Sleep 462

What is Apigenin?

2 min read

Simon Körösi

Reviewed by: Joanna Elmes

Apigenin is a naturally occurring flavonoid, notably found in chamomile, along with various vegetables, fruits, and medicinal plants. It is recognised for its multitude of health benefits, including its anti-inflammatory and antioxidative properties.

Research has indicated that apigenin might also exhibit anti-anxiety, antidepressant, and sleep-enhancing effects. It could potentially support immune function and enhance cognitive function as well.

Apigenin operates by binding to receptors in the brain, aiding in the reduction of stress sensations and promoting superior sleep quality.  Specifically, apigenin activates chloride ion channels, which serve to soothe overall neuronal activity in the forebrain. This process allows the body to transition into a more restful state.


Benefits of apigenin


Insomnia is a disruptive sleep disorder that can have detrimental effects on overall health and wellbeing. Apigenin is known for its notable sedative effect, potentially inciting positive and restorative actions against insomnia. It might also enhance GABA activity — a neurotransmitter recognised for its calming effects in the brain — and promote the release of melatonin, a hormone crucial to the regulation of the sleep-wake cycle. 

In a clinical trial, apigenin effectively demonstrated its sleep-enhancing abilities. With the administration of an apigenin-rich chamomile extract, a significant improvement in the participants' sleep quality was observed.


Apigenin for Anxiety


The properties that make apigenin beneficial for sleep also render it useful in research related to anxiety. The majority of these studies have primarily focused on chamomile tea, which is an analogue for apigenin and contains approximately 1% apigenin by volume.


Potential Increase in Testosterone


Low testosterone can influence sleep, mood, bone mass, and the size of testicles. It can also decrease sex drive and may lead to erectile dysfunction.

Apigenin could potentially enhance testosterone production and may even delay the age-related decline in testosterone levels. Previous experimental studies have shown an increase in testosterone production as a result of apigenin treatment.