We’re fully in the throes of Spring, and if all the chirping birds and blooming flowers remind you of itchy, watery eyes and a stuffy nose, then we’ve got some good news for you. While we can’t do much about the tree and grass pollen outside, allergy sufferers can find great relief with some thoughtful bedroom upgrades.
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Recipe: Magic Melatonin Mocktail
Mocktails are super trendy at the moment, so why not optimize them for health benefits? While many people have relied on alcohol to help them unwind after a day of work and ease them into sleep, alcohol is a known sleep disruptor. Luckily, your nightcap doesn’t have to include alcohol! With a few carefully curated ingredients, your nightcap can help tuck you into a good night’s sleep.
Be sure to look for a pure tart cherry juice—there are some on the market that dilute and sweeten with apple juice. For our purposes, we want as much of that tart cherry goodness as possible for maximum melatonin levels. But if you can’t find one without apple juice, just be sure to add the honey simple syrup to taste so it isn’t too sweet.
We put honey to work here for our simple syrup instead of sugar because honey is shown to help the brain absorb tryptophan, which gets converted into serotonin and then into melatonin. Make a big batch of the simple syrup to have on hand in the fridge, so it’s ready to go when you’re ready to go to bed.
We absolutely love shopping our hometown Ashland Food Co-Op for our mocktail supplies! We’re able to grab local and organic ingredients easily. If you’re further afield, be sure to check out your local natural foods store for the best quality possible.
Magic Melatonin Mocktail
For Rosemary Honey Simple Syrup
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup honey (local, natural, and unrefined if possible)
- 3 sprigs rosemary
Add water, honey, and rosemary sprigs to a small saucepan. Bring it to a boil, but keep an eye on it so it doesn’t scorch. Remove from heat and allow the rosemary to steep for at least 15 minutes. Pour through a strainer to remove any solids into a glass container with an airtight lid. Will keep in the fridge for a month.
For one mocktail
- 2 ounces pure tart cherry juice
- 2 ounces sparkling water
- Squeeze of lemon (Meyer lemons are lovely)
- 1 ounce Rosemary Honey Simple Syrup
You can either add all ingredients to a glass with ice, stir and serve, or to a drink shaker and then pour into a glass. Bonus points for using those big fancy ice cubes! Add a rosemary sprig to the glass for garnish and extra aromatic effect. Feel free to adjust sweetness to your taste—maybe a little more, maybe a little less— with the honey syrup.