California poppy
California poppy


California poppy (Eschscholzia californica) is a plant known for its bright orange flower. It's been traditionally used as a medicine in teas.

California poppy contains chemicals that might cause relaxation and sleepiness.

People use California poppy for anxiety, insomnia, aches, and many other purposes, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses.
When taken by mouth: There isn't enough reliable information to know if California poppy is safe or what the side effects might be.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if California poppy is safe to use when pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Surgery: California poppy can slow down the central nervous system, causing sleepiness and other effects. California poppy might slow down the central nervous system too much when combined with anesthesia and other medications used during and after surgery. Stop using California poppy at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.


There is interest in using California poppy for a number of purposes, but there isn't enough reliable information to say whether it might be helpful.
Likely effective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly effective Effectiveness definitions
Likely ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Insufficient evidence Effectiveness definitions

Dosing & administration

California poppy has been traditionally used by adults as a tea. But there isn't enough reliable information to know what an appropriate dose of California poppy might be. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult a healthcare professional before using.

Interactions with pharmaceuticals

Sedative medications (CNS depressants)

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

California poppy might cause sleepiness and slowed breathing. Some medications, called sedatives, can also cause sleepiness and slowed breathing. Taking California poppy with sedative medications might cause breathing problems and/or too much sleepiness.

Interactions with herbs & supplements

Herbs and supplements with sedative properties: California poppy might cause sleepiness and slowed breathing. Taking it along with other supplements with similar effects might cause too much sleepiness and/or slowed breathing in some people. Examples of supplements with this effect include hops, kava, L-tryptophan, melatonin, and valerian.

Interactions with foods

Both alcohol and California poppy can cause sleepiness. Using them together can cause too much sleepiness and might reduce the ability to safely drive, operate machinery, and perform other tasks.
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