Kirsten Shanks

Coconut Dream Milk

Rest is one of the most powerful healers available to us, yet the ability to relax, unwind and sleep through the night in a deep and peaceful slumber is a struggle for many. Overactive nervous and adrenal systems can wreak havoc on our capacity for a full night’s sleep, with feelings of anxiety and stress overriding the will to sleep.

Luckily Mother Nature has blessed us with some beautiful botanicals to naturally support us to rest the mind and body in deep peace.

Key players in the plant kingdom for sleep are those that target the nervous system; gently sedating while alleviating general feelings of anxiety. These herbal medicines can all be taken as tinctures and pills, however making them into an elixir or tea to slowly sip each night before bed can be an effective and valuable component of a night-time ritual.

Into the recipe below I have woven the following five botanicals, but when making magic in your own kitchen, feel free to interchange as available or even use individually for their unique and deeply restorative benefits.

  • Passionflower – The actual mystical flower and vines of the passion fruit plant create this beautiful herb which has been used for millennia to soothe the nerves and calm a racing mind.
  • Skullcap – A highly effective nervous system tonic and sedative, skullcap was the go-to herb before the release of anti-anxiety pharmaceuticals.
  • Zizyphus – Used for centuries in Traditional Chinese Medicine, zizyphus demonstrates an incredible ability to enhance the quality and quantity of sleep.
  • Valerian – Often referred to as nature’s valium, many studies have found significant improvement in sleep disorders with this beautifully pacifiying root.
  • Ashwagandha – This ancient Ayurvedic herb works wonders in supporting our response to stress; reducing cortisol and enhancing our ability to cope.

RECIPE: COCONUT DREAM MILK

Ingredients:

  • 1⁄4 tsp each/any of the following herbs, as powders; Passionflower, skullcap, zizyphus, valerian, ashwagandha
  • 1⁄4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1⁄2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp raw honey or nectar
  • 250ml coconut milk

To create:

  1. Add choice of herbs, cinnamon and nutmeg to your favourite mug.
  2. Add sweetener, making a paste with the herbs.
  3. Gently heat coconut milk.
  4. Slowly pour milk into mug, stirring slowly.
  5. Sip peacefully, rest well x
Image Credit - Will Braden (left) and Collective Hub (right)

Kirsten Shanks is a naturopath, founder and creative director of Orchard St., an inspirational Sydney based company with a true dharma to enhance the collective experience of wellness.
@orchardstlove  orchardstreet.com.au

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