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5 Natural Herbs for Sleep for a More Restful Night

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Tossing and turning. Hours spent staring at the ceiling in frustration. Squeezing one’s eyes shut out of desperation.

Occasional sleeplessness happens to all of us, but a chronic inability to fall asleep — called insomnia — is a severely debilitating condition that affects up to 25% of Americans every year. In an attempt to recuperate lost sleep, most people struggling with insomnia turn to pharmaceutical sleep aids. However, many sleeping medications can cause various adverse side effects, which makes their use risky and potentially problematic.

Thankfully, many people with insomnia have found respite in natural sleep aids, including herbs for sleep. In this post, we’ll explore five of the most popular and effective herbal sleep aid options for tackling insomnia naturally.

Valerian Root

Valeriana officinalis, or valerian, is a flowering plant that grows throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. When the ground roots of the valerian plant are consumed, the herb seems to work as a sedative, inducing drowsiness and reducing the amount of time it takes to fall asleep.

Although the exact mechanisms behind valerian root’s effects on sleep aren’t understood, some researchers have hypothesized that valerian root may work by interacting with GABA receptors in the brain.

However, when used as an herb for sleep, valerian root may not be as effective as prescription sleeping medicine. Unlike many fast-acting sleep aids, the herb seems to be most effective when taken consistently over the course of 1-2 weeks. In contrast, erratic or infrequent use of valerian root as an herbal sleep aid seems to be less effective, so consistency is key.


Although the Southeast Asian powdered plant kratom isn’t primarily known as being an herb for sleep, some people have found success in using it to address acute and chronic sleeplessness.

However, it’s important to note that not all kratom powders or products will aid with sleep. Most kratom is generally regarded as being soothing, but the coloration and variety, or “strain,” of the kratom in question will ultimately determine its characteristics and effectiveness as an herbal sleep aid.

For instance, red vein kratom strains are considered to possess pleasant, relaxing aromas, while white vein kratom strains are thought to produce stimulating and energizing aromas that might be less conducive to sleep. In addition, the effects of kratom are considered to be very subjective — so take what you read with a grain of salt.

Ultimately, if you intend on using kratom as an herb for sleep, you’ll want to do plenty of research beforehand in order to maximize your potential results.


Although 5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) isn’t exactly an herb for sleep, it is a naturally-occurring amino acid found in potatoes, meat, milk, and some green vegetables. When consumed, 5-HTP acts as a precursor to the body’s production of the neurohormone melatonin and the neurotransmitter serotonin, which are both conducive to restful sleep and elevated mood.

Chemically, 5-HTP is similar to L-tryptophan, the amino acid that’s often blamed for lulling many Americans into the proverbial Thanksgiving “turkey nap.” In actuality, it’s more accurate to deem 5-HTP as the culprit of holiday sleepiness because L-tryptophan converts to 5-HTP in the body.

Holiday anecdotes aside, 5-HTP has demonstrated a proven capability to promote sleep and appears to be effective even at low doses. By increasing deep REM sleep during the particularly rejuvenating stages 3 and 4, 5-HTP can help combat insomnia and occasional sleeplessness.

Quilt on Bed


The Akuamma seed is a natural medicine that has seen extensive use throughout West Africa. Sourced from the Picralima nitida tree, the dried seeds of the Akuamma tree are either sold whole or ground and sold as Akuamma powder.

Akuamma is packed with many alkaloids, some of which — including akuammidine and pseudo-akuammigine — may aid in alleviating sleeplessness. In particular, akuammidine’s relaxing properties are comparable to one of kratom’s primary alkaloids, mitragynine.

That said, only a limited amount of research has been conducted on using Akuamma seeds as an herbal sleep aid. Although some users swear by Akuamma’s effectiveness, other herbs for sleep have a stronger and more compelling track record.


Again, not necessarily an herbal sleep aid, melatonin is a hormone that’s produced within the human body. Acting as a sort of natural sleep aid, melatonin is one of many “signals” that your body uses to regulate your sleep patterns.

Melatonin is produced in the pineal gland, and levels in the body naturally fluctuate throughout the day. At night, melatonin release increases, which preps your body and mind for sleep. But, in the morning, melatonin release decreases, which allows other hormones like norepinephrine and cortisol to kick in, ensuring that you’re alert, active, and ready for the day.

Although melatonin isn’t technically an herb for sleep, many people take it as a supplement to promote and enhance their sleep.

Order Natural Products Online at Kratora

At Kratora, we carry a diverse selection of all-natural ethnobotanical products, including kratom, Akuamma seeds, and several other kratom alternatives. We’ve traveled the globe in search of nature’s finest botanicals, and we’re thrilled to share our exciting finds with customers from around the world.

In keeping with our principles, we take great care to ensure that our products are always:

  • Organic and all-natural
  • Sourced from reliable and trustworthy growers
  • Carefully packaged and securely sealed to preserve freshness

Despite our passion for high-quality botanicals and herbs for sleep, your satisfaction is always our highest priority. We’re proud to offer our customers:

Shop at Kratora today to receive same-day shipping on orders submitted before 3 PM EST Monday through Friday and 1 PM EST on Saturdays (excluding holidays).

Please note that none of the products sold on our website are intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or medical condition.

Want to learn more about kratom quality and value? Start here:
Why Buying Cheap Kratom Can Be Dangerous

Author Bio


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Colleen is a part owner of Kratora along with her brother David. Kratora was founded in 2013 by David with Colleen joining the team later in 2017. The siblings were born and raised in the Bay Area and spent most of their professional years working in Silicon Valley. Their interest in botanicals began in the early 2000s as they cared for a sick family member and quickly grew into the passion that formed Kratora.

Colleen and the team at Kratora are dedicated to providing the best quality botanicals on the market along with the best customer service. They believe their loyal customers are what makes Kratora so special! Over their many years in business it has always brought them joy to work with their customers and see how botanicals are changing lives for the better.

Kratora’s vision is to help their customers live a better life by consistently providing the highest quality, safest, and purest botanicals on the market. Colleen and her team specialize in regular kratom, kratom extracts, liquid kratom, even kratom gummies — plus a lot of kratom alternative products. Kratora is always looking to expand their product line while remaining true to their high standards.

Colleen believes in transparency between the Kratora team and the expert farmers in South Asia which is why they follow Fair Trade policies. Without these farmers, Kratora would not have any products to sell. As part of Colleen’s commitment in providing the highest quality botanicals, Kratora invests highly into third-party lab testing for all of the products they sell.

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