Before my Fibromyalgia symptoms begun, I was one of the “lucky” ME/CFS sufferers who didn’t have any problems getting to sleep. Staying awake? That was a different story but sleep came easily. Then Fibro hit, and oh boy, did things change.
So when Fibrocane offered me some of their herbal tea, Serenitea, which is designed to “soothe restlessness and facilitate night-time relaxation” I jumped at the chance. And I’m glad I did. Here’s my run down of what the product set out to do, and what it did for me:
I have been given this product as part of a product review through the Chronic Illness Bloggers network. Although the product was a gift, all opinions in this review remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the company. This post also contains affiliate links, which means if you click one of the product links I may make a small commission at no cost to you. View my full Disclosure Policy.
What is Fibrocane and what does it do?
Fibrocane is a line of products from US company Premier Bioceuticals made for Fibromyalgia patients. They make different items aimed at easing symptoms (pain, lack of energy and stress) and a multivitamin made up of vitamins commonly recommended for Fibro.
What is Fibrocane Serenitea and what is it for?
Serenitea is a tea made from a blend of herbs picked to help you relax. It is gluten-free and caffeine-free and the ingredients are grown organically and are not genetically modified.
What’s in it?
Organic Tulsi (Holy Basil) blend, Krishna Tulsi (leaf), Vana Tulsi (leaf), Rama Tulsi (leaf), Cardamom (pod), Chamomile (flower), Peppermint (leaf), Rooibos, Ashwagandha (root), Gotu Kola (Centella) (whole plant), Stevia (leaf)
When I first sniffed this tea, I was worried. Even brewed it smelt like sticking your nose in a bottle of mixed herbs. Pleasant smells but not something you would want to pour into your mouth.
I’m glad to say, this isn’t how it tasted. The Stevia meant that it was much sweeter than it smelt, but also the herbs were much subtler. I found I preferred the taste with a dash of milk (which I’m sure is blasphemy in the herbal-tea-drinking-world), but that it was actually very pleasant to drink. It took me a few cups to get used to the herbal taste, but now I really quite enjoy the flavour.
What I wanted this product to do was to help to get me off to sleep despite my painsomnia (insomnia caused by pain). Now, as I tell my doctors frequently, I am often perfectly relaxed for the hours I spend awake in bed, so really this was too big an ask. Even my amitriptyline isn’t always succeeding to get me to sleep.
But, I did start getting anxiety while I was trying this tea as a side effect of medication changes and here is where it helped. I kept feeling on high alert and anxious in the evenings, which was making it very hard to switch off for sleep even though the pain was a bit better by this point.
I picked up the Serenitea again and found it helped me to calm down and get into that “I’m ready to sleep” zone. I kept trying it and it kept working and I found the nights I didn’t I would keep faffing about doing things after I was in bed when I would normally be quietly reading and then laying down to sleep.
Was it just placebo?
It could be. But to be honest, I long for the Placebo effect when I try new things and it never normally comes. I am amazed when I read about how incredible an effect placebos can have.
Personally, I’d be very glad if a doctor could give me a placebo that actually triggered this effect in me (especially for pain). But alas, it isn’t really ethical to go about giving patients placebos outside of medical trials and I know I’d be very angry about them doing it if I didn’t suffer from chronic illnesses with no treatments.
But I will accept there is something about the ritual of drinking a hot drink before bed that is relaxing in itself. Plus I added milk, which is known to help get you off to sleep.
It could be this garnering a placebo effect but I do think this product was better at relaxing me than my de-caffeinated Earl Grey (that I also have with milk). I would urge people who have trouble relaxing at night to give any milky drink with no caffeine a go before bed anyway, but the Serenitea did seem to do this better.
If you have trouble “switching-off” before bed and stopping your brain for long enough to wind down in the evening, this tea may well be for you. It won’t work miracles but it might be just what you need to calm down and get into sleep mode, or even just for a bit of a de-stress during the day.
You find out more about Serenitea here, or click the banner below for information about the rest of the Fibrocane product range.
Note: this is a US product, so if you are ordering from elsewhere in the world please take into account international postage costs and customs/VAT charges.
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