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Home / News / Is Kava Safe?

Is Kava Safe?

Diana Grace image

By Diana Grace

Published July 28, 2021

“We do not fear the unknown. We fear what we think we know about the unknown.”

Teal Swan

Most of us have been told since our childhood that we shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. Sometimes, that is really hard. Especially when it comes to food. 

Passion fruit looks fairly normal when it is attached to the plant. The flower grows in vibrant shades of purple. It’s actually rather beautiful and exotic in appearance. When the fruit grows, it develops into a deep shade of purple.

The appearance of the fruit is nothing spectacular. It begins as a green ball of fruit and turns into a deep shade of purple as it ripens. A bowl of purple passion fruit sitting on a table makes a beautiful centerpiece. 

Passionfruit radiates a fabulously intense smell when you cut into it. The smell is so delicious that many companies have attempted to copy it for their scented lotions and soaps. 

Just don’t look at it. Because when you do …

Dear baby Jesus, what is this weird stuff? Are those frog eyes hiding in here? Or some sort of larvae?

Then, you’ll need to go get a drink of water because you probably just threw up in your mouth a little at the sight of it. Passion fruit looks absolutely revolting. It truly appears that a creature has laid eggs inside that lovely purple shell.

Nope. That is the actual fruit you are supposed to put in your mouth, chew, swallow, and enjoy. Mmm-hmm. Yeah. Biting into slimy egg-looking things does not seem like a good plan. 

And yet. Passion Fruit tastes delicious. 

Is Kava Safe, 3 fruits stacked next to each other.

We make judgments about people, places, and things all the time. Every single day, there is something that we judge without even realizing it. Sometimes we judge on appearance. And sometimes we judge based on what we hear from other people. 

Why do we do that? Why do we listen to Cousin Jenny on social media to get our information?  We just assume that she has done the research and knows what she’s talking about. Then we tell ourselves that we have enough information to make a good decision.

Good grief. If we are going to make guesses about something, we should at the very least make educated guesses. But that’s not usually what most of us do. And you know what? Quite often, our not-so-educated guess is completely wrong.

This is especially true when it comes to our bodies. We get drawn in by the latest fad or refuse to try something natural because our buddy told us it’s just snake oil. 

Natural solutions are not “snake oils.” When you actually do your own research you will more than likely find information that is contrary to the assumptions made by people. People have been dealing with health issues using elements found in nature since the beginning of time. 

Traditional medicines have been created to mimic plant derivatives. Yep. Nature did a whole lot of it first, and then we made chemicals to copy it. 

Kava is one of nature’s small miracles known by the people of the Pacific Island cultures. They’ve been using it generation after generation in their cultural rituals,  to relax at the end of a hard workday, and to celebrate life’s events.

In American culture, this is one of the biggest questions people continue to ask: 

Is Kava Safe?

That is a great question. And it definitely needs to be answered thoroughly because there are a lot of assumptions and pieces of misinformation floating around out there. The internet has a lot of accurate information … And a whole lot of very inaccurate information. 

So first, we are going to talk about the rumors you may have heard about kava.

Myth #1: Kava Will Cause You to Hallucinate

Kava Will Cause You to Hallucinate, woman under her bed covers wondering if she is hallucinating.

Pacific Island natives use kava for celebratory purposes in marriages and coronations of new kings. They use it as a means to promote unity through an overall feeling of calm, peace, and happiness.

Contrary to what you may have heard, kava is not the equivalent of island culture LSD. Kava will not take you to a new plane of being in the universe and show you your spirit animal. It is not mind-altering. 

Myth #2: Kava is Just Like Alcohol

You can debunk this myth rather quickly by doing about two minutes of research. Alcohol is a depressant. It goes straight to your brain and affects the parts controlling speech, judgment, self-consciousness, movement, motor function, vision, and memory. That is a lot of impairment ladies and gentlemen!

In addition to all of those lovely side effects, alcohol also dehydrates you and leaves you hungover the next day. Speaking of being hungover, it is clinically proven that drinking too much alcohol causes damage to your liver, heart, and pancreas.

The similarity between alcohol and kava is that they both have mood-altering effects on their users. But that’s about it.

Kava does not work like alcohol in your body. It doesn’t go to the brain and depress your responses. It works with the neurotransmitters that affect your body’s reaction to stress and basically stops you from having those unwanted reactions in your mind and body. 

You can drink kava in the middle of the day at work to help you remain calm and increase your focus. Your cognition is not impeded by kava. You get a little happy, not loopy and slow.

Myth #3: Drinking Kava Leads to Liver Damage

This is a biggie. The stories out there about kava causing liver damage have run rampant. Those stories have grown legs and moved all over the kava community.

Let’s briefly talk about spinach. How many times over the years have we seen something on the news about spinach making people sick and, in turn, being recalled off of grocery store shelves? It has happened several times. 

Did that keep you from eating spinach again? (Pretend you love spinach like Popeye, okay.) No, of course, it didn’t. You already know that not all spinach is bad. Just a particular shipment of it from a certain location because it was not properly washed and inspected before making its way to our local grocer’s aisles.

This is similar to what happened with kava. When kava is appropriately harvested, packaged, and brewed it is safe to be consumed. Just like most other consumables, there are standards to follow in order to do that. 

Should the kava be mixed or ground the wrong way, or contaminated while being processed through harvesting or packaging, then kava can absolutely become toxic. 

Kava should be tested for purity before it's made ready for human consumption. 

The Truth About KavaLet’s get right to it. Yes, kava is safe for human consumption! When you ingest the good stuff, you are on the right track. 

For starters, if you are going to try kava there is one major thing that you must remember. Here it is: High-quality noble kava is the only kava recommended for consumption

There are two types of kava: noble and tudei. We will never suggest that you consume tudei kava. Tudei is like the evil twin of noble kava. Its effects on the mind and body are not good for you, nor are they safe. Plainly put, noble kava is a completely superior strain of kava. 

Dosage is important. Kavalactones are the key component when considering your daily doses of kava. In the same way that you have recommendations for supplements, you will need to follow the suggested dosage for kava. 

Most experts would suggest that you keep your kavalactone consumption under 250 milligrams in a twenty-four hour period. 300 milligrams at the absolute most. So be sure to read labels and do your math. (Or let’s be realistic, make your phone do the math.)

You will want to consider any possible drug interactions before you consume kava. Liver enzymes work to break down kava. Those same enzymes help break down other drugs or supplements. So, if you take both at the same time the kava can prevent the other drugs from doing their job.

When it comes to kava consumption, go for the root. If the brand of kava you are considering uses any other part of the plant, just say no. The stems and leaves of the kava plant can damage your liver. That kava is contaminated and not the pure kind meant for our ingestion.

The roots of the kava plant are where noble kava gets its magical powers. Kavalactones are waiting within the roots to be ground up and deliver a bit of calm just for you. Now, listen. Do not have any grand illusions about drinking ground-up kava root. It is not like root beer or good ol’ fashioned sarsaparilla.

The Polynesian word for kava is “awa,” and it means bitter. They were not joking. It is appropriately named! Drinking a plain tincture of kava or a plain cup of kava tea will probably cause you to pucker in strange places and possibly cause your gag reflex to kick in. (Unless you ate a lot of dirt as a kid. In that case, you may have some great memories flooding your mind.)  

Pure noble kava should be like drinking a cup of calm in the midst of an anxious storm. It helps to slow down your racing mind and mellow your edgy body, bringing with it a sweet blanket of happiness.

Umm. That sounds pretty fantastic, right?! 

But the taste. Yep. Plain kava is undeniably bitter. We’d say earthy, but that’s just sugar-coating it for you. 

And why chase your tail scouring the internet for high-quality kava or develop an acquired taste for it when you don’t have to? We have a completely safe solution to the bitterness.

Calming Co. has taken the guesswork out of finding a safe kava product. We partnered with the best scientists we could find to create Ü Relax so we could bring you the safest, most reliable experience with kava on the market. 

You will never find the low-quality tudei kava present in our Ü Relax Calming Shots. Just four ounces of pure noble kava expertly combined with other clinically proven natural ingredients: lemon balm, ashwagandha, chamomile, and L-theanine. It’s a recipe for total relaxation. 

We formulated Ü Relax to deliver stress relief in its purest form. Nothing was left to chance when it comes to our quality and effectiveness. That’s why we did a double-blind study to prove just how fantastic our calming shots are. 

Oh. And did we mention that we also handled that pesky problem of bitterness just for you? We sure did. You can enjoy Ü Relax on an empty stomach in the middle of the day without the worry of gagging. A little pineapple, a little berry, or a bit of both. The choice is all yours.

So What?

You can’t believe everything you hear or read. So much research given on the internet is out of date. Make sure your sources are current and reliable. Things that were once thought to be true about kava damaging the liver have since been disproved.

The truth is that kava is safe when you stick with the right dosage and the right strain of kava. Do not exceed 500 milligrams in twenty-four hours and go with the purest noble kava.

You can feel confident about quality and safety when drinking Ü Relax because we went to great lengths to make sure we are giving you kava that just makes you feel good.