Chinese Folk Remedies for Treating Insomnia

Remedies for InsomniaInsomnia has already become a very common problem in modern society. Long-term insomnia can bring serious harm to people, such as a weak immune system, heart disease, obesity and diabetes, so it is crucial to treat insomnia sooner than later in order to maintain a healthy and balanced lifestyle. But what treatment methods are there? In other articles we have talked about the foods and lifestyle habits that may be causing people to experience insomnia and also outlined some solutions from a Chinese medical perspective. In this article we look at which folk remedies in China have been known among locals for helping cure sleeping issues to give you an alternative perspective.

Chinese Treatment for Insomnia


Some people after traveling long distances are over-exhausted and find it hard to sleep peacefully at night. Many Chinese recommend taking a tablespoon of vinegar, put it in warm water and drink it slowly. The background and science on this differs but then again, this article is more about presenting the folk remedy for your knowledge.


Tryptophan in milk is one of the eight essential amino acids in the human body, and it generates a certain feeling of calmness, especially when prepared warm. The site WebMD has also offered some insight into this topic


If anger and irritability make it difficult to sleep, drink a cup of sugar water. Lower amounts of sugar in the body can be transformed into a large amount of serotonin, a substance which when in the brain, can suppress the cerebral cortex and enable easy sleep.

Lotus root

Lotus root contains large amounts of carbohydrates and is rich in calcium, phosphorus, iron and vitamins. It also has the effect of balancing heat, nourishing blood, getting rid of frustration and more. Chinese remedies state people should use fresh lotus roots and simmer them over low heat. Adding honey is also beneficial.


For people who are over-exhausted and thus cannot sleep, eating apples, bananas and other fruits at bedtime can fight muscle fatigue. Also, the smell of fruit such as oranges placed near one’s bedside can also encourage sleep.


Apart from being rich in nutrients, tryptophan content in millet is found as a highly effective remedy for curing insomnia. Chinese medicine believes that it has the effect of strengthening the spleen and calming the stomach, making sleep peaceful and more.


Most people who have had massages have probably felt much more relaxed afterwards. Aside from relieving tension in the muscles, the mind is also able to relax and the Qi or energy in the body is overall able to flow more smoothly, thus preventing blockages produced from food, the environment and many other factors that harm sleep quality.

Massaging the temples several times daily is also highly beneficial, and using a comb, brush or fingers for massaging the scalp is highly beneficial for calming one’s nerves.

Navel therapy

Take spine date seeds and grind them until fine. Then, place the cream externally as an analgesic cream on your navel once a day.

Feet Therapy

Take cinnabar, add paste and mix thoroughly. Place it in an analgesic cream, and add it to the soles of the feet, then bandage the foot tightly. Do this once every night.


Meditation brings clarity of mind, so if people are suffering from excessive thinking doing this can help calm and empty one’s thoughts. Deep breathing also benefits the immune system, helps decrease heart disease risk and is a great way to detoxify the body. There are many other functions of meditation, which you can read elsewhere on this site.