If you are part of the group of people who have trouble sleeping, you may be interested in alleviating insomnia disorder without prescription drugs and their side effects. Teas, relaxing music, and other solutions can help, but even these options can fail and negative interactions with medications and other supplements can arise. Opting for natural supplements is the way to get a good night’s sleep without worrying about damaging other areas of the body.
Natural supplementation can help your sleep through various approaches, from regulating the circadian cycle to acting on the central nervous system, increasing the body’s sense of relaxation.
Preferring natural alternatives brings numerous benefits:
- It usually treats the cause and not the symptoms;
- Less chance of dependency;
- It is harmless to your body;
- It is less likely to develop allergic reactions.
Keep in mind that high-quality sleep is just as important for overall health as eating well and exercising regularly, so invest in sleep health! Achieve these benefits naturally by choosing your supplement properly.
What is the best natural sleep supplement
There are a wide variety of natural products that help you sleep. However, finding which of these options are effective against insomnia and favor the sleep cycle can be difficult, so we list only the supplements with scientific basis for their action:
Melatonin is a hormone produced by your body that communicates to your brain that it is time to sleep.
The cycle of production and release of this hormone is influenced by the time of day; melatonin levels naturally rise at night and decline in the morning.
Melatonin pills, as a result, have become a popular sleep aid, especially in circumstances where the melatonin cycle is disturbed, such as jet lag.
Furthermore, numerous studies show that melatonin increases the quality and length of daytime sleep. This is especially useful for people whose schedules compel them to sleep during the day, such as shift workers.
Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera, Solanaceae) is a rejuvenating plant that has anxiolytic, analgesic, hypotensive, sedative, anticancer, anti-inflammatory, anabolic, antifungal, hematological, and cardiorespiratory properties.
In principle, Ashwagandha does not work as a sedative, but it does reduce stress levels, improve vitality, and aid in the restoration of the body’s physiological mechanisms, including those in charge of sleep.
As a result, it treats the underlying cause of insomnia rather than the symptoms. This makes it one of the favorite supplements for those suffering with sleep disorders.
Participants in one 2006 trial who were having trouble sleeping took 3 grams of glycine or a placebo right before night.
Those who took glycine reported feeling less tired, feeling more alive, peppy, and clear-headed the next morning.
Another study published in 2007 found that participants’ sleep quality improved.
These findings are also corroborated by more recent study, which shows enhanced daytime performance in people who suffer from sleep difficulties.
From sudies, it has been concluded that PEA has a sleep potential that can reduce sleep onset time and improve cognition upon waking.
With this, several people can sleep better, as it optimizes the time to fall asleep by up to 19 minutes and also helps in the time to fully wake up, gaining by 11 minutes.
The authors of the study concluded that the reduction in sleep onset latency could be due to a variety of physiological reactions to PEA, such as increased AEA (anadamide) levels via the endocannabinoid system.
PEA is also proposed to have an effect on sleep due to its ability to act through transient receptor potential cation channel subfamily V member 1 (TRPV1). Activation of TRPV1 via increased AEA initiates vasorelaxation through a release of vasodilators and may facilitate sleep.
According to Bret A. Bauer – director of the Complementary and Integrative Medicine Program in the Department of Internal Medicine at the Mayo Clinic – several studies have found that valerian, a tall, flowering plant, can shorten the time it takes to fall asleep and help you sleep better.
This herb is commonly described as “nature’s Valium,” and it has been used to treat sleep disorders such as insomnia since the Middle Ages.
Furthermore, valerian can help you relax and may help persons suffering from anxiety and other symptoms.
To further optimize your sleep, it is important that you consume a supplement that is free of drug interactions, respects your diet and is appropriate for your sleep goals.