5 Natural Ways to Relax and Get to Sleep
Now there’s a new twist to an age-old solution to managing occasional symptoms of anxiety: ingestible lavender.
Lavender is well-known as nature’s stress reliever via aromatherapy and herbology. Its familiar scent calms frazzled nerves, helping to promote rest and restore balance. But it’s impractical to carry around a bowl of potpourri, or to constantly mist the air with essential oils–though I do that frequently at home.
Health professionals are discovering that ingestible natural lavender oil may be an easier way to help take the edge off.
We’re not talking about sipping bottles of essential oil. Save those for your bath water. A clinically studied lavender oil supplement – available nationwide as CalmAid – is a safe, non-habit forming and clinically proven way to help you feel more relaxed so you can stay productive.
I’ve tried mine for two weeks (swallowing one soft-gel a day) at mid-day… and I think it’s working. But I work under daily deadlines, and I already “rev high” as my husband would say.
Studies show swallowing this herb may relieve symptoms of anxiety including occasional restlessness, nervousness and sleeplessness, said naturopathic physician Dr. Don Brown. A randomized, placebo-controlled study found that an orally administered supplement may be as effective as some common interventions in managing the type of mild anxiety symptoms that we all encounter.
“It was also shown to improve sleep quality without causing daytime drowsiness,” said Dr. Brown. “Results were consistent with another placebo-controlled study which also found that lavender oil helped improve the duration and quality of sleep, while improving feelings of well being.”
The lavender oil supplement used in both studies is available as CalmAid (available at Naturesway.com) in soft gel form.
Dr. Brown’s detailed approach includes:
- Take a lavender supplement daily and use calming colors (blue, green, pales) in your bedroom.
- Snooze! “Running on just a few hours during the work week and trying to catch up on weekends may jeopardize your immune system. Many of us need seven to eight hours of quality, uninterrupted sleep every night,” said Dr. Brown.
- Shake your wild thing: Get an adequate amount of daily exercise, and then finish all exercise at least three hours before bed time. You’ll raise the feel-good endorphins in your brain and stretch your muscles to soothe nerves and physical tension.
- Carve time out for meditation or to spend time alone without distractions.
- Take a multivitamin with the RDA for B vitamins. “Increasing your levels of vitamin B12 and other B vitamins will also help improve your mood,” he said.
Do you have a secret weapon for insomnia? We want to know.
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