What is Swamp-Root good for? Dr. Kilmer blended the fifteen herbal ingredients of Swamp-Root, coming from South Africa, North and South America, Europe, the Middle East, Tibet, and North-west China, into a balanced formula that benefits the digestive, respiratory, and nervous systems. Here are these herbs listed in order of relative percentage.
IX : Valerian Root (Valeriana Officinalis) also called Amantilla, All-heal, Common Valerian, European Valerian, Garden Heliotrope, Garden Valerian, Kediotu, Phu, Seiyo-Kanoko-So, Setwall, and Valeriana, comes from China, Europe, Germany, North Asia, Spain, and Turkey. In medicine, the root of V. Officinalis was described as Phu (an expression of aversion from its offensive odor) of Dioscorides and Galen, by whom it is extolled as an aromatic and diuretic. It was found to be useful in certain kinds of epilepsy and first brought to notice as a specific for epilepsy by Fabius Calumna in 1592, he having cured himself of the disease with it. The plant was in such esteem in medieval times as a remedy, that it received the name of All Heal, which is still given it in some parts of England.
It is said by some authors to have been named after Valerius, who first used it in medicine; while others derive the name from the Latin word valere (to be in health), on account of its medicinal qualities. The word Valeriana is not found in the classical authors; we first meet with it in the ninth or tenth century, at which period and for long afterwards it was used as synonymous with Phu or Fu; Fu, id est Valerianae, we find it described in ancient medical works of that period. The word Valerian occurs in the recipes of the Anglo Saxon leeches (eleventh century). Valeriana, Amantilla and Fu are used as synonymous in the Alphita, a mediaeval vocabulary of the important medical school of Salernum. Saladinus of Ascoli (about 1450) directs the collection in the month of August of radices fu, id est Valerianae. Referring to the name Amantilla, by which it was known in the fourteenth century, Professor Henslow quotes a curious recipe of that period, a translation of which runs as follows: 'Men who begin to fight and when you wish to stop them, give to them the juice of Amantilla id est Valeriana and peace will be made immediately.' Theriacaria, Marinella, Genicularis and Terdina are other old names by which Valerian has been known in former days. Another old name met with in Chaucer and other old writers is 'Setwall' or 'Setewale,' the derivation of which is uncertain.
Valerian is a well-known and frequently used medicinal herb that has a long and proved history of efficacy. It has a remarkable influence on the cerebro-spinal system, and is used as a sedative to the higher nerve centers in conditions of nervous unrest, St. Vitus's dance, hypochrondriasis, neuralgic pains and the like. The root is antispasmodic, carminative, diuretic, hypnotic, powerfully nervine, sedative, and stimulant. It is noted especially for its effect as a tranquilizer and nervine, particularly for those people suffering from nervous over strain. Valerian has been shown to encourage sleep, improve sleep quality and reduce blood pressure. It is also used internally in the treatment of painful menstruation, cramps, hypertension, and irritable bowel syndrome. It should not be prescribed for patients with liver problems. Externally, it is used to treat eczema, ulcers and minor injuries. The active ingredients are called valepotriates, research has confirmed that these have a calming effect on agitated people, but are also a stimulant in cases of fatigue. Valerian has an effect on the nervous system of many animals, especially cats, which seem to be thrown into an intoxication by its scent. It is scarcely possible to keep a plant of Valerian in a garden after the leaves or root have been bruised or disturbed in any way, for cats are at once attracted and roll on the unfortunate plant. Prolonged medicinal use of this plant can lead to addiction so a course of treatment should not exceed 3 months.