Content: Kava (Piper methysticum)
Preparation: Use 3-4 Tablespoons (10g) per person. Place Kava inside a cloth bag in a bowl, add 200ml of warm water. Steep for 5 mins, then mix with your hands for 5 mins. Squeeze remaining liquid from bag and set aside (re-brew it later). Alternatively, blend Kava with water for 1-2 minutes, then strain through muslin or cheesecloth. Enjoy!
Other Names: Coral flower
Grown in: Solomon Islands
Organic Status: Chemical/pesticide free
Plant Parts: Root
Packaging: Home compostable, reusable zip lock pouch
In 2002, the US FDA issued a warning about the risk of liver damage associated with Kava use. Case reports have linked kava with liver toxicity, including hepatitis, cirrhosis, liver failure, and even death. Many of these cases were linked to pre-existing liver disease, excessive kava doses, and heavy alcohol use. It is still unclear whether the liver toxicity was the result of kavalactones, contaminants found in low-quality extracts, or the organic solvents (such as acetone or ethanol) used to make kava extracts and supplements.
Even though the WHO suggests that water-based kava beverages are “safer,” the agency concedes that moderate to heavy consumption can significantly raise liver enzymes. The WHO also warned that toxicity appears linked to the quality of the raw kava root, contamination of the root during storage, and the use of other herbal drugs with kava.
It is not recommended to consume Kava if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, have depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, Parkinson’s disease, bleeding disorders, liver disease, pulmonary hypertension, low blood pressure, kidney disease, alcholism, or less than two weeks prior to surgery. Do not operate heavy machinery. Avoid prolonged use. Avoid if taking the following medications: sedatives, antidepressants, MAOIs, Benzodiazepines, diuretics, blood thinners, Levodopa, Proton pump inhibitors, antipsychotics.
For specific herb contraindications, see our detailed herb information site.
Happy Herb Co provides referenced information for educational purposes only, and does not make any therapeutic claims for any of their products.
Please seek advice from a healthcare provider if you wish to use herbs for therapeutic purposes.