Newest Review: ... oblige, even combined with relaxing baths and warm, milky drinks. So, when I saw this tea in the supermarket tea aisle, claiming to be '... more
Dr. Stuart's Valerian Plus Tea
Member Name: angeldelightful
Dr. Stuart's Valerian Plus Tea
Date: 30/01/13, updated on 19/07/13 (476 review reads)
I've not had an easy relationship with sleep for the last 10 years or so. How I'd love to be one of those people who can get into bed, fall asleep instantly and wake refreshed after 8 hours' uninterrupted sleep! It just doesn't happen for me - I go through phases when I have major difficulties getting to sleep and anyone who's experienced the same problems will know just how frustrating and upsetting this can be if it continues for any length of time. Hence my quest for anything that will improve my sleep!
All the usual advice given to help induce sleep such as keeping the bedroom only for sleeping, making sure your room is the right temperature, having a comfortable bed, not having a heavy meal or performing strenuous exercise too close to bed-time, keeping regular going-to-bed and getting-up times - these things are all part of my routine and are important, but sometimes sleep just doesn't oblige, even combined with relaxing baths and warm, milky drinks. So, when I saw this tea in the supermarket tea aisle, claiming to be 'your ticket to Bedfordshire', I thought it wouldn't hurt to try it.
Dr Stuart's is a brand of herbal teas made with active botanicals. They explain this as meaning 'Herbs of the highest quality, picked from the most prized parts of the plants, with the most essential oils. That means the most aromatic, flavourful and beneficial tea possible'. They make a range of 'Benefit Blend' herbal teas, including Tranquillity, Detox, Echinacea Plus, Triple Ginseng Plus, Ginkgo Plus, Skin Purify and Liver Detox and claim to use the highest quality ingredients. This particular one, Valerian Plus, is 'a herbal infusion with valerian root and hops'.
The teabags (15 of them, individually packaged) come in a white cardboard box and contain limeflowers, valerian root, hops, passion flower and fennel. The box gives some information about the brand and the eponymous Dr Stuart, along with instructions on how to make the tea. (Nothing revolutionary or complicated here! Add boiled water and allow to brew for 4-5 minutes.) They suggest one tea bag is used one hour before bedtime, and warn that it can cause drowsiness (that's the idea!) and therefore not to drive or operate machinery. Incidentally, they do not recommend the tea for children.
So - how is it? Well, I'm not much of a tea drinker at all; I never drink black tea and only rarely take herbal teas. In other words, I'm not someone who can pour water on any teabag and gulp it down. I just make this point because for other people who are more into herbal teas, this might be an absolute delight, so do take my thoughts with a pinch of salt! Firstly, the smell - it reminds me a bit of a garden centre. By that I don't mean pretty florals, but rather hay and fertiliser. Tempting, eh?! But I have got past the smell now and don't really notice it once I've brewed the tea. As for the taste, I found it hard to drink by itself so now add a little honey just to sweeten the pill and it is really much more palatable for me like that.
But the 64 million dollar question is... does it help with getting to sleep? I really have found that I'm sleeping better on nights when I have a cup of this tea. It may be the placebo effect but it really does seem to help. More likely is the effect of the valerian root, which is said to have sedative and calming properties.
Whether or not it's a good idea to drink it every night is something I don't know, but I do think that having a few good nights' sleep with the aid of this tea may help reduce anxiety about sleeping, thus helping re-establish a 'normal' sleep cycle. It's certainly benefitted me!
The tea seems to be available in most supermarkets, as well as in health food shops. I bought mine in Asda, where it's currently on sale for £1.88 for a box of 15 bags.
Sweet dreams and thanks for reading!
Summary: Has really helped me!
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