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4 Ingredients That Help Promote Sleep (And Melatonin Is Not One Of Them)

  • 3 min read

Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

Written by Team NB Pure on April 28, 2021
Updated by Lauren Curl-Ferrell on April 30th, 2021. 

Long Term Sleep Solutions

At this point, we’ve all heard a thing or two about melatonin and sleep. While melatonin tends to work best as a short-term fix, it doesn’t always work for everyone.

If you’ve used melatonin and it hasn’t worked for you, it’s time to try something else. And you have options!

There are other natural sleep aids on the market that may help you fall asleep and improve your quality of sleep. 

4 ingredients that have been proven to aid in getting a better night’s rest

Gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA) 

Similar to the better-known serotonin, GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain whose primary job is to calm and relax you.

Ultimately, this amino acid can help the brain shift into a lower gear to put you to sleep.

It is naturally occurring in the brain, but also found in fermented foods, such as tempeh, kefir, or miso.

One interesting study linked low levels of GABA in the brain with insomnia. The level of GABA in the brain of the participants was 30% lower than the average level.

There’s still research to be done on the effects of GABA supplementation on sleep, but a recent promising study found that participants who took a GABA supplement an hour before bed fell asleep faster and achieved an improved quality of sleep when compared to those who took a placebo.

A recent study conducted with animals showed that a mixture of GABA & L-Theanine actually improved sleep quality and duration when compared to the effectiveness of each individually.


An amino acid compound, L-theanine is primarily found in tea and some types of mushrooms.

It does not occur naturally in our bodies nor is it essential for human health, however, there may be some benefits of this amino acid in the sleep department.

Researchers found that supplementation of L-theanine helped improve sleep quality among boys with ADHD in a study conducted in Canada.

There’s some evidence that suggests L-theanine may reduce resting heart rate and help lower blood pressure suggesting its ability to promote relaxation and calmness. This may be why drinking a caffeine-free tea before bedtime has long been recommended by health experts to promote relaxation.


Rhodiola rosea is an herb that originates in the cold, mountainous regions of Europe and Asia. This flowering herb falls under the informal classification of adaptogen.

There is a body of evidence from mostly small studies demonstrating the power of rhodiola on helping the body adapt to stress.

Supplementing with rhodiola has been shown to aid in reducing the symptoms of stress, such as anxiety, fatigue, mood, and concentration.

A 2017 study aimed to test the effects of rhodiola on the symptoms of stress-related burnout syndrome. They found significant improvement in mood, exhaustion, anxiety, concentration and zest for life.

With relief from stress symptoms, we can expect an improvement in sleep as the body and mind become more relaxed making restful sleep easier to achieve. 


This herb derived from daisy-like flowers has long been used in teas or essential oil to help induce a sleepy state.

Several studies have shown chamomile’s effectiveness in making you sleepy, but not necessarily improving the quality of sleep.

More research is needed to determine the benefits of chamomile on sleep quality. It’s the chemical structure of chamomile that makes it so effective for sleep.

Chamomile contains a flavonoid called apigenin, which binds to the GABA receptors in the brain to promote a calming effect.

One study tested the effects of chamomile in the form of an extract taken twice a day for 28 days. The researchers found that the group that took the extract had better daytime functioning than the comparator group.

The calm of chamomile may just promote enough relaxation to help you fall asleep faster. 

Get all these sleep benefits in one supplement

Our Power Down supplement formula contains all four of these natural sleep aids.

Simply take three capsules about 30 minutes before bed. You’ll find yourself dreaming the night away and feeling refreshed in the morning.