Review Of Nytol Herbal Tablets

nytol herbal tablets with hops, passion flower and valerian

I decided to try Nytol Herbal for a week in a typical situation where my insomnia flares up – sleeping in an unfamiliar bed in a new house.

I know that it takes me a couple of nights to settle into a new bedroom, so it was a good time to try out a new sleep aid.

I have to admit, I was slightly skeptical that it would work, knowing that research into the sedative effect of valerian is still inconclusive.

But perhaps being skeptical is a good thing in this case; it might help reduce the potential for the placebo effect to influence my opinion.

Different types of Nytol

There are a few different versions of Nytol. So it might be useful to take a quick look at the difference between them:

Nytol Herbal Tablets – the one I tried first. It contains valerian, hops, and passion flower (photo above).

Nytol Herbal One-A-Night – only contains valerian (photo below).

Nytol Herbal Elixir – valerian in liquid form for those who struggle with tablets.

Nytol Original and Nytol One-A-Night – these aren’t herbal but contain an antihistamine. They come in blue packets instead of the green herbal ones.

Nytol Liquid Caramel Flavour – the latest in the Nytol range. It also contains an antihistamine, but as an oral solution for those who don’t like tablets.

Please note that this review is only for Nytol Herbal. To find out more about the stronger antihistamine version, you can read my review of Nytol One-A-Night.

My experience with Nytol Herbal Tablets

Despite writing a review, the problem is that realistically it’s hard to judge how effective a mild sleep aid is. There are just too many other factors that can contribute to how well you sleep or not.

With a strong pharmaceutical sleeping pill, it’s usually pretty clear if it worked or not. Herbal sleep aids can be more subtle, so it’s not always easy to determine their effectiveness.

I do believe, however, that I felt a mild sedative effect on the second and third night. The first night I had a bad night, but I can also attribute that to a fiercely noisy storm outside.

You could argue that the sedative effect was partly due to tiredness because I’d slept badly the first night. But I don’t think it was, as I definitely felt a mild calming feeling on top of the physical tiredness.

I wasn’t mentally tired when I went to sleep, so I think the calming effect could probably be put down to the Nytol. I felt no lingering feeling the next day, which is always a bonus.

The question is though – do they really work as a sleep aid? Well, all I can say is that from my experience they could have a slight sedative effect.

But it’s definitely not as strong as some other over the counter sleep aids, such as the anti-histamine Nytol. And it’s incomparable with most prescription sleeping pills.

This was only my experience of the sleep aid – remember that it could be very different for you.

My experience with Nytol Herbal One-A-Night

nytol herbal valerian

I first wrote about the version with valerian, hops, and passionflower in 2014. And in 2018, I decided to test the valerian only One-A-Night to find out if it was much different.

The first thing I noticed is the improvement to the smell and taste. The previous type had a very strong valerian smell and was kind of unpleasant to swallow.

This time, the tablets were coated so you don’t have that same smell. They are larger tablets, but you only take one rather than two or more.

It’s suggested that valerian needs a couple of weeks to build up in your system before it’s most effective. So I decided to take it every night for a month.

Again, I think it did help a little, providing a mild sedative effect. It never knocked me out as such, but I do think it helped me relax at night.

I’m not sure the effect was much better in the second half of the month though really. If it was, then it wasn’t something I could objectively measure, either with my sleep diary or sleep tracker.

But on the whole, I think I slept reasonably well most nights of the month.

Further information

The ingredients of Nytol Herbal

2 brown nytol herbal tablets on a table

According to the information sheet, the ingredients are:

  • 200 mg extract of hops
  • 160 mg extract of valerian
  • 130 mg extract of passion flower
  • Calcium hydrogen phosphate
  • Microcrystalline cellulose (E 460)
  • Stearic acid
  • Magnesium stearate
  • Hypromellose 4500
  • Polyethylene glycol 400
  • Iron oxides (E 171)
  • Titanium dioxide (E 171)

Out of these ingredients, it’s the hops, valerian and passion flower which are meant to have the sedative and calming effect.

Who shouldn’t take it

The sheet comes with these warnings of situations when you shouldn’t take them:

  • If you’ve ever had an allergy to hops, valerian or passion flower, or any of the other ingredients listed above.
  • If you suffer from depression.
  • If you’re under 12 years old.
  • You shouldn’t drive or operate heavy machinery.
  • You shouldn’t mix them with alcohol.
  • You should talk to your doctor if you’re taking any other medications, especially beta-blockers or any that can make you drowsy.
  • You should talk to your doctor before taking them if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.

Possible side effects of Herbal Nytol

The information sheet advises speaking to your doctor if you experience any of these side effects:

  • Stomach cramps.
  • Palpitations or feeling faint.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Fever and headaches.
  • Gastroenteritis or diarrhea.

As with any medication, if you notice any symptoms after taking them it’s wise to stop taking them and contact a medical professional.

Nytol Herbal One-A-Night information

nytol herbal pills closeup photo

This version only contains one active ingredient, valerian 385 mg, and comes with fewer warnings.

Similar precautions are advised in terms of when not to take it:

  • Pregnant or breastfeeding women.
  • If you’re allergic to the ingredients.
  • Don’t drive or operate machinery.
  • Don’t drink excessive amounts of alcohol.
  • Consult your doctor if you take any other medication or sleep aids.

The possible side effects listed are:

  • Nausea.
  • Abdominal cramps.

What others say about it

Nytol Herbal doesn’t exactly get gleaming reviews online. On the US Amazon site, it has a rating of 4 out of 5 at the time of writing. On the UK Amazon site, it currently has a score of 3.7 out of 5.

Many readers have left comments since I first wrote this review, which has been helpful to read. Interestingly, some people find Nytol doesn’t work at all, whereas others have had a very positive experience.

So really, my feeling is that there’s just no way to predict how well it will work for you until you try it – if you decide to of course.

Your views

Have you tried Nytol Herbal or One-A-Night? Did you find it helped you sleep better?

Feel free to share your thoughts or experiences in the comments below.

122 thoughts on “Review Of Nytol Herbal Tablets”

  1. Hi,
    Knowing that I am very sensitive to any medicine, I took a third of a Nytol tablet. Slept well, felt calm in the morning, but slightly drowsy. I had to have a coffee to do the school run. I am a woman over 40. I wonder what age are the previous reviewers.

    1. Hi Iveta
      Thanks for your comment. Drowsiness can be a side effect in the morning after taking the Nytol. I don’t know what age the previous readers are, but I imagine they are all different ages. And having written the article, I can tell you I’m 40.

  2. I have tried nytol herbal for 2nights and although I slept better the next day I really suffered with the cramps feeling sick and the runs not worth the side affects

  3. Hi, if they are all natural & hearbal remedies why can’t a 12 year old take them? I have a son that truly cannot sleep before 1/2am every night, I’ve tried all the obvious sleep solutions & none work, what would happen if he did take them??

  4. How do I take this? Do I just swallow it or is it okay to chew? I have a pretty small throat so I am worried about just swallowing the whole thing.

  5. I have recently tried a herbal Nytol on 2 separate nights and they have both worked a treat. I suffer from insomnia and have taken chemical sleeping tablets on and off for years but have decided I don’t want to take the chemical option anymore. I feel exhausted when I go to bed but sleep won’t come. With the herbal Nytol I fell asleep about 10 minutes later and although I didn’t sleep the whole night through I got about 5 straight hours which was marvellous. No grogginess or woolly head the next day so, from my experience, I would highly recommend them.

  6. For the last few months I have had bad sleep – sleeping at 11 waking up at 2, 4, 5, 7 every night.
    I recently purchased the tablets and after the first night I slept from 1 – 7:30 with no waking up which was great, I actually woke at 7 – and I couldn’t open my eyes! I had no choice but to go back to sleep. The second day I only woke because of other factors – but I fell straight back to sleep with no problems.

    From what I can tell they are effective – I don’t have insomnia – My friends label my bad sleep due to anxiety.

    Hope this helps…

    1. Hi Chel
      Thanks for your comment. It’s always good to hear from someone who had a positive experience with something I’ve reviewed, so thanks for sharing!

  7. I take Lorien pills for anxiety but I only took one 25gram pill today rather than two. And I took a Nytol tonight. I feel a bit drowsy and slow is that normal because I have been extremely tired lately and slept the whole day today. I was worried I wouldn’t get sleep tonight so that is why I took it but I still do feel tired. Will I be safe because I don’t want to end up in hospital ?

    1. Hi there
      Sorry it took a while to reply to your comment – I hope you were Ok that night. If you have worries in the future about the medication you’ve taken, it’s best to call a doctor. I’d love to be able to help better, but I’m not a doctor and it takes a while to reply to all the comments on this site.

  8. I took 2 herbal nytol on Monday night it’s now Thursday and I am still getting stomach cramps which haven’t been very nice. I have taken gaviscon and it is easing . Is this common. I have disposed of the others .

    1. Hi Linda
      Thanks for your comment. I’d mention this to your doctor since it’s been 3 days. You might also want to avoid valerian products in case you have an intolerance.

  9. My 17 year old daughter is struggling to sleep. We have purchased these taborts for her but on the instructions it says they shouldn’t be taken for under 18 but on the website it says under 12. What is correct?

  10. I’ve developed very irregular sleep pattern over recent years due to combining working days and nursing elderly parents at night time. I felt the need to try and get back some sort of regular sleep rhythm since semi-retirement as not tired going to bed, tossing all night and getting up in morning feeling exhausted! Nytol herbal seemed to be a possible solution? Unfortunately, I still tossed and turned through the night and finally dozed off around 4am and slept soundly until 11am! Once awake had most unusual woozey feeling and dull headache similar to mild hangover!

    1. Hi Kim
      Thanks for your comment. It can be tricky to adjust your sleep schedule. As well as trying herbal remedies, you might like to consider melatonin, which can be useful for stabilizing a sleep pattern. I’d also suggest reading an article I wrote about fixing your sleep schedule, where you can learn some techniques for getting your sleep back on track naturally.

  11. Well tonight I’m particularly bad with my lack of sleep I’ve combined 2 melotonine tabs wit 2 nytol herbal I’ve had these adopt 20 mins ago and I am hoping I will get a few hours kip! I’m feeling sleepy now so hopefully il be good! I will check I. In the morning. I’m combining them with melotonine because I don’t. Ormaly chill enough for the melotonine to kick in I’m hoping the nytol might help!

    1. Hi Thedom
      Thanks for your comment. There are several over the counter sleep aids that contain a mix of melatonin and valerian, so it’s not an uncommon combination. However, I’d caution against taking too many pills in the hope that an increased quantity does the trick. Melatonin especially doesn’t tend to do much more at a higher dose than it would at a lower. Still, it would be interesting to hear back from you about how it worked for you.

  12. Have taken this for the second night in a row and I do feel they have helped me have a better sleep…but don’t know if continuous use would make them ineffective?? One thing i will say though, has any one else experience burning in stomach after taking them?? I’ve had this on both nights now about half hour after taking them??

    1. Hi JZ
      Thanks for your comment. I think if they are giving you that reaction, it’s probably not a good idea to continue taking them, unfortunately. You could experiment and not take them for a week, then try again to see if the unpleasant sensation comes back and isn’t just a coincidence. But equally, it might be better to find an alternative.

  13. …….tried these for the first time and surprised they actually do work. Really unpleasant smell, though. Took two tablets on first night but woke with headache, must have slept too well. Now reduced to one tablet but waking at around 4:30; still an improvement.

    1. Hi there
      Thanks for your comment. I agree that the smell of valerian is quite strong. It would be interesting to hear back from you after a few more days if you plan on taking it longer to find out how you got on with the one tablet.

    1. Hi Chris
      Thanks for your comment. It seems to be very hit or miss for people. There are plenty of other products you can try out though. Hopefully you’ll find something which helps.

  14. Personally, I was pleasantly surprised when I took these the other night. It wasn’t a hard feeling like the other sleep aids I’ve tried in the past and I also woke up not wanting to stay in bed all day which is certainly an added incentive to take them. I do agree that the feeling is very subtle, but considering its herbal, I think it’s a very good product. They provide a sleep aid without the risk of addiction and groggy sensations afterwards.

    1. Hi Liam
      Thanks for your comment. It’s good to hear from someone who has had success with them. I agree that they are subtle and don’t leave you feeling groggy. So if they do work for you, they are a great sleep aid.

  15. I absolutely love nytol herbal and have been using them every night for around three weeks. Before that I always woke up for maybe four hours at a time, the only respite I got was to take a prescribed sleeping tablet occasionally, which I didn’t like to do as they are so addictive. I also find that the herbs in these tablets act as a mild laxative, which no one else has mentioned, for me this is a plus also. I cannot remember sleeping so well and now no longer dread lying awake half the night.

    1. Hi Ella

      Thank you for your comment. It’s useful to hear from someone else who has found the Nytol herbal effective. It’s great that it works for you! I haven’t experienced the laxative effect personally, and I’m not sure I’d want to if that was the effect before going to bed!
      All the best

  16. Tried these for a week and afraid didn’t work – aggravated stomach problem and caused anxiety after a few days.

    1. Hi Chris

      Thanks for your comment. As with any sleep aid, they won’t be right for everyone. I hope you find something which does help you though.

  17. I am taking Nytol Herbal as a last resort. Have had two years of broken sleep and regularly waking at 3am and not going back to sleep. If I had one night a week of undisturbed sleep I was lucky. Last night was only night 2, but both nights I have slept all night, in fact I’m finding it hard to get out of bed this morning which is just not me.

    I tried them a few years ago and they worked then too. I don’t really think it’s a placebo effect but as the most important thing was I got some sleep I don’t care! I’ve taken diazepam in the past and found I was awake dead on 8 hours and had a headache, so for me these seem better.

    1. Hi Annie

      Thanks for your comment, and I’m really pleased you found that Nytol herbal work for you. There’s been quite a bit of chat about the placebo effect recently, so it’s nice to hear from someone who is sure they help.
      Some people might argue that you could take sugar pills and they would work. But the point is a placebo effect only works if you believe that what you are taking is actually designed to do what you think it will! So whether or not it is placebo, the fact that you’re taking something marketed as a sleep aid is a key point.
      I hope you continue to have better sleep.
      All the best

  18. I’ve recently tried Herbal Nytol but was completely useless as a sleeping aid. If you compared Nytol Herbal with a placebo I doubt whether you could tell any difference between them. In my opinion Trading Standards or similar body should look into what the manufacturers claims to be a sleeping aid.

    1. Hi Malcolm,

      Thanks for your comment, and I’m sorry to hear you didn’t have any luck with the Nytol herbal. You could be right about the placebo effect, especially since Nytol herbal is quite a mild sleep aid. The regulation with herbal remedies in most countries is quite relaxed, so I’m not sure if those kind of bodies will be looking too closely at these kind of products any time soon! If you do some research though, I’d be interested to hear what you find out.

    2. Hello Ethan, Yes, I accept it might be of benefit to your partner, I don’t want to appear to be getting dogmatic in my old age. And like you say, I will research what trials if any drug firms have to do prior to putting herbal pills on to the market etc.
      Regards Malcolm

  19. My fiancé has been having insomnia issues recently, and these seem to be working for him at this stage – he’s had a couple of nights with a prescription sleep aid, but since then he has taken the herbal nytol for about a week straight with decent results. I want for him to get back to a “baseline” of restedness before he goes off them, he is worried about rebound insomnia – has anyone reading this had experience with taking these pills for more than a week straight?

    1. Hi Babs

      Thank for your comment. Since you’ve addressed the general readership, I won’t reply in much depth. But what I would suggest is that if something as light as Nytol herbal is having such a positive effect, he might find he can help himself with general good practices when it comes to bedtime. Take a look at the section on sleep hygiene to find out more about that.

      1. He still would probably say he’s had a good night’s sleep if he’d taken a placebo pill, it’s all psychological

  20. I’ve tried it to limited success, nytol one a night works better but would not use it in long term, would rather use the herbal, also you should also note in the document that comes with the medicine it does say it takes 2-4 weeks before it actually works, so basing it off three nights doesn’t really support it…

    1. Hi Michael,

      Thanks for your comment. I agree about not taking Nytol one a night regularly. As for the 2-4 week point, thank your for raising that. From my understanding the reality is that Valerian may not work immediately for some people, which is why some manufacturers recommend taking it for a couple of weeks at least. But that doesn’t mean that it won’t help some people sooner. And of course, there is the placebo effect which can be pretty much instantaneous!

  21. I tried nytol herbal last week for the first time ever, i dont have insomnia or sleeping dissorder, just a couple of days ago i couldn’t get a full nights sleep so by day 3 i was feeling like a zombie during the day at work. Anyway tried them and although i still didn’t get a full nights sleep. I slept better and i did feel much better the next day, not sure why? This happened for 3 nights and i feel so much better. Would recommend if you have lack of sleep -give them a go. I always have them in my cupboard.

    1. Hi Sharon,

      Thank you for your comment, and it’s great that you found the Nytol herbal worked for you. Sometimes there is no need to know why it worked, the important thing is that it just did! You can count yourself among the fortunate who did find a herbal remedy worked, and so don’t have to move up the chain until they find something stronger which helps.

      All the best

  22. Hi, My father suffers with Alzheimer’s and wanders around the house all night. he is hardly getting any sleep and is feeling exhausted just having naps during the day. Do you think it would be ok for him to try these, he is 92 yrs old?

    1. Hi Richard,

      It’s not really my place to give recommendations on whether something I review is safe for any particular person to take. If you’re concerned, the best bet would be to speak to his doctor for advice. I’d also check their website to see if there are any new possible interactions with anything he may be taking.
      Sorry I can’t help more.

  23. when my wife was on her death bed due to cancer, I often than none slept few hours caring for her. This made me got indulged in taking lexotan. When i eventually hit bereaved, i developed insomnia.Because of fear of developing tolerance and or dependence I opted for nytol which gave me a deep sleep which was interrupted after an hour from a large bang on the door of my apartment. Since that int eruption I was unable to regain my sleeping. Could I have taken more but the fear taking overdose?

    1. Hi Jjakin

      Thank you for your comment, and sorry to hear about your wife. It’s unlikely that more Nytol herbal would have helped you stay asleep through a loud bang, I imagine. As for overdose, well, it’s not as dangerous as most pharmaceutical sleep aids. But my advice would still be to stay within the recommended range.

  24. have tried these on a couple of occasions, but only one per night with varying degrees of success , but am going to take 2 tonight as I badly need some sleep.

  25. Thanks to Nytol Herbal Tablets I am now sleeping so much better. I am not disturbing my wife which is a benefit too. I was skeptical about taking them as all tablets in the past that I have tried have left me drowsy and with that drugged feeling during the next morning. No so with Nytol once awake I am on the go without any “hangover” from them at all. I only take one a night and that is fine for me.
    Thank you Nytol for a lovely sleep pattern,

    1. Hi Graeme,

      Thank you for your comment and it’s great to hear from someone who has had success with Nytol herbal. And it’s great of course on an individual level that you managed to improve both your and your wife’s sleep.
      Long may it continue!

  26. 2.32 am still awake not even sleepy! Took 2 at 10 am. Took 2 last night and thought it helped. Got to get up for work at 6! Fed up with my insomnia so depressing. This has been going on for nearly 30 years tried everything & docs don’t help.
    Oh well best at least get of the Internet.

    1. Hi Milly,

      Thanks for your comment, and sorry to hear you’ve been battling insomnia for so long. If you have such bad insomnia, you might find a natural remedy like Nytol herbal doesn’t quite do it for you. It’s quite a mild sedative, and not for everyone. On the other hand, if you think it helped one night, then perhaps you might have some joy with it if you keep taking it for a few consecutive days.
      Don’t give up on the search for something to help you sleep, and have a look round this site. You might find something which does the trick.

  27. My husband works away a month at a time and while he is away I have a terrible sleep pattern and end up being awake most of the night so I take the low dosage Nytol. Having taken it for the last 10 days (great sleep!) I thought I had better give it a break and straight away had a terrible night. So today I bought the herbal, a friend recommended, but having taken one at 8.30pm I am not noticing anything still by 10.30pm :(

    1. Hi Julia

      Thanks for your comment. I think there is a considerable difference in the strength of the herbal and anti-histamine versions, so you may find that it doesn’t have the same strength. Perhaps try it for a few nights and see what happens, as you may also be expecting the kind of strength that came from the other version, and missing the more subtle effect of the herbal.
      Let me know how you get on though, as it’s always good to hear readers’ views on sleep aids.

  28. Hi
    I was getting very desperate for some much needed sleep, these was suggested by the pharmacist as I am very wary of things I’ve not taken before, it says to take 2 about an hour before bed, I only took one due to not having them before and I didn’t want to feel crap the next day. That night I had the most awful nightmare, which I’ve never experienced one before, and it also made me pee more then usual, so still had a broken nights sleep. I’ve left it a couple of weeks before taking another.

    Last night again I was unable to sleep, so by 11.25pm I was ripping open the box, I only took the one again, I fell asleep about an hour later, and here I am at 04.20 wide awake after needing a 2nd wee of the night ( which never happens)

    I certainly won’t be taking these again.

    1. Hi Shani

      Thanks for your comment, and sorry to hear about your sleep problems. Unfortunately not every sleep aid will work for everyone, so I guess as you say, they just aren’t for you.
      Hopefully you’ll find something which does help you get the sleep you need.

  29. I’ve taken these every night for a week now, I still find myself up till the crack of @%&*ing dawn. they don’t &%*$ing work at all.

  30. I’ve tried these for the past couple of nights and have found that they do take a couple hours to help me drop off but I put that down to my slow metabolism. However I have found that they have affected my appetite dramatically and I have had no interest in eating anything over the past couple of days.

    1. Hi Swagstaffe

      Thanks for your comment, it’s useful to hear from readers about how they got on with Nytol herbal. My personal thoughts would be that if they take that long to work, and are possibly causing you other problems, then you might want to try something else!


  31. These tablets work well, I’m having trouble with insomnia because of withdrawal and these have improved my life to no end. Non drowsy so no problems getting up for work the next day. And when i wake up I’m as bright as a button. They don’t make you groggy just feel refreshed, recommended.

    1. Hi Sir Alan,

      Thanks for your comment, and it’s good to hear you’ve had positive experiences with the Nytol herbal. If they do help you sleep, that’s fantastic, as the non-drowsiness the next day is always a bonus when taking sleeping pills of any kind.

  32. I am having terrible trouble sleeping. Am a bit scared of taking these pills but getting desperate. Don’t want to feel bad next day.

    1. Hi Jenny

      Sorry to hear you’re having sleep problems. I think you can probably relax about taking Nytol herbal because they are a very weak sleeping pill. The only thing I would personally be worried about is whether or not they actually work! But if you really don’t like taking sleeping pills, have a read of the sleep hygiene sections as there is plenty of advice about how lifestyle changes can make a big difference to your sleep.

  33. I use these. I agree with the OP that you can definitely feel a slight sedative effect if you take 2. I normally only need to take 1. I don’t really notice the sedative effect then, but it still works . (The box says take 2 by the way). I should point out that I don’t have a sleeping problem and don’t have insomnia or any kind of medical issue. But I work shifts and sometimes struggle to get to sleep after days off when going straight into an early shift and therefore needing an early night . For this they work brilliantly for me. Anything else or a regular problem I suggest you may need something stronger but for the occasional struggle to get to sleep they are really good. They also don’t have anything to keep you asleep according to the info, only to help you fall asleep initially so no drowsiness which is good.

    1. Hi Jon,

      Thanks for your comment, I’m glad you have positive things to say about Nytol herbal. If something works for you, then that’s the only thing which really matters. I can imagine that something so light would be useful for people in your situation, where there is no underlying sleep disorder, but an issue with your shift pattern disrupting your body clock.


  34. They do work quite well, you need to take them a little while before bed. I find they work best if I clear my mind before sleep, shower, get nice and cool and comfortable.

      1. Not at all, using them again tonight. I think where possible it is good to use something from a natural source, rather than traditional sleeping pills that you can become dependent upon. These work great to restore a natural rhythm.

        1. Thanks Tom. I think you’re right, as long as you can find something which actually works effectively for you. So it’s good that you seem to have done so.

  35. I’m trying them tonight as I was on nights last night and was only able to get 3 hours sleep after due to plans! Normally stick to non herbal meds and have had zopiclone which were brill! All day iv felt tired but started getting grumpy but couldn’t sleep so thought I’d give it a go! Feeling a bit nauseas but may be due to hunger/tiredness as iv not had much of an appetite/effort to make food! So fingers crossed! I’m feeling a bit calmer which is a bonus!

    1. Hi Jo

      Thanks for the comment. It would be great if you could pop back and let us know how you got on with them, since you wrote this comment a little while ago.

      Many thanks

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