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3 Herbs for Better Sleep

Updated on April 21, 2017
Chuck Bluestein profile image

At age 16 I was a volunteer at a hospital bacteriology lab. I became a chemist for U.S. government. Then I studied health & related fields.

Hawthorn Berry and Passion Flower

Passion Flower
Passion Flower | Source
Hawthorn Berry Plant
Hawthorn Berry Plant

Herbs for Better Sleep

According to the TV News most Americans have a problem with sleeping like insomnia. These are 3 herbs that Dr. Oz suggests for sleeping since they help with stress according to his show a couple of days ago. This was written on June 1, 2012.

Getting enough high quality sleep is vital for mental and physical health. I saw that back in February 2012, Dr. Oz suggested valerian and passion flower to help with sleep. This time his show suggests 3 herbs.

1. Passion Flower

It is suggested that passion flower tea be taken in the evening since it can help make you sleepy. Here is information on passion flower from the U.S. National Library of Medicine:

Passionflower is used for sleep problems (insomnia), gastrointestinal (GI) upset related to anxiety or nervousness, generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), and relieving symptoms related to narcotic drug withdrawal.

Passionflower can also help many other health problems like high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, fibromyalgia, pain relief and more according the National Library of Medicine. See above webpage for more benefits of passionflower.

2. Eleutherococcus

Above is the scientific name. Herbs usually have a scientific name and common name. The common name for this was made illegal to use since people may confuse it with ginseng. The common name was Siberian ginseng and the root is used just like with ginseng. This herb, according to the Dr. Oz show should be taken in the morning. Here is what the National Library of Medicine says about it:

Siberian ginseng is often called an “adaptogen.” This is a non-medical term used to describe substances that can supposedly strengthen the body and increase general resistance to daily stress.

Siberian ginseng is used for conditions of the heart and blood vessels such as high blood pressure, low blood pressure, hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis), and rheumatic heart disease.

This is only some of the information on these herbs. Go to the links to read more about them like how eleuthreoccous is used by athletes to enhance performance. The Russians like to have their Olympic athletes take this herb since it enhances performance. This is a great herb for anti-aging and to help with joint pain. I am an ethnobotanical herbalist specializing on herbs from China, America and the Amazon rainforest.

3. Hawthorn Berry or Hawthorn

Now this is according to the Dr. Oz show. This is also good for sleep and you can take it throughout the day. It is one of the best herbs for the heart. A website (NaturalWellBeing.org) says "Hawthorn Berry is classified as a natural sedative, a substance that can help support sleep and relaxation."

I thought this was going to be a short article but I know so many good things that I want to share them. The U.S. has 27 centers or institutes that make up the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Alternative medicine is used instead of conventional medicine and complimentary medicine is used with conventional medicine. One that was established in 1999 was the NCCAM-- National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Here is what they say about hawthorn:

More recently, hawthorn leaf and flower have been used for heart failure, a weakness of the heart muscle that prevents the heart from pumping enough blood to the rest of the body, which can lead to fatigue and limit physical activities.

See the above webpage for more on hawthorn or hawthorn berry and how it can benefit the heart and cardiovascular system. Hawthorn berry is one of the best herbs for heart health. I have never seen a hawthorn berry in a store but the herb is used in many herbal formulas for the heart and circulation. Here is my newer article: 14 Health Benefits of Hawthorn Berry for more on what this does with studies done on it.

I do not like to mention scientific names. Here is why. The above says that hawthorn is Crataegus laevigata (also known as Crataegus oxyacantha ), Crataegus monogyna. I like the taste of the following pungent herbs that are good for the heart-- garlic, hot pepper and ginger.

Here is more on heart failure which means that the heart is not getting enough blood. The owner of a pizza store in his 50s was having problems and the doctors did many tests on him but could not find out what was wrong with him. They had him on different medications for different things that were bothering him like swollen legs.

He died a year later and an autopsy showed that he had heart failure and that had caused his health problems. The problem was that this pizza place was open in the morning for breakfast until late night. So the owner could have eggs and bacon for breakfast, a cheese steak and fries for lunch and pizza for dinner. This means he is not eating any fruits or vegetables, except fried potatoes.

Eating fruits and vegetables (plant foods) are important for good health. Herbs are also plant foods. Animal foods contain no fiber. All plant foods have fiber but the processed ones have less fiber. Also plant foods contain phytochemicals that are great for health like the curcumin in turmeric, the lycopene in tomatoes and watermelon, and resveratrol in grapes.

The biggest source of trouble with sleeping is stress. Yoga and meditation are both very good at reducing stress. Also make sure to see the article Rooibos Tea Health Benefits Like Better Sleep. This tea is very good for the nervous system and helping people to sleep better. Whole Foods Markets sells a lot of health food. Their own brand is called 365 brand. They only have three 365 brand teas. One is (all of them are organic) peppermint, another one is a mixture of peppermint, yerba mate and green tea and the third one is rooibos tea.

Also see Harvard Medical School's 8 Secrets to a Good Night's Sleep. Number 1 is exercise and number 7 is de-stressing. Number 2 is to reserve your bed for sleep and sex. Also compare the above article from Harvard to my article 9 Ways to Sleep much Better.

What are Hawthorn Berry Herb Benefits

Talking with Trees - Hawthorn Herbal Remedy for Heart Health with Susan Weed

Eleutherococcus or Eleuthero

Nature's Way Siberian Eleuthero, 425mg Capsules, 100-Count
Nature's Way Siberian Eleuthero, 425mg Capsules, 100-Count

Siberian Eleuthero improves physical and mental vitality. It is an adaptogenic herb, which helps the body to adapt to daily stress. It is an ideal supplement for those leading a demanding and hectic lifestyle.

 

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    • bettersleeppro profile image

      Jon Greer 

      10 months ago from Paris

      Great post - I had never heard of these herbs for help with sleeping better. Interesting! I'm a big fan of L-theanine, which is an extract of Green Tea - not sure if that fits in the herbal category but it definitely reduces anxiety and improves sleep for me. Thanks

    • profile image

      sleepguru 

      5 years ago

      Honestly, it is just now that I have heard of these herbs. Anyway, you got a very informative post, thank you for sharing this idea, I got a new learning!

    • jcevans2009 profile image

      Judith C Evans 

      6 years ago from Boise, ID

      Great information! Passion flower has worked for me in the past, and I am having good results from hawthorn and eleuthero these days. Thanks for spreading the word about these "useful plants." I am voting up and awesome.

    • Angelo52 profile image

      Angelo52 

      6 years ago from Central Florida

      Herb tea, yoga and medititation all sound like great ways to relax and get into the sleep mode.

    • KimberlyLake profile image

      Kimberly Lake 

      6 years ago from California

      Very interesting Thanks for Sharing.

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 

      6 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Back again for a second read and I am thinking I should try the Passion Flower Tea. Dr Oz always shares new tips and really backs up his statements with studies and other experts. I am learning more about health-related topics from your hubs!

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 

      6 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Interesting! I did not know much about this topic.

    • KrystalD profile image

      Krystal 

      6 years ago from Los Angeles

      This was so informative! I will be linking think to my hubs of sleep. Thanks for sharing!

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