Sleeping and why you need to get your z’s can be a big problem and can cause many health issues that my last article provided. Now that you are aware of the health problems let’s find some natural and herbal remedies to cope with insomnia and to continue living green and avoiding toxic chemicals and serious reactions from medications that many doctors prescribe. We all want and need to get our rest and wake up refreshed so that we can enjoy life to the fullest and regenerate our bodies every night with restful, peaceful sleep.
1. First we need to check out your bedroom:
- Is your mattress and pillow comfortable for you, is it too hard or too soft? It has been suggested that you should check your mattress 2 times a year for wear and tear. Organic mattress are great! You will probably need a prescription to purchase one since the law requires that conventional mattress and box springs have to be treated with fire retardants and many other chemicals.
- Is there other pollutants in your bedroom that could be causing you to toss and turn such as fragrances from the detergent you wash your sheets in, candles that contain toxic chemicals, other sprays or toxic cleaning products that you might be using in your bedroom?
- Do you have electronics in your bedroom that could be affecting your sleep. A laptop computer, cellphone, television all can impair your sleep from EMF and cause electronic pollution. Turn them off and take them out of the bedroom.
- Clean up any clutter if you bedroom. A cluttered bedroom leads to a cluttered mind and will make it difficult to fall asleep.
- What is your mattress and pillows made of? Does it contain toxic chemicals that could be affecting your sleep not to mention other health issues. Make sure your blankets, and bedding are made of non toxic or organic materials and not synthetic fibers that contain toxic chemicals. I have an organic cotton blanket that I have had for over 10 years and it is still in great shape.
- Is your bedroom noisy? Is so you just might want to consider a white noise generator that masks sounds by making soothing sounds to help you drift into dreamland.
- Be a dust buster. Your bedroom should be as dust free as possible. Dust makes it harder for you to breathe especially if you have allergies or asthma. It can cause allergy symptoms and seriously disturb your sleep.
2. Make Some Changes In Your Activities Before Bedtime:
- Relax, calm, and de-stress your body at least 1-2 hours before bedtime. If you are watching TV make sure that it is something that is calming or a comedy, not a horror movie or bloody murder movie.
- Don’t be on the computer or other electronic equipment.
- Do some relaxation strengths and deep breathing exercises to relax your body and mind. Try some yoga relaxation techniques.
- Listen to soothing music that has wonderful calming effects on the body.
3. Change Your Diet:
- Cut out the sugar — sugar has many negative health effects but when you eat it right before you go to bed it can make your blood sugar climbs high and then suddenly falls — your body releases hormones to bring the levels under control. Of course the sudden hormone and blood sugar swing can keep you awake.
- Stop eating preservatives, chemical additives, synthetic dyes, processed foods, aspartame, and all GMO’s
- Stay away from caffeine and alcohol especially before bedtime. Caffeine is a stimulant and will keep you wired and awake. Alcohol and caffeine increase night-time urination and affect your sleep patterns. If you have to get up to go to the bathroom chances are you can’t get back to sleep — it can disturb your sleep pattern.
- Eat organic and local harvest — use natural alternatives sugar substitutes such as stevia or raw honey
4. Herbal Remedies :
These herbal remedies for insomnia can help you find an alternative solutions without using addictive prescription that many times have dangerous side effects.
- Aromatherapy — can help relax your body and mind. Lavender oil is one of the best known aromatherapy to help lessen anxiety and induce restful sleep.
- Chamomile Tea — That warm cup of chamomile tea before bed can help you find you way to dreamland and wake up refreshed.
- Passion Flower — This herb is known for it calming and sleep inducing abilities. It is also especially useful for insomnia in asthmatics. Passion is very useful in calming nerve pain and muscular cramps. Take 30-60 drops of tincture 45 minutes before bedtime to induce a peaceful and restful sleep.
- Lemon Balm: Lemon balm tea is extremely relaxing, soothing sedative properties, reduces stress, and induces sleep. Right before bedtime — Try pouring 1 cup of boiling water over one or two fresh leaves of the herb. (You can also us 1 tsp of dried leaves but this has proven not to be as effective). Steep for ten minutes, set back and relax while you slowly sip, right before bed.
- Valerian: Very useful especially for women and for severe insomnia. Studies have shown this herb is great for irregular sleepers or if you have trouble falling to sleep. Valerian is relaxing and sleep inducing, relieves spasms, calms the digestion, and lowers blood pressure. Recommended amount is about 20 drops of tincture in water at bedtime. If used as a tea drink a cupful about 45 minutes before bedtime.
- Hops — This remedy is good for general insomnia when associated with tension, anxiety, headaches, restlessness, indigestion, and is known for its relaxing ability. Can use by mouth, in a tea or add some to your bath water before bedtime.
- St John Wort: A well-known sedative, anti-depressant and anti-anxiety, and pain reliever that also can help improve the quality of your sleep. It helps to improve sleep patterns and helps balance the serotonin in your brain. To achieve maximum benefits from St.John Wort it should be taken regularly for several weeks.
*******Some people receives more benefit from herbs through different combinations — if one doesn’t work try finding the right mixture that agrees with you!
5. Other Natural Sleep Remedies: Proven natural sleep remedies that help you sleep.
- Melatonin — Melatonin is hormone that your body naturally produces. It helps your body control sleep cycles and it peaks at night. Taking a melatonin supplement about half hour before bed can help induce sleep and keep you sleeping.
- Gaba — This is a sleep aid that is also naturally in your body. Gaba is a neurotransmitter in your brain that helps to balance out inhibitions and excitement. Taking a GABA supplement can help with those that have trouble falling to sleep.
- 5HTP — 5HTP is an amino acid that your body produces, and helps build serotonin in your body. If you don’t have the proper balance of this neurotransmitter it will inhibit your sleep and can cause insomnia. Taking a supplement of 5-HTP has improved many people sleep.
Sleep is an essential part of good health as eating an organic and healthy diet is all part of your journey to healthy and green living. When we don’t sleep our bodies can not and will not function properly. We let the door open for invasion of disease and sickness. So please, if your sleep is out of balance talk to you health care provider and ask them about some of these remedies and alternative solutions so that you can wake feeling refreshed and invigorated. If you have a favorite sleep remedy, please share it with us. I wish you all a peaceful and restful night sleep!