You are reducing stress, getting exercise, and turning your electronics off an hour before bed is effective strategies for getting better sleep. But what about natural supplements?
Herbs have been used for their tranquilizing properties for centuries. "herbal" comes from the Latin word "herba," meaning grass or plant. And while it may not be a magic elixir, some herbal remedies can help you get a good night's rest. Here's everything you need to know about herbal supplements for sleep and which ones work best.
What are herbal supplements for sleep?
Herbal supplements for sleep are compounds used to help with sleep promotion. These supplements are used to help with insomnia and other sleep-related issues. These supplements can be taken in a few different ways.
They can be taken as a tea, liquid extract, edible, or even pill form. Some of the most common herbal supplements for sleep include chamomile, kava, passion flower, valerian, and melatonin.
Kava is a plant that grows in the South Pacific region. Long used as a home remedy for anxiety and insomnia, it has a long history of usage as a medicine. Kava has a long history of safe use, and significantly few known side effects are associated with this herb.
Kava is also non-habit forming, which means you can take it regularly and not worry about becoming dependent. Kava is effective at reducing anxiety and promoting relaxation. These effects have been observed in both laboratory studies and clinical studies.
Kava is thought to produce these effects by acting on neurotransmitter receptors in the brain. Kava has been shown to act as a serotonin reuptake inhibitor and as a GABA receptor modulator. Kava may also influence other neurotransmitters, such as dopamine and acetylcholine.
The blooming plant known as chamomile is native to Europe and Asia, although it is widely grown in North America. Chamomile has long been a medicinal herb commonly used to treat insomnia and anxiety.
Several chamomile species, including German and Roman chamomile, are used for medicinal purposes. Chamomile is usually ingested as tea and is thought to have calming and sleep-inducing properties.
Several studies have investigated the use of chamomile for insomnia. These studies demonstrate that chamomile is an effective treatment for insomnia. A review of these studies concluded that chamomile is significantly more effective than a placebo for the treatment of insomnia.
The passion flower is a flowering vine that is native to the tropical regions of the Americas. Passionflower has been used for centuries as a medicinal herb, most often as a natural sleep aid.
Passionflower is also commonly used to treat anxiety, headaches, and other conditions. Passionflower is usually ingested as a tea or in an edible. Passionflower has been the subject of several studies, including randomized controlled trials investigating its effectiveness for sleep.
These studies have generally found that passion flower is a safe and effective treatment for insomnia. A meta-analysis of these studies concluded that passion flower is significantly more effective than a placebo for the treatment of insomnia.
Valerian is a flowering plant that is native to Europe and Asia, but it is also cultivated in North America. Valerian has long been used as a medicinal herb and is most commonly used to treat insomnia, anxiety, and other sleep-related disorders.
Valerian is usually ingested as a tea, extract, or edible and has a pungent and distinctive smell. Several studies have investigated the use of valerian for insomnia.
These studies demonstrate that valerian is an effective treatment for insomnia. A review of these studies concluded that valerian is significantly more effective than a placebo for the treatment of insomnia.
The pineal gland in the brain produces the hormone melatonin. Melatonin is naturally produced in the brain throughout the day and night, peaking during the middle of the night. Melatonin is also available in supplement form and is commonly used to treat insomnia.
Melatonin has been investigated in several randomized controlled trials, which have generally shown that melatonin is an effective treatment for insomnia. A review of these studies concluded that melatonin is significantly more effective than a placebo for the treatment of insomnia.
GABA and Shiatzu
Gamma-aminobutyric acid is a neurotransmitter that is naturally produced in the brain. GABA is frequently touted as a natural sleeping aid and is often included in herbal supplements.
GABA is also frequently used as an alternative treatment for anxiety. Some clinical studies have investigated the effectiveness of GABA for sleep disorders, but the results have been mixed. Some of these studies have found that GABA is effective for sleep, and others have found that it is not adequate for rest.
Herbal mixtures for sleep
Certain herbal mixtures are effective for sleep. Valerian and hops, chamomile and hops, lemon balm and passion flower, and kava are some of the most common combinations that are effective for rest.
If you have trouble sleeping, you must speak with your doctor about what could be causing the issue and what treatment options are available. While herbal supplements may help in some cases, they are not a permanent solution. Once the cause of your sleep issues has been identified, you can work with your doctor to find the best treatment approach.