Citation: HerbalWisdom. "Pleasant and an Energetic Buzz: An Experience with Galangal (exp95765)". Erowid.org. Dec 26, 2017. erowid.org/exp/95765
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This experience happened a few years ago. I don't recall the exact date. However I had given up using illegal substances for a few years at this point but still had a fascination with altered states of mind and medicinal herbs. After reading some reports on galangal, I decided it would be fun to try. On a day off work, I went shopping to see if I could find some galangal. At one of the shops I visited, I purchased a small package of one of my favorite candies which is a a gooey, sweet, spicy ginger candy. I ate several pieces of it throughout the day and ate nearly the whole package. After visiting a few stores, I finally found a bag of dried, powdered galangal root at a popular chain store which specializes in selling spices. I went home and made my preparations.
I boiled some water and placed it into a coffee mug. I poured in about 1.25-1.5 cups of boiling water and thoroughly stirred in 1 tablespoon of the powdered galangal root. I also spat into the mixture figuring it might do something after reading this suggestion in the report titled 'Calm with a Capital 'C'.' Though I don't recall exactly how long I let this sit, I'd estimate 15-20 minutes so that it would cool enough to drink comfortably.
At this point the root powder had settled to the bottom of the mug, and the liquid was a dark reddish-brown. I had a prayer group meeting that night, so I grabbed the mug, hopped in my car, and started driving to church. Unsure of what to expect, I decided to take it cautiously and took sips of the beverage (which was a little warmer than room temperature at this point), swishing them in my mouth thoroughly before swallowing. The taste was very spicy which was fine by me as I love hot peppers and fresh ginger. I found the taste pleasant; it was similar to yet quite distinct from ginger. The drive was about 10 minutes long, and I was just finishing the mug as I pulled into the church parking lot. All that was left in the mug was wet root powder which looked like mud and a tiny bit of water. I parked my car, and it was about this time that I realized I was definitely feeling something. I was a little unsure if I should go into the building at this point, but I went ahead and walked inside.
The buzz I was experiencing was mental in the sense of feeling pleasant. I don't know that I would call it euphoria, but it was an improved mood.
I don't know that I would call it euphoria, but it was an improved mood.
There was also a body buzz. It really felt like I had taken one or two hits off a bowl of mild cannabis, but it didn't have the dreamy, sedative quality of cannabis. It was a more 'uppity' or energetic buzz.
I went inside and joined my friends. There was no mishap of any kind. I didn't feel mentally or physically impaired. The only thing weird which happened is a friend of mine looked at me and said it looked like my hair was blonde (I have dark brown, almost black hair). I thought this was really weird, and I know it sounds crazy but I can't help but wonder if some plants cause strange phenomena like changes in our body's electromagnetic field (or aura, if you want to call it that) which can sometimes be perceived by others.
Anyway, I'd say the strongest part of the buzz lasted about 30 minutes, and by the time the 1 hour meeting was over most of the effects I was feeling were gone or barely noticeable. I just kind of felt good the rest of the evening. I didn't have any negative side effects that evening or in the following days. Some users report diarrhea or such the next day. I did not experience this.
I have since tried galangal in varying amounts, but I have never experienced the same level of intensity again as I did the first time. There are two things which I suspect may have influenced the potency of the galangal. The first is the saliva I added to the mixture. As suggested in the aforementioned experience report, it may be that, like kava, galangal may have constituents which are made more bioavailable after reacting with saliva? The second factor which may have played a part is the fact that I had been eating ginger candy all day. One article I read online said that alpine turmeric, when combined with galangal, creates a more potent experience. Could it be true also with ginger? Maybe galangal acts synergistically with other botanically related plants like ginger and turmeric. I think this possibility needs to be explored more thoroughly.
Just a few last notes about galangal. The writer of 'Calm With a Capital 'C' claims galangal helped with his heart arrythmia. I also have a mild issue with this sometimes and occasional angina. I have found it to be helpful for this as well. I use it for stomach complaints when I don't have ginger handy, and like ginger it seems to benefit me in relieving generalized anxiety. It also tastes great in rice or in Thai cooking. So even if I never catch a buzz from it again, I keep some handy for cooking and medicinal use.
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