AHPA releases updated entry for kava in the online Botanical Safety Handbook

The updated entry provides additional safety information amidst growing public interest in kava

April 1, 2024

The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) has released an updated entry for kava (Piper methysticum G. Forst.) via the online Botanical Safety Handbook, 2nd ed.
The revision process added over 45 new literature references to the kava entry. These references provide recent scientific information related to the following:

  • Pharmacological interactions with metabolism of drugs or supplements

  • Other pharmacological studies of bioavailability and enzyme inhibition

  • Analysis of adverse events and case reports

In addition, a new Food Use section is established in the entry, noting kava's history of traditional use as a beverage. The Editors' Notes section is expanded to provide context for the distinct phytochemical profiles between traditional (water-extracted) and contemporary extraction processes using organic solvents. The Standard Dose section is also updated to recognize these different forms of kava.

“We encourage consumers of any herbal substance, including kava, to take safety information available in the Botanical Safety Handbook and from other reputable sources into consideration when making choices about their personal health and wellness,” said Jane Wilson, AHPA Director of Program Development.
AHPA members can obtain an annual individual subscription to the online Botanical Safety Handbook or a hard copy for $95.00, with multi-user rates available for companies needing expanded access. Information about subscriptions and hard copy purchases can be found on the AHPA website.

Subscribers to the online Botanical Safety Handbook can review short descriptions of updated entries in the "Revisions" panel on the online version homepage when they log in. The online Botanical Safety Handbook is undergoing review of existing entries and the addition of new entries to provide the latest safety information before it can be included in the next print edition of the handbook. AHPA will continue to post additional updates to existing entries as well as develop new botanical entries.

AHPA's Botanical Safety Handbook is an essential tool for anyone who manufactures, recommends, or uses herbal products. The handbook provides safety information on over 500 species of herbs, derived from data compiled from clinical trials, pharmacological and toxicological studies, medical case reports, and historical texts. All entries are reviewed by an Expert Advisory Council that includes some of the most renowned herbal and integrative medicine experts in the United States.