I was out collecting the aerial parts of the Californian poppy and other relaxing herbs and decided to share a little about calming sleeping herbs. I've met many people with sleep problems, and some had it worse after using synthetic drugs. They didn't know that calming herbs were probably enough to wind down after a stressful day and fall asleep without side effects.
Sleep is important, and the method you use for a restful night's sleep can make a real difference.
The wonders of REM sleep
People with frequent episodes of insomnia have many thoughts about sleep while actually trying to fall asleep. One of them is: "why should I sleep, anyways, if I can use this time for work?"
The short answer is that REM sleep is essential to reset your brain chemically. Throughout the day, different neurotransmitters and substances build up. Some of them are toxins or inflammatory substances. But then, entering the REM phase of sleep, the blood vessels sweep away the toxins, and the amyloid plaques are cleared out, reducing the risk of depression, Alzheimer's disease, and other problems.
One of the substances that build up in the brain is norepinephrine, a substance that turns on the amygdala, the brain's fear and alert center. By clearing norepinephrine from the amygdala, sleep reduces stress and emotional reactivity, preparing you for a new day.
Sleep is definitely useful to prevent neurodegenerative disease and reset your brain and emotions for a new day. But what can you do if you can't get asleep?
Recommended herbs for a restful sleep
In "The Wizard of Oz," there was a meadow of poppies surrounding the castle that would make everyone fall asleep. This makes me reflect on herbs that relieve tension, bringing a sense of happiness and calmness that is fundamental to fall asleep. They have helped many people with sleep problems to relax the mind, relieve tension, and prepare for bedtime.
If you asked me which herbs do I recommend, these ones would definitely be on the list:
- Chamomile: It has flavonoid substances that trigger the same receptors as sleep aid drugs, inducing sleep and quieting the mind.
- Lavender: Substances in this herb inhibit nerve impulses in key areas of the brain, reducing anxiety and agitation.
- Lemon balm: This herb stimulates serotonin in the brain and inhibits anxiety by keeping the neurotransmitter GABA activated for a longer time.
- Holy basil: It lowers cortisol level, a hormone that keeps you active throughout the day.
- Passionflower: This herb also works with the neurotransmitter GABA, making neurons more sensitive to its anxiolytic effects.
Of course, the list can be longer than that, but all herbs in the list above can work synergically in different parts of your brain to promote sleep. That is why they are all featured in the Relax & Unwind Herbal tea.
I recommend Relax & Unwind tea
if you had a stressful day and still feel agitated and tense at night. It might also help if your anxious thoughts start at night when everything is dark and quiet, and you're supposed to get asleep. The best thing is that you won't experience any side effects. Just a soothing sensation of letting go and welcoming sleep.
About Suzanna Wallace
Suzanna has a Health Science degree and is a registered Naturopath and Herbalist in Australia, and has also trained and worked in numerous healing art techniques to assist with mind, body and spiritual health. Focusing on a wide range of health topics, and the implementation of her detox and regeneration health programs, Suzanna has created her own product range, Suzanna’s Natural Life, which can be found in the ‘shop’ section of this website. Suzanna conducts consultations online zoom and in-person consultations in her clinic in Perth, Western Australia. Contact Suzanna today and kick-start your journey to achieving good health.
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This content is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of such advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. The Green Naturopath takes no responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. All viewers of this content, especially those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications, should consult their physicians before beginning any nutrition, supplement or lifestyle program.