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Vol 5.  September 12, 2014 - Authored by Chris Allen 

The Kava
What is the Right Dose of Kava for Me?

I hear that question a lot and it is hard to answer. Are you talking about regular kava powder, micronized or instant? Are you taking about a paste extract or even a powder extract? In this article I will talk about the dose for the Powdered root, micronized and instant. I do not feel that the extracts are traditional so I will stick with the traditional powdered kava root.

Kavalactones can act on the body in different ways at different doses. There are around 18 of these kavalactones but 6 of them represent more than 90% of the total kavalactone content. As stated in an article I read, “It is true and must be noted that it is the combination of all these kavalactones that act synergisticly to give us the qualities we love so much in kava.” Also each kava strain has its unique kavalactone contents and chemotypes and thus they all provide different effects. This is another reason that I like the traditional kava root powder and not the Kava Extract, the extracts do not get all the active components that are in the natural traditional drink. An example would be the enzymes, most extraction processes destroy the enzymes and they insure well roundeInstant Kad Kava Effects.  For those who want the effects of Kava Root Powder but the convience of instant, then try Instant Kava.

Of course, the more Kava you take, the greater the effects and vice versa. But everybody has to find the Kava Dose that is right for them. We also know that different kavalactones will act faster or take longer to act and also some will not last as long as others. A good example would be DHK and DHM or as they are called, dihydrokavain and dihydromethysticin. These two kavalactones will act slow. It may take 15-30 min before you feel their effects. On the other side of the kava shell you have Kavain or just "K". This kavalactone acts in about 5 min but it does not last as long as the DHK or DHM. Studies suggest that each kavalactone has certain effects but it is the combination of them that create the synergy effect. You cannot feel the full effect taking just K, DHK or DHM. 4.

I drink kava for many reasons. One day I might have worked real hard and I want something for my sore muscles so I need a strong Kava Effect.  Kava is a great anti-inflammatory.   Other days I just want to relax with a milder Kava Effects. The way I get the different effects is by controlling the dose. I use 40-50 grams of instant or micronized and mix it with about 16 ounces of water. I mix it real good by shaking it in a jar and then I will take a big gulp or two and then wait for about 10-15 min. Then I will take another big drink or two and wait another 10 min. I do this till I find the spot that I want. Most of the time I never finish the drink, I end up saving the rest in the fridge till the next day. Chugging your kava every 15 minutes is what I call “Kava Dosing” and I stop when the I get the desired effect. By waiting 15 minutes, you allow all the Kavalactones to take effect.

If I were using a medium grind powder I would use about 100-120 grams with 16 ounces of water.
If the kava does not do what I want using these directions then I am thinking it is not a good strong kava.

The way you drink the kava will have make a difference too. I like to have my kava in a jar so I can shake it up before I drink it, as most of you know the kava settles to the bottom after a few minutes. I will shake up the kava and then wait for 30-60 seconds and then I will drink. I want some of the kava powder to settle but not all of it, if I wait too long then it all separates and has to be shaken up again. A close friend who loves kava will shake it up and drink it right away and he drinks the entire jar. This just goes to show you that each person is different. So to find your Kava Dose you have to experiment but “dosing” every 15 minutes will help you get there.

One of the problems is that it is hard to know how many kavalactones you are getting in a drink. If you were taking a standardized Kava Extract then it would be easy. An example would be a 55% kava extract, that means that the extract is standardized to have 55% kavalactones. This means that if you have a 1 ounce jar of 55% kavalactone paste then 55% of that ounce is kavalactones. If you take a teaspoon of the paste, 55% of the material on the spoon will be kavalactones. A 30% powder extract is the same way. If you see a 10 to 1 ratio that means that they used 10 ounces of kava to make 1 ounce of extract, these are mostly liquid tinctures and take note that I am using an ounce as a point of reference, it could be 10 pounds of kava to make 1 pound of extract.

Now back to the dosing. A lot of the kava studies are done with a standardized extract so they can control everything including the amount of kavalactones. Some of the studies say a typical dosage of kava when used for treatment of anxiety is 300 mg daily of a product standardized to contain 70% kavalactones. A lower dose of 150 mg daily has also been tested but may be less effective.  The typical Kava Dosage for insomnia is 210 mg of kavalactones 1 hour before bedtime.

For some people this will be just the right dose but some might need less. Those that use less can space their shells and find the right dose over a period of time. And here is the disclaimer:

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Kava is not intended to cure, treat, diagnose, or prevent any disease. I am just giving information on how I make my kava and encouraging everyone to space their shells and stop when they find the right dose. Remember, you can always store the remainder in the Fridge for later. I hope you all enjoyed this article and I hope that it helps you find the best Kava Does for yourself.

Aloha nui loa

Drink Kava in Moderation
What is the Right Kava Dose

The Kava Blog