I have noticed many of my clients having difficulty getting to sleep and then staying asleep.

Sadly, for too many of our people rely on sleeping pills to help their situation before trying a more natural holistic approach.

While there’s always a chance insomnia can suggest the presence of other root cause disorders, most of the time it’s temporary and we just need to wait it out and apply a few natural remedies in the meantime.

Now, let me share with you a few Ayurvedic remedies that have helped many of my clients tremendously when they experience either difficulty falling or staying asleep.

It’s best to be in bed by 11 pm. Remember there are three master cycles or rhythms in each day. If you go to bed around this time, your body is under the daily cycle that has several qualities of heavy, slow and stable, which are very supportive of the sleep pattern. Remember if you miss this window, the next cycle is going to be a more fiery cycle and can make falling asleep a big challenge.

Take a warm bath and add a few drops of lavender, which is helpful for relaxation. After you dry off, massage some luke-warm oil of either almond or sesame oil, paying particular attention to the feet. Then put on some warm cotton socks. Some clients find it’s difficult to sleep with cold feet.

There are two marma points that correspond to the seven chakras or energy centres of the body. Apply gentle pressure on each side of the temples with alternating clockwise and counter clock-wise circular movements for a few minutes.

Ayurveda considers the herbs jatamamsi, brahmi and chamomile, very useful for promoting sound, deep sleep, and relaxation. They are all good choices to try, but, my favorite is jatamamsi which is also known as spikenard. Jatamamsi allows your brain to think more clearly and function more efficiently.

It is important to avoid heavy meals. Ideally, your last meal should be light, but warm and grounding. Food should not be taken later than 8.30 pm as it is difficult to fall asleep if all your body energy is tied up with digestion. Yes, digestion takes energy and will affect your quality of sleep.

I often recommend drinking walnut milk 45 minutes before bedtime. Walnuts contain a very rich source of serotonin. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter in the brain that promotes the feeling of relaxation and well-being. Remember, you can make a walnut shake simply by blending 1/8 of walnuts with an equal amount of milk about 45 minutes before bedtime.

I have found for even greater benefit, you can include a teaspoon of ground organic flaxseeds and a tablespoon of lecithin granules with a dash of cinnamon.

If all this fails, just lay quietly in bed with your eyes closed and an awareness of your body while repeating the mantra ‘Deep Sleep’ to yourself. The thing not to do is to worry that you won’t be able to operate well the next day, which only creates more anxiety. Your body can rest and repair itself while resting quietly.

For further information please contact Patrick Murphy at The Herbal Academy.