Kava - dosage. How much can you drink?
The way kava is drunk today is hardly like traditional consumption. Where it is a cultural drink, quite little was consumed, and if larger amounts, it was usually spread over a longer period of time, even a few hours, that the meeting lasted. However, it was a recreational and cultural drink, and today the methystine pepper is most often approached in a much more pragmatic manner, so the dosage must also be more precisely determined.
What does the dosage depend on?
It is difficult to find unambiguous and universal dosing rules for kava root. You usually need to select the correct dose individually, using general guidelines as a starting point. What will the dosage depend on?
The content of active substances.
Plants from the pepper family, including Piper methysticum, are distinguished by quite variable levels of active substances. Depending on the variety of methistine pepper and which part of the plant the raw material was prepared from, the content of kavalactones can be from 3 to 20%. Logical - the more of them, the smaller the dose of the root should be served at the beginning.
Supplements for a drink.
Basically, kava should be extracted in water, but to enhance its effect it is worth adding milk, nut drink, MCT, etc. to the solution, because kava lactones are more fat-soluble, in the case of such enriched beverages their properties will be more pronounced and may be slightly reduced doses.
The primary factor that will influence the dosage is the effects you want to get. Strong kava has a more calming effect, while in a dose 2-3 times lower it has a slightly stimulating effect and increases creativity. The effect will of course depend on the concentration of kavalactones, and not just the amount of herbs used.
When selecting the dose, it is definitely worth taking into account your own metabolism. If you want to get kava several times a day, remember that the effects can be cumulative. The extract will be weaker if some time has passed since you made your drink, so if you are a busy person you may have trouble finding time to drink a fresh drink.
Kava and its active substances exert their effects primarily through the nervous system. Methystine pepper should therefore be dosed with some caution. Be careful, especially if you are just starting your experiments or trying a new genre for the first time. Remember that methistine pepper is quite a variable plant - different varieties grow in different Pacific islands, and are also handled differently, and the dosage of one product can differ significantly from the other. What rules should you follow?
- Start with small doses - you can easily increase them later, and if you drink too strong a drink right away, you may become unnecessarily discouraged.
- If you're not used to kava, it's best to use a scale, not a teaspoon, so that you can always measure exactly the amount you want.
- If you weigh over 70-75 kilograms, you can use 2.25 - 4.8 mg kavalactones / kg body weight as a starting dose. This is less convenient than using the standard portions of kava, but doing so will allow you to better select the amount of roots.
- Always check how the manufacturer recommends dosing a specific product. Depending on the quality of the root, how it was processed and whether the product contained only roots, or maybe even fragments of the stems, the producers may recommend a modified dosage.
The effects of overdose.
If you can buy a good quality product, you probably won't have anything to worry about when it comes to side effects. Research indicates two types of possible effects: some of them arise after consuming small doses - mainly fatigue and possibly a slight headache. Most of the effects of an overdose will only be seen with high doses and longer intake if the kavalactones are not completely removed before they are replenished. This group of side effects includes:
- skin sensitivity or local mild inflammation (usually limited to redness);
- partial desensitization to sensory stimuli (this symptom will be more severe if kava is consumed with alcohol);
- the so-called a hangover - symptoms will be similar to typical party hangovers, but usually disappear faster (leave a bottle of water next to your bed);
- tiredness or agitation.
Pacific Islanders deal with the side effects by simply eating right and drinking a lot the next day. These are all short-term effects, and although they are unpleasant, you can avoid them when you understand what portion to use to achieve a beneficial effect without side effects.
Is Kava safe?
Scientific research does not indicate any adverse effects associated with the regular consumption of the drink based on kava root. Of course, it is worth remembering that when the dose is regularly exceeded, such undesirable effects may appear, but in this respect it is not an exceptional product.
Starting with small doses, you can see how your body reacts to kavalactones and adjust the strength of the extract to your needs. Kava is legal in Poland because the negative effects of its regular intake have not been noticed, and the effects of a single overdose, although unpleasant, do not pose a real threat to health.