Sleep - 'that old chestnut'! A vital component to our overall health and wellbeing, yet one that many people seem to struggle with - and increasingly so since the pandemic.
Indeed, it was the awareness of the twin issues of sleep and stress through the lockdowns that inspired Mark and Laura to set up The Herbtender in the first place. So, when I arrived on the scene in early 2021, we agreed that an adaptogen-based sleep product was essential to include in the range.
As a Medical Herbalist by trade, I knew that the two issues most people faced were either difficulties getting to sleep or, if they could get to sleep without problems, waking in the night unable to get back to a restful slumber. Clearly, an all-encompassing sleep solution was needed to be effective against both of these issues.
THE HARD WORK - DEVELOPING AN ALL-IN-ONE FORMULA
Meet the adaptogens…
From the outset, I knew that Ashwagandha would be a key part of the formula. As one of the few sedative adaptogens, it can help with getting to sleep and sleep quality, as well as helping the body deal with stress, which is often present when there are issues with sleep. Through its actions on the adrenal glands and its capacity to improve strength and stamina, it also enhances the experience of the following day.
Reishi was also an early addition to the formula. A beautifully gentle adaptogen, it is ideal for a sleep formula as it won't stimulate or keep someone awake. Amongst other things, Reishi works on the nervous system and is known to be beneficial with 'deficient insomnia" - when someone can't sleep because of overall depletion.
And their supporting act…
With over 20+ years as a herbalist developing bespoke formulations to help people sleep, I have a few favourites among the non-adaptogenic herbs. Here's what I chose to support the formula's adaptogens and make it a more rounded blend...
Chamomile - both mentally and physically relaxing, it's traditionally used to help people with sleep.
Nutmeg - used in a night-time milky drink to help sleep for a good reason! It calms the nervous system and promotes the release of serotonin in the body, essential for ensuring a good night's sleep. Herbalists use nutmeg for its ability to help people to stay asleep through the night.
Passiflora - a gentle sleepy herb that calms mental restlessness and helps with sleep duration, ensuring a long night's rest.
ADDING VITAMINS & MINERALS
We decided to include a nutritional element to our formula for two reasons:
- It enhances the efficacy of the formula, and
- It enables us to legally make certain claims about the actions of the product
We thought carefully and had many long discussions about which nutrient to add and what form it should be in. In the end, we were delighted to include Seagreens(R), a natural seaweed product which provides iodine. Iodine contributes to the normal functioning of the nervous system and complements our formula well.
TIME TO DOZE & DREAM
As with all of our formulae, it was imperative for us to get honest feedback about how effective Doze & Dream was before launching it as one of our products.
We discovered early on from initial trials that the dosage was important and that individuals would need to adjust it according to their needs. One of our participants who took the highest dose reported that they, 'Struggled a bit to wake up in the morning because I had slept so deeply'.
We added to our instructions and encouraged people to find the dose that worked for them. Our second trial, in the form of capsules, was very successful, with most participants reporting improved sleep…
'I went to sleep quicker and went back to sleep after I woke at night. I was able to stop taking medication the majority of nights and reduce herbal tinctures.'
'I found that I was less likely to wake up in the night, and when I did I was more likely to fall asleep again rather than being awake for long stretches.'
'Good product, it did help me to feel more relaxed when going to bed and improved quality of sleep'
THE FINAL PRODUCT…
And so, Doze & Dream came into being. A new sleep supplement designed and manufactured in the UK to support getting to sleep, staying asleep and overall sleep quality. All whilst remaining vegan, free of fillers, binders and artificial nasties.
We are proud of this product and know, from feedback and reviews, that so many of you have incorporated it into your nightly routines and are reporting better sleep and a reduction in stress. And to us, that's the biggest compliment of them all!
If you have any questions about this product or anything else The Herbtender related, we'd love to hear from you! Feel free to leave a comment below, pop us an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or send us a DM at @theherbtender!