Herbs to Sleep Better?

Dear Friends,

Do you ever feel this way?

I mostly have sleepless nights! Tossing and turning and counting sheep has become part of my routine…I’m experiencing this roller-coaster sensation daily. Highs during the day and when it’s time for rest, wide awake….

Here are some calming Chinese herbs with relaxing properties that promote healthy sleeping patterns:

Ziziphus Juju

Ziziphus jujube, a calming herb, rich in nutrients and vitamins, used to treat irritability, insomnia while it assists in quieting the mind. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) this herb is believed to nourish the heart, augment the liver blood and calm the spirit.

Polygala tenuifolia

Used as a relaxing sedative, Polygala tenuifolia acts as a soothing agent that reduces nervousness, distress and irritation. Its root has been used for centuries in aiding sleep and Taoist monks benefitted regularly from enhanced mental and spiritual development.


This classic Chinese herbal medicine, Schisandra contains a number of compounds, including essential oils and acids found in the seeds of these tiny red berries. Laboratory studies suggest that Schisandra can improve performance at work and home, generating energy and reducing fatigue.

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Cat’s Claw

Uncaria rhynchophylla, commonly known as Cat’s Claw herb, is used around the world to help nutritionally support the body’s immune defense, circulatory and gastrointestinal systems through its antioxidant properties.

Bupleurum chinensis

Another traditional herb, Bupleurum chinensis is one of the most important herbs used in China. Its constituents, known as saikosaponins, appear to account for much of its medicinal properties. This herb is an anti-inflammatory, liver protective, mild sedative, which serves a variety of harmonizing activities in the body.


5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan), a naturally occurring amino acid, precursor to serotonin and an intermediate to tryptophan metabolism. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that helps regulate sleep, mood and anxiety.  As a dietary supplement, it is used as a mood regulator and sleep aid, playing a beneficial role in easing the anxiety of sleepless nights.

Share your Comments:

What herbs do you use?

About Debbie

Debbie Polisky, MS, MBA, CLT is a Bilingual Nutritionist, Zumba Instructor, Wellness Consultant and Adjunct Faculty who uses mind and body techniques, such as mindfulness, stress management, exercise, dance/zumba, yoga and nutrition to improve the lives of patients, students and the community. She has over 20 years of experience in the healthcare field, in two countries, Argentina and in USA and in her two native languages, English and Spanish.