Food Philosophy

The unusual relative of The unusual relative of Lamb's Lettuce: Valerian


The unusual relative of Lamb's Lettuce: Valerian

Valeriana and Valerianella, the Latin names of the two plants valerian and lamb's lettuce, already show that they are closely related. Both plants belong to the Valerianaceae family. But each could not be more different for us humans. From ancient times, valerian has been known to us as a medicinal plant that especially calms nerves and promotes sleep, so lamb's lettuce is certainly a welcome change in the winter salad selection.

But this dissimilar assessment of the two plants is not entirely accurate. Both species stand out from the valerian family and we will see that we probably underestimate lamb's lettuce and its effects.


"The main focus of the family and the most expressive forms of the type are clearly in the two genera Valeriana and Valerianella, valerian and lamb's lettuce."
(Pelikan, Heilpflanzenkunde III, P. 67)


Same family, same effect? If we look at the range of effects of valerian and lamb's lettuce, we can see a common fundamental theme. Both plants are concerned with the harmonization of the interaction between mind and soul, i.e. between thoughts and feelings and on the physical level between the energy system and the nervous system. Valerian plants reduce the influence of our emotions on our nervous system. Especially exciting emotions, such as fear, anger, rage and aggravation, are muted. Valerian and lamb's lettuce help us to achieve more peace of soul and an improved emotional balance. For example, nervousness, inner restlessness, difficulty falling asleep and "being able to switch off" count among the classic applications of valerian plants.

The unusual relative of The unusual relative of Lamb's Lettuce: Valerian

In the long term, valerian helps us to rid ourselves of negative and stressful emotions and to find our way back to ourselves. It has a strong, positive power, which makes it easier for us to generate joy, lightness and a good mood. Mentally overloaded by too much brooding and contemplation, it harnesses forces of restructuring, recovery and reassurance. Its specialty is the reduction of tensions through processing and liberation. It leads us to our true, deep emotions and needs so that we can better listen to ourselves and our bodies and realize what we really need in life.

Lamb's lettuce helps us to perceive burdens, problems and stress caused by pressure, and in the truest sense of the word, to balance and reduce pressure. Especially in situations where problems and pressures have built up to a mountain and we no longer know how we should start removing this mountain, lamb's lettuce is an important aid. It gives us the power and energy step-by-step to clear away the mountain of problems. Above all, it provides us with the mental strength to deal with blockages and to also be able to perceive our real problems better once again. With the release of energy and power during the day, lamb's lettuce offers relaxation and rest during the night and helps us in the transition of action and recovery into dynamic growth. So lamb's lettuce fortifies us from a lack of drive and activity during the day and counteracts daytime fatigue. But if we are more active during the day and release more energy, the night's sleep is thus qualitatively improved and promoted.

Both plants are helpful when we are so busy in our thoughts with negative emotions and problems that we have lost sight of the essentials and are a little bit disoriented. Especially when we lose joy and lightness in life, are under constant pressure, and feel that life is only full of problems, these two extraordinary plants - lamb's lettuce and valerian - can be of great help. Neither of these valerian plants exhibit their effects upon the first intake, but should be regularly incorporated in the diet over a period of several weeks in order to make optimal use of their powers.

You can find unusual and delicious lamb’s lettuce recipes on my Pinterest pin board. You are welcome to drop by.


Important note:

All of the findings listed here are neither scientifically nor conventional medical evidence and form no basis for the treatment of physical and psychological symptoms, complaints or diseases. Under no circumstances do they replace the consultation of a physician, pharmacist or other medically trained personnel.

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