8 Herbs to Help With Sleep for Insomnia

Good sleep helps us get refreshed, calm, and ready to start a day. Restless and sleepless nights make us anxious and constantly tired. Increased numbers of people suffer from insomnia, preventing them from functioning and living happy and healthy lives. In this article, we will acquaint you with Traditional Chinese Medicine and herbs as part of it.

Insomnia or sleep deprivation is often caused by stressful schedules, improper diet, or some emotional issues. Insomnia is sleep dissatisfaction and difficulty falling asleep, maintaining it and waking up early with the inability to return to sleep.

Sleep is your body’s natural way of healing and good sleep prepares you for the day and makes you more productive. Unfortunately, an increased number of people suffer from insufficient sleep and potentially develop higher risk for conditions such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.

Herbs and TCM have been used for centuries to help promote sleep by fixing the root of chronic insomnia. Herbs can be used to support psychological changes, which are often culprits of sleep deprivation.

Stress, as the primary cause, affects the production of serotonin thus herbs can balance it back to relieve insomnia symptoms. Herbs can improve your overall health, relax muscles, and slow heart rate, all of which help with having a good night’s sleep.

Explore Chinese Herbs to Promote Sleep With Makari Wellness

Michael Woodsworth has been practicing TCM for more than fifteen years and is also a licensed herbalist. He uses a combination of holistic ways such as herbs and acupuncture to help his patients improve sleep and overall balance. TCM believes that sleep is intertwined with two forces Blood and Yang Qui which help the body to function and sleep well. Michael gives every patient custom approach to the root of insomnia and improves the whole immune system by suggesting Chinese herbs as the primary way to ensure long-term health benefits. If you experience sleep issues, please contact us at (888) 871-8889.

8 Herbs Which Help with Insomnia

Blood and Tang Qi may be impacted by number of factors such as anxiety, stress, overthinking, excessive dreaming, and more. A wide selection of TCM herbs have been used to help with these conditions which deprive sleep and impact everyday life activities.

Suan Zao Ren

This herb is also known as Sour Date and has been used in TCM for centuries to treat insomnia. Ancient theorists and practitioners believed that Sour Date works best when raw and prepared forms to help promote sleep and create sedative effect. Suan Zao Ren brings balance to the liver and heart while reducing restlessness.

Xie Cao

This herb is called Valerian Root and originates from many parts of Asia and Europe. It is one of the most popular herbs known to treat insomnia and promote relaxation. Valerian Root slows down the breaking of GABA, a neurotransmitter which influences our nervous system. It is believed that it helps people fall asleep faster and improve sleep continuity. Valerian root also has sedative effects, calms nerves, and reduces anxiety. Consider trying Valerian Rot if you have trouble supporting sleep.

Bai Zhu

It is a herb that has been known for tonifying the Qi in various digestive conditions. According to TCM, you support sleep quality by harmonizing and bringing balance to your stomach. The herb also tonifies the Spleen Qi and reduces tiredness due to poor sleep quality. It holds the chemicals known as atractylenolide II and III which have proven to be effective with sleep and for having sedative impact.

Dao Zao

It is also known as Jujube or Chinese date and besides being a medicine, it is a very delicious fruit. It can be consumed as a snack or added to food. The daily intake of Jujube should be controlled since it can cause digestive discomfort. It renews the chemicals which fuel our body with Qi energy and warmth. Jujube calms the spirit and treats insomnia.

Fu Ling

Fu Ling is also called poria, a type of mushroom used in TCM for centuries to treat various conditions such as restlessness, insomnia, and other sleep issue symptoms. Fu Ling is a heart tonic, which means that it influences energy, strength, and vitality. It also has sedating and tranquilizing effects. The heart can be responsible for mental anxiety which is typically attributed to insomnia.


Chamomile is well known for its relaxing and calming effects. It lessens everyday stress, anxiety, calms nerves, and improves sleep thus easing symptoms of insomnia. People mostly like to drink chamomile tea, but its aroma can also be inhaled to relax nerves. Consider implementing Chamomile tea daily if you feel tense or restless with difficulty unwinding.


Lavender can be used in many ways and is immensely popular among women for various conditions and cosmetics. It is the most common herb known for resting and calming the body and spirit. People use it in oil form and diffuse it in their bedroom 30 minutes prior to sleep. Its soothing fragrance is very pleasant and is known to enhance sleep. Lavender has sedative and antidepressant features which stabilize mood disorders.


Passionflower is cultivated in many countries and widely used in North America to enhance sleep and treat insomnia. It contains nerve-relaxing flavonoids which help with anxiety and promote sleep. Its effect is the best when combined with valerian or hops. The major advantages of consuming Passionflower are sleeping duration, waking up many times through the night, and less time needed to fall asleep.

What is Insomnia?

People who suffer from insomnia often have feelings of worry, racing thoughts, analytical brain, irritability, depression, and anxiety. All these symptoms make it harder to fall and stay asleep. There are three main categories of insomnia:

  • Short-term – lasts less than three months.
  • Episodic – occurs occasionally.
  • Chronic – lasts more than three months.

Causes of Insomnia

Many factors can cause insomnia and some of them are:

  • Pain – chronic or temporary
  • Sleep apnea
  • Medications
  • Circadian rhythm disorder
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Poor sleep hygiene
  • Inadequate quality of mattress and pillow

Possible Side Effects of Suffering from Insomnia

Negative effects may arise from constantly having sleep troubles since it can completely prevent a person from functioning daily. It can also impair overall health and quality of life. Sleep deprivation can leave the following consequences:

  • Digestive issues
  • Drowsiness and tiredness
  • Poor concentration
  • Muscle tension
  • Headaches and migraines

Tips to Improve Your Sleep

Sleep habits are especially important if we want to prevent insomnia and other sleep disorders. It is a set of behaviors and practices that are followed daily and into bedtime. Some of the practices include:

  • Bedtime routine is something that was proven to improve sleep. It can be a warm bath or shower, brushing teeth, applying lotions, and reading a book before sleep.
  • It is advisable to avoid excessive intake of coffee and other beverages which hold caffeine.
  • Try to keep your wake-up and bedtime on schedule, even on weekends.
  • Avoid eating spicy or greasy food before bedtime.
  • Try light stretching before bed and avoid cardio exercises right before going to sleep.
  • Try not to use your phone or watch TV right before bed.