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Essential oils and herbs-how to get to sleep.

The research says that young adults need approximately 8 hours of sleep.

Physiologically, adolescents and young adults tend to have a delayed circadian preference and are “night owls”. Existing evidence does suggest an association between sleep and GPA. Students who obtained more sleep (long sleepers, ≥9 hours) had higher GPAs than short sleepers (≤6 hours): GPAs were 3.24 vs 2.74 on average. More evidence exists to support an influence of sleep patterns rather than sleep duration on GPA. (1)

Using herbs and essential oils as a central nervous system sedative means that the herb or oil has the ability to help you relax and, in this case, fall asleep.

The lengthy list of central nervous system sedatives in essential oils include:
Lavender (Lavendula angustifolia), Vetiver (Vetiveria zizanoides), German chamomile (Matricaria recutita), Opopanax (Commiphora guidotti), and Patchouli (Pogostremom cablin). The components that are relaxing in Lavender are linalool and linalyl acetate. Vetiver, opopanax and patchouli are grounding and have an earthy aroma. Studies found that german chamomile has CNS relaxing qualities, the aroma is herbal and fruity.

Some ways to use essential oils for sleep.

I love diffusing lavender for 30 minutes before bedtime or using a linen spray to help nod off to sleep. Vetiver, patchouli, opopanax, frankincense, myrrh, and nutmeg oils are all grounding. Sweet marjoram (Origanum majorana) can also work in blends.

Sweet orange contains d-limonene that has a calming and anxiety relieving effect which makes it a great oil for a children’s blend. You don’t have to stick with Lavender as a sleep aid when using essential oils.

Change it up by trying a blend of lavender, ylang ylang and vetiver in a carrier oil. Or if patchouli is too strong, try blending with cedarwood and opoponax in a carrier oil. Any of these blends makes a good inhaler to keep by your nightstand.

Everyone has preferences to what essential oils they like and dislike, for instance, I would much rather drink a cup of chamomile tea than use German chamomile essential oil in a blend. To me the oil overpowers blends and is offensive, and that is the beauty of aromatherapy, there are so many different oils to choose from!

I love chamomile tea.

Chamomile tea, lavender, and patchouli sachets, along with valerian also work in the herb side. Valerian has that unique smell that some find offensive, so it is nice to blend with a better smelling herb. Skullcap and passionflower are nice additions to tea blends.

Happy blending,

Crystal.

1. Hershner, S. D., & Chervin, R. D. (2014). Causes and consequences of sleepiness among college students. Nature and science of sleep, 6, 73–84. https://doi.org/10.2147/NSS.S62907.

“Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!”

PSALM 136:1
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It’s tea time!

Image by dungthuyvunguyen from Pixabay

I started this post after reading an article concerning the vitamins soluble in water. Did that make a difference in my tea? Should I be concerned? After hopefully trying to find studies on the subject, I found that there wasn’t much written about the subject. Americans have minimal issues concerning the lack of vitamins B and C in the diet. We aren’t deficient in these vitamins. While we know that cooking methods in vegetables matter, it barely effects our tea.

Water is the best solvent for herbs. Hot or cold? 1 minute or 20? What is the best way to brew, steep or make tea to get the most nutrients from the herbs that you are using?

White tea– steep 1 minute. Green tea–steep 2 minutes. Black tea– steep 4 minutes. Chamomile tea — steep no longer than 2 minutes or it is bitter. Do you look on the back of your tea box, bag, or can? The Lemon ginger tea that I am drinking says to steep 3-5 minutes at 190 to 210 degrees. It all seems confusing. Should it be so confusing?

Image by congerdesign from Pixabay

I put peppermint or mint in everything I make. I don’t like the taste of many herbs, which is why I started studying aromatherapy. If I couldn’t stand a tea, how was I going to get my family to drink it? Heck, my grandkids won’t even taste honey!

So, when I brew something, if I don’t like the individual components or in this case, herbs. They don’t go in the blend.

Brewing tea ideas

Sore throat tea:

Sage (1 teaspoon dried) and ginger root (1/4 teaspoon dried).

Sweeten with a little honey if needed.
Bring water to a boil, simmer ginger for 15 minutes.

Remove from heat. Add sage and steep for 15 minutes.

Strain and sweeten if desired.

Tummy tea:

Equal parts peppermint, lemon balm and chamomile.
For one serving, use 1 teaspoon each for 8 ounces of water.
Steep 3-4 minutes.

Sleepy time tea:

Equal parts chamomile, skullcap, lemon balm and burdock.
For one serving: use 2-3 teaspoons of tea per 8 ounces of water.
Cover with boiling water and steep for up to 15 minutes.

Everyday tonic tea:

Peppermint, chamomile, lemon balm, oat tops, dandelion root, schisandra berries, orange peel.
For one serving use 1 teaspoon of tea per 8 ounces of water.
Cover with boiling water and steep for up to 15 minutes.

Happy Blending,

Crystal.

“May He give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.”

PSALM 20:4