The Sitka Valerian belongs to the Valerianaceae (Valerian) family in the Valeriana genus.
The root of the plant is edible when stemmed for 24hours, although it does have a strong flavour. The roots however if eaten raw is poisonous.
Valerian is a used as a medicinal herb, it is known for its effect as a tranquilliser, nerve stimulant and calming effect – especially in those suffering from nervous overstrain. It is also known to improve sleep and sleep quality as well as reducing blood pressure. Internally it is used in the treatment of painful menstruation cramps, hypertension as well as irritable bowel syndrome. However people with liver problems should not use it. Externally, it has been used to treat eczema, ulcers and minor injuries.
The root is antispasmodic, hypnotic, sedative, stimulant, and urine inducing. The agents found in this plant help to relieve and remove gas from the digestive system. However any use of this plant must be done with caution as it is poisonous.