Calm Me Maybe

A blog dedicated to the eternal pursuit of happiness through all-natural methods of rest and relaxation

5 all-natural sleep aids

on September 21, 2013

We’ve all been there.16_camomile_tea_28nov11_istock_b

It’s 3 a.m. and you have to be up for class or work in a few hours.  You’ve spent the last four tossing and turning, flipping the pillows over for the “colder” side, and even counting sheep. No matter what, your mind continues to race.

So, what do you do? If you’re anything like me, a decent night’s sleep is necessary in order to make it through the day without offending anyone.

Some sleep aids involve harmful chemicals which help you drift off to sleep, but will leave you feeling groggy the next day.  Here are some all-natural sleep aids that will get you the sleep you need without harming your body.

1. Chamomile tea

Unlike other teas, Chamomile is caffeine-free. It’s a very mild flavored tea that has a calming effect on the body and has been known to work as a mild sedative.  Also, a warm liquid before bed can make you tired by raising your body heat.

Cherries2. Sleep-promoting foods

In a study by the University of Rochester, researchers found that cherries, particularly tart cherries, naturally boosted the body’s supply of melatonin (a hormone in the human brain that is responsible for the sleep-wake cycle).  There’s no telling how many cherries it would take to put you to sleep completely, but a few in solid or liquid form before bed won’t hurt.

Dairy products, like yogurt, milk and cheese, contain the sleep-inducing nutrient Calcium.  Calcium has also been proven to reduce stress.

Almonds contain magnesium, which promotes sleep and muscle relaxation. Jacob Teitelbaum, MD, medical director of the Fibromyalgia and Fatigue Centers, says, “Almonds have the added benefit of supplying proteins that can help maintain a stable blood sugar level while sleeping, and help promote sleep by switching you from your alert adrenaline cycle to your rest-and-digest cycle.” For a bedtime snack, try a teaspoon of almond butter or a 1-ounce portion of almonds to help your body relax. melatonin 3

3. Melatonin

Melatonin can be found at any pharmacy or drug store for under $10. It comes in pill form and is non-habit forming. Personally, I find it to be most effective if I take it while leaving ample time for sleep (8 hours or more).  Within 5 to 10 minutes I’m asleep and wake feeling refreshed and well-rested.

TETRRF-00013265-0014. Gettin’ down with your bad self

Exploring self-pleasure is a great way to naturally coax yourself to sleep.  According to Cosmopolitan, orgasms cause a surge in the hormone oxytocin, which promotes sleep. And good sleep means less stress, a healthier heart, a better memory and a much-improved chance of maintaining a healthy weight.

5. Marijuana

If your state allows it, Marijuana can be a very effective all-natural sleep aid.  Dopamine, found in the brain and known as the “feel good” neurotransmitters, is responsible for feelings of happiness or pleasure.  THC, one of the marijuana_main compounds in Marijuana is responsible for making a user feel “high” and will temporarily increase the dopamine level in your brain.  This will cause you to feel relaxed and happy, thus making it easier to fall asleep.  Marijuana is illegal in *most states. Please do not pursue this if it is illegal to do so.

 For a list of states where marijuana consumption is legal, click here.

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