When you can’t sleep, you’re willing to try just about anything to induce deep sleep and relaxation. If that sounds like you, you’ve come to the right place.
If you’ve done your research, you might be asking, “Does chamomile tea make you sleep?”
Chamomile tea has sleep-inducing properties that have been clinically studied and proven to induce sedation and help relax the brain to allow for better, faster sleep.
In this article, we’ll look more in-depth at chamomile tea and understand the properties that make it a great sleep aid so you can decide if it could be the missing bridge between you and the good night’s sleep you deserve.
10 Reasons Why Chamomile Tea Makes You Sleepy
Chamomile tea has many studied health benefits, but it might be best known for its support for quality rest and relaxation. Does chamomile tea make you sleep? And why does chamomile make you sleepy? Let’s find out.
Apigenin, Sleep’s Best Friend
If you’re wondering why chamomile makes you sleepy, the answer is apigenin. Apigenin is a natural flavonoid found in chamomile tea that binds to the benzodiazepine receptors in the brain, which have soothing effects. In essence, this means that apigenin induces sedation when taken before bedtime.
And not only will it help you fall asleep faster, but you’re also more likely to stay asleep through the night. For those who struggle with continuous sleep, it can be a real lifesaver.
If what keeps you up at night is your racing thoughts, chamomile tea may be able to counteract that, as well.
While we still need more research to understand chamomile’s impact on anxiety, one small study published by Phytomedicine found that the consumption of chamomile in extract form reduced generalized anxiety disorder for those with moderate-to-severe symptoms.
The Mayo Clinic somewhat supports these claims, saying that it’s potentially effective in reducing anxiety symptoms. While it might not have an anxiety-reducing benefit for everyone, it’s worth a try.
A Caffeine-Free Nightcap
Tea, in general, has tons of health benefits, but caffeinated tea, like black tea or green tea, before bed can have the opposite intended effect if you’re trying to catch some Zs. Herbal teas like chamomile tea that are naturally caffeine-free are a great alternative that won’t be stimulating.
While you might be tempted to try other tea options that have the caffeine chemically removed, like decaffeinated earl grey tea, these options can still have trace amounts of caffeine. If you’re already having trouble sleeping, even a small level of caffeine before bed will work against you.
The Calming Scent of Chamomile
Does chamomile help you sleep if it’s just the scent of it? Possibly!
You don’t have to drink chamomile tea to reap its benefits. The scent of chamomile is used widely in aromatherapy and has calming and soothing effects that can help lull you into a deep sleep.
Whether you sip your tea before bed or spray some essential oil on your pillow, the scent of chamomile might be just what you need for quality rest.
Digestion Aid After Dinner
If you’re feeling stuffed after dinner and are having trouble sleeping, chamomile tea might be able to help with that. Consuming chamomile can reduce stomach discomfort and irritable bowel syndrome when taken in capsule form.
Since it’s also available in tea, you can enjoy a beautiful cup of tea after dinner that will not only be calming but also help with digestion, and in turn, help you sleep better without feeling uncomfortable.
Chamomile tea doesn’t just make you sleepy, it can also help boost your serotonin levels. Serotonin is the hormone that helps regulate your mood and fight off depression, and those living with depression often experience sleep problems. Increased serotonin levels can help you feel better, which in turn can help you sleep more soundly.
Reduce Stress & Cortisol Levels
Studies have found that chamomile tea can reduce cortisol levels, which allows your body to naturally relax and unwind from the day’s stress. In addition, the flavonoids in chamomile tea act as antioxidants, which help reduce inflammation and make it easier to fall asleep faster.
Chamomile tea can also help with cramps, spasms, and gastrointestinal issues because it contains antispasmodic properties, which relax muscles, especially those in the stomach. If you’re experiencing digestive disturbances or having trouble sleeping due to cramps, chamomile tea may provide relief and help you settle into a good night’s sleep.
The Ritual of Tea
While not specific to chamomile, the ritual of tea has numerous benefits in and of itself. From the warmth of the mug to taking slow, deep breaths while you sip, drinking a cup of tea can help bring your body into an alpha state that is more conducive to restful, restorative sleep.
Plus, there’s something so calming about having a hot cup of tea before bed that gets you in the right mood for a good night’s sleep.
Chamomile is what’s known as a “cooling” herb, which are herbs that help lower your body’s temperature and cool its tissues from the inside. Other herbs in this category include:
- Lemon balm
When you’re having trouble sleeping as a side effect of sickness, drinking chamomile tea can help cool your body and balance an overheated state, making naturally falling asleep a bit easier.
Does Chamomile Tea Make You Sleep? Why We Love It
So does chamomile help with sleep? From digestive aid to calming the mind and body, chamomile tea can be a powerful tool for better sleep. The scent of chamomile alone can help relax your body, while its antispasmodic properties and ability to increase serotonin levels might also give you more sound slumber.
Plus, drinking a cup of tea before bed can give you the ritual of comfort and relaxation.
So, does chamomile tea make you sleep? If you’re struggling with sleep, try it out tonight and see if it helps. You just might be surprised.
Frequently Asked Questions About Chamomile Tea
Are you still wondering, “Does chamomile tea really help you sleep?” Here are a few more answers to the most frequently asked questions to clear things up.
How Long Does It Take for Chamomile Tea To Make You Sleepy?
After drinking a cup of chamomile tea, you should start to feel sleepy after about 45 minutes. It’s ideal to drink your tea an hour or so before bed to give the tea plenty of time to kick in before bedtime.
What Happens if I Drink Chamomile Tea Every Night?
Drinking chamomile tea every night is relatively safe. The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health says it’s likely safe when consumed in amounts that are commonly found in teas. Drinking it regularly may even help you fall asleep faster as your body becomes used to the apigenin in the tea.
How Much Chamomile Tea Should I Drink for Sleep?
One to two cups of chamomile tea should be sufficient to help you sleep. If you find that you need several more cups to get the desired effect, speak with your doctor about other sleep aid options.
When Should You Not Drink Chamomile Tea?
You should avoid drinking chamomile tea if you’re allergic to chamomile or have allergic reactions to other related plants, such as daisies, chrysanthemums, ragweed, or marigolds.
If you take cyclosporine, a drug commonly used to prevent the rejection of transplanted organs, or warfarin, a blood thinner, you should also avoid drinking chamomile tea as some reactions have been reported.
If you’re worried about whether chamomile tea may interact with a drug you currently take, talk to your doctor before beginning a chamomile regimen.
What Does Chamomile Tea Do to the Brain?
The apigenin in chamomile tea binds to the brain’s benzodiazepine receptors, which can create a calming, sedative-like effect.
Will Chamomile Tea Make Me Sleepy During the Day?
Because of the apigenin presence in chamomile tea, you may feel a bit sleepy if you drink it during the day, although it may simply induce feelings of relaxation. In this way, it can be helpful to drink it in the daytime to mitigate stress and anxiety, but you should proceed with caution if you need to operate any vehicles or heavy machinery.
Can Chamomile Make You Drowsy the Next Day?
Chamomile does not cause extreme drowsiness, so it’s unlikely to still affect you the next day. Many people who use chamomile to help them sleep find it gives them more energy the next day since they enjoy longer, better-quality nights of sleep and feel more rested in the morning.
How Long Should I Let Chamomile Tea Sit?
You should brew herbal teas such as chamomile at a temperature of 210ºF. While steeping time will vary, you should expect chamomile tea to steep longer than herbal teas with a stronger taste, like ginger tea, because it has a generally mild taste.
A general recommendation is around five minutes or longer if you prefer a stronger taste.
What Happens if You Drink Too Much Chamomile Tea?
If consumed in doses that are too large, it can lead to drowsiness and possible vomiting, although this is rare. In general, as long as you’re not drinking chamomile tea for every drink of your day, you should only reap the benefits it provides.
Is Chamomile Tea Good for Anxiety?
Chamomile can help with anxiety because of its chemical structure. The apigenin flavonoids have a sedating, relaxing effect on the brain that can help calm anxious thought patterns and quiet internal noise.
Does Chamomile Tea Have Caffeine?
No, chamomile tea does not have caffeine. Unlike other teas that have caffeine chemically extracted, chamomile is naturally caffeine free, so there are no trace amounts of caffeine found.
The total absence of caffeine makes it a great drink to enjoy sipping before bed without any negative consequences.
Final Thoughts on Chamomile Tea for Sleep
Does chamomile tea make you sleep? Yes, it can!
Chamomile tea offers a natural and delicious way to get better sleep. With its sedative-like effects, chamomile can help quiet the mind, helping you relax and drift off into slumber.
It’s crucial to understand any potential interactions with medications or allergies before beginning a regimen of regular chamomile tea drinking. But beyond that, it’s a safe and proven way to relax the mind and body before bed and promote healthy, restful sleep.
If you’re struggling to get quality shut-eye, try adding a cup or two of chamomile to your evening wind-down routine and see the difference it can make in your life.