According to ayurveda, sleep is
one of the three important supporting
pillars of health.
<< Ayurvedic Remedies and Herbal therapies
As unique individuals, we are all part of cosmic consciousness, the universal intelligence that organizes all of nature.
Supporting this intelligence with herbal therapies can help
promote peaceful sleep.
Treatments, Therapies and Herbs/Oils
Herbs with sedative properties can be incorporated in daily
routine with some of the following methods:
> A warm herbal bath before going to bed with infusions or
diluted essential oils of Lavender, chamomile, neroli, or rose
can help to loosen tense muscles and quiet an overactive mind.
> Stuffed herb pillows with catnip, lavender, lemon balm, or orange blossom have been used traditionally for aiding and promoting sleep.
> Warm milk with blanched or ground almonds and a pinch
of nutmeg or cardamom helps settle the digestive and nervous
> Herbal teas or tinctures of some of the following herbs can
support a proper sleep pattern: lavender, hops, passionflower,
chamomile, skullcap, lemon balm, valerian root, kava, kava.
These can be used singly or in combinations as suggested by a
qualified herbalist or practitioner.
> A powerful herb for cultivating balance in the nervous system
(and helping promote sounds sleep is ashwagandha (Withania
somnifera). This well-known Ayurvedic herb is helpful for
nourishing a depleted and worn-out nervous system. Brahmi,
also known as gotu kola, is traditionally used for its calming
effect on an agitated mind.
Massage Before Bed
Self-massage with nourishing oils, such as almond, sesame, olive, or other vegetable oils combined with herbs and/or essential
oils such as lavender, brahmi/gotu kola, or nose.
Herbalized nose oil drops (nasya) are one of the first remedies
I reach for when needing to calm a restless body and mind. With
base oils such as olive/sesame, coconut, or sesame and herbs
such as brahmi/gotu kola, skullcap, rose, and/or eucalyptus,
nose drops directly treat the brain and central nervous system.
Ayurveda teaches us that every day we can make choices that
build us up or break us down. Therefore, following an Ayurvedic
lifestyle can be the ultimate preventative medicine. Regularity
in your sleeping hours, waking hours, eating habits, and regular elimination brings steadiness to our lives and balance to our
ever-changing energetic constitutions.
Guy Gabriel is a yoga therapist, Ayurvedic educator, and activist who teaches regularly
at Yoga and the Village and offers workshops on Ayurveda and Yoga to help promote sleep.