Nutrition Made Simple

Melatonin: Your Sleeping Aid

January 23 2021

Melatonin: Your Sleeping Aid

Melatonin: Your Sleeping Aid

Sleep is an essential part of life. Sleep not only restores our energy levels, but also repairs muscle tissue, promotes growth, reduces inflammation, helps maintain a healthy weight and immune system, and keeps your brain in tip-top shape. One hormone that plays a critical roll in your sleep cycle is melatonin. Melatonin is a hormone that usually signals to the brain that its darkness and specifically melatonin helps the healthy onset of your sleep the timing of your sleep now it can be somewhat efficacious but the studies are somewhat equivocal.

But first let's learn deeply about melatonin and it's production. A derivative of serotonin, melatonin is best known for its role as a hormone and is produced in a small endocrine gland in the brain called the pineal gland, as well as in the retina and a number of other organs and cells.

The synthesis of melatonin in the pineal gland, however, is considered to contribute most to the circulating levels of melatonin in the bloodstream. Production of melatonin in the pineal gland, and resultant levels of melatonin in the bloodstream, display a clear circadian rhythm, also known as the biological clock of the body, where they are maximum at night. This night-time melatonin production is stimulated by neural input from a structure called the suprachiasmatic nucleus, which acts as a master circadian clock for the brain.

Indeed, the best understood function of melatonin is its role in regulating circadian rhythms. Elevating melatonin levels at night are linked with lower body temperature and blood pressure, and an increase in tiredness.

 

Melatonin synthesis can be inhibited by exposure to blue wavelength light, which is part of the basis for advice to refrain or avoid using electronic devices close to bedtime. It is also known that changes in melatonin content can provide information about differences in night length, that may provide the brain with information about seasons. In some animals, this information may assist n regulating seasonal changes in events like reproduction, hibernation, and migration. 

Melatonin is thought to have ample of other functions as well.

It is thought, for example, to modulate immune system activity and to act as a free radical scavenger and antioxidant.

There are two G-protein coupled melatonin receptors, MT1 and MT2, that have been identified and found to be present throughout the body. Melatonin also seems to bind to other sites, even though the details of these mechanisms are still under investigation. In addition, some of melatonin's effects (like its antioxidant effects) are considered to be exerted independently of receptors.

Sources of Melatonin

Some foods contain melatonin, such as tomatoes, olives, rice, cherries and milk, which may contribute to that tired feeling after a meal. Melatonin is also offered in supplement form to help aid in sleep. You can check out Alvizia's melatonin supplements that will help you get a good night's rest.

But, it's important to speak to your doctor before you do decide to take supplements. Since supplements aren't regulated by the FDA, there are cases where some people can have a higher dose than a doctor would prescribe which might affect the other medications they currently take.

Moreover, there are a number of factors can contribute to a loss of sleep, so it's important to speak with your doctor about your sleep habits to see if it's something as simple as putting the phone away before bedtime, or if your melatonin levels are off.

And even if melatonin isn't necessarily beneficial for helping you stay asleep, it helps with the timing of your sleep but maybe not with the generation of sleep. Nevertheless, the placebo effect is the most reliable effect in all of pharmacology. So if you are taking melatonin and you feel as though it's helpful to you and worthwhile in terms of quality then there's no serious harm in taking it.

 

 

Tagged: Immune-Support, Melatonin, Softgels

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