Hops - Other Uses - Medicinal


Hops are also used in herbal medicine in a way similar to valerian, as a treatment for anxiety, restlessness, and insomnia. A pillow filled with hops is a popular folk remedy for sleeplessness. Hops may be used alone, but more frequently they are combined with other herbs, such as valerian. The relaxing effect of hops may be due, in part, to the specific chemical component dimethylvinyl carbinol. Hops tend to be unstable when exposed to light or air and lose their potency after a few months' storage.


Dermatitis sometimes results from harvesting hops. Although few cases require medical treatment, an estimated 3% of the workers suffer some type of skin lesions on the face, hands, and legs. The chemical sprays used on hops during cultivation are probably toxic to dogs, resulting in life-threatening hyperthermia.

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