What Is Kava? Why is it Gaining Popularity?
Kava’s real name Piper Methysticum is grown primarily in the islands of the Pacific Ocean - so Fiji, Micronesia, Vanuatu, the Samoas and Tonga.
People who live on these islands have used Kava for hundreds of years, mainly for social gatherings and natural medicinal purposes
The two most prominent alkaloids in Kava are kavapyrones and kavalactones
These alkaloids target the neurotransmitters in the brain - specifically the Gamma - aminobutyric Acid neurotransmitter - which is responsible for the activity in nerves.
Kava is known to relax the activity going on in your nervous system - promoting calm, relaxing effects and promoting a better sense of well being - aka Happiness!
Originally - the Islanders would chew the roots in their mouth until it became similar to a paste - and they would spit it out for others to use
(Don’t worry - we do not follow these practices at Happy Hippo)
Now, the root of the Kava plant is dried out and crushed down into a powder by hand, and we order our Kava already in powder form from our supplier
This powder can either be put into a capsule, tablet, tincture or taken just as raw powder (which is the way us Hippos prefer to take it)
Raising in popularity in the US - Kava Bars are the new place to relax and grab a drink after work, without risking the hangover effects that alcohol brings
The Kava is made like traditional tea; the roots are ground down, and placed into a strainer bag. The bag is then soaked in warm water, while the ‘Kava Barista’ kneads the bag, applying pressure for about 10-15 minutes. The bag is squeezed dry and the pulp from the roots is discarded. This ensures that the best part of the kava is making up most of the drink - rather than the roots in combination.
The Barista may also add other ingredients to help with the bitter taste - such as pineapple flavor or milk
Fun Fact #1: The word Kava translates to ‘Bitter’, and Piper Methysticum translates to ‘Intoxicating Pepper’
We have two very special Kava options for our customers to choose from
If you do not like one - you are sure to like the other
Vanuatu Kava is derived from “The Fire Islands of the South Pacific”
As stated on our product page - Our Vanuatu Kava is selected from Kava plants 5 to 6 years in age that have been organically grown in rich volcanic soils.
The difference between this Kava and our Fijian Kava, is that this Kava is a Juice Extract - meaning it is extra potent
Our Vanuatu Kava is described as being better for work and being productive than our other Kava
Our Fijian Kava Root is derived from the Kadavu Island in Fiji
Super Waka Kava is pure root - meaning no leaves or stems!
Fun Fact #2: “Waka” is the Fijian word meaning “Lateral Roots” - the Lateral Roots of the Kava Plant are known the have the most potent concentration of Kavalactones
This Kava in particular has the highest level of natural Kavalactones that you can find out there - 15% to be exact! So although it is not an extract like the Vanuatu Kava - it is still just as strong because it is very pure and potent compared to generic Kava you may find elsewhere.
Our Waka Kava is best used for relaxing after a long day - not used for getting things done around the house
How to use Kava:
Start with about 2-6 oz Milk, or Coconut Water - adding sweetener to Kava is not uncommon
Always remember when trying something new, start small!
Start with 2 grams (1 tsp) and work your way up by 1/2 gram at a time (1/4 tsp)
Increase serving size until you achieve your desired effects - but be careful not to take too much
Kava can cause severe drowsiness if taken in high servings, so you should most definitely not take it before operating a vehicle or heavy equipment
Kava and Kratom
Kava should not be taken with Kratom directly - they should be taken at least 4 hours apart from each other
Kava at 10 AM means no Kratom until 2 PM, at the earliest
The reason for this is because Kratom and Kava essentially have the same effects when consuming - so taking them together may cause drowsiness more than anything