Passionflower and Anxiety: The Research

Passionflower and Anxiety: The Research

Passionflower, or Passiflora incarnata, is not just a visually stunning perennial vine and adaptogen, but it also has been used by indigenous peoples of the Americas for centuries as a potential sedative and relaxant (1). Over the years, this popular plant has garnered a reputation for being a possible remedy for anxiety, irritability, and insomnia. 

In this age of anxiety (quoting a really good Arcade Fire song btw), many of us are seeking natural alternatives to help calm our minds. Anecdotally, passionflower seems like a good option for this- but what does the research say? 

Passionflower benefits anxiety

Benefits of Passionflower for Anxiety: The Research

There are some high quality studies highlighting the potential benefit of passionflower on anxiety. 

Notably, a 2001 double-blind, randomised controlled study tested the effectiveness of passionflower in treating anxiety against oxazepam, an anti-anxiety medication (2). The results were promising, as passionflower was as effective in reducing symptoms of anxiety as oxazepam. Although oxazepam worked faster, the side effects (such as drowsiness) were much more prominent. 

A 2019 study testing the effects of passionflower on subjects with anxiety found that the herbal extract significantly improved the quality of life of the subjects when compared to the placebo group (3). 

To wrap up this section, a 2020 systematic concluded that the majority of studies carried out on passionflower reported reduced anxiety levels in subjects after consumption (4). 

What does this suggest? This research is promising, but it's important to remember that it's still early days. More studies are needed to definitively say passionflower is a cure-all for anxiety. However, these findings are encouraging and suggest passionflower as a potential contender in the natural anxiety-relief arena.

Passionflower Benefits on Sleep

Passionflower's calming reputation extends beyond anxiety. For decades, it's been used as a natural sleep aid. And guess what? Science is starting to take notice.

Recent studies are now highlighting the potential positive qualities of passionflower on sleep disorders. More specifically, it has been shown to improve sleep parameters in adults with insomnia (5). 

There's more to the sleep story with passionflower. While the exact mechanisms aren't fully understood, research suggests it may influence brain chemistry to promote relaxation (6).


A Convenient Way to Experience Passionflower's Benefits

While passionflower can be consumed in various ways, like teas or tinctures, if you're looking for a convenient and delicious option, consider our Unwind blend. This unique blend combines passionflower with other calming herbs like ashwagandha, creating a synergy of relaxation and stress relief.

Unwind is a healthier hot chocolate/chocolate milk for those seeking a natural way to relax after a long day. Learn more about Unwind here!

Calming Nights Ahead?

While more research is needed to fully understand passionflower's benefits, the current evidence is promising. If you're struggling with anxiety or sleep issues, talk to your doctor about whether passionflower might be a good option for you. Remember, it's always best to consult a healthcare professional before adding any new supplements or remedies to your routine.

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