Cramp bark is a plant that grows in North America. Historically, Native Americans used cramp bark as medicine for reducing swollen glands and treating fluid retention, mumps, and eye disorders. Nowadays, the bark and root of this plant are used to make medicine for relieving cramps, including muscle spasms and menstrual cramps, as well as for increasing sleepiness.
Ginkgo biloba extract has been used for centuries in traditional Eastern cultures, often to improve memory and to treat circulatory disorders. The ginkgo tree is one of the oldest tree species in the world. Some research has shown that ginkgo can improve sleep in certain patients. For example, in 2001 one of studies published in “Pharmacopsychiatry” found that ginkgo improved sleep in depressed patients who reported that the ginkgo extract significant improved their sleep patterns and helped wake up less during the night. The researchers also noted that those who took the ginkgo extracts had their non-REM sleep phase enhanced.
Valerian root is a popular ingredient in pharmacology and herbal medicine as sleep remedy. It has been used to ease anxiety, insomnia and nervous restlessness since the second century A.D. According to the National Institutes of Health, there is good body of scientific evidence that it improves the quality of sleep and reduces the time needed to fall asleep, especially when taken nightly for several weeks. Scientists still debate on how valerian works. Some believe it increases the amount of a chemical in the brain called gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA). GABA has a calming effect on anxiety and helps regulate nerve cells.
Feverfew & Passionflower
In herbal medicine, feverfew is used in treating chronic headaches and migraines that has been also recognised by the conventional medical practitioners (the British Medical Journal and the Harvard Medical School Health Letter published the success stories of relieving migraines by taking feverfew ). Additional benefits include lower blood pressure, less stomach irritation, relieving the pain and inflammation of arthritis.
Passionflower is a protective antioxidant powerhouse containing flavonoids, sterols, cholorogenic acid, volatile oil and traces of alkaloids (including harmine, harman). Several sstudies indicated that significantly reduced anxiety-like reactivity. The British Herbal Compendium indicates its use for sleep disorders, restlessness and nervous stress. In several traditional systems of medicine this herb has been used as a sleep aid for occasional sleeplessness nights and for the treatment of epilepsy.