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Kava-Kava Herbal Enhancement Benefits
Kava-Kava Piper methysticum
Common Names : Ava. Intoxicating Peper
Actions: stimulant, increases blood flow, increases sexual desire
Medicinal Uses:stress, anxiety
Parts Used: rhizome
Constituents:Kava lactones, kawahin, yanoginin, methysticin, glycosides


In the Polynesia and the Pacific Ocean Islands, natives calm down by chewing a few kava-kava leaves, but the best medicine is in the roots, which can be used to make a tea. Kava is used for medicinal, religious, political, cultural and social purposes throughout the Pacific. These cultures have a great respect for the plant and place a high importance on it.

The word kava is used to refer both to the plant and the beverage produced from its roots. Kava kava can be used as a mild sedative for nervous tension and stress. The active constituents in the roots, kava lactones, have relaxing and intoxicating properties. Kava kava can induce hallucinations and heighten sexuality. It evokes warmth and can stimulate the genitals. Drink kava kava tea no more than one hour before sex- or you may succumb to the desire for sleep (1)

How to Use: Kava-Kava
Preparation Methods :Kava kava can be used in liquid extract or capsule form, but the most popular method is to make kava tea.

Kava Powder: Generally one tablespoon of powder is added per cup of water, but sometimes as much as a half a cup of powder (eight tablespoons) is added per cup of water to increase potency. The powder is then soaked in water for approximately 30 minutes to allow the water to completely soak through the powdered fibers. Lecithin,a waxy like ingredient derived from soybeans, is often added to aid in the process of emulsifying the kavalactones with water. Blend the kava powder, lecithin and water in a blender for several minutes then strain into a cheesecloth or nylon straining cloth.

Kava root: The more time consuming traditional method: With the powdered pulp enclosed within the straining material, (large muslin bags are good for this) the pulp is usually massaged for five to ten minutes within the beverage by soaking it then wringing the liquid out, then soaking again and repeating, applying pressure to release the most kavalactones. The liquid will have a muddy, opaque and yellow appearance, and will begin to feel oily. Once the kava solids are strained and pressed out, the kava is ready to enjoy. Kava needs a lot of help in the flavor department, try adding coconut milk, cocoa, sugar, or soy milk to improve flavor.

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Side Effects:
Can be highly sedative and intoxicating and causes numbing to the mouth and lips. Safe in recommended amounts. Do not use while pregnant, or give to children. Not for those with a pre-existing liver condition.
  1. Nancy L Nickell Nature's Aphrodisiacs (1999)
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