Kava Kava is similar in the way that it affects brain wave activity as Valium (diazepam). Basically, it works by helping to potentiate the efforts of GABA, which is considered to be the chief inhibitory neurotransmitter within the brain. The supplement works by binding to GABA receptor sites which calms the brain by preventing over-active neurons from firing.
As your anxiety levels go down, so will overall stress. It is also thought that this helps to improve your overall mood. Some studies indicate that this supplement helps to increase the levels of Dopamine within the brain. This is another powerful neurotransmitter that also affects things related to mood and movement. It not unusual for users of this supplement to consider the experience to be pleasurable.
Although this has not been proven conclusively, Kava Kava supplementation may improve conditions of insomnia. Some research has shown the possibility of the supplement leading to improved sleep quality and also a decrease in the time required to actually fall asleep.
Side Effects & Dosages
Kava Kava is known to have dangerous effects on the liver that may be comparable to alcohol and other types of drug use. There have been at least 25 reports of people have sometimes serious liver issues as a result of this supplement. This includes things like hepatitis, cirrhosis, and liver failure.
Given this potential risk, it would be highly recommended to consult with a doctor or medical professional before actually using it. It would also be strongly recommended to start with a very low dose and only consider raising this after you are fully familiar with the effects and benefits.
The generally recommended dosage of Kava Kava is between 250 and 500 mg per day. However, there are many experts who also suggest that taking less is safer. Different supplements react differently to different body chemistry, so understand that your ideal dose may require a bit of adjustment and experimentation.