Naturopath and Nutritionist
Needing some help getting those Zzzz’s?
Following on from our tummy settling tea recipe, here’s a little remedy to help you fall asleep.
Do you find it difficult to doze off, or perhaps you wake up frequently during the night? Note that this is not intended to replace any medication, nor be taken as medical advice. If you are taking any medications which affect your nervous system, such as benzodiazepines, check with your medical practitioner whether or not this recipe would be appropriate for you.
There are some beautiful flowers and plants which also elicit some amazing relaxing actions on the nervous system. If you can, forage the following dried flowers/herbs, combine equal amounts of them, and store in a dark, cool and dry container to make your own not-so-common “Sleepy Tea”.
One serve should be one tablespoon of the herbal blend, steeped in hot water for 5-10 minutes.
If you find that drinking liquids before bedtime results in frequent toilet visits disturbing your slumber, another option would be to make a more potent and concentrated beverage. This can be done by using the same amount of dried herbs, in a much smaller amount of water (eg: a shot). If you’re not a fan of the flavour of the pure herbs feel free to add a splash of honey or maple syrup.
Passiflora incarnata, Passionflower, one of my favourite plants in the world! The flower itself looks other worldly, and brilliantly divine, something which inspired Avatar, perhaps? In my experience, Passionflower aids with frequent night wakings and the inability to fall back to sleep once awake, in addition to being beneficial at balancing out the sympathetic nervous system (your ‘fight and flight’ response).
Scutellaria lateriflora, Skullcap is a wonderful nervous system tonic, helping to aid with anxiety and restlessness, helping you drift off. A great plant to incorporate, because who hasn’t had one of those nights where you are tossing and turning with too much on your mind? Perhaps the night before a big event or something exciting
Melissa officinalis, or Lemonbalm leaves is great for the nervous system and the digestive system. It helps to ease that ‘nervous tummy’ feeling, so if you find yourself tossing and turning at night, feeling nervous or anxious, this is a great addition to your blend. It is a nervous system tonic, and mild sedative. Lemonbalm is not advised for those who have hypothyroidism.
The three herbs above make up the main bulk of the sleepy tea, however if you would like more flavour or aroma, good old Lavandula spp. (Lavender) makes for a lovely addition if you’re a fan of the smell.
Drink a cup with dinner and one 30 minutes before bed, or just have one cup. It’s totally up to you. Enjoy!
Kimberly Kushner BHSc (Nutritional Medicine), BHSc (Naturopathy) is a clinical nutritionist and naturopath who aims to provide you with the finest holistic health care. Her approach in assisting you to optimal health is practical, compassionate, empathic, and scientific. Kimberly treats acute and chronic health conditions and her main areas of expertise include, but are not limited to: reproductive health (women’s and men’s), digestive complaints, food allergies, healthy weight management, detoxification, and more.
Passionflower: Flicker Liz West
Skullcap: A. Sergeev