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CBD Oil vs. Kava: Thoughts from a Busy Mom

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4 NATURAL SUPPLEMENTS FOR STRESS (1)

CBD Oil vs. Kava: Thoughts from a busy mom

I just started a new job after nine years with my previous employer and I'm two semesters into grad school. My Google calendar looks like a very well played game of Tetris. Maybe it’s because I’m trying to exert a false sense of control over my life or maybe it’s because I’m trying to distract myself from something lingering beneath the surface. Either way it’s created an increase of pressure (hello white hairs) on top of the all-consuming job of running a household with two relentless kids. For the most part I can cope, but sometimes I just need a break.
I've read about the risks associated with medications like Xanax and I’ve seen friends and family members get hooked on them. And I can see why. Anxiety sucks. Sometimes my anxiety makes me feel like I’m dying, and there are very few arguments for things worse than death. So poppin’ a chill pill so I can at least breathe again; so I can see straight; so I can follow my own train of thought sounds pretty alluring to me. But knowing that Xanax causes detrimental effects even with short term use (as few as 3 days) makes me incredibly hesitant and weary. That being said, I was on the look out for a safer alternative.
Two natural remedies for anxiety that I was eager to try was Kava Root and CBD oil. I saw success stories all over the internet and social media about people using these herbal supplements to reduce stress, feel more balanced, and to not explode like a bomb after having to tell the kids to go to bed twenty-seven times.
Kava is grown in the lush jungles of the South Pacific in places like Hawaii, Fiji, and Vanuatu where it's been used for cultural and medicinal purposes for thousands of years. Traditionally, the root was ground with coconut water to make a relaxing beverage. Now kava's having a surge in popularity because of its Xanax-like qualities, but without the nasty side effects. And it’s no wonder. Study after study prove kava’s efficacy for combatting anxiety. 
CBD is a non-psychoactive compound found in Cannabis that interacts with receptors found throughout the human body. It's known to have a wide range of therapeutic benefits including easing anxiety, pain, seizures, and inflammation. And yes—CBD is still weed—if that is something that concerns you. It's not an issue for me as I'm not drug tested for work, but it is an issue for my husband who serves in the military. Would I give it to my kids? Responsibly, yes. 
After going down a few rabbit holes: reviewing the scientific literature, reading up on different brands and products, and checking out reviews, I ordered a kava extract and CBD oil that suited my needs. Both from trusted companies, clean and organic ingredients, fast shipping, and easy to use. I carefully chose a high quality kava extract that’s blended with lemon balm, passionflower and lobelia for added sedative effects. I also ordered a full spectrum CBD oil by Bloom Farms. I tried them both out on different occasions and these are my honest thoughts..

Kava Root works instantly to calm the nervous system 

The other day I was rushing home to start dinner because I had just spent an hour in traffic. I pulled up to the driveway and before I even had one foot outside of my car I heard the shrieking and crying coming from inside the house. My initial reaction was to jerk back inside the car and slam the door shut. Instead of driving away to never return, I pulled out the kava extract that I had put in my work bag earlier that morning. I sprayed the extract five times underneath my tongue. I closed my eyes and started to take deep breaths through my nose. The extract burned like Cinnamon Listerine, but I could feel it working almost instantly. At first my mouth was tingly and numb (an effect of the high quality kava) and then soon after a calm feeling just washed over my body. I didn’t feel stoned or zombie-esque, I just felt like I could breathe. Within 5 minutes, I felt calm enough to respond—not react—to whatever situation was going on inside. That evening ended up being fine. We figured things out. We listened. We apologized. I took another five sprays right before bed and I wasn’t replaying the day over and over in my head or ruminating over the critical thing my boss said to me earlier. I just curled into bed, closed my eyes and then it was morning.

CBD Oil works to restore balance to the body as a whole

As someone who enjoyed a joint over a cocktail back in the pre-kids era, I was excited to try CBD oil. Many of the things I read online stated it was the holy-grail of anxiety relief, and that it's relaxing like regular weed but without the stoned feeling. Perfect.
I started my CBD regimen when my partner was set to leave for a few weeks. It was the perfect time for some back up support. I took a dropper full of the oil which was about 20mg of CBD. Tinctures are best taken sublingually so after squirting the oil under my tongue, I let it soak in for about 30 seconds before swallowing. I did this every night before bed for a week. And honestly, I didn't feel a distinct difference like I did when I took kava. The effects were much more subtle and in ways that I wasn’t expecting. I felt like it improved the quality of my sleep helping me feel more rested. I’ve also had relief from the painful tendonitis I was experiencing in my wrists prior to starting my CBD regimen. I just felt better overall and when I feel good physically my anxiety usually stays at bay. 

CBD Oil vs. Kava: What’s better for anxiety?

I use them both but lean more heavily on kava. Stress and anxiety is my primary concern and I feel that kava combats that more directly. Whether I’m in my car or at work, I can keep the kava extract in my purse and I’m able to get quick relief if something comes up. CBD doesn't work well in the moment. In my opinion, it's better for long term support if you can afford it. I keep the remainder of my CBD oil in my medicine cabinet as my go-to pain and soreness reliever. If my wrists hurt from too much downward dog or if I have a stress migraine, I'm pulling out the CBD oil for sure.

Where can I buy Kava or CBD oil?

If you're interested in trying kava, I recommend using a high quality kava concentrate because it's portable and works fast. This company uses organic ingredients, has great customer service, and offers a free bottle to first time customers.

With such a saturated CBD market, I found it overwhelming to sweep through the thousands of different CBD brands to find a product that was right for me. My acupuncturist had recommended EAZE, a CBD delivery service that focuses only on quality and legal products. Their well curated selection helps weed out untested or unsafe products. They also give $20 off towards your first CBD purchase

Kava and CBD oil are both highly beneficial herbs that can be easily incorporated into your family's regimen. 

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About the Author

Dana Hawk

Dana Hawk

Dana is passionate about helping others find peace, purpose, and fulfillment through her writing. She specializes in relationship advice and exploring how human psychology affects our interpersonal behavior.

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