If you suffer from a sleep disorder, you’re not alone. Over 70 million Americans suffer from sleep disorders, and one out of three people have insomnia at some point in their lives. Chronic sleep disorders can be frustrating, debilitating and may lead to other health problems. While there are plenty of medical options available to treat sleep disorders, the best treatments are often found in nature.
Here are 12 natural remedies to combat insomnia:
As you may know, valerian is one of the most common remedies for sleep disorders, thanks to its sedative and muscle-relaxing properties. Valerian induces relaxation to promote deep sleep, and studies have shown it may even improve the overall quality of sleep.
- Mix 1 teaspoon of dried valerian root into a cup of hot water.
- Cover and steep for 15 minutes, then strain and add honey while warm.
- Drink this tea at least one hour before bedtime.
Chamomile induces sleep by relaxing the nerves and muscles. Drink a cup of warm chamomile tea one hour before bed to promote better sleep.
- Mix 2-3 tablespoons of dried chamomile into a cup of hot water.
- Steep for 3-5 minutes.
- Strain and add 1 teaspoon of honey.
- Drink while warm.
3. Warm Milk
Drinking a glass of warm organic milk before bed can have a relaxing effect on the body. Milk is full of calcium, which helps regulate melatonin — the hormone that controls sleep.
- Mix 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon powder and a little honey into a glass of warm milk.
- Drink at least one hour before going to sleep.
Bananas are considered to be a natural sleep aid, because they contain an amino acid known as tryptophan, that helps raise serotonin levels. Serotonin helps to regulate sleep patterns. Bananas also contain natural muscle relaxants, in the form of magnesium and potassium, that help promote sleep.
- Eat a banana one hour before bed every night.
- Make this banana cinnamon tea recipe and drink it 1-2 hours before bed.
5. Lavender Oil
The aroma of lavender has a calming effect on the body, relaxing the body and promoting better sleep.
- Put 1-2 drops of lavender essential oil in a handkerchief and place it near your pillow while you sleep.
- You can also add several drops of lavender oil to a bathtub filled with warm water and soak in
- the bath for 20 minutes, one hour before going to bed.
- Chew a handful of dry roasted almonds at least 1 hour before bed.
- You can also spread 1 tablespoon of almond butter on a piece of toast, and have it with a glass of warm milk before going to bed.
7. Oil Massage
Massaging the body with warm coconut oil can help improve blood circulation and relax the nerves to promote a better night’s rest.
- Slightly warm some coconut oil, then rub the oil on your neck, shoulders, back and feet.
- Massage the oil into your skin for 10 minutes using circular motions.
8. Lemon Balm
Lemon balm, also known and used as Melissa essential oil, is said to relieve anxiety and calm the nerves, which enhances sleep quality.
- Mix 1 teaspoon of dried lemon balm into 1 cup of hot water.
- Let it steep for 5-10 minutes, then strain.
- Drink several times a day to notice improvements in your sleep pattern.
9. Epsom Salt Bath
Taking an Epsom salt bath 1-2 hours before going to bed can promote a more sound sleep. The magnesium sulfate in Epsom salt soothes sore muscles and calms the nerves.
- Add 1/2 of Epsom salt to warm bath water.
- Stir for a few minutes until the salt dissolves, then soak for about 20 minutes.
Nutmeg is a popular spice with a long list of health benefits, including help with insomnia, thanks to its mild sedative properties.
- Grind nutmeg, then consume 1/4 teaspoon dissolved in warm water about 4-5 hours before bedtime.
- You can also add freshly ground nutmeg to your nighttime tea.
11. Tart Cherry
Cherries contain melatonin, a hormone that helps regulate the sleep-wake cycle. Researchers from Louisiana State University found that drinking Montmorency tart cherry juice helped sleep time among older adults with insomnia.
- Drink 1/2-1 cup of tart cherry juice twice a day.
- You can also eat a handful of tart cherries before bed.
12. Golden Turmeric Milk
This mixture of turmeric, coconut milk, and ginger can reduce inflammation and ease your digestive system, helping you get to sleep faster.
- 2 cups of coconut milk
- 1 teaspoon of turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper
- A one-inch piece of ginger, sliced
- Raw honey to sweeten, if desired
- Add all ingredients to a saucepan except the honey, and whisk.
- Heat over medium heat until the mixture starts to bubble, then turn the heat to low and allow the mix to simmer for about 5 minutes.
- Strain out the ginger, add the honey and stir.
- Drink before bed.