Valerian is a plant with mild sedative properties that is sold as a sleeping aid and to treat anxiety. But does it work?
In the United States (U.S.), valerian dietary supplements are usually sold as sleeping aids. In Europe, people more often take them for restlessness and anxiety.
There are actually over 250 valerian species, but Valeriana officinalis is the one most commonly used for medicinal purposes.
While medicinal valerian dates back to ancient Greek and Roman times, strong clinical evidence for valerian’s effectiveness in treating insomnia and anxiety is lacking.
Still, valerian is considered safe by the U.S. Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) and is gentler than synthetic drugs, such as benzodiazepines and