3 Herbs to Promote Natural Sleep Rhythm
March brings a shot at improved weather, but also the disruption of daylight savings time. If your sleep cycle gets out of sync when the clock lurches forward (or back, in the fall), some gentle herbal supplements can help promote your natural sleep rhythm. Interestingly enough, soporific blends occasionally include herbs for energy, because a sound night’s sleep is essential to summoning energy for the challenges of the waking day. You’ll find diverse options in our online supplement store, among our single-herb extracts and in such blends as Kava Calm and Chamomile Calmer for Kids. Here’s a short list of marvelously effective herbal supplements for sleep.
This native European climber is the source of beer’s bitter flavor. Beer makers have been adding hops to their brew for a millennium. But hops have an even older history as a herb. In the Middle Ages, pillows stuffed with dried hops flowers ensured a restful sleep. The ancient Romans considered young hops shoots a taste treat, served like asparagus.
Native to the South Pacific, this member of the nightshade family is a tropical shrub with heart-shaped leaves and an aversion to too much sunshine. The root is the only portion utilized. For centuries, various Polynesian cultures have pulled the root, pounded it to release its chemical components and mixed it with water to serve at storytelling get-togethers and religious rituals. In Hawaii, one variety of kava, offered to the gods to secure specialized knowledge and creative inspiration, was considered so sacred that only Hawaiian royalty could ingest it.
Kava supports restful sleep by interacting with neurotransmitters in the brain in a way that reduces the nerve activity associated with anxiety.
In the second century, Valerian was used to promote restful sleep. Modern studies confirm that test subjects given valerian do indeed fall asleep more easily, experience fewer nocturnal awakenings and enjoy a deeper sleep state. The sweet white flowers of this European and Asian herb were once used to make perfume.
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