Dreaming of a Good Night’s Sleep?
This Ayurvedic remedy will reduce your stress to allow you to switch off and gain a more restful and undisturbed sleep. This nightly sleep aid and anabolic tonic is designed to help you get the rest you need to recharge overnight. The magic’s in the milk, except it’s not really magic. It’s nature’s intelligent design in herbs and spices combined with one of the most nourishing foods: cows’ milk.
Your Stress and Sleep are Connected
Insomnia, which can increase the risk of most degenerative diseases(1), is mostly caused by stress. Cortisol (stress fighting hormones) are important in regulating your body, including your sleep-wake cycles, but when we are under stress, cortisol levels rise. Living with sustained levels of stress, means that we are unable to or don’t have the energy to calm down, keeping you awake at night. Luckily, milk is here to save your sleep. Modern science backs ancient wisdom by showing milk has certain peptides that lower cortisol and support sleep by up to 50%.
The benefits are remarkable:
- Promotes deeper sleep (3)
- Supports more restorative sleep (3)
- Provides relaxation at the level needed for sleep (4)
- Calms anxiety (4)
- Improves numerous stress markers (5)
- These peptides further support digestion, emotional state, cognitive function and even cardiovascular function. (6)
Current pharmaceutical drugs constantly borrow from the wisdom of nature. Common pharmaceutical drugs that are used as sedatives for stress, anxiety, and sleep target our GABA receptors, which work to reduce neural overstimulation. Perhaps not so surprisingly, the peptides in milk that lower cortisol and support sleep, activate these same GABA receptors, meaning they are a natural alternative to pharmaceutical sleep aids.
If you are intolerant to dairy, it could be potentially due to indigestion, some weakness and/or your mind getting the better over you by 'accepting' the intolerance. Additionally, most milk is difficult to digest because it is unnecessarily homogenised, pasteurised the wrong way, or has added chemicals, pesticides, preservatives and antibiotics. However, drink the right milk and correct your digestive tract, and you may find you can slowly introduce milk and its medicinal properties back into your diet. Non-homogenised milk without the nasty additives can now be found most places. Getting non-pasteurised or vat-pasteurised, (heated at low temperature for a short time), is a bonus, but the main precept is to drink non-homogenised milk. This has become so popular that mainstream supermarkets in Australia and New Zealand are now selling it. Additionally, most health-food stores will have it. If you are very sensitive to milk, it may be beneficial to improve your digestive tract first. Once you are able, introduce dairy to your diet by drinking a thin Lassi with lunch. Alternatively, you may substitute coconut or (freshly made) almond milk. Though you won’t get the benefits of the milk peptides, you’ll still have a vehicle for the calming benefits from the warmth of the milk and spices.
Not Just a Sleep Aid
This night-time tonic will not only upgrade your sleep to be more deep and restful, but also build your Ojas, a critical part of your vitality. Ojas (OH-jas) is considered to be the most refined by-product of digestion, said to reside in the heart. Ojas has everything to do with vitality, immunity, vigour, skin, sleep, digestion, spirituality, and physical strength. When we are under stress, emergency alarm bells keep ringing, signalling our sympathetic nervous system, or flight or fight responses. These stress signals are so loud that we are unable to hear our circadian rhythm in which we thrive, and so we lose connection with that part of ourselves.
Building ojas is an art. Yoga, pranayama breathing exercises, meditation, spending time in nature, sleeping at the right times, laughing, showing love and affection, giving to others, spending time being creative, relaxing, and doing things that make you happy all build ojas. Often stress comes from external factors, such as work, which can make it feel as if we do not have the time to spend this time creatively. Perhaps one of the best ways to consistently build ojas is by doing something we must do everyday: eat. By eating a diet of seasonally appropriate, fresh, whole foods, we can build up our ojas.
Further, there are certain foods and herbs in Ayurveda that are great ojas builders. Traditionally, these were blended with warm milk and taken before bed as a sleep aid and an ojas builder, like our Golden Sleep Elixir.
AYURVEDA’S SUPER SLEEP RECIPE
Golden Milk Sleep Elixir Ingredients
- ¾ cup of milk of choice
- ¾ cup of water
- ½ teaspoon of One Eleven Bliss
- 2 strands saffron
- 1 chopped medjool date
- 3 crushed, peeled almonds
- Pinch of cardamom powder
- Pinch of cinnamon powder
- Pinch of ginger powder
- Pinch of turmeric powder
- Pinch of black pepper
- ½ teaspoon of ghee
- Boil milk and water. Ratio can be adjusted according to taste and digestion, i.e. add more milk to make it creamer or water to dilute.
- Add saffron, date, and almonds to milk + water. For extra digestive boost and purity, you can let the saffron, date, and almonds sit in milk + water mixture.
- Boil again until it foams up, and repeat the boiling process for a total of 3 times (including the first boil).
- After the milk has boiled 3x, add One Eleven Bliss, spices, and ghee.
- Stir well and enjoy.
*Note you can add or subtract the spices and the food items according to your taste and liking.
When to Drink It:
- Have between dinner and sleep - approximately 45-60mins after dinner and 45-60mins before bed.
- You can even make this your dinner.
- Drink one cup of the golden milk each night for 3 months to rebuild ojas levels and support sleep patterns.
- You can also have this in the morning approximately 45 minutes before breakfast or make it your breakfast. It is good for people who don’t have an appetite in the morning. It is also a great replacement to coffee.
Take this milk to build some resilience towards the stress that prevents us from sleeping like we should. It’s tasty, nourishing and a great way to end the day. Plus it’ll send you off with the clouds for the night.
(1) Occup Med (Lond). 2010
(2) The Open Sleep Journal. 2009;2:128-32
(3) J Dairy Sci. 2000 Jun
(4) Ther Umsh. 2009
(5) Eur J Nutr. 2005
(6) Eur J Clin Nutr. 2007
(7) FASEB J. 2001