Kava kava tea is made from the whole root of piper methysticum plant or also known as awa, sakau and yaqona. Kava is the traditional herb of the Pacific islands and according to some records it has been used for over 3000 years.
In the South Pacific, kava tea isn't as popular compared to a type of intoxicating kava drink somewhat similar to alcohol. The beverage is made by mixing grounded kava root with water and coconut milk. Its uses include calming and relaxing a person's nerve.
Studies found that kava kava root contains glycosides and kava lactones such as dihydrokawain, kawahin, methysticin and yanoginin. And researchers also found that kava herb produces a highly sedative effect , bring about the feeling of euphoria, relaxation and can numb certain parts of the body.
Some of the claims made on the benefits and effectiveness of kava kava extract are as follows:
To make kava tea from the root itself, simply boil the root. Another option is to steep 1 teaspoon of kava root powder in a cup of hot water. For convenience, just use kava tea bag.
Kava kava root extract is available in capsules, liquid extract, tinctures and tablets. Kava root powder and kava tea bags are also available.
It is not advisable to drink kava kava tea or to take the supplement over a long time or in high doses because it has the potential to cause liver disease. Kava kava side effects include stomach pain, dark stool or urine, loss of appetite, persistent nausea, unusual fatigue and yellowing eyes or skin.