For the passed few days i've been taking kava more and more and I've been noticing more and more pleasant effects from it, and it seems to be getting better and better. The anxiolytic effects may not be as strong as a benzo, but there are other benefits that accompany the kava that the benzos can never give you.
For one I've noticed that kava has been helping with my recent depression, It absolutely puts me in a more positive mood when I take it. 2 it makes me more aware, when I meditate I'm able to get into a more awake, yet relaxed state of mind. 3 it produces a pretty good buzz of euphoria which I don't really get from the ativan that I take. 4. It kind of puts me to sleep, but not the drowsy hypnotic type of sleepy feeling you get from benzos, its like your physically sleepy, but not mentally sleepy.
The only problem that I have with it is that it kind of messes with your coordination, much like alcohol. I've heard people have gotten DUI's from using Kava.
As far as the taste goes its pretty nasty, but first thing first, you gotta buy the root powder, and you gotta strain the root powder through a cloth, from my experience it potentiates the active ingredients in the kava, and it doesn't have that disgusting chunky texture to accompany it. The best mix I have found so far is to mix it with dark chocolate cocoa powder, the flavor is strong enough to knock out the bitter flavor of the kava and actually kind of compliments it.
All in all I would say kava is a good thing to take in between your benzo regimen to prevent tolerance. It can also be good for helping you cope with benzo withdrawals. It kind of takes some getting used to and you gotta give it a few chances before it you really feel anything, because it took me almost half a bag before I felt any definite effects.