Valerian

Valerian-400x266Sometimes described as nature’s tranquilliser, valerian (Valeriana officinalis L.) grows wild in North America and Europe although it is also cultivated for medicinal purposes. The name valerian is thought to come from the Latin ‘valere’ meaning ‘to be well’.

The erect, fluted stems can grow as tall as 2m, with indented leaves forming a rosette around the base of the plant. Throughout summer it boasts umbrella-shaped clusters of pinkish flowers that grow from a tuberous rootstock or rhizome, which contains its active ingredients. These are harvested in autumn after the leaves have died back.

History of Use

Valerian was used as early as the fourth Century BC recommended by the Greek physician Hippocrates. Both the Greeks and the Romans used valerian medicinally mostly for digestive problems, nausea, liver complaints and urinary tract disorders. It has a distinctive, rather unpleasant smell and was aptly called ‘phu’ by the Greek physician Galen who was the first to write about valerian’s use as a treatment for insomnia.

In Medieval Europe valerian was credited with tranquilising properties that could cure or at least treat epilepsy. It was also used during this period as a remedy for stomach upsets and as an antidote to the plague.

Since April 2014, all herbal medicines for sale in the UK and Europe must be approved by the Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) having been rigorously checked for safety and quality. They must also display the Traditional Herbal Registration ‘THR’ logo on their pack.

Use of valerian for insomnia and nervous conditions became more common in the 1500s and since the 1700s has been widely taken as a sedative, as a remedy for nervous disorders, trembling, headaches and heart palpitations.

The following products contain Valerian


  • Herbal Store Sleep Aid
    Herbal Store Sleep Aid
    A traditional herbal remedy to promote a natural calming sleep.
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  • Kalms Night
    Kalms Night
    A traditional herbal medicinal product used for the temporary relief of sleep disturbances, based on traditional use only.
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  • Dormeasan Sleep Valerian-Hops Oral Drops
    Dormeasan Sleep Valerian-Hops Oral Drops
    Dormeasan Sleep is a traditional herbal medicinal product used for the temporary relief of sleep disturbances resulting from mild anxiety. Based on traditional use only.
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  • GOOD-NITE
    GOOD-NITE
    A traditional herbal medicinal product used to aid sleep.
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  • Natures Aid SleepEezy
    Natures Aid SleepEezy
    SleepEezy is a traditional herbal medicinal product used for the temporary relief of sleep disturbances due to symptoms of mild anxiety based on traditional use only.
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  • Stress Relief Daytime Valerian-Hops Oral Drops
    Stress Relief Daytime Valerian-Hops Oral Drops
    Stress Relief Daytime is a traditional herbal medicinal product used for the temporary relief of symptoms of stress and mild anxiety. Based on traditional use only.
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  • Vitabiotics Valerian Tablets
    Vitabiotics Valerian Tablets
    Vitabiotics Valerian is a traditional herbal medicinal product used for the temporary relief of sleep disturbances and mild anxiety. Exclusively based upon long-standing use as a traditional remedy.
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  • VALDRIAN
    VALDRIAN
    A traditional herbal medicinal product used for the temporary relief of symptoms of mild anxiety and to aid sleep.
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  • Kalms Night One-a-Night
    Kalms Night One-a-Night
    A traditional herbal medicinal product used for the temporary relief of sleep disturbances, based on long standing traditional use only.
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  • Herbal Store Stress Relief Tablets
    Herbal Store Stress Relief Tablets
    A traditional herbal remedy to aid relaxation from everyday stresses.
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  • Kalms Day
    Kalms Day
    Traditional herbal medicinal product used for the temporary relief of symptoms associated with stress such as mild anxiety based on traditional use only.
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