Kitchen Apothecary: Sleep Rituals + Anima Mundi Apothecary Giveaway!

tea

In our modern world, sleep is completely undervalued. We live in this fast-paced culture where we push ourselves day in and out, running our bodies and minds into the ground without recognizing the physical and emotional affects of chronic fatigue. Dr. Claudia Welch has a great anecdote about this very thing. She says, “When we’re hungry – we eat, when we’re thirsty – we drink, when we’re tired, we think – what’s wrong?”.  One of the most essential practices we can do for our health, beyond all the beautiful conscious foods we consume, is to get enough rest so we can properly digest and receive the nutrients from the food and lessons from our day. Here are a few rituals to add to your nighttime routine for better sleep….

Create A Sanctuary
All through college and into the early days of starting my business, I used to work on my laptop in bed throughout the day and into the late hours of the night. Then, I might watch a movie…and sometimes I’d even eat my meals while on my computer…in bed. So when it came time to sleep, it was no wonder I would wake up through out the night or have troubles falling asleep. It’s essential to make your bedroom your sanctuary and leave mentally stimulating activities, like work or movie watching, to separate spaces in the home.

Ayurveda’s sister science, Vastu Shastra, recommends the bedroom to be a peaceful place. You can even organize your bedroom to work with the energies of the four directions and elements, positioning your bed so your head faces east or south to promote sound sleep. In Sherri Silverman’s book, Vastu, she explains that sleeping with your head pointing north is draining and speeds up the aging process. Because of the magnetic polar effects in the body, the northern direction has a negative effect on energy flow in the body and can be too stimulating on the nervous system while sleeping. Equally, if you have a strong Vata constitution, sleeping with the head facing north can be too agitating because the north/northwest quadrant of the room is the element of air/space. Generally, you would want to harness the earth element of the south instead for a more grounding and calming effect for all three doshas. If you can’t position your bed in these directions, don’t stress – simply keep your bedroom as a peaceful place for sleeping and your other rooms for activity. Keep it clean and the clutter to a minimal.

Eat Light
Finish eating before 7pm, allow plenty of time to digest and settle before bed. When we eat a late or heavy meal in the evening, it dampens our digestive fire and interrupts our organs natural cleansing process in the nighttime hours. Instead, opt for lunch as your largest meal and keep dinner light, warm and simple.

Sip Tea
Sipping warm water or tea after a meal can aid digestion and set you up for sleep. Keep a stock of soothing sleepy time herbal teas like chamomile, lavender, lemon balm or valerian.

Cool Down
Turn the heat down or crack a window in your bedroom. Studies show that sleeping in a warm and stuffy room can disrupt deeper sleep patterns. This is essential for those with a pitta imbalance! Our circadian rhythms naturally keep our body warmer in the day and begin to cool us down at night to prepare for sleep. An NIH study also showed that sleeping in a 66-degree room increases the bodies stores of metabolically active brown fat, which helps your body burn calories and dispose of excess blood sugar. This is essential for those with a pitta imbalance!

No Screens
Okay, so now we know not to work on your laptop or watch tv in bed, but what about that nasty habit of scrolling through instagram after you turn the lights out? NO! Blue light stimulation from all electronic screens negatively affects melatonin production, hindering your body’s ability to produce the hormones that help you sleep and regenerate through the night. Melatonin is not just a supplement, it’s a hormone made in your body by the pineal gland. It’s actually produced in darkness and inhibited by light. The levels of your melatonin increase in the middle of the night and gradually fall as the night turns to morning, so exposure to light before bed can push your biological clock in the wrong direction. Melatonin also works to lower overall body temperature, so that idea of the body cooling down to fall asleep is also essential.  A simple remedy to this modern problem – leave all electronics out the bedroom and remove any artificial light sources that keep the brain stimulated while you’re falling asleep.  Ladies – this is also essential for estrogen production and healthy reproductive hormone balance! Read more about lunaception here.

Oil Massage
Keep a bottle of your favorite herbal oils by your bed and give yourself a lovely foot massage to wind down. You can also rub this into the ears and around the temples for an additional grounding effect. Banyan Botanicals has a Sleep Oil that’s great for this.

Lights Out
It’s so hard… I know. But seriously, now that your phone, tv and computer are out of the bedroom – turn all the lights out by 10pm and go to sleep! Your whole body will thank you and your morning routine will feel so much juicier!

4I8A5725

LUCID DREAMING TONIC TEA
Ashwagandha
Passionflower
Tulsi
Mulungu
Guayusa
Ginger
Kava Kava
Blue Lotus
Cornflowers
Rose Petals

Anima Mundi’s Dream Tea is made from biodynamic and organically grown ingredients. This calming blend aids in deeper sleep, supporting the nervous system and sharpening your connection to the dreaming realms. When the brain is in the Alpha and Beta states, it enters into a deeply regenerative space and supports rejuvenation in the whole body.

How To
Add 2 tbsp of loose leaf tea to a french press, tea pot or single tea bag. Pour hot water over top and allow to steep for 10-15 minutes. Sip slowly before bed.

GIVEAWAY! 

Anima Mundi Apothecary is gifting a bag of their potent Lucid Dreaming Tonic Tea to two lucky winners in this week’s giveaway!

To enter the giveaway…
1. Follow @animamundiherbals on Instagram & Facebook
2. Comment below and tell us your favorite rituals for better sleep.

Two winners will be selected and notified by May 31st, 2016!

48 Comments

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48 responses to “Kitchen Apothecary: Sleep Rituals + Anima Mundi Apothecary Giveaway!”

  1. Rebecca says:

    My favorite rituals for better sleep are turning off screens well ahead of time, going to bed early enough to read for a while, and doing a little meditation/deep breathing.

  2. Kelsey says:

    I love doing an abhyanga and having a hot bath before bed. It carries me straight to coziness and sleep so easily 🙂 And it feels so nourishing after a long day.

  3. Definitely one my favorite bed time rituals is performing a Mayan abdominal massage on myself with castor oil. It’s a technique I learned from a naturopath a few years ago and has changed my life. Feels so good and soothing before bed and you wake up feeling refreshed and cleansed. Win-win!

  4. Diana Cote says:

    My ritual is a warm shower or epsom bath, loose comfy and breathable clothing, Warm cup of tea and dim lights. I also like to keep the temp cooler than normal as I tend to get hot during the night at the normal house temp. I sleep like a baby when I follow all of those steps. 🙂

  5. Judith says:

    i always read a bit before bed

  6. Sarah says:

    My favorite rituals before bed are a bath bomb infused bath, yoga, meditation and camomile tea😴🙏✨

  7. Cristina says:

    A quick warm shower to cleanse, and then moisturize. A daily organic face cream by badger, a candle and read a few pages of poetry. Tea too – and release any negative thoughts, Count blessings

  8. Maddy says:

    Calming herbal tea or tonic, yin yoga and when there’s time a warm bath infused with coconut oil and herbs. I love Anima Mundi and would be thrilled to try the Lucid Dreaming Tonic Tea!

  9. Debbie says:

    Diffuse lavender essential oil in the bedroom. Also put a combo on the bottom of my feet: lavender, frankincense, vetiver & patchouli 😴

  10. Rose says:

    Hm, I like to have a tidy bedroom before I get to bed, Diffuse sage maybe, wind down & breathe. Purified water

  11. Jenner says:

    Flossing, mint tea with lemon & a good book!

  12. Courtney See Elizondo says:

    I love herbal teas before bed, along with writing my gratitude list, a guided meditation,calming essential oils, and trying to cut back on screen time.

  13. Iovino Barbie says:

    I am a 53 yr old , otherwise healthy female. A teacher 26 yrs. and …a 11 week recovering brain tumor survivor ! An unexpected devastating event that has left me with insomnia , night sweats and anxiety. I have purchased essential oils and use my new diffuser with lavender every night. I wear a 100% chemical free white cotton nightgown every night and keep my room dark and cool. I close my eyes and pray. I enter into sleep with a grateful heart feeling blessed regardless of my circumstances. I acknowledge in my slumber how fragile life is as i exhale the negativity and breathe in the positive vibes. Once I’m asleep I’m at peace with my mind body and spirit.

  14. sarah Pittoello says:

    My favourite pre-bed rituals include a warm tea, dimming the lights in our home, a warm shower or oil massage (chocolate lavender oil is my current favourite), and reading something inspiring and not-too emotionally evocative.

  15. Gina says:

    My favourite rituals include a reishi tonic, some journaling to clear the mind from the day and set an intention for the next. Then a meditation with some lavender essential oil and right before bed a deep foot massage with either coconut oil or warm sesame oil.

  16. natassia says:

    Thanks for the helpful post! Soft lighting, hot tea, mellow music, meditation + a foot massage do wonders for sending my mind to space at night! Usually my mind is super active when trying to sleep. A salt lamp is really nice in combination with music — Marconi Union’s albums are great for winding down, and some helpful white noise apps are MelloToneGen and Noizio. 🙂

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  17. Annette says:

    I like to have a cup of hot tea right after a bubble bath.

  18. MelissA says:

    Wonderful post! I love warm almond milk with nutmeg, cardamom & honey, or tulsi bedtime tea. I rub my feet & chest with banyan’s sleep oil & have a lavender oil diffuser next to the bed. It’s helpful!

  19. Kristen says:

    I love a hot bath and having my phone off, away from me for awhe before bed. It makes a huge difference. Love this post!

  20. Karla says:

    Before bed each night I drink CCFD tea – cumin, coriander, fennel, and dandelion tea. I place the seeds in a tea ball and then place them in a mug with the roasted dandelion root tea bag. I pour near boiling water over them and steep for a minimum of 15 minutes. Sometimes I toast the seeds beforehand, sometimes I don’t, I love the taste both ways. While the tea is steeping, I lay down on my yoga mat with my legs up vertical on the wall and, depending on my mood, I either lay there in silence or play some light classical music. When the tea is ready, I sip my tea and read a book.

  21. Madeline says:

    My favorite ritual for better sleep is to take a hot shower and wash my body with coconut oil in the shower. I find that its very moisturizing but doesn’t leave me feeling too oily. This and writing down 10 things I am grateful for.

    I love the advice about not eating after 7 pm. I have been eating later lately and also haven’t been sleeping as great as normal. Thank you!

  22. Lisa says:

    My favorite bed time ritual, which doesn’t always happen, is to turn on my diffuser with lavender and eucalyptus oils before I shower. When I come out, the aroma immediately helps me relax and drift off to a good night of sleep.

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  23. Charlotte says:

    Hot bath, lavender oil and hot tea.

    • Eliza says:

      Lol thr;e#39y&e already preparing the talking points if they all have to bite it and support Romney. The new meme is the liberal media is picking their candidate so it's not really their fault the field is so weak. I'd really like to hear what real republicans think of their party's messaging. Is this who they really want to be.

  24. Kristin says:

    I loooove some soothing tea before bed and some journaling to help release the day. (:

  25. LindSay says:

    I do not have a television in my bedroom so that helps quite a bit. I usually light a wood wick candle and have it burning while I finish getting ready for bed. Once in bed I will read a chapter or two, blow the candle out and off to sleep. 🙂

  26. Sheila cunny says:

    The only thing I’ve found to be helpful for sleep is a regular yoga practice, walking for 30 min or longer and going to sleep at the same time every night (usually before 11pm). Maintaining circadian rhythm is key

  27. Emily Cahill says:

    Before going to bed, I set my phone far away and switch on the salt rock lamp that I have in my room. I make some chamomile tea with honey and sip it as I read or reflect on my day.

  28. Donna says:

    I like to set up my diffuser before bed with frankincense, love how it melts away the stresses of the day! Also love to use Lotus Wei serums behind the ears, on my wrists and back of neck and temples. Also Lotus Wei formulas in spray form are great for a little spritz on the pillows!

  29. Kristen says:

    I love to put lamps lights on as a I read or journal. Sip some tea and use lavender oil.

  30. NINA latimer says:

    I bought an alarm clock that doesn’t show the screen numbers unless I hit the button…reduces light in the bedroom. We have blackout shades…and I love to listen to my podcast of the local yoga teacher who had a very soothing voice ans a spritz of lavender oil on my pillow.

  31. Brandon says:

    As the sun sets, I refrain from foods except tea (lucid dreaming or maybe a special blend I put together). After, do some breathework while feeling what ive taken fill every cell of my body with its properties. This leaves me tingling and floating with relaxation, and once I hit the mattress I’m out!

  32. Molly Sarle says:

    I love to give myself a lymphatic massage, and take a hot bath. Then do a bit of relaxing yoga, maybe a forward bend or two. I’ll settle into bed with some chamomile tea and a great book. Reading reallyhelps me calm my mind for sleep. Also, if someone nice is around sex works too ;)!

  33. Cecilia says:

    Thank you for this great article! You explain it so clearly it inspired me. I have one question. In Ayurveda, we try not to drink at the table, not to miw too much food whith liquids. and that is why I don’t have herbal tea after dinner. I feel that it bloats and fills me with water. is it incorrect? doesn’t it affect digestion?

    Thank you very much for you website which I love and your time !
    Love,
    C

    • Great question! This is correct, you want to avoid chugging cold water or consuming large amounts of liquids during a meal. A common practice is to drink 8oz of water before your meal, then to wait 30 minutes to an hour after eating to resume drinking liquids again. However, sipping warm water or herbal tea slowly around a meal can help to increase agni. If you feel too bloated sipping tea in the evening, then skip this practice and keep your hydration steady through the between the meals or see if sipping smaller amounts slowly 1 hour after eating changes this for you.

    • Janelle says:

      Always rehfesring to hear a rational answer.

  34. Janay says:

    Blowing the Lid was a great article. I made sure to pass it along to all of my friends and family. It was an article that helped elevate Mosrcoyclitt above the fry in my perceptions and directly led to me picking their rag up off the news-stand more then a few times. Thanks for the wonderful article Dexter. I’ll definitely have second thoughts next time I’m standing at the news-stand or when looking for my next lid.

  35. Lauren says:

    Love that you bring up the concept of Vastu. This is something I have been practicing for 10 years or so and I believe it has such a subtle, yet powerful influence in our health. The position of our head when we sleep is a great way to start and to start recognizing the energies in our space and what an impact they can have. xx

  36. Carolyn says:

    Wonderful article. I will rearrange our bedroom furniture and de clutter it today. Thanks.

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