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Valerian (Valeriana officinalis) is a wonderful herbal sleep inducer and
tranquilizer — exceptional for helping people fall asleep faster and
sleep more soundly. Before over-the-counter medications were available,
valerian was used by herbalists to ease pain. The valpotriates in
valerian act as muscle relaxants, making it useful for painful spasms
and menstrual cramps. But researchers have discovered a number of other
factors responsible for valerian's relaxing, sedative and analgesic
effect: valeric acid, volatile oils, choline, flavonoids, sterols, and
"Valerian root has been used for centuries to calm upset nerves, treat
mood problems, pain and headache. In medieval times, valerian was so
popular it became known as "all-heal." It is currently one of the most
popular orthodox antispasmodic medications in Russia and Germany."