Iranian researchers have discovered a natural remedy for insomniacs. According to them, lemon verbena (Aloysia citriodora) can improve sleep in patients with insomnia. The respective research was published in the Journal Phytotherapy Research. The study states that oral intake of Lemon verbena can potentially aid sleep among insomniacs.
Lemon verbena is a plant native to South America which is now accessible all over the world. The plant became famous due to its characteristic flavor. It became a popular ingredient in food products like poultry and fish dishes, salads, dressings, jams, and beverages etc.
Lemon verbena was also traditionally used as a natural sedative. It remedied fevers, digestive problems, and insomnia. Scientific evidences back the medicinal benefits of the plant against inflammation, metabolic problems, congestion, and anxiety.
Insomnia is a sleep disorder, affecting up to 40 percent of Americans every year. It is the most common sleep disorder among the U.S. population. This list of the possible reasons behind the condition include,
- Psychological issues
- Hormonal imbalances
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Chronic pain
- Extreme noise
- Extreme temperatures
- High altitudes
The people suffering from sleep loss often opt for sleeping pills which impose many side effects including erratic behavior, daytime drowsiness, memory loss, and increased risk of death and cancer.
What does the study say?
This respective research determines that lemon verbena can serve as a natural, safe remedy against insomnia.
The researchers conducted a randomized clinical trial employing around one hundred participants. The subjects were randomly divided into two groups. The first group was given lemon verbena (1.66 mg total essential oil per 10 ml and 3.22 mg of quercetin per 10 ml syrup). On the other hand, the second group received a placebo syrup.
The participants were instructed to take 10 cc of their assigned treatment an hour before going to bed. The treatment continued for four weeks.
The patients were evaluated via,
- Insomnia Severity Index (ISI) questionnaires
- Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI)
The PSQI underlines four components i.e. Sleep latency, habitual sleep efficiency, daytime dysfunction, and subjective sleep quality. After two weeks and after four weeks of the treatment the researchers conducted the assessment at baseline.
The group treated with lemon verbena exhibited significant improvements in PSQI and ISI scores. Thus, the researchers concluded that lemon verbena can potentially be used as a natural remedy for insomnia.
Natural ways to promote sleep
Here are some additional tips to promote a good night’s sleep by natural means,
- Drink chamomile tea
- Get some sunlight in the morning
- Start a healthy and regular exercise
Chamomile tea has been used as a natural relaxant for centuries. Studies show that chamomile tea calms down the nerves, alleviates anxiety, and prevents insomnia. Experts recommend using two to three tea bags of chamomile for effective results.
Letting sunlight into your room after waking up is also helpful in this regard. It wakes your body up and helps you sleep better at night.
A healthy and regular exercise promotes better sleep. Experts suggest that doing a 30-minute workout three to four times per week extends sleep by up to an hour.