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6 Insomnia Herbs - Natural Remedies to Help You Sleep

6 Insomnia Herbs - Natural Remedies to Help You Sleep

6 Insomnia Herbs - Natural Remedies to Help You Sleep

You've been struggling to get a good night of sleep consistently, and you've tried all the tricks. You don't look at your phone close to bedtime, you avoid eating or drinking too late at night, and you have all the accessories that make for an ideal sleep environment. But still, restful nights elude you. 

If you're looking for something that will give your sleep hygiene the boost it needs to help your drift off to dreamland when your head hits the pillow, there are insomnia herbs & natural remedies that could be an excellent addition to your evening rituals. 

If you're interested in using natural herbs for sleep, you've found the perfect guide. Here, we share the most popular herbs for sleep, explain why they may help people catch the Z's they need, and show you how you can start implementing these ingredients in your routine. Read on for the information you need to start making big changes to your bedtime worries. 

1. Full Spectrum Hemp Oil

You may know full spectrum hemp oil by another name: CBD. While there are CBD oils that aren't full spectrum, full spectrum hemp oil often provides the additional cannabinoids because it contains all the naturally occuring compounds of the plant it's derived from. The nature of this full spectrum product makes many consider it a more reliable compound. 

As the name suggests, full spectrum hemp oil and CBD come from the hemp plant. CBD oils never contain over 0.3% THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). This is the chemical that provides the mind-altering effects of marijuana. But without the THC, you just get the plant's benefits without the high. 

Scientists are still exploring the exact efficacy of full spectrum hemp oil on treating sleep and why it works. However, early studies do point to a connection between taking CBD and improved sleep. 

These studies point to a decrease in cortisol levels when people take full spectrum hemp oil. Cortisol is a stress hormone. While it's essential to a properly functioning body, it will also keep you awake at night if your cortisol levels are inflated when it's time for bed. 

Other Potential Benefits 

Just as with sleep, there are many claims about what CBD can do to improve people's health, but the research is still lacking and ongoing. However, there are some potential effects people may experience when taking full spectrum hemp oil. 

A top effect is eased feelings of anxiety. The same studies that reviewed CBD's effect on sleep also pointed to decreased anxiety in test subjects. This may be for the same reason CBD may improve sleep: lowered cortisol levels, a stress hormone. 

And again, following the same line of reasoning for why full spectrum hemp oil is considered one of the top natural herbs for sleep, it may also ease the symptoms of PTSD. By lowering a person's cortisol level, they may be able to properly regulate their body to accurately observe signs of true stress. 

There are many health claims out there about CBD. However, many of them cannot be absolutely confirmed by trials at this time. But the good news is that full spectrum hemp oil seems to have minimal negative side effects, making it a fairly safe choice. 

You may be one of the few to experience some dizziness or upset stomachs, and it's important to discuss with a doctor if you're taking any medications as there may be some unwanted interactions between your medication and full spectrum hemp oil. 

2. L-Theanine

You may have been using L-theanine for sleep without even knowing it. That's because it's a naturally occurring amino acid that you'll find in popular, natural remedies and herbs for sleep, such as green tea. It's found in most teas in fact, and some mushrooms as well. 

So if you got into the habit of having a cup of decaffeinated green tea to wind down before bedtime, you may have already discovered the wonders of L-theanine as one of the insomnia herbs & natural remedies. 

From what studies have shown, L-theanine seems to affect the brain's neurotransmitters, increasing serotonin and dopamine. Both of these neurotransmitters affect a person's sense of calm, overall well-being, and sleep cycles. A boost of these chemicals could be what the brain needs to find and stick to a correct bedtime and get a good night of rest. 

This is further backed up by studies that show those who take L-theanine have improved sleep after several weeks of taking it. But it's not just about falling asleep. The highlighted study also showed that those taking L-theanine had improved sleep with fewer disturbances and fewer problems in their quality of sleep. These effects make it popular amongst the top natural herbs for sleep. 

Other Potential Benefits 

Like many other insomnia herbs from natural remedies, L-theanine isn't only about bedtime. With the effects from this herb on the neurotransmitters, L-theanine has been shown to help alleviate overall stress-related symptoms. This could include lowered blood pressure and fewer signs of depression or anxiety for an improved sense of well-being. 

In the same study that demonstrated the link between those taking this herb and improved sleep, reasearchers also noted improved cognitive function. This may be why a cup of tea isn't just about calming. But L-theanine combined with some caffeine could actually support both increased energy and mental clarity. So perhaps before you reach for another cup of coffee you may consider getting your daily dose of L-theanine with a nice cup of tea instead. 

3. GABA

GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) occurs naturally in our bodies and must remain high enough for people to sustain proper amounts of sleep. However, the more stressed you are, the lower your GABA levels are likely to be, even if your body is supposed to produce it naturally. So the more stressed you are, the less likely your body will be able to fight off symptoms of insomnia. 

While our bodies do produce GABA, it's also present in our food and drinks, making it one of the natural herbs for sleep. Like L-theanine, GABA is present in many teas. So when you have a cup of tea, you're likely getting a dose of GABA and L-theanine, whether you know it or not. However, it's also present in some food, such as:

  • Spinach
  • Potatoes
  • Oats
  • Rice
  • Soy Beans
  • Cruciferous Vegetables (Cauliflower, broccoli, brussels sprouts)

Research at this time concludes that the benefits of consuming GABA supplements have limited evidence in studies, but there is a large amount of anecdotal evidence available from consumers. Many claim that consuming GABA provides them with a sense of calm and eases their anxiety, therefore allowing them to get the good night of sleep that they need. 

And logically, it seems to make sense that if you could increase your GABA levels through ingestion, your sleep would be improved. After all, GABA is so crucial to a body's functioning, and sleep is an important part of that. 

Other Potential Benefits 

As mentioned above, the direct effects of ingesting GABA is limited, leaving it as one of the more mysterious herbs for sleep out there. However, when exploring anecdotal evidence while we wait for clinical trials to come through and support or dispute these claims, there are some common themes from people who use GABA supplements as their natural herbs for sleep and other remedies. 

One of the most common uses for GABA supplements is to ease anxiety symptoms. It may do this by decreasing brain activity, blocking neurons from firing when they don't need to and causing undue stress. For those who often face stress, GABA may go beyond the herbs for sleep to provide the balance needed to restore proper GABA levels. 

4. Hops Flower Extract

Ever tasted a hoppy beer? Then you've already been introduced to hops. 

Hops extract comes from hops plant (formally called the humulus lupulus). Though commonly used for brewing beer, the extract can also be used as one of the natural herbs for sleep improvements. Because of the bitter acids, it also typically comes with a bitter flavor. However, its potential effects are nothing but sweet. 

In studies, hops extract has been shown to have sedative effects. This means people will feel more drowsy at night, allowing them to fall asleep and stay asleep. Some explain these effects by pointing to an increase in GABA levels due to the extract. It may also lower our body temperature, which is ideal for sleeping well. 

Other Potential Benefits 

Hops extract has been shown to relieve young adults of mild depression, anxiety, and stress symptoms. The reason behind these benefits is still not entirely known. However, the anecdotal evidence is strong, particularly for anxiety symptom relief. 

While hops are incredibly popular in beers, the extract isn't one of the most popular natural herbs for sleep. However, it's often paired with valerian root. If you think hops extract could be right for you but you're having trouble finding it, you may want to look for valerian root products that contain hops extract as well. However, for the best results, keep an eye out for products that contain a combination of these herbs for sleep. 

5. Valerian Root Extract

Valerian root extract has long been a popular remedy for the many maladies that faced ancient people. In places and times like Ancient Greece and Rome, valerian root was a go-to remedy for many ailments. 

While the plant isn't known for having a particularly enjoyable scent, it's long been one of the top choices for insomnia herbs and natural remedies. This is because valerian is packed full of all sort of compounds that could support proper health. These include:

  • Volatile Oils
  • Phenols
  • Ketones
  • Valeric Acid
  • Amino Acids
  • Alkaloids

With over 150 substances in this root extract, it's no wonder that it's used to treat such a variety of problems. 

As for being one of the natural herbs for sleep, research shows that taking this ingredient can significantly improve sleep. This includes the sleep latency — the time it takes from getting in bed and turning off the lights to actually falling asleep. It also includes the quality of sleep and the total sleep time. On valerian root, rapid eye movement (REM( decreased, showing that people were in a deeper sleep while taking valerian root. 

Other Potential Benefits 

As we mentioned, with so many chemicals in valerian root, it's clear that this goes beyond just being one of many natural herbs for sleep. This ingredient affects people both in mind and body. 

As for physical effects, some reports pain relief from valerian root. According to the above research, it does appear to be somewhat anti-inflammatory. Anti-inflammatory ingredients do help ease the systems of many ailments which may contribute to the pain relief that people feel. 

Ancient people used the herb for menstrual cramps, migraines, and insomnia. Now, people can use it as a natural remedy to potentially support their health and decrease the amount of time they spend in bed thinking about their pains and just hoping for a better night of sleep. 

As for mental effects, valerian seems to ease anxiety by increasing the hormones like serotonin that deliver increased feelings of overall well-being. It may reduce your brain's activity in the cortex, allowing you to relax and focus on what you want to. 

6. CBN

Don't worry, you do not have déjà vu. We may have already discussed CBD oil at the top of this, but CBN is another of the herbs for sleep. 

CBN is an abbreviation of cannabinol. Both CBN and CBD come from the cannabis plant. However, CBN is actually a “worn down” version of CBD. People discovered that if they left the plant out in the sun and air, the THC compound would be less potent without harming the benefits of the plant. 

In addition to coming from the same plant, CBD and CBN also interact with a person's endocannabinoid system. This system is an integral part of the central nervous system. It affects so much of a body's function, including:

  • Eating
  • Sleeping
  • Anxiety
  • Memory
  • Learning
  • Growth
  • Development
  • Reproduction
  • Metabolism

So as you can imagine based on this list, CBN can have significant effects as one of the insomnia herbs/natural remedies. However, while there is limited research on the effects of CBD on sleep, CBN has even less. For now, research is pointing to cannabinoids in general as having positive results for improved sleep outcomes. As research continues, we'll learn more about the different effects CBN has over other cannabinoids. 

Other Potential Benefits 

As mentioned above, we currently lack the research necessary to get a full understanding of the benefits of CBN as one of the herbs for sleep. However, preliminary results point to similar results as CBD. 

In addition to improved sleep, CBN is often cited as a popular form of pain relief. This makes it a popular choice for those who want insomnia herbs and natural remedies that address both insomnia and some aches and pains. 

Because CBN is one of the newer natural herbs for sleep to start taking over the natural remedy space, it's a little harder to find. However, if you're interested, you're most likely to find it in an isolate oil or in tinctures. 

How to Use These Herbs for Sleep

With so many ingredients that are considered insomnia herbs as natural remedies, what can you do with them? Are you supposed to take all these natural herbs for sleep?  

Individually, these ingredients are commonly cited as popular remedies for sleepless nights. And you can purchase each individually and find a dosage that might work for you. Every dosage will vary based on several factors, including your:

  • Age
  • Weight
  • Mental State
  • Metabolism
  • What You've Had to Eat or Drink that Day
  • Physical Fitness
  • Level of Tolerance to the Insomnia Herbs & Natural Remedies

Of course, it can be a long process of trial and error to find the perfect remedy or combination of herbs for sleep. Ultimately, this could be time and money wasted on individual ingredients that don't do the trick for getting you a good night's rest. 

A good alternative to using these insomnia herbs and natural remedies individually is to opt for a product with all these ingredients, like MDsleep. These products are blended for optimal results and come in easy-to-use, pre-made dosages. 

Restore Your Sleep

If you need just a little more help getting tired for bedtime and falling asleep, insomnia herbs as natural remedies could be the support you're looking for. 

Of course, results will vary from person to person, so you'll need to find what works for you. However, if you're looking to take advantage of all these herbs for sleep, supplements like MDsleep combine various ingredients to support healthy sleep hygiene. And after all, a night of good sleep is exactly what we can all use after a long day. 

Learn more about how natural remedies could help you in your quest for the perfect bedtime routine that will help you rest and recover for the exciting tomorrows ahead.