4 Teas For Calming Down After Long Days of Spring Sunshine

4 Teas For Calming Down After Long Days of Spring Sunshine

In just 10 days we turn our clocks ahead an hour. Darkness will shroud mornings for longer. But the other side of our days offers more light. On March 15, for example, sunset takes place at 7:08 p.m. And from there, the days just grow increasingly longer until the summer solstice on June 20.

Many praise the later sunsets — us included. As the duration of sunlight expands, we fill our days with as much activity as possible. After-dinner hikes. Dinners on the patio, stretching well into the evening. 

We also get wired. Sleep often suffers during the light-saturated months, as we immerse ourselves in constant busy-ness. In addition, that light can persist until close to 10 p.m. by June. Many of us hit the sack while it’s still light outside.

Last week we offered ideas about tea for boosting energy. This week, it’s all about relaxation and sleep. You might need liquid assistance to deliver restful sleeps across the bright months.

Rooibos is an excellent tea for sleep; its electrolytes promote sound rest.

Tea for Sleep: Rooibos Earl Grey

Unless it is removed, all traditional teas from Camellia sinensis contain caffeine. Other common teas, like those made from the South American shrub yerba mate, also offer caffeine boosts. 

But one common style of tea, rooibos, lacks the buzzy compound. It serves as an excellent tea for easing into sleep.

The key to rooibos’s sleep-enhancing powers revolves around its balance of iron, potassium, fluoride and magnesium. Each of these minerals helps induce sleep. In South Africa, where the wild shrub thrives, parents often give rooibos to children with colic; the tea helps soothe them back to sleep.

All of the minerals in rooibos are electrolytes, electrically charged compounds that regulate nerve and muscle function, maintain optimum pH-levels, and help the body keep a healthy water balance. The profusion of electrolytes is one reason athletes often drink rooibos while training.

Fortunately for the jocks, electrolytes are not sedatives. Rather than knocking people out in the manner of sleeping pills, rooibos just helps the body perform better, whether that means climbing a trail on a mountain bike or drifting off to sleep.

Our Rooibos Earl Grey combines the flavor triumphs of Earl Gray, which revolves around the Italian citrus fruit bergamot, with the health advantages of rooibos. Sip a cup before bed, and feel your body ease into la-la land.

Tea and book in bed
Our CHA-Relax tea helps you sink into relaxation.

Tea for Sleep: Organic CHA-Relax

We return to rooibos, and add more sleep-happy ingredients, with our signature Organic CHA-Relax tea. This organic tea, borne out of a partnership with the University of Colorado’s Center for Humanities & the Arts, rests on a foundation of electrolyte-packed rooibos. That alone helps calm nerves, soften anxiety and prepare busy minds and bodies for sleep.

But it also contains chamomile, a flower used around the world to precipitate sleep.  The flower contains apigenin, a compound that induces sleep. Another ingredient, elderflower, enjoys the Latin name Sambucus, which means “gift from the gods.” Elderflower is famously effective for treating symptoms of the flu and common colds, but it also contains nervine properties, compounds that strengthen the nervous system during times of stress. 

Other ingredients, such as ginkgo leaf and spearmint, help round-out CHA-Relax’s sensational taste.

Organic Cloud Chaser honors classic herbs for calm.

Tea for Sleep: Organic Cloud Chaser

Herbal teas can contain obscure ingredients, like the Chinese adaptogen jiaogulan and Iceland moss. And then there are classics, such as mint, chamomile and hibiscus. 

Our Organic Cloud Chaser blend provides a cross-section of class herbs, all of which contribute towards healthy sleeps.

Lavender, for example. Sleep teas around the world feature leaves from this beautifully aromatic shrub. Tea blenders add it for the beguiling flavor and perfume, sure. But more importantly, they include lavender for its ability to help carry people off into the land of dreams.

Multiple studies highlight lavender’s sleep powers.

  • A 2005 Wesleyan University study of 31 people found whiffing lavender before bed produced more profound sleeps.
  • A 2008 study in Glasgow, Scotland used lavender oil sprinkled on the bedclothes of 12 insomniacs. Those with the lavender sprinkles slept better.

Cloud Chaser also contains St. John’s Wort, a flower used across Europe to treat depression. One of the keys to St. John’s Wort is its ability to manage anxiety, which often contributes towards depression as well as poor sleeps. The flower increases the body’s production of the hormone melatonin, which plays a key role in the body’s ability to sink into sleep, and stay there.

Other classic herbal ingredients in Cloud Chaser include lemon balm, marjoram, peppermint and rose petal. 

This is an absolutely delicious tea, one you will savor in the evenings or any time you desire relaxation, anxiety relief and an upbeat mood.

Night Time Herbal Blend is meant for sleep. Sip a cup and drift off into la-la land.

Tea for Sleep: Organic Night Time Blend

All of the teas discussed so far help with sleep, as well as overall relaxation. Anybody can enjoy a cup of CHA-Relax, Cloud Chaser or Rooibos Earl Gray in the afternoon and experience profound shoulder-sinking without falling asleep. They also can sip the tea prior to bed, and witness the teas’ abilities to aid the body’s natural night-time predisposition towards time under the covers.

Our Organic Night Time Blend, on the other hand, is aimed more explicitly at the people eyeing the pillows. It functions more like a sedative than the rest of the teas.

The key ingredient? Valerian root.

Those familiar with the sleep-aid section of the supplements aisle likely have repeatedly encountered valerian. It’s widely respected for its ability to send people into deep sleeps. Its Latin root, “valere,” means “to be healthy” or “to be strong.” That works for us, particularly if the “strong” bit refers to sleep.

Key valerian compounds, most notably valerenic acid and isovaleric acid, interact with the body’s gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in ways that improve the nervous system’s functioning. For example, studies show that valerenic acid can mitigate the breakdown of GABA in the brain, which results in tranquility and better sleep. The loss of GABA interrupts feelings of calm, and messes with sleep; anything that helps preserve the brain’s quotient of GABA is sleep-positive.

The root also contains linarin and hesperidin, antioxidants that studies suggest offer sleep-improving qualities.

This sleep-focused blend also contains chamomile, which we discussed earlier in this post, as well as peppermint and catnip, another her well-known for producing superior sleeps.

Next Sunday we move our clocks ahead an hour. At the same time, light’s daily appointment in the Northern Hemisphere expands every day until June 20. It’s time to get out, and enjoy all that longer days invite into our worlds. 

And then it’s time to slip beneath the sheets and recharge for the next day’s parade of busy. Let tea help you fully sink into those dreams.

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