Saturday, April 9, 2011

Paradise Kava's Answer to the "Kava Extract" Market

Let's face it - there haven't been a whole lot of great "to go" Kava options on the market. Almost every Kava "capsule" that has been released - Kona Kava's Kavalovetones, Gaia Herbs Kava, Solaray Kava - has been at best something that tastes like Kava if you crush it with your teeth. At worst, they are worthless investments that do absolutely nothing. With the exception of Yogi Tea's "Kava Stress Relief," I have never found a dry root, fresh root, or instant Kava replacement that truly delivers kavalactones "on the go." Sometimes you absolutely need Kava when it's not quite easy to brew up a bowl of grog. Now we have a solution.

Paradise Kava, who have brought us fresh Hawaiian Kavas such as "Black Beauty Blend," or dry root Kavas such as "100% Awa," also offer a couple different solvent-free Kava extracts. Each small bottle is $12, which is a steal considering I still haven't gotten through one of them (though I have been dipping into two different ones). They are by far the strongest and most effective "instant" Kava solutions available. Adding to that, they are much tastier and more pleasurable than breaking up chunks of instant Kava and mixing it with water.

Each of these extracts comes in a small ointment-sized container that resembles a lip gloss or make-up of some kind. The directions are to get a pea-sized quantity on the end of a popsicle stick (I used a matchstick, because it was easier) and place it under your tongue. The extract comes in two flavors - "Chocolate and Orange" and "Honey and Lemon." They are both extraordinarily delicious. The "Chocolate and Orange" flavor has a kind of orange, mint, and chocolate chip type of flavor and the "Honey and Lemon" tastes something like a lemon bar dipped in honey. To be honest, I would flip a coin if I had to choose between the two. They are both very good, though I've found myself reaching for the "Chocolate and Orange" more than the "Honey and Lemon."

Just like Kava from the shell, this stuff gives you a strong numb feeling in your mouth and throat. Most poignantly, it gives you a strong buzzing numbness under your tongue and your inner gum line. The effects are, not surprisingly, very immediate. In terms of the actual feeling of this extract, it resembles Paradise Kava's 100% Awa, which is my personal favorite of the dry root Kavas available. I'd say three or four pea-sized doses of this stuff put you on level with about two shells of the 100% Awa.

As I just finished writing my Master's Degree thesis, this stuff has really got me through the last six weeks. When feeling overwhelmed with stress, nothing hits the spot like some Kava. When brewed Kava root is too tedious to make, having this with you can be a lifesaver.


  1. would like to know more about these products, but I can't find them on The website seems to be unfinnished or under construction.

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  2. I love your kava blog!

  3. Yeah right now they just have the option to pay via paypal to an e-mail address which seems sketchy...Kavasseur, how did you get your kava? Did you pay with paypal?

  4. these guys are legit. i buy my kava from them.

    Adil gives excellent customer service as well.

  5. These "guys" are legit - I was on vacation on the big island in mid-february and there was a girl selling paradise kava's products at a booth at Hilo's farmers market. I bought the honey lemon at the time and think it is "just ok" but am very tempted to buy and have them ship some frozen.

  6. This comment has been removed by the author.

  7. I just ordered this can't wait to get it!

  8. Just ordered from Paradise Kava, very anxious for it to arrive! It does seem like a very professional organization. Here's how it worked for me:

    1. Emailed the site at, asked about prices, shipping, and availability
    2. Adil (guy from their Youtube videos) responded with all the relevant info, answering all my questions
    3. I replied with my order via email
    4. Went on Paypal, clicked on "Personal" --> "Send Money" and had the appropriate amount sent to
    5. Received confirmation email

  9. yes I tried them out just now and they are definitely legit. The extracts arrived a couple days ago and tonight my boyfriend and I are going to try it!! very excited. hopefully they will get us slighty krunked, that would be nice since we haven't had kava in a while

  10. Great site, I appreciate the reviews.

    However, you mentioned in a post awhile back that kava is in danger of FDA pressure due to companies creating extract based products...

    Don't you think this product qualifies as a danger to kava's future?

  11. I believe he was referring to two things: acetone/alcohol based extractions that have been linked to liver toxicity (possibly extractions containing stems or other poisonous parts of the kava plant) AND new "anti-energy" drinks containing kava like "Mary Jane."

    The former were the cause of the 2002 liver damage scare and are proven to be dangerous. Paradise kava is a CO2 extract). The latter are part of a new trend of "anti-energy" drinks that market themselves as a legal high (which true kava drinkers know is inherently misleading) and likely part of the FDA's current clamp down. These drinks are problematic as they tend to encourage irresponsible use. Teens and other groups that are likely to abuse kava are more apt to drink these than go through the extended process of making a traditional batch of kava. Thus, as seen in the recent concern regarding "Four Loko," when substances that are otherwise legal and safe (in moderation) are marketed to abuse-prone groups, the government swoops in to the rescue.

  12. yeah and these jerks that are selling these "relaxation" drinks with kava extract in it are causing a stir. The ripple effect from the "herbal incense" craze, and "vicozens" out there may ruin many many great plants and herbs' reputations in the years to come :(

  13. I tried some of the honey/lemon extract tonight and it was outstanding. Very tasty and potent. I've tried the Kona extract, and this was much more potent and tasted a lot better. A little goes a long way, but I will definitely be ordering some more!

  14. I tried the Chocolate and Orange. It was my first experience with Kava ever, and I was very disappointed. Did not like the taste, and I didn't feel anything. Not like I was expecting to be intoxicated or anything, but it did not relax or mellow me at all. I was virtually the same as before I took it, except disappointed. I took a little more than a gram the first time.

    A couple of hours later, I took about 3 grams. About an hour later, I took the rest of the 9 grams I originally had. Nothing. :(

    I hope to find a different form of Kava that works for me.

  15. I agree with the above commenter.. this extract is weak! Very poor value. I took 10 grams in an hour and basically felt nothing. I can't believe this stuff got a 10/10 rating. I'm an experienced kava user so I know what's good. Maybe they are shipping a different batch now than the one that is reviewed. On the positive side, the taste is good (for kava) and their service was great. If you're going to order, get their powdered root kava or the frozen stuff. I have the root powder, it is good.

  16. continued from the above post, I have emailed them to ask if I got a different batch, I will post more soon.

  17. (continued from above) Nope it's the same batch but I didn't take it as prescribed (let it dissolve under tongue, don't just swallow) and take it on an empty stomach. I tried it this way this morning and got satisfactory results. Still not as strong as I was expecting, but ok. They describe it as mild strength, which I was not aware of. Thanks to Paradise Kava for the fast and friendly response.

  18. Glad we could sort that our Kyle. Actually it's not mild, and I believe we wrote "It never gives the FULL "krunked" effect of a kava beverage, but it is not designed to. It's designed to mildly relax, and that it does."
    However, the most important thing is that we can be of service in the best possible way, even if that means taking returns right away, and doing what it takes to make it right!
    Adil Ghiasi -

  19. Wow - seems to me that this is more a "smashboard" than anything else for Kava companies. I personally tried Kona Kava products and Paradise Kava prod. Love them both.
    Especially the drinks and capsules from Kona Kava. Their kava has a real rich nice effect... that feels natural. Not like some of the "buzzed up" kava you are bound to find more here. Trust me I lived in the islands for a decade and know my kava...

  20. Hey Douglas, should be expecting a post soon? Looking forward to some of your pending reviews!

  21. Hey guys, I've been having trouble getting noticeable effects from this kava extract apart from numbness in my mouth. How much do you usually use and how long do you find you need to hold it in your mouth for? Thanks!

  22. Have to agree, found the quality to be poor, and even in a large quantity the effects felt different. Kava is more social. I think this only extracted some of the Kavalactones.

  23. Did our earlier post in response make it? Can't seem to find it here.

  24. Apparently not, could you please post it again?

  25. The Kava Anxiety Depression Spectrum Study (KADSS): a randomized, placebo-controlled crossover trial using an aqueous extract of Piper methysticum.
    Sarris J, Kavanagh DJ, Byrne G, Bone KM, Adams J, Deed G.
    School of Medicine, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia,
    Piper methysticum (Kava) has been withdrawn in European, British, and Canadian markets due to concerns over hepatotoxic reactions. The WHO recently recommended research into "aqueous" extracts of Kava.
    The objective of this study was to conduct the first documented human clinical trial assessing the anxiolytic and antidepressant efficacy of an aqueous extract of Kava.
    The Kava Anxiety Depression Spectrum Study was a 3-week placebo-controlled, double-blind crossover trial that recruited 60 adult participants with 1 month or more of elevated generalized anxiety. Five Kava tablets per day were prescribed containing 250 mg of kavalactones/day.
    The aqueous extract of Kava reduced participants' Hamilton Anxiety Scale score in the first controlled phase by -9.9 (CI = 7.1, 12.7) vs. -0.8 (CI = -2.7, 4.3) for placebo and in the second controlled phase by -10.3 (CI = 5.8, 14.7) vs. +3.3 (CI = -6.8, 0.2). The pooled effect of Kava vs. placebo across phases was highly significant (p < 0.0001), with a substantial effect size (d = 2.24, eta(2)(p)). Pooled analyses also revealed highly significant relative reductions in Beck Anxiety Inventory and Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale scores. The aqueous extract was found to be safe, with no serious adverse effects and no clinical hepatotoxicity.
    The aqueous Kava preparation produced significant anxiolytic and antidepressant activity and raised no safety concerns at the dose and duration studied. Kava appears equally effective in cases where anxiety is accompanied by depression. This should encourage further study and consideration of globally reintroducing aqueous rootstock extracts of Kava for the management of anxiety.

  26. Seems our earlier post did not make it.
    Here it is, broken in two parts.
    Here are some possible reasons as to why you are not seeing the effects you desire.
    The reverse tolerance effect:
    It can sometimes takes weeks of steady kava use to feel it effects because of this.
    If first time users try kava extract only a few times and feel nothing more than a numbing of the mouth, no more can be expected. This reverse tolerance effect of kava seems especially relevant to the cases of those who have a generally high tolerance toward substances, or are used to taking stronger substances.
    Enough dosage taken correctly before meals:
    One needs to take enough milligrams of kavalactones to feel kava’s effect. In the case of our extracts, there is only one way which works perfectly. It’s placing a gram or two (approx a large pea size makes up a gram) under the tongue similar to how a Homeopathic remedy is administered. This helps the saliva dissolve the extract within 10 seconds or so. If simply eaten like food, our extracts work only if taken in much larger quantities.
    Also, taking kava before meals works much better than taking it after meals.
    Our kava extracts deliver 100 mg of kavalactones per dose.
    As of last week, they now deliver an even higher 120 mg per dose with their increased the strength level. (Stock with the lower % of Kavalactones will be discounted on ParadiseKava.Com)

    This step was undertaken after coming across a research paper (see below). It clearly determines the safety and effectiveness of administering 250 mg of kavalactones per day, making our product’s delivery of two doses close to the research findings.

  27. SOOOOOOOOOooooo, Mr. Kavasseur, are you ever going to post again? I're taking forever man. come on. say somethin'. Or ask a fellow kavasseur to write a pot for ya. but don't just least without a warning, we miss you!

  28. Doug - great blog. In your experience, how does Paradise Kava's extract compare to Nakamal's instant kava powder?

  29. Nakamal at homes instant powder is green kava in instant form. It is very strong and will get you krunked. Paradise kavas extract is meant for just relaxing and thats it. You can really compare the two.

  30. Paradise Kava's Extract is CO2 based with way more kavalactones per serving than any powder based kava I think.

  31. For people not familiar with Kava, it goes back again to the early days of Polynesia and is a old fashioned drink in lots of areas there. But becoming a conventional beverage is possibly not motive sufficient for persons to want to get Kava. As a substitute, they've been spreading the phrase about the other benefits of this drink. In addition to exercising and a balanced weight loss plan, Kava will probably have some immediate results on mood. Men and women order Kava to allow remain calmer, not like the much less calming effects of coffee. Some come to feel that Kava can even diminish tightness in their muscle tissues. Substances in Kava which could very well contribute to this peaceful feeling can include kawain, yongoniin and other substances.

  32. Extracts are overrated in my opinion. However, they're great for travel, keep a jar in your car or purse when you want to chill out without the mess of a traditional kneaded preparation.