Sleep - Natural Remedies for Insomnia by angiesmart321


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									Disclaimer and Legal Notifications
The book contains information about sleep. The information is not
advice, and should not be treated as such.

You must not rely on the information in the book as an alternative to
medical advice from an appropriately qualified professional. If you
have any specific questions about any medical matter you should
consult an appropriately qualified professional.

If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you
should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay
seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue
medical treatment because of information in this book.

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To the maximum extent permitted by applicable law, we exclude all
representations, warranties, undertakings and guarantees relating to
this book.

Without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing paragraph, we do
not represent, warrant, undertake or guarantee:

  • that the information in this book is correct, accurate, complete or

  • that the use of the guidance in this book will lead to any
    particular outcome or result.

Copyright © 2012 Insomnia Sleep Aids. All rights reserved.

No part of this document or the related files may be reproduced or
transmitted in any form, by any means (electronic, photocopying,
recording, or otherwise) without the prior written permission.

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Table of Contents
Introduction                                                         4
Chapter 1                                                            6
 How To Make Behavioral Changes To Cure Insomnia                     6
   Bedtime Habits                                                    6
   Setting Up A Sleeping Environment                                 7
   The Proper Sleeping Equipment                                     9
Chapter 2                                                           11
 Do It Yourself Sleep Techniques                                    11
   What Is Color Therapy?                                           11
   Physical Activities                                              13
   Relaxing Through Meditation                                      14
   Effortless Respiration: Breathing Techniques                     16
   Music and Melodies To Induce Sleep                               17
   Reduce Your Evening Stimulants                                   19
   Avoid Internal Stimulants                                        20
   How Your Diet Impacts Sleep                                      21
   Eliminate Anxiety and Worry                                      22
   Bath Time is Relax Time                                          24
Chapter 3                                                           26
 Herbal Remedies To Combat Sleep Disorders                          26
   The Body’s Natural Hormonal Makeup                               26
   Chamomile Benefits                                               27
   Calming Properties of Lavender                                   28
   The Healing Properties of Valerian Root                          29
   Effective And Fast Acting Herbs That Promote Sleep               31
   Vitamin and Mineral Supplements That Promote Sleep               33

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Everyone has experienced some type of sleeping problem in their lives.
While these problems may be a burden, the good news is they are
usually temporary. But, if you have started to notice that you are
having more sleepless nights than you should, then there may be a
possibility that you are dealing with a sleeping disorder.

Being unable to obtain an adequate amount of sleep for an extended
frame of time can impact every single part of your life. Sleep
deprivation can impact you in a physical, emotional, and mental
aptitude. Physically, you may start to notice a decrease in your level of
productivity, plus an inability to carry out day to day tasks.
Emotionally, you may start to notice changes in your personality and
problems dealing with your relationships. On the mental forefront,
your sleeping disorder can create anxiety and stress if left untreated.

Sleep deprivation, otherwise known as insomnia has two different
categories that it can be broken into. The first category or stage is
referred to as initial insomnia. Initial insomnia is the time that you
start to realize that you are having a hard time going to sleep.
Individuals who are in this stage will take up to an hour or more to
enter into a sleep state.

Middle insomnia is a condition that occurs in individuals that have a
difficult time staying asleep. Once an individual with this type of
condition is awakened, they will stay awake into the early morning
hours. The most severe level of insomnia is known as terminal or late
insomnia. Individuals with terminal or late insomnia will wake up early
in the morning and proceed to stay awake, even though they have
received less than six hours of sleep.

There are many different reasons why you may have trouble going to
sleep or staying asleep. If your insomnia is triggered due to a medical
condition, then your doctor may be able to give you some suggestions
or the appropriate medical attention that you require to rectify the
issue. If the problem stems from a medical issue, the medical issue
that is causing the insomnia to occur will be addressed and treated,

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with the intent of solving the insomnia issue concurrently with the
existing problem.

If your sleeping disorder is occurring because you are stuck in a
sleepless night cycle, or your insomnia is due to an inability to settle
your mind before bedtime, then this book is intended for you. Here
you will find various options to treating your condition before it
becomes hazardous to your health. Your treatment will not include
harmful prescription sleep aids that can be habit forming either.

This book will help you with a variety of different things including:

  • How to prepare a proper sleep environment

  • Bedtime relaxation techniques

  • The role that exercise and dieting play in your sleep health

  • How to turn off of your thoughts to promote a healthier state of
    mind that is prepared for sleep

  • Different natural supplements that can be used to promote sleep

This book will provide you with all of the tips and tools that you need
to finally stop tossing and turning at night, and to start enjoying a
relaxing and peaceful night’s sleep, naturally. You will awaken from
your slumber feeling attentive and rejuvenated, instead of restless and
exhausted. Be prepared to drift off into dreamland the naturally safe
and effective way!

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Chapter 1
How To Make Behavioral Changes To Cure Insomnia

Bedtime Habits

It is important that your brain has a consistent bedtime schedule that
it follows so your body can learn by itself how to fall asleep without the
aid of medication. Create a sleeping routine to determine the best
avenue for you to take. Make the routine a mandatory thing that you
follow for at least one to two weeks before altering it.

Your bedtime routine should include:

  • Going to sleep at a regular time every night

  • Waking up at an identical time everyday

  • A list of any and all natural supplements you have tried to rectify
    your sleeping problems

  • Mundane routine activities that do not stimulate the body, such
    as reading a book or brushing your teeth prior to bedtime.

Adopting a regular and consistent bedtime routine will tell your brain
that it is time for it to rest. The desired result of having a bedtime
routine is to adopt a regular sleep pattern that is both restful and

Plan to sleep for at least seven to eight hours per night, do not allow
yourself extra time to sleep. Waking up at the same time every day
will help you establish a suitable routine. Do not take naps throughout
the day. Naps can confuse your body and interrupt sleeping patterns.
Do not attempt to take extra sleeping hours. Attempting to sleep later
in during the morning time will not make up for any sleep that is lost
throughout the night. Practicing this method will only make you feel
more fatigued.

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Every person sleeping habits are different. You must be patient with
yourself while you work through the process of finding what bedtime
routine and sleeping plan accommodates your needs.

Setting Up A Sleeping Environment

In addition to exercising a consistent bedtime routine, you must also
make your bedroom a place that encourages sleep. The more
comfortable and relaxing your sleep area is, the better your chances
are for going to sleep and staying asleep until you are expected to
rise. When creating a sleeping environment that is going to make you
feel comfortable and relaxed consider doing these things:

  • Eliminate any and all annoyances and interruptions that could
    stop you from going to sleep and staying asleep.

  • Control the temperature of your sleeping space. Cooler air that
    fluctuates between sixty five degrees and seventy five degrees
    Fahrenheit is suitable for sleeping. However, you should always
    set your thermostat at a temperature that adheres to your
    comfort level and preference.

  • Sleep in a room that is well ventilated, if possible; Try cracking a
    window slightly, to allow the outside air to fill the room. This
    promotes airflow which can help you breathe deeper and provide
    you with the essential oxygen you need for a restful night’s

  • Use ear plugs or other sound barriers if the noises outside of
    your sleeping area keep you awake. There are different types of
    sound barriers that are designed to promote sleep. If you are
    unable to locate a pair that adheres to your needs, try another
    until you find a sound barrier device that accommodates you.

  • Cover up the interrupting noises with a white noise machine, if
    you decide that sound barrier devices such as earplugs are not
    going to work for you. White noise machines are designed with
    the sole purpose of blocking out disturbing noises to promote

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     sleep. Fans or air conditioning machines may also be used to
     help provide background noise if you require it. These pieces of
     equipment will help hide bothersome outside noises such as
     barking dogs or traffic.

  • Use a CD player that plays soothing music throughout the night.

  • Your body’s internal clock, also known as a circadian rhythm
    relies solely on light and dark patterns to signal to your body
    when the appropriate times for it to sleep are. When going to
    sleep, make sure that your room is as dark as possible. This will
    help your body settle into a sleeping state. Use thick curtains and
    mini-blinds to block out any light that can seep into your sleeping
    space through the windows. Wear an eye mask to block out any
    additional light that the curtains or blinds may not be able to
    cover entirely.

  • Do not keep a clock beside your bed. If you have a tendency of
    watching a clock throughout the night, face the device towards
    the wall. Constantly gazing over at a clock will only make you
    think of sleep, and the lack of it that you are getting. This will
    only continue your sleepless cycle.

  • When the air from the outdoors is dry, use a room humidifier.

  • Utilize your bedroom for sleeping only. Remove any gadgets that
    you have in your room out of it. This includes your television,
    stereo, and computer. Only let your mind associate your
    bedroom with the area that you sleep in.

  • Sleep in the most comfortable clothes that you own. Clothing
    that is non-constrictive will not wake you throughout the night.

There are a lot of different things that you can do to help you get a
better nights rest. Everyone has their own unique elements that create
their perfect sleeping environment. If one thing does not work to help
you induce sleep, try another one, until you are able to find what
accommodates your specific needs.

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The Proper Sleeping Equipment

Another thing that is important to your sleep environment is the
sleeping equipment that is used when you are in it. Sleeping
equipment includes your bedding, pillow, mattress, and the clothes
you wear.

The mattress that you are opting to sleep on should be firm and
smooth. This allows your back to be well supported, and ensures that
your body is propped into a comfortable position when it is laid down
for the night. Make sure that the mattress that is employed is
supported by an underlying bed frame that does not promote any

The mattress that is employed should be sized to fit your body. Make
sure that the bed is large enough to give you the space that you need
when sleeping. If you are presently using a single or double sized bed,
consider purchasing a larger queen style bed or a king sized mattress

Use a comfortable pillow. The style and type of pillow does not matter.
What matters is that the pillow you choose to use provides you with an
adequate amount of head and neck support.

The sheets and blankets that are used on your mattress should be
clean and neatly pressed into the mattress. If you do not enjoy the
feeling of being tucked into your bed, then you can loosen the sheets
on your bed, which will allow your feet to move freely.

To determine the right bedroom temperature, try experimenting with
different type of blankets that are different weights and made from
different types of materials. Having a cool room is supposed to help
promote sleep and stop restlessness, keep your room temperature
low, and consider purchasing bedding with this in mind.

Find out what sleeping position you are comfortable with. When you
lay in this position, this will tell your body that it is time for it to rest.

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The type of position that you choose to adopt will be based on your
personal preference. Having a favorite position will help you instantly
relax your body.

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Chapter 2
Do It Yourself Sleep Techniques

What Is Color Therapy?

Color therapy, also known as chromatherapy is a distinctive way to
treat various ailments, including sleep disorders. Chromatherapy
involves exposing oneself to colors in many different ways. Being
exposed to different colored lights, meditating or visualizing a specific
color, being massaged with different colored oils, or wearing specific
colors can help alleviate physical and emotional sleep ailments.

Chromatherapy is an ancient practice that has been used for an
elongated frame of time. Ancient Native Americans practiced
chromatherapy in conjunction with Ayurvedic medicines. They believed
that certain colors corresponded with different parts of the body,
emotionally and spiritually. The ancient Native Americans had a strong
belief that each area of energy within the body was linked to a specific
color of some kind.

Ancient Egyptians also practiced chromatherapy. They would break the
sunlight up using specially designed lenses. Solariums were built by
the Egyptians as a place for them to practice chromatherapy.

The type of chromatherapy that we know was developed in the latter
1600s when Sire Isaac Newton proved his theories about light. Sir
Isaac Newton believed that light was a mixture of color that broke off
from the ranges of colors that can be seen with the naked eye.

Modern day color therapy was documented by Dr. Edwin D. Babbitt.
He publicized his theories in a book entitled the Principles of Light and
Color. In his publication Dr. Edwin D Babbitt concluded that color
therapy could be used to treat a variety of ailments, including sleeping

During the 1940’s there were further experiments conducted on color
therapy. S.V. Krakov a renowned Russian scientist experimented with

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chromatherapy and determined that by separating different
wavelengths of color that the nervous system reacted in a different
way. Krakov discovered that red lights increased blood pressure and
also caused the adrenal glands to react. White and blue colored lights
created a relaxing sensation on the body. The theories that Krakov
proved through his experiments are still used today by many
individuals that practice color therapy.

How does chromatherapy or color therapy work? Color is one of the
things that make up light. Light possesses various energy waves.
When light enters the retina of the human eye, it will touch the
photoreceptor cells of it. These cells will alter the light into electrical
impulses. Once the brain receives the electrical impulses that were
transferred from the photoreceptor cells it will release hormones into
the body. By being able to control the release of these hormones,
chromatherapy can help treat sleep disorders and other insomniac

With alternative medicine practices increasing popularity,
Chromatherapy is quickly becoming more accepted by the medical
community. It is being used to treat different types of disorders such
as depression as well as seasonal affective disorder.

Color therapy is a medical practice that should only be employed by
trained professionals. There are some color therapy methods that can
be practiced in the comfort of your home.

When practicing chromatherapy on your own, you should follow a
couple of tips. Choose special hues to wear that are based on your
recommended colors. When eating, choose foods to consume that are
a particular color. Take some time visualizing what your recommended
color is.

The potential concerns of color therapy are:

  • Chromatherapy should never be used to replace traditional care
    for severe insomnia conditions.

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  • Individuals that suffer from epilepsy should avoid looking directly
    into flashing lights.

  • When employing the use of colored lights, never look directly into
    them. Instead, use light colored therapy by looking indirectly at
    the color by gazing at an object that is lit up by the colored light.

  • If you are taking any prescription medications, make sure that
    you check the labels for any light sensitivity side effects that the
    medication may cause. Some medications may state that
    exposure to bright lights can be troublesome.

Physical Activities

Exercising during the day is one factor that influences how you sleep
during the night. If you continue to be physically active throughout the
day, then your body can enter into a state of relaxation at night
easier. Exercise will help your body deal with daily stresses and
anxiety. Exercise affects chemicals in the brain. The amount of
exercise that you receive is linked directly to your emotional and
physical health. Regularly exercising will help you go to sleep faster
and maintain a sleeping state, because it will force your sleeping
cycles to become consistent. Try working exercise into your life in
order to avoid sleeplessness.

When engaging in a physical activity, you should exercise three to four
hours before going to bed at night. To receive optimum sleep benefits,
be physically active late in the afternoon or towards the early evening.

Make it a point to be physically active for twenty to thirty minutes per
day, at least three to four times a week. Aerobic activities are normally
the best remedies to insomnia. These activities can be anything from
an easy walk to a rigorous run. By increasing your heart rate,
improving your breathing and adding additional oxygen to your blood,
your body will not only be in better health, but you will also naturally
be correcting your sleeping disorder at the same time.

Aside from aerobic exercise, there are other physical activities that you

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can engage in as well to ward off sleeplessness. Consider trying out
Yoga or Tai Chi. Yoga inadvertently affects the brain, the core muscles
of the body, and improves blood circulation. Using the breathing
techniques practiced in Yoga will help you learn to relax our body and
live your life with less stress. Tai Chi is a physical routine that involves
breathing with slow moving body movements. Tai Chi is a perfect type
of exercise routine for individuals that suffer with joint pains or having
issues engaging in high impact exercise routines.

If it is difficult for you to add thirty minutes of exercise into your daily
schedule, try adding in small blocks of physical activities instead. Start
making small changes, such as taking stairs instead of using the
elevator, or parking your vehicle a further distance away from your
destination and walking the rest of the way. Exercise or any physical
activity for that matter will help you live a healthier more energetic

Relaxing Through Meditation

It only makes sense that the more relaxed you are before going to
bed, the more likely it is that you will be able to fall asleep and
maintain a satisfactory state of sleep. In order to be able to fall asleep
quickly, you must be able to quiet your mind first. By using some
means of meditation you can quiet your mind from thinking, worrying,
or whatever may be going on in your head, allowing you to
concentrate on the task at hand.

There are many different visualization and meditation methods that
you can employ to assist you with entering into a state of relaxation.
Try one of these meditation styles to see which one adheres to your

  1. The Focal Point Technique: Choose a focal point; it does not
     matter if the focal point is mantra, a visual point, or your
     breathing. Mantra is when you use a word or phrase and repeat it
     over and over again either in your mind or out loud to help you
     focus during meditation. Using a mantra focal point will help you
     cease your mind from wandering off and thinking about other

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     things that could keep you awake. In order to practice mantra
     you will need to be disciplined. Thoughts will come into your
     mind, but it will be up to you to not be tempted to let those
     thoughts remain. Mantra does become easier with practice.

  2. The Breathing Focused Technique: Find a comfortable space that
     is also quiet for you to sit. You should sit on the floor during this
     technique; a cushion may be used if you desire to do so. Sit
     steady with your hands in your lap, close your eyes and calm
     your body down. Breathe in through your mouth and out through
     your nose. Try to concentrate solely on your breathing. Count
     each breath that you take in and each breath that you take out
     until you reach ten of each. Proceed counting in increments of
     ten until you start to feel relaxed. Clear your mind of everything
     else that is going on around you and only concentrate on your
     breathing. If thoughts begin flooding your mind, acknowledge
     that they have entered and let them go. Continue to focus on
     your breathing as much as you possibly can. Once you have
     finished your breathing focused technique, stretch your body one
     time before getting up.

  3. The Guided Imagery Technique: The Guided imagery technique
     combines meditation, visualization and hypnosis. The meditation
     technique will guide you to a visualization of a relaxing place,
     thus helping you feel relaxed. Search for a place that is cut off
     from outside noises and disturbances, but is also dimly lit. Using
     a CD player play an imagery recording for yourself. The Guided
     imagery technique will start with deep breathing exercises. Once
     you are relaxed, your imagination will become alive while the
     recording is guiding you through different scenes. The key is to
     use your imagination to help you find a place of peacefulness and
     relaxation. Some of the most common guided imagery scenarios
     include beach strolls, nature walks, and mountain hikes. Once
     your session has ended, you should feel relaxed and calm.

These relaxation techniques are only a small sampling of the various
choices that you have. Feel free to experiment with these techniques
and research other techniques that may help you. Relaxation

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techniques may be the only thing that you need to combat your

Effortless Respiration: Breathing Techniques

Breathing is an effortless way to relax and reduce stress. The deeper
that you breathe the more relaxed you become. These breathing and
relaxation techniques will help you wind your body down so you can
prepare yourself for sleep.

When going to bed:

Lie down on your back and start breathing through your nose deeply.
Envision the air moving into your stomach with each breath that you
take. When you inhale, count to four and then breathe again. Release
the air slowly through your lips, while counting to the number eight at
the same time. You will begin to feel the built up tension in your body
leave every time that you exhale. Repeat this technique at least six to
ten times in order to put yourself into an immediate state of
relaxation. Practice deep breathing techniques daily in order to develop
a healthy habit of relaxation. By calming your mind you will be able to
fall asleep faster.

Before going to bed for the night try this technique:

Lie yourself down on a firm surface with your back to the floor, place
your arms along your side; face your palms upwards towards the
ceiling; Space your feet a comfortable space apart from one another.
Close your eyes and begin to mentally concentrate on each part of
your body. Tense your muscles than relax them, as you concentrate
on the separate parts.

Start from the top of your head when releasing tension, and begin to
slowly move the tension down your body and then release it as it takes
its course. Focus your attention on your breathing while you are
tensing and then releasing the tension in the different parts of your
body. Take deep slow breaths, allowing yourself to let go of your
stress and concerns that you have. Once your body knows that it is

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okay for it to let go of its worries, you will be able to go to sleep
naturally without any outside help from medications or over the
counter sleeping aids.

There are a lot of different types of breathing techniques that you can
do to help your body relax. By experimenting with different techniques
you will be able to find one that adheres to your needs.

Music and Melodies To Induce Sleep

Noise has been used as a means to induce sleep since the dawn of
time. The earliest form of the noise technique is the lullaby. The lullaby
was successful at helping colicky babies relax. There are a lot of sound
devices and CDs that are marketed today that are supposed to have
the same effect on people as the soothing tones of a mother singing a
lullaby to her young does. Here are a few things you can use to sail
away into a slumber:

  • Classical music is a great way to relax and put all of your
    thoughts at bay. Music from Mozart, Brahms, and Strauss all
    have relaxing tendencies. Of course, these three musical
    geniuses are not the only forms of classical musical that you can
    choose to listen to.

  • Listen to something that is soothing as well as modern.
    Electronica music is also a great way to relax your body and help
    you wind down after a long day. This form of music mixes an
    ongoing techno beat with a little bit of house music for irregular
    melodies. Electronica music has calm sounding effects and soft
    melodies combined.

  • New age tribal music is also a popular recording form. This style
    of music is similar to Electronica, but unique instruments that are
    soft sounding are used. The beat of the music is similar to drum
    circles and it involves a lot of chants and grunting throat sounds
    throughout its composition.

  • If you prefer to fall asleep without music playing in the

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     background, there are also non-musical tapes and CDs that may
     be effective. These CDs feature things such as rain, waves,
     waterfalls, and other sounds that are conducive to nature. If you
     are a city dweller that has a difficult time falling to sleep when it
     is too quiet outside there are also recordings that feature the
     typical sounds of the city.

  • Sound machines are also available. They can be found in many
    different sizes and can accommodate many different sized
    budgets as well. A typical sound machine is about the size of a
    standard alarm clock. They come equipped with different sounds
    to pick between. You can choose how you want the recordings on
    the machine to play. They can be played so the music constantly
    loops, or they can go on for a specific length of time before
    transferring over to the sound of something else.

There are some sound machines that have alarm clocks built into
them. These machines can be used to gently awaken you from your
slumber. When choosing a sound machine it is important that you get
a unit that plays synthesized sounds. Units that play synthesized
sounds are normally the best, simply because they emulate natural
sounds. The other choice would be to purchase a sound machine that
plays recorded samples.

The style of music that will work best for you will depend on your
personal preference. There are some people that prefer non-linear
music, while others may prefer to go to sleep with soothing sounds
playing in the background. Other individuals may like the sound of
random beats that have a constant musical pattern. You should try out
different sounds to determine which style you prefer to go to sleep to.

In an attempt to determine the reaction of sleep on the brain a study
was conducted by the University of Toronto’s psychiatry department.
In the sleep clinic they were investigating the way that brain music
worked on different individuals. Brain music is a form of EEG readings.
It is simply music that is converted through a computer program that
is made to customize music based on an individuals EEG readings.

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During the study every participant’s brain waves were carefully studied
and watched. The scientists determined which sounds the individual
responded to and they put the information into a computer that was
hooked up to the individual while they slept. Based on the data that
was entered the computer made a personalized music soundtrack for
the individual to help invoke the same brain wave patterns that the
individual responded to the most, thus helping the individual fall

Evidence shows that this type of personalized musical therapy method
is highly effective when employed. Researchers are extremely
interested in this method of relaxation simply because it is effective
and it does not make an individual dependent on habit forming
medications to induce sleep.

Reduce Your Evening Stimulants

The most effective bedtime routine is one that leaves you feeling
relaxed and ready to go to sleep. If you are having a difficult time
going to sleep, the best thing for you to do is to avoid stimulants an
hour before going to sleep each night. If you have a difficult time
giving up watching television before going to bed at night, try
replacing action packed shows and programs with calming and relaxing

When reducing evening stimulants to help you sleep better, try
adopting these techniques:

  • Do not place a television in your bedroom. This helps your mind
    and body associate your bedroom as a sleeping area only.

  • Do not exercise three hours before going to bed. Exercise will
    awaken your body, unless you engage in a physical activity well
    before going to bed at night, exercise will work against your
    sleeping pattern.

  • Unwind when returning back home after you have been out. If
    you jump into bed shortly after arriving home, your mind and

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     body may not have an adequate amount of time to slip into your
     bedtime routine.

  • Read something. A little bit of non-technical reading can help you
    feel tired. Avoid reading anything that is related to work or that
    is overly complicated material.

  • Do not fall asleep with the lights on. Falling asleep with the lights
    on can disturb your sleep cycle, causing you to wake up.

When it is time to unwind it is important that you are able to
distinguish the difference between relaxation and stimulation. Being
able to relax at night will help you go to sleep naturally, without
having to rely on outside substances to assist you.

Avoid Internal Stimulants

You will find that there are a lot of external stimulants in your
environment, along with internal stimulants. Internal stimulants affect
your body internally, while external stimulants will affect the body
externally. Internal stimulants impact the way that you feel, relax, and
think. Internal stimulants contain sugar, caffeine, and other chemicals.
You do not have to remove these items entirely from your body, but
you will need to ensure that you do not consume then after dinnertime
in order to avoid insomnia.

  • Caffeinated beverages: Caffeine will wake up the body, mind,
    and increase your heart rate. Since caffeine has this effect on the
    body it is considered to be a stimulant. Coffee, tears, colas, and
    chocolate all contain caffeine. To avoid sleep problems consume
    your last caffeinated beverage three to four hours before bed.

  • Chocolate: Chocolate contains a mixture of sugar and caffeine.
    Both of these substances are stimulants that can stop you from
    receiving a restful sleep. Stop consuming chocolate at least two
    to three hours before going to sleep at night.

  • Alcohol: Even though alcoholic beverages will make you feel tired

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     and can help you go to sleep faster, the sleep that you receive
     from consuming alcoholic beverages is normally not restful. You
     may find yourself waking up throughout the night because you
     feel dehydrated, and then having a difficult time going back to
     sleep once you have awoken. Alcohol can also become addictive,
     making you believe that you need it in order to be able to fall

  • Smoking: Cigarettes contain a mixture of tobacco and nicotine.
    Nicotine is a stimulant. A nicotine dependency may cause you to
    awaken during the night as the level of nicotine in the blood
    depletes. If at all possible, try not to smoke a couple of hours
    before going to bed at night.

How Your Diet Impacts Sleep

Your diet has a direct impact on your ability to fall asleep and stay
asleep at night. By eating a healthy diet that is low in sugar, fat,
preservatives and processed foods you may be able to stop insomnia
and improve your health.

To have a healthy sleep diet, consider following these simple steps:

  • Consume the recommended daily guidelines of fruits and
    vegetables daily.

  • Increase the amount of complex carbohydrates that you

  • Eat protein that does not contain a high amount of fat. Substitute
    meat for other things such as veggie burgers and tofu.

  • Stay away from spicy and heavier foods.

  • If you must have a snack before going to bed at night, make
    sure that the snack is low in sugar and fat.

  • Eat your last meal at least four or more hours before going to

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     bed at night.

  • Do not overeat at dinnertime because you may begin to feel
    drowsy shortly after. Also, make sure that you eat enough at
    dinnertime so you do not feel starved shortly before going to

  • Drink a lot of water during the day. Individuals that are well
    hydrated do not wake up in the middle of the night due to
    dehydration. You should drink at least eight glasses of water per
    day or the equivalent to two liters of water every day.

Watch yourself to ensure that you do not have any food allergies that
could be prohibiting you from going to sleep at night. Some of the
most common food allergies that can disrupt sleeping patterns are
dairy products, wheat, chocolate, and corn.

Maintaining a healthy diet will help you be a healthier person. Health is
a big factor when it comes to your body’s ability to fall asleep
naturally. If your daily consumption of food is healthy, then your body
as well as your mind will be healthy and well nourished. This will help
you sleep deeper and sleep without waking up throughout the night.

Eliminate Anxiety and Worry

Are you the type of person whose mind fills with thoughts about your
family, finances, job, or future, and it is prohibiting you from falling
asleep? Do it find it difficult to shut your mind off from thinking about
things long enough to fall asleep at night? If your mind is constantly
thinking about other things aside from going to sleep at nighttime, this
can lead to tossing and turning in your bed, and of course insomnia.

If you worry about things that are going on in your life, there are a few
things that you can do to help put your mind at ease, allowing you to
fall asleep. First, you need to realize that it is time for you to go to
sleep. The situations that are keeping you awake will be there for you
to deal with once you awaken. Try making yourself a “Worry Book.” In
this book you can make lists that clearly discuss what is causing you

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anxiety and stress before going to bed. You can then go through the
list to identify what issues you can deal with the next day. The items
on your list that can be dealt with the next day will become your to-do
list for that upcoming day. This will help you feel like you are in control
of the situation and make you think positively about the things that
you need to accomplish in order to rectify your primary stressors.

Along the other side of your notebook make a list of things that you
constantly worry about that are entirely out of your control. Try to
reconfirm with yourself that you do not have any power to change the
things that you cannot control.

Once you have finished making your lists, tuck your notebook away
and remind yourself that all of the stressors that you were worried
about are now out of your mind and written on paper. You will not
need to think about any of your worries again until the next day. If
you still find yourself thinking about the things that are stressing you
out or worrying you, try to remind yourself that you have put your
worry book away and that it is now time for you to go to sleep. You
cannot deal with any of your stressors in a coherent manner if you do
not get an adequate amount of sleep.

Another way to help you eliminate your stress and anxiety is to write
everything down in a diary. Aside from talking about your day, indicate
what bothers you and what is causing your stress. The main thing is
that you get all of your feelings down on paper. By writing your
feelings down on paper, you can stop yourself from thinking about
them or worrying about them during the night.

With both of these techniques, you will be freeing your mind from your
stress by writing it down. This will give your brain permission to rest at
night, and allow you the ability to handle all of your problems and
other feelings throughout the day.

Aside from using these techniques, you may also want to engage in
some of the relaxation tips that were discussed in the previous
chapter. Yoga, soft music, and relaxing sounds can clear your mind of
the thoughts that linger in it while you are trying to get to sleep. Try

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some light reading to help you steer your mind clear of stressful
thoughts. By teaching your mind to relax, you will be able to obtain a
peaceful and restful sleep.

Bath Time is Relax Time

Taking a soothing warm bath an hour before going to bed will help you
relax and feel sleepy at the same time. It is important that you do not
attempt to go to sleep immediately following your warm bath because
the stimulating effect that it has on the body can raise your body’s
core temperature. Once your bath has been completed, you will
possibly find yourself feeling fairly drowsy as your bodies temperature
returns to its normal stature.

How can a warm bath help cure insomnia? Warm water will relax all of
the major muscle groups of the body; it will raise your body’s
temperature and also help your circulatory system. Once your body’s
core temperature has returned to normal, which is usually an hour
after you have taken a bath, you will still feel comfortable and relaxed,
leaving you prepared to go to sleep.

Taking a warm bath is easy to do and it’s enjoyable. When creating a
soothing bathing environment, light some candles, and use some dim
lighting in your bathroom. Experiment with using different scented oils
or other types of incense. Turn some light music on that is tranquil and
vast in the relaxing atmosphere that you created.

Another great way that you can make your bath a special experience is
to add some herbs to your bath water. Blend some herbs so you can
take advantage of the relaxing qualities that the herbs provide. Some
of the best comforting herbs to add to your bathwater are chamomile,
lavender, mint, lime flower, and passion flower.

Aromatic oils are also a great way to promote relaxation when taking a
bath. Add about four to five drops of oil into your tub after it has been
filled. Use chamomile, rose, lavender, vetiver, hops, neroli or ylang-

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Bath powder is another substance that can be added to your bath to
enhance it. The powder should be added to your bath while you are
filling up your tub.

Bath time is a great time to encourage your body to relax and to bring
you into a state of drowsiness. Experiment with different oils and
herbs to find out which ones accommodate your needs.

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Chapter 3
Herbal Remedies To Combat Sleep Disorders

The Body’s Natural Hormonal Makeup

Melatonin is a natural hormone that is found in the human body. The
chemical name for this hormone is methoxy-N-acetyltryptamine.
Melatonin is secreted by the pineal gland, which is a small organ that
is located in the center of the human brain. The hormone is secreted
throughout the night to help our bodies maintain a sleeping schedule.

The human body has an internal clock that tells it when it should be
asleep and when it should be awake. This internal clock is known as
the body’s circadian rhythm. The circadian rhythm is regulated by the
hormone melatonin.

The darkness encourages the pineal gland in the brain to release the
hormone melatonin. The light represses the release of the hormone.
Researchers have identified that as the human body ages the pineal
glands release and production of the hormone melatonin decreases.
This explains why a lot of younger people usually do not have any
sleep problems in comparison to older individuals.

Scientists have been able to synthesize melatonin so it is naturally
occurring in the human body. This synthesized form of melatonin is
sold as an over the counter supplement. There is no prescription
needed to obtain the synthesized version of melatonin. It is readily
available in health and drug stores throughout the United States.

Synthesized melatonin is not a regulated product by the Food and
Drug Administration. However, since melatonin naturally occurs in
some of the foods that we consume, it is permitted to be sold as a
dietary supplement in the United States.

Melatonin has proven that it is successful at treating sleep related
problems. Two sleep related problems that melatonin supplementation
is commonly used to treat are insomnia and jet-lag. Other sleep phase

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disorders can also be treated by supplementing the hormone.

How much melatonin is safe to consume? When beginning a melatonin
supplementation you should start consuming a small amount of the
hormone, usually 1 milligram. You can begin increasing the dosage as
it is needed. Melatonin is sold in a pill form that normally contains
between 1 milligram to 3 milligrams of the hormone.

When should melatonin be taken? In order to obtain the maximum
amount of effectiveness from consuming the hormone, it should be
taken an hour and a half before going to bed at night. If you typically
sleep during the night, you should not take the hormone during the
day because it can impact the way that your circadian rhythm works.
The opposite statement is true if you work during the night and sleep
during the day. If you are going to be using the hormone to prevent
jet lag when traveling, you should take a dose prior to flying and
another dose thirty minutes before going to sleep, once you have
reached your final location.

Before taking the melatonin supplementation there are several things
that you need to consider. Even though the supplement has been used
for an elongated frame of time and does not have any obvious side
effects, the supplement has not been approved by the FDA. Anything
that is consumed that is not approved by the FDA does not have a seal
of approval stating that the supplement is safe or pure. The
effectiveness of the product has not been gauged either. Another thing
that you must consider is that there is not a lot of research on the
supplementation and how it will react with other types of medications
that you may be taking.

Before taking a melatonin supplement you should consult a doctor if
you suffer from an auto-immune disease, diabetes, depressive
disorders, leukemia, or are taking any type of MAO inhibiter. The
product should only be used by adults and it not intended for children,
women who are pregnant or breastfeeding or teenagers to utilize.

Chamomile Benefits

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Matricaria chamomilla or chamomile for short is a native flowering
plant that is grown in Argentina, Europe, Australia, Northern Africa,
and Egypt. The leaves and flowers of the plant are dried and used in
tea mixtures. They come in teabags or some loose tea form.

Chamomile has been used for centuries as a sleep promoting aid. One
of the major benefits of using chamomile to promote sleep is it does
not need to be taken over an elongated frame of time in order to be
effective. Chamomile can be used to treat insomnia and anxiety

There are a couple of different ways that chamomile can be used.
Chamomile can be placed inside of a sachet and then tucked
underneath a pillow, or it can be brewed into a tea that is consumed
thirty to forty five minutes before going to bed. Chamomile is best
used by individuals who suffer from mild forms of insomnia.

The natural chemical that is found in chamomile that encourages sleep
and promotes drowsiness is chrysin. Chrysin is a chemical that also
appears in passion flower, another type of anxiety alleviator and
herbal sleep formula.

If you suffer from insomnia because of congestion or allergies,
chamomile will also work as an anti-histamine to help reduce the
amount of swelling that you suffer from your allergies, thus allowing
you to sleep easier. The only downside to chamomile is it can create
allergic reactions that are similar to those of ragweed and other plants
that are in the same family. If you have ragweed or aster allergies you
should not consume chamomile.

Calming Properties of Lavender

Lavender was first discovered in the Arabians and western
Mediterranean. Lavender is believed to be the first domesticate
flowering shrubbery discovered. After its discovery, Romans began
cultivating and spreading the plant throughout Europe. Pilgrims
brought Lavender with them to America. Lavender is one of the first
plants that were taken to Australia during the 1800s.

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A lot of herb gardens all around the globe contain lavender that is
either grown in a garden or container. Lavender flourishes in soil that
contains alkaline, receives a lot of sun and has suitable drainage.

The essential oils in Lavender tranquilize the nervous system, which
makes it an extremely effective herbal remedy for sleep disorders and
insomnia. Once the flowers of the plant have dried, they can be
brewed into a tea and consumed in that manner, or the oils in the
plant can be extracted. The oils may be applied to the skin to relax the
muscles or inhaled to be used as a type of aromatherapy.

The feet are one of the areas of the human body that quickly absorbs
products that have been applied to it, thus through massaging
lavender oil directly onto the feet; the oils create an immediate
calming effect on the body. The oils found in the plant can be
vaporized and added to a warm bath, where they can be inhaled. A
sachet of lavender can be made from its dried leaves and flowers, and
then sprinkled with some of its oils. The sachet can be laid underneath
your pillow to help induce sleep.

There are some individuals that have had an allergic reaction from
applying lavender topically on their bodies. It is important that you
conduct an allergy test on yourself before applying the essential
lavender oils to your skin. To conduct an allergy test, test out a small
patch of skin first. If you do not have a reaction, then you can apply a
larger amount topically to the skin.

Not all species of lavender have a calming effect on the body. Spanish
lavender is actually used to wake up the body and invigorate it, thus
having an opposite effect.

The Healing Properties of Valerian Root

Valeriana officinalis or Valerian Root for short is known as being one of
the most effective natural remedies for curing insomnia. In order to
see the benefits that accompany using valerian root, the herb must be
taken regularly for at least one month. After you have used the herb

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for the course of one month, you will start to notice how it encourages
relaxation and aids in a deep sleep.

Valerian root starts to bloom its flowers during the springtime. It can
be located in pastures in the wild. The roots and rhizomes of the plant
are the two parts of the plant that are used for its herbal properties.
Valerian root is uprooted during September, dried, and then sold as an
herbal product.

Several researchers at Switzerland’s Nestle Research Laboratories
discovered that the most effective dose of Valerian that an individual
should take to experience the effectiveness of the herb is 450
milligrams. Higher doses of the herb can cause extreme drowsiness,
and are not any more effective than the recommended dose.
Leatherwood, one of the researchers that made the initial dosage
discover also conducted a separate study in regards to valerian root.
He determined that valerian root is not only effective as a relaxing
agent, but it also has the ability to improve the quality of sleep that an
individual receives when it is taken.

The impact that valerian root has on the body is similar to the impact
that benzodiazepine has. Benzodiazepine is one of the main
ingredients that are found in Valium. One of the prime advantages that
valerian root has over other sedatives is that people who consume the
herbal remedy do not experience any grogginess or cloudiness the
next day. There are a lot of assumptions that Valium received its name
from valerian root. However, it is important to distinguish that these
two substances are entirely different and in no means related to one

Prescription sleep aids can be considered to be toxic. However,
valerian root is a non-toxic formula that will not hinder your ability to
drive and it does not have a negative interaction with alcoholic
beverages. Valerian root’s main intention is to alleviate anxiety
disorders and to act as a strong sedative that encourages sleep.

Herbalists recommend using fresh valerian root over the extract
version of the herb. The extract version of the herb can have a

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stimulant effect on some people that utilize it. Your body chemistry will
be used to determine if the extract has a stimulant effect on your body
or not. In some individuals, the valerian root will cause an immediate
sedative effect that is then followed by large surges of energy that can
last a few hours. Obviously, if your main intent for taking valerian root
is to go to sleep, then the energy surges that the extract can cause is
not something that is encouraged. Fresh valerian root is less likely to
deliver a stimulant effect on users.

Effective And Fast Acting Herbs That Promote Sleep


Piper methysticum commonly known as Kava is abundant in Tonga,
Samoa, Western Polynesia, Micronesia, and Melanesia. This shrub is a
member of the pepper family.

Kava is sold in various health stores all over the world and is available
in a variety of forms. The herb is used as an over the counter anxiety
alleviator. Kava extract is the most popular form of the herb. The
extract comes in a spray that can be applied underneath the tongue to
instantly alleviate anxiety. Raw forms of Kava are also available.
However, it is best to purchase the high grade root for the best

Herbalists proclaim that Kava is most effective when consumed in a
daily dose of seventy to 200 milligrams. For a restful sleep 150 to 200
milligrams is encouraged. This dosage should be taken twenty to thirty
minutes before bed.

Lemon Balm

Melissa officinalis or Lemon Balm has a satisfying lemon taste and is
commonly used as a relaxant in tea. The herb is found in Southern
Europe and Northern Africa. It is a direct descendant of the mint
family. The herb can be grown in a garden where the soil is well
drained. It also does extremely well in sandy soil that is subjected to
lots of sunlight.

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When consuming the herb add two teaspoons of it into one cup of
boiling water to create a tea. Let the tea brew for ten minutes,
consuming it right before your desired bedtime.

Passion Flower

Passaflora incarnate or passion flower for short is a relaxant that is
used to calm the digestive system, relax the muscles, and help aid in
digestion. Passion flower is commonly consumed in tea.

Passion flower is grown in the Southern United States and throughout
Latin America. Historical references to the flower denote that passion
flower has also been used as a tobacco substitute to tranquilize

There are some herbalists that believe that passion flower is the best
herbal remedy around for treating individuals that suffer with
intermittent insomnia. The herb is non-addictive and induces deep
sleep. There are no known side effects associated with utilizing passion
flower. It may be used by children and the elderly without any

Dried out passion flower makes an extremely effective tea mixture;
when brewing passion flower tea, add one teaspoon of the herb to one
cup of boiling water, let it simmer for fifteen minutes. Drink the
mixture thirty minutes before going to sleep.

California Poppy

Eschscholtzia californica also known as California poppy is an herb that
contains a substance known as protopine. Protopine has the same
effects on the brain as morphine. However, it does not contain the
same narcotic in its chemical makeup as the Opimum poppy does.
California poppy is a non-addictive substance. Scientists have not fully
studied the effects of California poppy on individuals, so there are no
official guidelines stating how much of the herb should be taken to
promote sleep.

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Humulus lupulus or most commonly known as hops is the main
ingredient that is used to flavor beer. Hops is the fruit of the plant, and
is a member of the cannabis family. Hops is normally used in
conjunction with other herbal mixtures when it is being solely used for
its sedative properties. However, the herb is effective when it is used
by itself also.

Hops is available in dried stobiles, tablets, and capsules. It is typically
used as a sachet that is placed underneath an individual’s pillow or in a
tea mixture.

When making a sachet with the herb you will use ¼ cup of hop
stobiles, a 1/8 cup of chamomile flowers, and a 1/8 cup of lavender.
Sprinkle the outer surface of the sachet with some lavender oil and
then sew the open side of the sachet up.


Honey can be mixed into a cup of warm milk or into an herbal tea,
allowing you to enjoy the sedating properties that it possesses. Place
one teaspoon of honey and one drop of vanilla into a cup of warmed
milk; consume the drink immediately before going to bed.

Vitamin and Mineral Supplements That Promote Sleep

Adding vitamins and minerals to your well balanced diet may help you
alleviate the symptoms of insomnia. There are a lot of people that are
not receiving an adequate amount of vitamins and minerals that their
body needs in order to promote sleep. One of these substances may
be of some assistance to you:


A calcium deficiency can impact your sleep cycle. Take 600 milligrams
of calcium per day in a supplement with food.

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Individuals suffering from a magnesium deficiency may experience
nervousness which can impact their ability to go to sleep and remain
asleep. Taking a 250 milligram supplement of magnesium once a day
along with consuming foods that are rich in the vitamin may help with
your sleeping disorder. Foods that contain magnesium are almonds,
wheat bran, and kelp.

Vitamin B6

The human body requires vitamin B6 to be able to produce the correct
levels of serotonin in the body that are required to promote sleep. Fifty
to one hundred milligrams of Vitamin B6 will need to be taken daily in
its yeast form. The yeast form of the vitamin should be mixed into a
glass of fruit juice for better flavoring.

Vitamin B12

Individuals who do not receive enough B12 may experience confusion,
grogginess, insomnia, and memory loss. B12 is normally combined
with B5. It naturally occurs in bananas, wheat germ, sunflower seeds
and peanuts. If B12 is taken in a supplement form, 25 milligrams
should be taken daily.

Vitamin B5

A lack of vitamin B5 can result in tiredness and insomnia. Vitamin B5
is an anxiety alleviator. Individuals with a deficiency should take 100
milligrams of the vitamin per day.

Folic Acid

A synthetic form of folic acid is processed more effectively in the body
than the naturally occurring mineral. Individuals who do not have
enough folic acid in their bodies can experience insomnia. Foods that
contain the mineral include orange juice, leafy roughage, fortified

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breakfast cereal, and beans. It is recommended that you receive 400
milligrams of folic acid daily.


Recent studies confirm that pre-menopausal women who have a
copper deficiency have a difficult time going to sleep at night. The
study concluded that women who consumed two milligrams of copper
per day were able to fall asleep quicker and woke up feeling refreshed.
A great way to include copper into your diet is to eat lobster and
cooked oysters.

Maintaining a balanced diet is the best way to eliminate vitamin
deficiencies. You can start out by adding a couple of supplements to
your daily diet every day to see if you notice a difference in your
sleeping habits. If you do not notice a difference, then you should stop
using supplements and focus on eating the right foods and exercising.

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You have been given a variety of different ways that you can combat
your sleeping issues in a natural way, without having to take harmful
prescriptions or over the counter drug sleep aids. When trying out
these alternative methods, try testing a couple at a time. This way you
will be able to determine what methods work best for you and which
ones do not. Choose the alternate methods that you can commit to

Finally Sleep Better Tonight


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