Together, herbs and meditation can work in harmony to enhance our sense of inner peace and clarity. If you’re looking to optimize your meditation practice, consider incorporating herbs that help soothe the nervous system and boost cognitive function.
The Best Herbs for Meditation
Although various herbs are beneficial to enhance meditation, the four below offer some of the most remarkable effects for calming the mind and increasing focus.
Have you ever sipped on chamomile before bed to quiet your mind? You may have chosen it because it is a non-caffeinated tea, but chamomile is well-known for its soothing effects, making it excellent support before meditation.
Additional benefits of chamomile include:
- Aids in digestive health
- Reduces anxiety
- Improves sleep
- Reduces inflammation
- Reduces menstrual pain
The elixir of life! Chyawanprash is a time-tested Ayurvedic remedy that infuses 30+ medicinal herbs into one super-powerful nutritive jam. The strength of this herbal formula for meditation lies in its balancing combination of adaptogens and nootropics. The adaptogenic herbs in this formula – including ashwagandha root, tulsi, and shatavari – calm and balance the nervous system, while the nootropic herbs – like bacopa and guduchi – boost cognitive function and brain power. Additionally, Chyawanprash offers a number of health benefits to encourage overall health and wellness.
Take 1 tsp of Chyawanprash 15 minutes before your meditation or yoga practice for a heightened sense of clarity.
The herb of longevity! Gotu Kola is an Ayurvedic staple, offering numerous health and wellness benefits. Firstly, Gotu Kola may help to boost cognitive function, making it one of the best herbs for meditation. Furthermore, Gotu Kola may reduce stress, decrease anxiety levels, and improve bodily circulation. Some yogis claim that Gotu Kola can expand the capacity of the crown chakra, equalizing the brain hemispheres and energy.
Common to traditional and folk medicine, valerian root is a known sedative, making it worthwhile to reduce anxiety and promote calmness. Valerian can be taken in tea for 30 minutes before a meditation to increase a level of serenity. Once in a peaceful state, clear thinking and inner peace may come more bountifully during meditation practice.
Cannabis has a long history of being used in ancient China and many other cultures and spiritual rituals. Often used as medicine, cannabis, in its many different strains, is very potent. Therefore starting with a microdose (about half of your tolerance) is essential. Too much and you may become tired or ignite an overactive mind.
Below are a few different strains of cannabis that may be beneficial for meditation. They are a mix of Sativa, Indica, and hybrids.
- Blue Dream
- Social Master Kush
- Oregon Lemons
All strains may have a slightly different effect. Take time to explore what feels best for you.
Clare Michalik, Ayurvedic Practitioner, @clareminded