The name “Valerian” comes from the Latin verb valere, which means “to be strong” or “to be healthy.” Such a bombastic name echoes the ancient origins of this medicinal herb, as Valeriana officinalis has been used in traditional medicine for more than 2,500 years as mild sedative and tranquillizer and to aid the induction of sleep.
Valerian is an herb native to Asia and Europe, nowadays commonly grown in many countries and quite abundant in China. The mature plant may reach a height of 1.5 metres and during the summer period it shows off delicately scented pinkish flowers, used to make perfumes since the Middle Age. Unlike its flowers, the Valerian root presents a pungent, distinctive and earthy odour given by the volatile oils it contains.
The Valerenic acid contained in this herb is now well renowned for its interaction with with gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a chemical messenger that helps regulate nerve impulses in our brain and nervous system. Numerous studies confirmed GABA levels to be negatively correlated with wake after sleep onset and low levels associated with anxiety and poor-quality sleep. Patients suffering from primary insomnia generally shown GABA levels about 30% lower than average.
Even though its mechanism of action has remained long unknown, recent research have suggested that Valerenic acid is able to inhibit the breakdown of brain’s GABA, resulting in a natural way to counteract restlessness and anxiety, inducing calmness and relax. Discover now our Valerian root Dry Extract >0.8% Valerenic acid, the latest addition to our new catalogue of SinoVital botanical specials!