Natural Remedies to Help Safely Taper Off of Benzos

on May 10, 2023| Modified on Jul 28, 2023

Benzodiazepines, or benzos, are a class of medications commonly prescribed for anxiety, sleep disorders, and other mental health issues. However, long-term use can lead to dependence and withdrawal symptoms. This article explores natural remedies that can support a safe and gradual benzo tapering process under the guidance of a healthcare professional.

The Importance of a Gradual Tapering Process

Following a gradual tapering process is crucial when discontinuing benzos to minimize withdrawal symptoms and reduce the risk of complications. Always consult your healthcare provider before starting any tapering regimen or incorporating natural remedies into your routine.

Consult a Healthcare Professional

Before attempting to taper off benzos, consult a healthcare professional to create a personalized tapering plan. They will consider factors such as the type and dose of the medication, duration of use, and any underlying health issues.

Duration of a Safe Benzo Tapering Process

The length of time required to taper off benzodiazepines safely can vary significantly depending on individual factors and the specific medication being used. Generally, a slow and gradual tapering process is recommended to minimize withdrawal symptoms and reduce the risk of complications.

Factors Influencing Tapering Duration

Several factors can influence the duration of a safe benzo tapering process, including:

1. Type of Benzodiazepine: Some benzos, such as alprazolam (Xanax) and lorazepam (Ativan), have a shorter half-life, which may necessitate a more gradual tapering process. Others, like diazepam (Valium) and clonazepam (Klonopin), have a longer half-life, potentially allowing for a slightly faster taper.

2. Duration of Use: Individuals who have been using benzos for an extended period of time may require a longer tapering process to minimize withdrawal symptoms.

3. Dosage: Higher doses of benzodiazepines typically require a more extended tapering period.

4. Individual Factors: Personal factors, such as age, metabolism, and overall health, can also impact the tapering process's duration and success.

General Tapering Guidelines

Although there is no one-size-fits-all approach to benzo tapering, some general guidelines can help ensure a safe and successful process:

1. Slow and Steady: A gradual taper is typically recommended, reducing the dosage by 5-10% every 1-2 weeks. This allows the body to adjust to the lower dose and minimizes withdrawal symptoms.

2. Personalized Tapering Plan: Work closely with a healthcare professional to develop a personalized tapering plan that takes into account your specific circumstances and medical history.

3. Monitor and Adjust: Regularly communicate with your healthcare provider during the tapering process, as they may need to adjust the tapering schedule based on your progress and any withdrawal symptoms experienced.

Natural Remedies to Support Benzo Tapering

Incorporating natural remedies into your tapering plan can sometimes help alleviate withdrawal symptoms, manage stress, and improve sleep quality. Here are some natural remedies to consider.

Valerian Root

Valerian root is an herbal supplement known for its calming and sedative properties, making it a popular natural remedy for anxiety and sleep disorders. It may help alleviate withdrawal symptoms and support sleep during the tapering process.


Passionflower is another herbal supplement with anxiolytic and sedative effects. It may help reduce anxiety and promote relaxation during benzo withdrawal.


Magnesium is an essential mineral that is vital in regulating the nervous system. Supplementing with magnesium may help reduce anxiety, promote relaxation, and improve sleep quality during benzo tapering.


Melatonin is a natural hormone that regulates the sleep-wake cycle. As sleep disturbances are common during benzo withdrawal, taking melatonin supplements may help improve sleep quality.

Mind-Body Practices

Incorporating mind-body practices such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, and progressive muscle relaxation can help manage stress and anxiety during tapering.

Lifestyle Changes to Support Benzo Tapering

In addition to natural remedies, making certain lifestyle changes can help support a successful benzo tapering process.

Maintain a Consistent Sleep Schedule

Establishing a regular sleep routine can help regulate your sleep-wake cycle and improve sleep quality during withdrawal.

Engage in Regular Exercise

Exercise is known to have numerous mental health benefits, including stress reduction and improved mood. Engage in regular physical activity to support your mental wellbeing during benzo tapering.

Seek Support from Friends and Family

Having a strong support system can be crucial during the tapering process. Communicate your needs and concerns with friends and family, and consider joining a support group for individuals going through benzo withdrawal.


Tapering off benzos can be challenging, but incorporating natural remedies and making positive lifestyle changes can help support a safe and gradual transition. Remember to consult a healthcare professional before starting any tapering regimen or using natural remedies.

Continue reading below to learn which natural remedies have helped Earth Clinic readers taper off benzos, and let us know if you have any remedies to add to the list.


  1. American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (5th ed.). Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Publishing.
  2. National Institute of Mental Health. (2018). Benzodiazepines and Opioids.
  3. University of Michigan Medicine. (2020). Tapering Off Benzodiazepines.
  4. Ashton, H. (2002). Benzodiazepines: How they work and how to withdraw. The Ashton Manual.
  5. Valerian. (2021). In National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health.
  6. Miroddi, M., Calapai, G., Navarra, M., Minciullo, P. L., & Gangemi, S. (2013). Passiflora incarnata L.: Ethnopharmacology, clinical application, safety and evaluation of clinical trials. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 150(3), 791-804.
  7. Sarris, J., Byrne, G. J., Cribb, L., Oliver, G., Murphy, J., Macdonald, P., Nazareth, S., Karamacoska, D., Galea, S., & Short, A. (2019). L-Theanine in the adjunctive treatment of generalized anxiety disorder: A double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled trial. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 110, 31-37.
  8. National Institutes of Health. (2021). Magnesium. In Office of Dietary Supplements.
  9. National Institutes of Health. (2021). Melatonin. In Office of Dietary Supplements.

Online Resources

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Debbie (MI) on 05/23/2023

This is a place to get help withdrawing from any drug. Much wisdom and knowledge...

Replied by Denise E
(Crescent City, CA)

Hi Debbie,

I belong to Benzo Warriours on FB, and also another forum but I prefer to talk about it here because of the remedies that might be offered. Thank you for the link though, Denise

Tapering Off Benzos Remedies

2 User Reviews
5 star (2) 

Posted by Denise E (Crescent City, CA) on 05/23/2023

I also am a T2 Diabetic, and for 2.5 years I have been on a ketogenic diet. Only 2 times have I knowingly ate something I thought could spike my blood glucose so I have been very diligent. I'm 70 and not into playing around foolishly with anything. I did have just a bit of sort of burning pain in just my toes in the beginning, after diagnosis. I don't remember before while I was, unknown to me, prediabetic. It had showed up in my labs from 2018.

Anyway, I think that was just a little neuropathy and I basically cured that with my Keto nutrition with extra Magnesium and still take my magnesium every day (500 mg 2 x per day). Last night I had severe burning pain in a much larger part of my right foot. It would come and go for about 30 minutes and if it hadn't been coming and going I think I would have been in such pain I probably would have called for help. Each time it only lasted a few seconds though and finally subsided.

I'm here hoping for feedback as I am not finding much on it, and I'm trying to determine what else I might do to help prevent it, and the possibility of it getting worse. I don't know if it's my T2 as my diet has not changed, nor my regular walking, and gym workouts. I suspect this is a withdrawal symptom which neuropathy and peripheral neuropathy are listed as wd symptoms from Benzo diazapines.

Any feedback is so welcome on what I might try, and I did see the list above, but I would love to hear from someone that may have experienced neuropathy, and type of neuropathy, and thanks so much,


Replied by Denise E
(Crescent City, CA)

Update on my progress tapering off Clonazepam

I took the drug many years at 1 mg only so even though it was a small dose, comparatively speaking, cold-turkey brought on a nightmare I had to walk through in 2010. Luckily my doctor, at the time, re-prescribed the drug and I took it for another 10 years. Then 2 Summers ago, I had been weaned too fast and I had another episode they thought, still think but not proof whatsoever from tests etc., that I had a TIA. I found a forum where at least 1000s, if not more people are trying to get of Benzos, and I learned a lot about tapering.

So now, just about 4 months ago I began what they call a slow-taper that is usually 5-10 percent of tablet, and started my taper at just 3%. I am doing GREAT, very few wd sxs (stands for withdrawal symptoms) while I see others tapering more as they are in a big hurry, and as a result are suffering awful wd sxs which I won't petrify anyone with the details.

I just want to say that I hope anyone reading this will look into any drug your doctor wants you to take, be open-minded in studying, doing your own home-work so you can make an educated decision rather than going in blindly on some drug.

Sometimes it is difficult because of mixed reviews, and beliefs, but at least you can be more informed than I was. I do not even know, honestly, if I would have listened to negative information back then when I was first prescribed, but I usually do learn things the hard way. Now I will try a supplement if I feel the need, but I am careful to listen to my body, and found it does speak to me. Also I am on a ketogenic diet which has done amazingly positive things for me, and am convinced that my lack of wd sxs has a huge amount to do with what I eat, and the exercise I get at least 3 times a week. I am 70 years old and go to the gym and do weight-training, and my fave thing is taking walks after dinner most nights.

I love Dr. Heather Ashton if you want to read some very good info on Benzos, and you can see many videos by real doctors and scientists, I will put 2 of my fave by Dr. Ashton below:

EC: Can someone tell me why I cannot use contractions in my replies/posts? Also, are links allowed as the ones I posted above? Thank you much, Denise

EC: Hi Denise,

Contractions should not be problematic when replying or using our contact us page form. What happens when you write one? Do you get an error message?  I'll let the programmer know and check it out in the meantime. Also, please share if this issue is happening on a desktop browser or when you are using a mobile phone to post a reply. Thanks and sorry about that!

Yes, links are allowed for people posting on EC for a while. We're just trying to prevent people from posting possibly fake reviews about a product they are affiliated with.


Replied by FAM


I strongly encourage you to look at all the information from the Benzodiazepine Information Coalition (BIC). They grew out of Dr. Ashton's work. They have put out a new study on benzodiazepine harmed patients and have an incredible amount of useful information available. I just found their Potentially Dangerous Substances List of supplements and herbs and allopathic medicines to avoid during a benzo taper and post-benzo taper. It was a real eye opener. You can find it at

Tapering off Benzos Remedies

2 User Reviews
5 star (2) 

Posted by Earth Clinic on 05/10/2023

Hi Denise,

As you suggested in your recent post to Art above, we created a new page on benzo tapering. Please post any helpful tapering remedies on the new page:

Replied by Denise E
(Crescent City, CA)

Oh thank you so much! I'll share what I can, and have experienced with tapering, and I will send some new found friends to EC!! Denise :)