6 Herbal Sedatives to Help You Fall Asleep Naturally


| 6/22/2010 4:17:00 PM


More than a third of our population has trouble falling asleep at night. Sleep is the body’s natural way of restoring itself, and sleep deprivation can lead to a host of health problems, from headaches and fatigue to depression and a weakened immune system. If you’re struggling with insomnia or just having trouble falling asleep, check out these herbal sleep aids. Safe and natural, these natural sedatives will help you get a good night’s rest.

California poppy: The California poppy contains protopine, which has similar (but much milder effects) as morphine, making it a good natural sedative. Although it is a relative of the Opium Poppy, it is not an opiate, so using it won’t cause dependence problems. Steep two grams of this herb in boiling water to make a relaxing tea.

California poppies
California poppies make a relaxing herbal tea that can help you fall asleep. Photo By PYHOOYA/Courtesy Flickr. 

Chamomile: This plant is a well-known herbal sleep aid. A cup of chamomile tea before bed will help you relax and fall asleep faster. Steep a heaping tablespoon of this herb in boiling water; cover the tea as it steeps so as not to lose the calming essential oils.

Hops: Although this natural sedative is used to make beer, drinking a glass full of beer before bed does not have the same effect as drinking a tea made from hops. Alcohol will lull you into a restless sleep from which you will wake several hours later, but hops will ease you into a deep, restful sleep. Hops work well on their own, but paired with chamomile and lavender they make a lovely herbal sachet.



Lavender: Lavender relaxes the nervous system, helping you to fall asleep faster. Stuff an herbal sachet with the leaves of this plant, take a few drops of lavender tincture or place a few drops of lavender essential oil into a cup of boiling water and inhale.



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