Natural Remedies

Natural Remedies for Insomnia, Tried and True

Posted by Gertjr (Madison) on 07/31/2020
4 out of 5 stars

I've been taking melatonin the way Art suggested--2 hours before bed I take 1/3 total dose, then 1 hour before the next 1/3, then at bedtime the final 1/3.

I also take niacin, 100 mg, at bedtime since it helps also. So, most nights this really works and I fall asleep fast. I still wake several times per night but go right back to sleep. I wake up well and feel okay for several hours, then feel like I could nap but power through it since I'm at work.

I've been taking a total of 15 mg melatonin. But, like last night, nothing helped me sleep. I took another 5 mg melatonin an hour after bedtime and still didn't sleep but maybe 3 hours total. Any idea why? Or is this just something you have to deal with? (No choice there, I guess). Also, some days I get a real headache that lasts until noon or so. Is this the melatonin? I think so but it could be allergies.

Thanks, Art, this has worked more often than not and I'm happy for that.

Posted by Blue Star (Tennessee) on 05/01/2018
5 out of 5 stars

5 HTP for Sleep and Depression

I recently discovered 5 HTP for my sleep issues. I never seemed to go into a deep sleep and would grind my teeth. I have back, neck and sciatica issues so the pain would keep me up at night.

With 50 mg of 5 HTP about an hour before I go to bed, I go into a deep sleep and finally become fully rested. I wake up in the morning loving my life. I am feeling that 5 HTP is going to be great dealing with my SAD, which seems to happen every year Jan- March. I just want off the planet with SAD... it will sneak up on me..

My attitude towards life is much better. It seems my depression has lifted somewhat. I don't seem to crave carbs as much.

Skullcap and Valerian
Posted by Art (California) on 05/06/2021 1383 posts


Magnesium Glycinate as part of the combo at the dose recommended on the bottle is helpful for relaxing muscles and helping to get you to sleep.


Castor Oil
Posted by Michael (New Zealand) on 11/22/2016

Hello there Mama to Many!

Been reading your postings often. Good work there. I can relate to your use of a Castor Oil pack! I commenced a couple of weeks ago and have done it for one hour in the afternoon, six days each week, on my lower back. I largely follow your regime. I have cut a piece of flannel and folded it four times to make a six inch by six inch pad. Left in a container in the 'fridge in a little bit of good quality, Castor Oil (enough to lightly saturate but NO more), I drag it out when the billy has boiled and nearly fill the hot water bottle. Lying face down on a protective cloth over a piece of foam in my "sleep out" ( the smell is best kept to one's self ), I proceed to place the pad directly on the lumbar region, cover with a second layer of dry, double-folded flannel cloth, a double layer of plastic sheeting and then the HWB. Time passes O.K. I sometimes nod off until my clockwork timer shrills, when I promptly arise and use the discarded hot water from the HWB, plus a little Bicarb. and a dedicated sponge, to wipe down the nether regions. Already in my working gear, I am then good to garden. Good as gold: job done.

Does it warrant such dedication you may well ponder? Well I AM sleeping much better, not going to "you no where" during the night, and feeling more mobile with a bit less pain. So it is worth all that lot for starters. Kidneys and liver yes but ovaries no I suspect. Mind you, I have gone and done the Raised Bed Trick, about four inches so far, at the same time I started on the Oil. Also, now taking Alfalfa and more MSM so that may have helped. Again, I have re-commenced my "Brew" of Molasses, Lime juice, Honey and ACV once per day which I am always a complete fan of anyway.

So yes, my sleeping HAS improved for sure and I think the Hot Oil Pad may be the secret and it only took a couple of weeks to kick in so all's good. I hope this helps others. Worth a try for sure and there may be other benefits too.

I love this Site as much as you do!

Cheers, Michael

Sodium Bicarbonate, Potassium Bicarbonate
Posted by Janet (In) on 02/10/2017

Namaw I use this in the morning before coffee or anything else. 1/8 tsp pot carb I have not added baking soda but I add a small pinch of sea salt

The 5 mg melatonin at night.

The baking soda method I use is Teds alkalyzing formula. 2x a day. 1/2 hour after food. 5 days a week.

Apple cider vinegar 2 tbsp add 1/2 tsp of baking soda let fizz then add half a glass of water and drink. This is pain relief and digestive health normalizing stool.

Or... For circulation and digestion I use 1 whole lime squeezed or 8 tsp add 1/2 tsp of baking soda let fizz. Add 1/2 glass of water drink same schedule. This helps get rid of excess calcium too.

The most help for our family for no sleep is in this order.

Potassium carbonate..melatonin..

Digestion ..enzymes aminos baking soda with and after food

Sufficient minerals through the day from food and sea salt.

Bulletproof coffee or butter and collagen...and again improves gut health..drink during the day.

I have used iodine 1 drop in water of 5% lugols iodine before bed.

I had to go further for Ken and I as we are 60 yrs and correct hormones provide a better platform for sleep and health. Progesterone cream applied to upper body 2 or 3x a week. Pregnanolone 25mg. 2x a week. 25mg of dhea. I take it 5x a week as it corrects my intestinal issues too. The melatonin is also part of this.

Ted talks frequently of acid brain preventing sleep th fix is the alkalyzing drink.

Our results...

1 daughters narcolepsy solved with defluoridating water.

1 lifetime of insomnia for another daughter was blending her food. Bulletproof. Because it was her bad digestion and fluoride

Me the quickest relief was potassium carbonate. But my overall health and better sleep was a gentle regime of the above mentioned. I just added things slowly until I normalized.

My husbands body clock must be reset for 3rd shift everyday. He does much of the above and at bedtime takes 2.5 mg lithium gaba melatonin.

Adding niacinamide 250mg 3x a day. Often boosts sleep at night as our bodies need and use quite a lot of it.

These are things if you need further help. Beyond your question. It is what we have found successful. But no sleep is really a symptom of many ailments in our house. Each unique and handled differently.


Castor Oil
Posted by Sheila (San Diego, Ca, USA) on 04/15/2011
5 out of 5 stars

Castor oil has given me the best nights' (plural) sleep in a very long time!


Calcium, Magnesium, Zinc
Posted by Margaret (Tallahassee, FL) on 09/14/2007
5 out of 5 stars

Insomnia -- This really works. Combo Vitamin of Calcium 1000 mg, magnesium 400mg, & zinc 25 mg. 1 hour before bedtime. Also take Valerian Root 530mg 1 hour before bedtime. I guarantee in 1 weeks time, you won't need sleeping pills anymore.

Coconut Oil
Posted by Jean H. (Us) on 04/14/2018

Don't spit the coconut oil in your toilet or down your sink as it's solid below about 76 degrees and will clog your pipes.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Cheryl (Center Valley, PA) on 03/15/2007
5 out of 5 stars

I came across your website while desperately searching for a cure for a severe sinus infection. The ACV helped tremendously. Another amazing plus is that I sleep so well since taking it. I've been troubled with disrupted sleep for about 2 years now. Just curious to know what it does in the body to make such an improvement in sleep? Thanks for this wonderful website!

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Bree (Blanchard, OK)
5 out of 5 stars

I have mixed honey and ACV together and taken it as a sleep aid. Made me drowsy. You guys have a great website here!

Posted by Art (California) on 08/02/2020 1383 posts
5 out of 5 stars


I forgot to mention to you regarding your IBSD because I was so busy talking about melatonin usage for sleep. Look into low dose naltrexone (LDN) for the IBSD, because if it works for you as it has for others, that relief is also likely to help ameliorate your sleep issues. Melatonin may also be useful for this issue, but quality studies on this specific health issue are insufficient, but the known methods of action for melatonin would also tend to suggest potential benefit from melatonin.


Posted by Dee (Florida) on 01/16/2022

I realize everyone reacts differently to doses and remedies. I have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep. There are many causes. I think my cause is my blood sugar goes up during the night and wee morning hours. I tried so many remedies, what works for me at night is 6mg. Melatonin and 1 cup of Organic So. African Red Rooibos Tea. I buy it (80 bags) on Amazon, the tea relaxes. Everyone has to find the right dosage of melatonin that works for them.

Posted by Art (California) on 06/25/2020 1383 posts


It could be difficult coming off something like Tramadol that is fairly strong and can be on the habit forming side, especially since it was helping you with sleep. Your body has adjusted to it so you could try tapering off of it gradually instead of just stopping it all at once to help with the transition off of it.

Deirdre has the best method of taking melatonin with magnesium. The magnesium tends to help the muscles and tension relax, while the melatonin helps with sleep. Magnesium glycinate is going to be about as good as any form of magnesium for this purpose taken about 1 1/2 hours before bed.

The lowest dose of melatonin that has shown effectiveness for sleep is one third of a milligram, but you are already taking 3 mg. The next dose is 5 milligrams and then 10 mg. Myself, I have used a method I call "melatonin 123" to help me get to sleep. I determine what time I want to go to bed, so lets say I want to go to bed at 11:00pm, I take one melatonin at 9:00 pm, one melatonin at 10:00pm and one melatonin at 11:00 pm and usually by 10:45 I am yawning and ready to go to bed. In your case, you might use 1 mg x three melatonin in order to maintain your current dose of 3 mg. The time released melatonin can have a similar effect as "melatonin 123", but my preference is the melatonin 123. The idea is to release melatonin at a more natural rate into your system. When I take my dose all at once, I do not get as good of a sleep effect as melatonin 123.

There are additional things you can do to help improve sleep. The first thing is exposing yourself to a good dose of morning sunlight, to try and get your circadian rhythm in sync. Avoid using the tv or computer monitor at least 1 1/2 hours before bed because these can trick your mind and body into thinking it is still daylight. Make your bedroom dark enough where you can not see your hand in front of your face in the dark. Failing that, using the soft fabric night glasses like these can make it plenty dark:

If there is ambient noise such as traffic, noise deadening ear plugs may be useful.

Medical marijuana can also be useful, but may be on the habit forming side too.

Antihistamines can help initially, but they are not good for you on a regular basis or long term as they have been shown to possibly contribute to dementia with long term use and they can affect blood pressure in some people.

Lastly, getting on a regular sleep schedule or routine sets your body up for certain expectations of when to fall asleep and when to wake up in order to help sync the circadian rhythm.

You may have to make this extra effort to help with the transition off of Tramadol in order to get back into a good sleep rhythm.

Good luck and keep us posted on how you do!


Posted by Martin (Cambridge) on 06/12/2018
5 out of 5 stars

Melatonin to regulate my sleep cycle which was worsening with age (62 y/o male). Give it 2 weeks or more time before you see results. People give up too soon when experimenting with melatonin. Give your brain time to adjust to a new circadian pattern. 3 mg sublingual melatonin before bed is what I do.

Lettuce Tea
Posted by Mama To Many (Tn) on 02/22/2018


This is great!

100 years ago, Beatrix Potter wrote about the "soporific effect of lettuce on the Flopsy Bunnies" in a children book! The bunnies were sound asleep from eating too much lettuce.

I guess she knew what she was talking about!


~Mama to Many~

Nettle Tea
Posted by Rsw (Oh) on 07/22/2016

Thank you, Mama, for taking your time to look into this. I can imagine how busy you must be with you family, farm animals and all the reading and remedies you prepare. You have generously helped so many of us here on Earth Clinic with you knowledge and advice, using herbs most of us are not familiar with, in ways we would never have discovered without you!

Hypnic Jerks
Posted by Anthony (Ireland) on 09/30/2021
5 out of 5 stars

I too suffered from hypnic jerks, past tense. It was my medication that was causing them, taking magnesium out of the system. I would get them when trying to fall asleep and just before you dose off, they would jerk you awake again. one night I jumped out of bed with one scary. Too much tea coffee and alcohol would also take magnesuim out of the system. I would get them real bad on a Sunday night if I was out drinking Saturday night. Now I take magnesium citrate two hours before bed 400mg with a snack, magnesium by solgar best quality. Not that expensive for a month's supply. Cut back on tea coffee and alcohol.

Cherry Juice
Posted by Mommy2 (Atlanta, Ga, Usa) on 02/11/2013
5 out of 5 stars

My husband travels a lot and does not rest well when he sleeps. I'd heard so much about how Tart Cherry Juice helps with sleep issues, so I decided to give it a try. We both had a cup one night about 2hours before bed. Wow!! What a wonderful surprise. I was awaken about 3am. He said he didn't know what was going on, but he was "in the mood". 3 orgasms for him! Needless to say, tart cherry juice is a staple in our house. I did notice I was more aroused too.

We joked about it the next morning. But, guess what. When I searched the benefits online, it did what it was supposed to do.

As for our sleep... I have noticed a deeper sleep and he's noticed less grogginess when in the morning.

Posted by Brad (Shreveport, Louisiana) on 09/16/2011
5 out of 5 stars

2 things come right to my mind for sleep issues:

Sleep Assure (a melatonin + supplement) and Sleepy time tea. I have tried both and they both work well. Also, never take benadryl or anti- depressents before bed.. both can act as stimulates.

I had a stroke in 20005 at 28 y/o. so anything I say or propose, is something I have already tried or experimented with.

Castor Oil
Posted by Alvina (Damascus, Oregon) on 05/03/2011

I put castor oil on my upper eyelids before I go to bed and it helps me to go to sleep and sleep deep (except for nature calls)

Vitamin B-3
Posted by Rick (Sorocaba, Brazil) on 01/19/2011
5 out of 5 stars

I have suffered from insomnia since I was a teenager (I'm 34 now), going to bed has always been my least favorite time of the day because I would roll over for hours, it was horrible. I have tried many things such as melatonin, prescription drugs, Cannabis (illegal where I live, not good), certain teas, alcohol, etc. All were either Not effective, or created other problems in the long run. I also tried common sense approaches such as reading, warm milk, warm baths, skin brushing, etc etc etc... Nothing worked.

However for a month now I have been sleeping like a baby and the solution came in as a surprise since I'm taking it for something else other than insomnia: niacin (vitamin B3), in the form if nicotinic acid (B3 in the Niacinamide Form didn't work). Wow! Now I take it and I get that heavy feeling on my eye lids, and after a while I start yawning. Once that happens I just go to bed and voila!

Be careful though: nicotinic acid will make you flush, and if you don't know what that is it can be scary. So please do your homework and Research Doses and possible side effects so you know what to expect. Start on the low side until you get a nice flush (after awhile you will enjoy the warm feeling, and your skin won't itch as badly). As an extra bonus my skin feels and looks amazing, everybody comments on my Complexion Now! I'm also much calmer and no longer depressed (reason why I tool it in the first place). Very interesting positive side effects! I hear it will also lower bad Cholesterol and increase the good kind. Beware of side effects of you have liver issues, or is on medication. Amazing! But again, do you homework first.

Best part: this stuff is cheap, over the counter, and needed by the body anyway (without it you develop pellagra. Some bread is enriched with it, but not in orthomolecular amounts). I'm taking about 3 grams a day.

Posted by Jean H. (Us) on 04/15/2018

If the magnesium oil stings, it's an indication that your body is low in magnesium so dilute the oil with a bit of purified water so it doesn't sting. You can also make a magnesium body butter with 2 parts cocoa, shea or mango butter, 1 part coconut oil and 1 part magnesium oil. Melt butter and oil over double boiler, stir to help emulsify. Allow to cool for about 20 minutes. Slowly mix magnesium oil in butter/oil mixture, mix with hand mixer. Put in the fridge for about 20 minutes to cool and then blend a second time with hand mixer and put in container. I saved a large necked jar from some herbs for my dogs that I use that works well. A teaspoon of the body butter provides approximately 250 mg of magnesium chloride.

Coconut Oil
Posted by Alex (Aventura, Fl.) on 02/27/2009
5 out of 5 stars

first of all i can talk all day regarding health its my passion [ as a nutritional researcher ] coconut oil eliminated sleeping problems now my body is in tone at sun down i begin to feel the affects of bed time befor sunrise am getting more awake to begin my day personaly it take 1-2 days to reset my body clock 1tbsp.early morning and 1tbsp.late afternoon does not need to be perfect. this fixed my problem. etc...

Eliminate EMFs
Posted by Juliana (Albuquerque, NM) on 01/15/2009
5 out of 5 stars

I have suffered from insomnia since childhood (I am now in my 30s), and it has been crippling to my life, to say the least. About a month ago, my husband and I decided to try turning off all breakers in our house at night, except for the one attached to the refrigerator. Since doing so, I have slept very well, even experiencing deep REM sleep. I have vivid dreams every night. My husband has experienced the same thing -- deep sleep, many dreams. It's worth a try if you have trouble sleeping. As I understand it, the EMFs interfere with hormones in the body. Some people are very sensitive to EMFs. I believe somebody else on this site suggested not using the computer or cell phone before bed, but my suggestion takes the idea a bit further.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Stuart (Fresno, California USA) on 10/18/2008

This is in response to 9/18/07: Robin from Dallas Texas was wondering why apple cider vinegar caused constipation after 3 or 4 days. This is caused by using the processed apple cider vinegar but if you switch to an organic apple cider vinegar, that should end the problem and better health benefits overall will be achieved.

Earth Clinic is a great and informative website giving much attention to apple cider vinegar as a remedy, but I think it may be helpful to always specify it as ORGANIC apple cider vinegar instead. Many people that come across this website might miss the few areas that do specify the difference, so not knowing better, they will most likely go out to the grocery store and buy the most popular Heinz brand (processed) apple cider vinegar, and therefore they will have less satisfactory results than if they used an organic one from a health food store.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Kayla (Oelwein, Iowa ) on 05/09/2017

You should not be drinking Apple Cider Vinegar plain!! Always mix with at least 4-8 oz water or juice, I use 3 oz water + 3 oz aloe Vera juice + 1 tbsp acv. Drinking Apple Cider Vinegar undiluted is very harsh on tooth enamel and can also burn your esophagus over time

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Matt (Blossom, Tx) on 03/04/2015
5 out of 5 stars

I made a cup of just plain old apple cider with a kcup maker and it cut my wind down time by a half an hour. Now I use it every night and I am thinking since everyone says apple cider vinegar works, maybe it's apples in general.

Dried Figs
Posted by Junebug (East Earl, PA) on 05/31/2022
5 out of 5 stars

I have noticed that my trouble sleeping vanished when I started snacking on dried figs (maybe about a cup a day). An eye twitch that I had been suffering with for over a year also disappeared. I noticed the improvement less than a week after starting to eat the figs. I skipped one day, and that night the sleeplessness returned. I resumed eating figs the next day and my sleep improved. It's been about a month now and I am so impressed by the results! I have read that figs are a good source of various vitamins and minerals, so I think it might be the combination that works for me. I had tried eliminating caffeine and taking magnesium supplements with no effect. I also tried mag-rich foods like hemp and pumpkin seeds with no effect. Potassium-rich bananas and avocados never helped me either.

Posted by Missm (New York) on 07/31/2020

Art has given excellent advice BUT if you don't do things like stop caffeine intake early in the afternoon, indulge in chocolate at night which has caffeine, use your computer before going to sleep, have light emanating from devices in your bedroom you will have problems.

Work on above and sleep improves. Also setting regular sleeping hours! Melatonin does work. I love it. I get deep rest from it.

Another option is to listen to theta waves with headphones before sleeping. if you are not familiar with these just google theatre waves for sleep.

Posted by Art (California) on 08/03/2020 1383 posts


LDN is available by prescription only, but if the doctor is familiar with LDN and its good safety profile, they will sometimes prescribe it for you. It is generally used at less than 5 mgs per night. Otherwise, some of the LDN websites can recommend a doctor in your area who will prescribe it for you. LDN is used for many health issues and more recently, possibly for Covid-19. Here is a link to a brief article that discusses the use of LDN for IBS-c/d :

Here is a link to 2 LDN sites :


Posted by Deirdre (Ct) on 06/25/2020

Hi Gertjr!

I suggest you take Art's lead on the melatonin dosage. I am going to try his 123 method tonight with 10 mg each hour. I decided to skip melatonin and magnesium last night to see how I would do. Was wide awake at 3:00am and couldn't fall back asleep, so I ended up taking 10 mg of melatonin and mag l threonate at 3:30. It did eventually kick in.

Note: I also regularly use my Waff max to help put me in the sleep and peaceful zone. Not sure you saw my video on it a year ago. It's almost impossible to explain how well it works until you lie on one and, unfortunately, there is no way to demo it unless you happen to work at Loreal in France where they have a giant room with Waffs for their employees to recuperate on! At any rate, the Waff at least once a day plus the 2 supplements have totally turned night-time around for me in the past month. Good luck!

Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium
Posted by Clatterbuck (Beltsville, Md) on 09/12/2018
5 out of 5 stars

I had been having trouble getting to and staying asleep for over a year. I tried melatonin, meditation, magnesium, castor oil, etc... Nothing really seemed to work consistently. For other health reasons, I started upping my intake of calcium, magnesium, and potassium. After this change to my diet, I noticed my sleep improved dramatically. I try to get 1,200 mg of calcium through my diet each day, but if I fall short, once in a while I will take one 500 mg chocolate supplement. Every night before I go to bed I take a half of a magnesium supplement with a glass of watermelon water (for potassium). This combination of minerals knocks me out. I still get up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night, but when I get back in bed I fall right back to sleep. I also wake up feeling refreshed. I never would've thought that a nutritional deficiency could cause insomnia.

Lettuce Tea
Posted by Mary Martinez (Arcadia, Ca) on 02/21/2018
5 out of 5 stars

LETTUCE TEA. For insomnia

I found this recipe from a lady I buy plants from. She said that her baby grandaughter was very troublesome so he said she rubbed the baby with lettuce leaves and placed a few underneath her pilllow as well and the baby went right to sleep! I found the recipe on the computer here it is:

How to Make Lettuce Leaf Tea

If you are wondering what else to do with all that lettuce laying around the house - try making a great cup of tea for insomnia. This simple recipe for lettuce tea will help you with insomnia and also acts as a mild sedative. The recipe was found in a 40 year old herbal medicine book - and I have tried it. It works ever so gently.

After the basic recipe there is more information about the particular lettuce that I chose, romaine, which is by far more nutritious than iceberg. I always recommend that lettuce be bought organic only.

Recipe for Lettuce Leaf Tea:

- 2 outer leaves of organic romaine lettuce

- 8 ounces of water

Thoroughly wash the leaves and then simmer for 20 minutes in the 1/2 pint of water.

Strain and drink before bedtime

How often should I drink it? - While it is recommended as a nightly drink - I'd suggest trying it first on the weekend when you don't have to get up for work and see how you feel. It is supposed to have sedative effects and I found the next day that I wanted to lay around and read a book. I didn't feel tired but wanted to lay around - it felt quite good. Perhaps that is the sedative effect.

Read the full article:

Multiple Remedies
Posted by Teena (Melbourne Australia) on 01/19/2018 235 posts

Hi, I understand you have tried magnesium, however your symptoms scream magnesium deficiency to me. Perhaps the supplement you tried was not well absorbed due to gut and or intestinal issues, the tablet/capsule housing did not break down in time, etc. I would suggest absorbing some minerals transdermally, avoiding possible absorbency problems in the gut. In a bath every night before bed, one cup each borax, sea or Celtic or Himalayan salt, Magnesium in the form of Epsom salts, also supplying sulphur, as it is likely you are deficient in other minerals/vitamins because of absorbency issue. I would try this bath routine every night for a week at least. Thinking also some bentonite for ingestion. And after bathing apply some magnesium oil, perhaps on to of slkome coconut oil. Also consider a cheap and easy way of getting minerals to your cells would be 1/4 tsp sea salt to a litre of water a day.

1 2 3 4 5 6 ...16