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Herbal Therapy For Insomnia : Top 7 Herbs and Supplements

One of the essential factors for a person's health is a fair amount of sound sleep. It helps your brain and body function adequately and improves memory, creativity, decision-making, and learning. 

However, not having sufficient sleep is linked to a higher risk of diabetes, heart diseases, and obesity. Despite this, sleep quantity and quality are at an all-time low, and many people have a poor sleep schedule.

herbal therapy for insomnia

It would be great if you keep in mind that sound sleep starts with better practices and habits; in any case, it is not enough for many. It demands a little extra help for getting better sleep by considering trying the following natural sleep-promoting supplements that can act as one of the best herbal therapies for insomnia.


1. Melatonin 

The hormone melatonin is produced naturally in a person's body during sleep hours and signals their brain, telling them that it is time to sleep.

This cycle of hormone release and reduction in the blood is influenced by the time of the day, i.e., melatonin levels naturally rise in the dusk and fall at dawn. Henceforth, its supplements are a popular sleeping aid, particularly when its cycle is detracted, such as during jet lag. 

Certain studies have reported that melatonin enhances daytime sleep duration and quality. This is advantageous for people whose schedule demands them to sleep in the day, for instance, the people working night shifts.

Therefore, melatonin is used for improving sleep quality in people with insomnia by reducing the time that people take to sleep, also known as sleep latency, and by increasing the total duration of required sleep. 

However, certain studies did not observe a positive effect of melatonin on rest because they were pretty less in quantity. They have observed advantageous effects by using 3 to 10 mg of melatonin before going to bed.

These supplements are found to be safe for adults either for a longer or shorter period. It is one of the best home remedies for insomnia and natural sleep aid.  


2. Valerian Root

herbal therapy for insomnia

Valerian root is a herb native to Europe and Asia and is one of the best herbal therapy for insomniacs. Its roots are commonly utilized as a natural remedy for conditions like depression, menopause, and anxiety. Valerian root is one of the most consumed sleep-promoting herbal supplements in Europe and the United States of America. 

However, the studies are inconsistent anyway. Ladies with menopause and postmenopausal sleep deprivation can use this supplement for improving their sleep quality and sleep disorder symptoms as per some randomized controlled trials

According to other literature reviews, 300 to 900 mg of valerian can enhance self-rated sleep quality if the right amount is taken. However, all the counted improvements in these studies and trials are subjective. They rely on the people's perception of sleep quantity and quality other than being on personal measurements taken while sleeping, including heart rate and brain waves.

At the same time, many studies have reported positive effects of this supplement and are found to be negligible. For example, it might lead to little improvement in sleep latency. 

Nonetheless, short-term usage of valerian root is safe for adults with infrequent and minor side effects. As an adult, you can consider experiencing it for yourself despite the lack of objective measurements behind valerian. However, safety is still a concern for long-term and in particular populations like lactating and pregnant women. 


3. Passionflower

herbal therapy for insomnia

Also known as maypop or Passiflora incarnata, Passionflower is a popular herbal therapy for insomniaIts species are linked to sleep improvements and are native to North America.

Besides, they are now cultivated in Asia, Australia, Europe, and Africa. Its sleep-promoting effects are demonstrated in animal studies; however, its impact on human beings solely depends on the form of consumption. 

study in human beings compared the results of a placebo formulation made from parsley leaves with the impact of a passionflower tea. People have each of these teas an hour before going to bed for one week daily with one week break between the two of them. Every tea bag was steeped for 10 minutes, where the researchers took adequate measurements of the sleep quality.

The objective measures indicated the participants had not experienced improvements in sleep after the three weeks of study. The subjects rated 5% higher during the passionflower tea week than the parsley tea week upon being asked to subjectively rate their sleep quality. Those who had passionflower extract for a 2-week-period experienced significant improvements in specific sleep parameters compared with a placebo group in a recent study of people having insomnia. 

The parameters noticed are as follows:

  • The total time of sleep: The amount of sleep they had other than lying awake in the bed was shortly called sleep efficiency. 
  • The time of waking up after sleep onset: According to a study held in 1998 compared the effect of 1.2 grams of conventional sleeping pills, passionflower supplement, and a placebo. There ought to be no difference between them all. 


4. Magnesium Glycinate 

A mineral included in several human body processes, Magnesium Glycinate, holds importance for heart health and brain function. It is one of the best herbal remedies for insomnia. Moreover, it might also help to calm the body and mind by making them fall asleep easily.

According to research, magnesium's relaxing effect can be due to its efficiency in regulating melatonin production, as it is known for relaxing muscles and inducing sleep. As per the study, 46 people took 500 mg of magnesium daily for eight weeks and benefited either way and had better sleep quality. They also had higher blood levels of renin and melatonin that are hormones used for regulating sleep.

As per an older study, a combination of vitamin B, magnesium, and melatonin effectively treated sleeping disorders, including insomnia, regardless of the cause. Magnesium also increases GABA levels, also known as gamma-aminobutyric acid, a brain messenger with calming capabilities. 

However, studies have proved that an insufficient magnesium level in the body is linked with troubled insomnia and sleep. At the same time, increasing magnesium intake can help in optimizing the quantity and quality of sleep. 

In another study, people used 225 mg of magnesium and had a better sleep than those given a placebo. However, that supplement also had 11.25 mg of zinc and 5 mg of melatonin that made it difficult to attribute the effect to the magnesium supplement all alone.

However, all of these studies have been done on older people who have had lower blood magnesium levels to start with. It is not sure if these effects can be as strong in people having dietary magnesium utilization.

Magnesium certainly has a relaxing impact on the brain and body that improves sleep quality. Henceforth, it is safe to say that it is one of the best home remedies for insomnia and Behrbal's Supplement Magnesium Glycinate 400 mg successfully does that.


5. Glycine

The amino acid glycine plays a crucial role in the human body's nervous system, enhancing and improving the sleep cycle. Its working is precisely unknown; however, glycine acts by lowering the body temperature at bedtime, alarming sleep time. 

As per a 2006 study, people having a low sleep cycle took 3 grams of glycine instantly before going to sleep. The glycine users reported less fatigue the next day they woke up. According to them, their peppiness, clear-headedness, and liveliness were higher than the rest of the mornings. 

Another study was done in 2007 and investigated glycine's effects on people having low sleep cycles. The researchers measured their heart rate, brain waves, and breathing while they were asleep. Compared with the placebo group, the people who had three grams of glycine before sleep showed improved sleep quality. 

Not only a sleep cycle, but it also improves daytime performance in the people partially sleep-deprived, as proven by a study.

The researchers restricted the participants' sleep for three nights and gave them 3 grams of placebo and 3 grams of glycine to the test and control groups, respectively before they went to sleep. The glycine users reported more positive responses than the placebo ones with reduced daytime sleepiness and fatigue. 

You can increase glycine intake by having rich food items, such as:

 - spinach

 - kale

 - bone broth

 - meat

 - eggs

 - poultry

 - fish

 - beans

 - cabbage

 - bananas

 - kiwis


6. Lavender

herbal therapy for insomnia

The lavender plant is one of the best herbal therapies for insomnia that can be found on all the continents. It makes purple flowers that have a wide range of household uses once dried up. Also, its mild odor is used for enhancing and boosting sleep hormones.

According to several studies, simply smelling lavender oil can improve sleep quality, and this effect comes more substantial in the ones having mild insomnia, such as young people and females.

A study in older people with dementia has reported that lavender aromatherapy helps improve sleep disturbance symptoms and increase total sleep time. Another group of 221 people with an anxiety disorder was given 80 mg of lavender oil or a placebo every day. At the end of the 10th week, both groups showed improvements in the duration and quality.

Hence, lavender has established itself as one of the best home remedies for insomniaAlso, lavender users have been found to have improved quality of life due to better sleep quality without having any side effects.

Taking lavender orally has been associated with nausea and stomach pain in some people, although lavender aromatherapy is a natural sleep aidThese essential oils are for aromatherapy and not for oral digestion; thus, using them adequately makes it entirely effective in its way.


7. Deep Sleep-Natural Sleep Aid

As the name tells, the Natural Sleep Aid Supplement serves as an effective herbal therapy for insomnia that allows you to fall asleep faster and better while keeping you restored.

It is scientifically proven to be the best therapy with excellent ingredients found in nature. These herbal sleeping pills help the adults calm their anxiety, support adrenal health, and improve sleep quality.

Besides, it also helps to restore cognitive function and wake up renewed and refreshed. It comprises natural herbs with amino acids' availability to optimize sleep, allowing you not to depend on pills with side effects for a longer time.


Other Supplements

Besides the supplements mentioned above, there are certain other sleep-promoting supplements in the market. Here are some of them:

  • Saffron: Beherbal's Golden Saffron Extract is a 100% natural supplement made out of the Cocus Stevia plant, clinically proven for its effectiveness. This supplement not only rejuvenates your skin but can also help improve your sleep and overall quality of life.
  • Tryptophan: One gram of tryptophan per day having amino acid can improve the sleep cycle. It helps in falling asleep quickly. 
  • Ginkgo biloba: Taking ginkgo Biloba almost an hour before going to bed can reduce stress, promote sleep, and enhance muscle relaxation. 
  • L-theanine: Daily consumption of this supplement can enhance relaxation and sleep factor. It can be more effective if combined with GABA. 
  • Kava is another one that can be linked with sleep-promoting effects in many studies. It comes from the South Pacific islands and is in the form of tea. However, it is not confined to tea form and can be consumed in the supplement form too. As per studies, it has negative and adverse effects; thus, many countries have banned its usage.


Other Over-The-Counter (OTC) Options

Diphenhydramine is one of the active ingredients that can be used for causing drowsiness and enhancing sleep. However, it is not recommended like other supplements as it may cause:

- Reduce sleep quality

- Dizziness

- Confusion

- Dry mouth


Follow Your Doctor's Advice

Always consult your physician or doctor before using any drug or supplement. If anything can be useful for a specific time, it can be worse at a later time.

Every medicine and supplement has its benefits and side effects that can influence you accordingly. In case you are already on drugs or have some health issues, you should consult your physician at every cost. 

As goes the proverb, 'Health is wealth,' taking care of your health using the best health supplement can make your internal system better. Always heed the doctor's advice and take adequate care of yourself. 



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  2. Sadeghniiat-Haghighi, Khosro et al. ‘Melatonin Therapy in Shift Workers with Difficulty Falling Asleep: A Randomized, Double-blind, Placebo-controlled Crossover Field Study’. 1 Jan. 2016 : 225 – 230.
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  5. Djokic G, Vojvodić P, Korcok D, et al. The Effects of Magnesium - Melatonin - Vit B Complex Supplementation in Treatment of Insomnia. Open Access Maced J Med Sci. 2019;7(18):3101-3105. Published 2019 Aug 30. doi:10.3889/oamjms.2019.771
  6. Lillehei AS, Halcón LL, Savik K, Reis R. Effect of Inhaled Lavender and Sleep Hygiene on Self-Reported Sleep Issues: A Randomized Controlled Trial. J Altern Complement Med. 2015;21(7):430-438. doi:10.1089/acm.2014.0327
  7. Rondanelli M, Opizzi A, Monteferrario F, Antoniello N, Manni R, Klersy C. The effect of melatonin, magnesium, and zinc on primary insomnia in long-term care facility residents in Italy: a double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2011;59(1):82-90. doi:10.1111/j.1532-5415.2010.03232.x