Diazepam (Valium) is a synthetic analog to Valerian. Valium doesn't come from Valerian, but the active compounds are chemically similar. Both Valium and Valerian root are thought to affect the level GABA amino acids in your brain, which are related to increased anxiety levels.
Dr. Oz calls this the Sleep Secret of Greece. He suggests using Valerian as a smooth muscle relaxant to aid in treating insomnia, back pain and sciatica. Shows 11/16/2012, 10/28/2011, 06/08/2011
Constituents: Valepotriates, valtrate, didrovaltrate, acevaltrate, isovaleroxy-hydoxydidrovaltrate; volatile oil, esters, bornyl isoValerianate, bornylacetate, bornyl formate, eugenyl isovalerate, isoeugenyl, isovalerate alcohols, eugenol, terpenes, Valerianol, sesquiterpene alcohol. Alkaloids including chatinine, valerine and two others similar to skytanthine.
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Valerian Root is used as a smooth muscle and skeletal relaxant to aid in treating insomnia, back pain and sciatica. It may also be used to alleviate gastrointestinal pain and irritable bowel syndrome as well as reducing hypertension thereby regulating blood pressure.
Known Dosage (for Adults) ½ teaspoon in a cup of warm water, adjusting dosage by an additional 1/4 tsp.
Note: Effects are felt quickly and may last up to 6 hours. Do not assume more is better as there can be adverse effects from over dosing.
Do not drive or operate equipment while taking Valerian Root tincture. Valerian root is nontoxic, but may cause side effects such as slow muscle reaction and disorientation. Over dosing can cause the muscles to feel weak and should not be taken before driving or operating heavy equipment.
Do not take Valerian if you are also taking depressants, such as alcohol, benzodiazepines, barbiturates, or opiates.
People with impaired kidney or liver functions should not take Valerian except under a physician’s supervision.
Valerian should not be used with Kava.
LiveStrong.com "Valerian Root vs. Valium" RxList.com University of Maryland Medical Center Dr. Weil on-line [endtab]
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The information provided here is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgement of your physician, pharmacist or other healthcare provider and should not be construed to indicate that the use of this herbal product is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. Consult your healthcare provider before taking this herbal product.