Ayurveda factors in three pillars of health, Ahara (Nutrition), Vihar (Balanced lifestyle), and Nidra (Sleep). It’s no wonder that sleep and nutrition are accorded equal importance! According to the root text, Charaka Samhita, ‘happiness, nourishment, strength, virility, knowledge, and life itself depend on proper sleep’.
Sleep according to Ayurveda:
“Yada Tu Manasi Klante Karmaatmanah Klamaanvitaha |
Vishayebhyo Nivartante Tadaa Swapati Maanavaha”
(Cha Su 21/ 35)
According to the Ayurvedic clock, it’s best to wake up before sunrise and sleep before 10 p.m., when the kapha period has induced dullness in the body. It’s also important to have a gap of at least 2 hours between dinner and sleep time. An ideal time for dinner is 7 p.m. If you’re eating a late dinner, aim for something light and eat 2 hours before you go to sleep.
Sleep can be physiological, induced by Tamas (lethargy), Kapha, mental or physical exertion, illnesses and stress, improper nutrition, lifestyle, and environmental factors can cause,
Insomnia is a very profound sleeping disorder, generally followed by day time sleepiness, low energy, lethargy, fatigue, irritability. The cases of insomnia are ever growing. Factors like stress, lifestyle habits and dietary choices have a severe impact on sleep and gradually develop into insomnia.
Ayurvedic remedies for a good night’s sleep
*Regular practice of yoga along with pranayama, or deep breathing exercise, in the morning also helps in improved sleep.
Here's how Ayurveda could help for a better sleep
*Some common Ayurvedic herbs for improved sleep quality include:
*Applying stimulating oils like Bhringaraja thailam,himasagara thailam ,chandanadi thailam,ksheerabala thailam , Tila Taila on the head and pressing down on the scalp in gentle, circular motions remarkably soothes the mind.
*The juice extracts from sugarcane regulates mood, memory and sleep, hence ensuring uninterrupted rest at night.
*Milk is a great sleep supporter. You can also add some crushed almonds(badaam), a pinch of nutmeg(jaathi kaai), and a pinch of cardamom, for a flavourful and healthy potion right before you tuck into your bed.
*Add one teaspoon of Brahmi and Ashwagandha powder in two glasses of water. Boil them and then reduce it to one glass and drink it daily at least once for best results.
* Have one teaspoon of licorice root powder(adi madhura podi) with a glass of cold milk every morning on an empty stomach, for instant and best results
*The combination of milk and honey is the best to induce sleep and has been practiced for a long time
*Chronic cases of insomnia may be treated with shirodhara, a procedure where oil is slowly poured on the forehead.
*Internal medications like manasamitra vatakam ,aswagandharistam,saraswatha ristam ,kallyana ghritha can help