Topic of articles: Diazepam and potential herbal alternatives to Benzodiazepanes

diazepam

“Diazepam is used to relieve anxiety, muscle spasms, and seizures and to control agitation caused by alcohol withdrawal.”—AHFS® Consumer Medication Information 2016

So I have become aware that quite a few people use Diazepam, or maybe better known as Valium (1 brand name used).  I said I was going to start looking into at least 1 pharmaceutical each week to better enhance my understanding of them, and to see if there are any herbal alternatives or remedies for their side effects, so Diazepam is the first of many.

Side effects from diazepam are common and include the following:

  • drowsiness
  • dizziness
  • tiredness
  • weakness
  • dry mouth
  • diarrhea
  • nausea
  • changes in appetite

—Diazepam side effects, HFS® Consumer Medication Information 2016

Article.1 link:  diazepam and kava combination article

Describes the use of Kava, or Piper methysticum, and its use in combination with Diazepam to reduce side effects, or its potential to be an alternative for minor anxiety conditions, as it is shown to cause sedation and has anti-epileptic effects.   The article is an animal study, but concludes that there was a significant increase to the MEST threshold, or the threshold of not having a seizure, seen within mice when given Kava in combination with Diazepam.  As concluded by the authors,”this combination protected against incidence of liver or kidney functional changes that render this combination a safe alternative for synthetic anticonvulsants
without loss of therapeutic efficacy,” (2013, pg.7)

Article.2 link:  The effect of most important medicinal plants on anxiety and depression article

H. perforatum (St.John’s Wort) yielded a significant difference in favor
of H. perforatum over conventional antidepressants for
withdrawal”, (2014, pg.36).

C. sativus (saffron) extract showed
significant improvement of depression over placebo”, (2014, pg.36).

“A clinical trial revealed that acute administration of
Scutellaria lateriflora attenuated anxiety [71]. A pilot clinical rial revealed equivocal efficacy to oxazepam,” (2014, pg.37-38).

This article is a systematic review and goes into quite a bit of detail into anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) herbs, including medicinal herbs that can be used as alternatives to pharmaceutical benzodiazepines.  Pages 36 -37 have tables that outline each herb, their action, as well as, their active constituent.  Keep in mind, the authors state,

“There are growing preclinical and clinical trials, which
show beneficial efficacy for herbal medicine to treat
anxiety and depression. However, concerns exist over poor
reporting of data in some clinical trials. The other issue is
that many herbal medicines have not yet been rigorously
tested in human clinical trials”, (2014, pg.38).

With this in mind, consider alternatives to pharmaceuticals, but always consult an expert before trying anything yourself, especially when mixing treatments.

Hope you enjoyed these articles, and be aware and eat with care 🙂

Refs:

Diazepam picture ref:  http://premiersupplier.net/DIAZEPAM-Valium-10mg-100-tabs-9.htm, 2016 PremierSupplier

Diazepam use/side effects: https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/meds/a682047.html, AHFS® Consumer Medication Information. © Copyright, 2016

Article.1:  “Enhanced efficacy and reduced side effects
of diazepam by kava combination”,  Rasha A. Tawfiq, Noha N. Nassar, Wafaa I. El-Eraky & Ezzeldein S. El-Denshary, Production and hosting by Elsevier B.V, 2013.

Article.2:  “The effect of most important medicinal plants on two importnt
psychiatric disorders (anxiety and depression)-a review”, Kourosh Saki, Mahmoud Bahmani & Mahmoud Rafieian-Kopaei, Asian Pac J Trop Med, 2014.