Published: 09/29/2010 - Updated: 08/09/2019
Author: Prof. Dr. Luis Ruiz-García
If the body does not rest and sleep enough every day, the body becomes imbalanced, it affects the nervous system and impairs the body's defenses down, increases susceptibility to infection, nutrients are poorly absorbed, health problems become more frequent and accented and cells get deteriorated and age prematurely, which can be seen evidently in the skin, hair and general weak and worn look.
So if you feel you're not sleeping, you need to remedy the situation before the lack of sleep begins to act up. There are many ways of helping to reconcile a good sleep, exercise during the day to relieve stress, eating enough nutrients, avoid being upset at night and maintain a healthy lifestyle in general. Besides this, you can dip into nature which has plants with relaxing effects that can help reconcile a good sleep and make you feel energetic and active in the morning.
Here is a list of plants most widely used for relaxing.
GENERAL NOTE: Remember not to abuse the teas, try to rest from time to time from a plant and change to another, the best is a cup daily, or see the suggestion in each. If you are pregnant it is best to consult with your doctor.
Herbs for sleep
Orange blossom: this plant is widely used to treat sleep disorders, their flowers contain an oil with strong sedative properties, which helps to relax and put to sleep. A cup unsweetened before bedtime is recommended.
Lime flower: This is the more effective and natural sedative to sleep. You can add it in bags or in bulk, and make a tea with honey before bed and drink it as hot as you can.
Passionflower: analgesic and tranquilizing properties, a medicinal plant with high wear properties to sleep like a baby. If you often suffer from insomnia or high level of stress that accompanies you to bed, do not hesitate to take two or three cups of tea passionflower during the day. The infusion can be prepared by placing a teaspoon of this plant in a cup of boiling water. Let boil 5 minutes and then strain and drink as hot as you can. Add a teaspoon of honey or molasses; avoid white sugar and derivatives that only irritate the nervous system.
Lemon Verbena: high soothing properties, plus it is a stomach tonic that reduces bloating, nervousness, anxiety, irritability and nervousness in general. To use it simply prepare a tea with a teaspoon of leaves and 2 cups water, boil 5 minutes and let stand until cool. Strain and drink.
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Lavender: fresh and relaxing properties to combat anxiety, nervousness, tension, headache, insomnia, etc. You can prepare a cup of lavender tea or give you a relaxing bath with the sweet aroma of flowers.
Valerian: gently relaxing, you can drink it in tea or give you a hot bath between the leaves. Ideal for insomnia. To prepare, just add a bag or spoon in a cup of water and boil for 10 minutes. Take two or three cups a day depending on your level of stress.
Hop: also the most effective remedy for insomnia. Beer contains hops which gives it its bitter taste, so take a beer can help you relax and put you to sleep, although you should not abuse the beer because of its alcohol content.
Poppy: one of the best plants to relax and enjoy a deep and restful sleep; it is one of the most popular for insomnia. To prepare the infusion of poppy, use two grams of flowers and let stand ten minutes in a cup of boiling water. Take a cup before bed or two during the day if you feel anxious or irritable.
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Lemon balm: high soothing, combats anxiety, nervousness, irritability, plus it is an excellent digestive. To use the lemon balm tea, mix 1 tablespoon of flowers with 1 cup water and boil for 5 min. Cover and let stand. Strain and drink, if you like sweeten with a little honey.
Parsley: anti-stress properties, helps keep the mind calm and quiet and smoothly helps you fall asleep. To use, boil 30 grams of seeds in 1 cup water for 5 min. Let stand and strain.
Verbena: helps fight nervousness and reduces tachycardia, relaxes and soothes emotional disturbed states. Prepare an infusion during the day with dried flowers in 1 cup boiling water for 5 min. Rest 10 minutes and strain. Drink hot.
Poleo-Mint: high soothing properties, helps soothe a cough and anxiety. It’s made with one teaspoon of leaves either dry or fresh with a cup of water. Boil for 5 min, let stand for 10 minutes, then strain and drink.
- National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, 2018. Sleep Disorders and Complementary Health Approaches
- Zhou, E. S., Gardiner, P., & Bertisch, S. M. (2017). Integrative Medicine for Insomnia. The Medical Clinics of North America, 101(5), 865–879.
- Burman, D. (2017). Sleep Disorders: Insomnia. FP Essentials, 460, 22–28.
- Wing, Y. K. (2001). Herbal treatment of insomnia. Hong Kong Medical Journal = Xianggang Yi Xue Za Zhi, 7(4), 392–402.
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