep latency and caused more stable sleep in the first quarter of the night. The results from these studies suggest that herbs for sleep may be an effective treatment option for insomnia.


Valerian root extract also has a history in traditional medicine, commonly in combination with other herbal remedies like passion flower, to help manage anxiety. Since it increases GABA in the brain, valerian root extract may effectively reduce anxiety symptoms. Early research suggests that valerian root for anxiety may produce positive health benefits, but there is insufficient studies to reach a safe and definite conclusion.

One study compared 100 mg of valerian to 20 mg of propranolol and a placebo in an experimental stress situation in 48 healthy participants. According to the results, valerian significantly reduced somatic arousal, which is a physical symptom of anxiety.

Another preliminary, randomized, double-blind study used a sample size of 36 people with generalized anxiety disorder. For four weeks, the subjects either used a placebo, 2.5 mg of diazepam three times a day or 50 mg of valerian three times a day. The researchers noticed that valerian and diazepam significantly reduced the psychic factor of the Hamilton Anxiety Scale (HAMA).

In another randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled trial, researchers studied 54 participants to compare the effects of kava and valerian root versus a placebo. After seven days, valerian root and kava supplements significantly decreased blood pressure, heart rate reaction and self-reported stress.

Lowers Blood Pressure

High blood pressure is a common health concern among adults. However, taking valerian root supplements may help lower blood pressure levels. In one study, participants with high blood pressure were given it extract twice a day for four weeks and showed significant reductions in both systolic and diastolic blood pressure.

Reduces Inflammation

Inflammation is a common cause of pain, discomfort, and chronic disease. Studies have shown that valerian root extracts have anti-inflammatory properties that can aid in reducing inflammation in the body. This makes it particularly effective in treating conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and other types of inflammatory diseases.

Boosts Immune System

Valerian root also has immune-boosting properties that can help to protect the body from illness and disease. It contains antioxidants that can help to reduce oxidative stress in the body, and also has antimicrobial and antiviral effects that can help to fight off infections and viruses.

Menstrual Pain

Some patients also use valerian root extract to help ease menstrual pain. Because of its calming and relaxing properties, it extract may help reduce the severity of menstrual cramps and help manage painful periods. It acts as a muscle relaxer. Therefore, it can calm the uterine muscle contractions that cause menstrual cramps.

Heart Health

Not only can it calm the mind, it may also be an effective tool to manage blood pressure. The same chemicals that help relax the body and reduce anxiety and insomnia may also help regulate blood pressure and possibly prevent hypertension. This condition can cause several complications, like stroke, heart disease or a heart attack.

It Can Help Boost Mood and Overall Well-Being

Valerian Root is also great for boosting mood and overall health. Regular consumption of Valerian Root has shown to improve mood and reduce stress levels. This is due to it’s unique property of increasing gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) levels in the brain. By consuming this herb, you’ll enjoy a sense of well-being.

Can Valerian Root Help with Anxiety?

Several clinical studies conducted to evaluate the efficacy of valerian root in treating anxiety. A study published in the Journal of Affective Disorders in 2014 found that valerian root was effective in reducing anxiety symptoms in patients with generalized anxiety disorder. Another study published in Phytotherapy Research in 2009 found that it reduced anxiety levels in participants who were undergoing dental treatment.

Is Valerian Root Good for Sleep?

Numerous studies have been conducted on the effectiveness of valerian root for sleep. While the results have been mixed, there is evidence to suggest that it can help improve sleep. In one study, participants who took valerian root reported a significant improvement in their sleep quality compared to those who took a placebo. However, it is important to note that it may not work for everyone and should not be used as a replacement for medical advice or prescribed medications.

Benefits of Valerian Root

Side Effects of Valerian Root

Usually, patients tolerate it very well without any side effects. However, side effects are still a possibility and they may include headaches, dizziness, gastric problems, restlessness, dilated pupils, muscle spasms and pruritus. Studies state that it may also cause tiredness. In one particular study, researchers noted that patients were more tired in the morning after taking 900 mg of valerian root. 

Drug Interactions

Medical researchers have not identified any significant herbal or drug interactions with valerian root. However, it may exacerbate side effects from other medications. It may also have adverse side effects with other sedatives, such as benzodiazepines (Xanax, Valium), barbiturates or central nervous system depressants (Luminal or morphine) or dietary supplements (St. John’s wort, kava or melatonin).

Other drugs like antihistamines, diabetes medications, and muscle relaxants interact with it in various ways. Antihistamines can cause excessive sedation, while muscle relaxants enhance the sedative effects of it, resulting in excessive drowsiness. On the other hand, diabetes medications are known to cause hypoglycemia, and when taken with it, it decreases blood sugar levels even further.

Increase Risk of Bleeding

It has antiplatelet properties which can increase the risk of bleeding when used with blood-thinning medications like warfarin, aspirin, or clopidogrel. If you take blood-thinning medications, it is necessary to consult with your healthcare provider before adding it to avoid the risk of bleeding.

Liver Damage

There have been reports of liver damage associated with the use of valerian root supplements. While these cases are rare, it is important to be aware of the potential risk and to consult with your doctor before starting any new herbal supplement. People with pre-existing liver problems should avoid it altogether.

Fetal Development

Pregnant or nursing patients should not take valerian root extract. It may cause problems with fetal development. Children younger than three should not take it. Researchers have not evaluated how it may affect children. Always check with a doctor or healthcare provider before taking this supplement. If you experience any unusual symptoms or side effects, contact a doctor or healthcare provider.

Valerian Root for Menopause

It may be useful for menopausal women who experience anxiety, hot flashes, and insomnia. The compounds in it can help to calm the mind and alleviate feelings of stress and anxiety. Some studies have also suggested that valerian root may help to reduce the frequency and severity of hot flashes and night sweats. While more research is gathering in this area, many women find that taking valerian root supplements or drinking valerian tea can help them feel more relaxation and sleep better at night.

Valerian Root and Ashwagandha

While valerian root and ashwagandha are both effective on their own, combining them can provide an even more powerful solution for stress and anxiety relief. The combination of these two herbs can work together to provide a synergistic effect, enhancing the calming properties of each. The result is a natural solution that can help reduce stress and anxiety levels, improve sleep quality, and promote overall well-being.

Why Try Valerian Root Extract

Several studies suggest that it is a safe, effective treatment for anxiety and sleep disturbances. It contains oils and other components that help relax the mind and the body, potentially counteracting stress that affects sleep and mood. Patients may also find it helpful to manage menstrual pain, using the same chemicals to relax the uterine muscles that cause cramps. The herb has a very long history as a natural herbal remedy. Thankfully, supplements are an effective way to capture all of its benefits for a controlled dosage.

Where to Buy Valerian Root Extract

Valerian Root can be conveniently purchased at As an industry-leading manufacturer and distributor of pure dietary supplements, supplies high-quality ingredients not just for its own brand, but also for other food and supplement products. All products undergo rigorous manufacturing and testing in accordance with current practices. If you are curious in trying Valerian Root extract, reach out to today to place your order.


Dosage for Valerian Root Extract

The recommended dosage for valerian root extract powder as a dietary supplement is 300 to 600 mg two hours before bedtime. Consult a doctor before taking this supplement and follow all medical advice. It is not a cure for any medical treatment, but it may have positive health effects.

The Bottom Line

Valerian root extract is a safe herbal remedy that has been used in traditional medicine for many years. As a supplement, it is crafted into an extract tea, capsule or powder. Studies suggest that it may be effective as a natural sleep aid for insomnia and a tool to manage anxiety. It may also have the ability to relieve menstrual cramps and even lower blood pressure. Patients usually tolerate the supplement well and it is generally safe as a supplement with few side effects. However, it may interact with certain medications and herbal supplements, so make sure to consult a doctor before taking it. Supplements are not a cure for any medical condition, but they can impact overall health.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease

Author: James D