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Moon Milk Is the Insta-Worthy Drink that Helps You Fall Asleep

If you’re anything like me, you have been starting to feel the fatigue and toll quarantine life was taking on your body. Despite how tired I felt, I experienced so much trouble falling asleep. This led me down a fitness and lifestyle guru rabbit hole where I couldn’t escape the notion of a remedy I hadn’t tried before: moon milk.

Related: Here’s the Nighttime Routine I Swear By

What is moon milk?

Moon milk originates from Ayurvedic traditions and has been used for centuries as a remedy for stress and insomnia. Ayurveda is one of the world’s oldest holistic medicines and is still part of India’s traditional medical systems. Traditional moon milk utilizes cow’s milk, cardamom, cinnamon, ghee, and a special Ayurvedic herb, ashwagandha.

The aforementioned components each have their own properties which help relax the body and alleviate stress, aiding in the sleep process. Ashwagandha is an adaptogen, a substance that helps the body adapt to stress, and “contains powerful anti-inflammatory, anti-stress, and antioxidant effects.” As you can imagine, combining these ingredients can help improve sleep.

Cut ashwagandha root can be found in many Indian grocery stores and the adaptogen can also be found in gummy, capsule supplement, and powdered form on Amazon and in Walmart. For moon milk, however, it’s best to use powder ashwagandha as it will dissolve better. Need a substitute? Look for these other adaptogens: licorice root, holy basil, red ginseng.

Related: 7 Sleep Experiments I’ve Performed Over the Past Month That You Should Try, Too

Taking it to the next level

Today you can find #moonmilk trending all over Pinterest and Instagram in vibrant colors and decorated with edible flowers. Though the ingredients above are the basics, there are so many ways to put a spin on this drink and really make it your own. Whisk in some butterfly pea flower to brew a gorgeous marine blue or add a dash or two of turmeric powder for a golden beverage. You can try a sweet and calming cherry lavender or even a refreshing blueberry-flavored moon milk.

person taking picture of food
Photo by Dan Gold from Unsplash

If you’re looking to boost the sleep benefits, consider making almond milk the base and adding tart cherry extract. Almonds are high in both melatonin and magnesium — two of the best sleep substances, while cherries are among the riches fruits in melatonin and may add a hint of sweetness to your moon milk. 

Though drinking moon milk right before bedtime is ideal for the best sleep results, if you’re only looking to unwind from the day, skip the ashwagandha and go for rhodiola rosea. Rhodiola rosea helps the body adapt to stress while keeping your alert.

How to make your own moon milk

By now, you’re probably wondering how to make your own healing moon milk, here’s a simple recipe to follow, allowing you to add your own twists:

  • 1 ½ cups of milk (hemp, oat, almond, regular — it doesn’t matter)
  • 1 tsp of your favorite sweetener (raw honey is often used in traditional recipes)
  • 1 tsp of ghee or coconut oil
  • 1 tsp of an adaptogen powder (like ashwagandha)
  • 1 tsp of any spices (cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg)
  • Any flower or herbs to decorate the top 

Combine these ingredients and heat them over medium heat until warmed. After, you can strain if you prefer and then garnish your drink to enjoy! 

Add moon milk to your nighttime routine and see the results for yourself! Before you doze off, you definitely need to snap a pic for the ‘gram. Insta-worthy and functional? We love to see it!

Ana Hilario

Montclair '21

Ana graduated from Montclair State University with a degree in English. She loves reading, traveling, coffee, llamas, and the Oxford comma. Follow her on Instagram @ana_hilarious_ for good vibes and funky outfits.
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