Melatonin, the natural supplement to sleep well
Statistics show that about 5-70 million US adults have a sleeping disorder while 37.9% reported that they have unintentionally fallen asleep during the day. Drowsiness, lack of focus and a generally dreary and inactive approach to life are all caused by poor sleep. It doesn’t even have to be a lack of sleep sometimes as most people do not feel rested even after a full night of sleep. Poor sleep lowers your productivity and impacts your life in a sharply negative way by making you easily irritable and unfocused. Apart from that, poor sleep increases the risk of diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure as well.
The Sleep Hormone
Melatonin is a hormone in your body that is linked to your sleep. The production and release of melatonin in the brain are affected by the time of the day which helps let this hormone tell your body when it is time to sleep. Melatonin thus shapes and directly impacts your natural sleep-wake cycle. Using melatonin as a supplement has reportedly worked wonders for people who happen to be dealing with poor sleep or a lack thereof.
Benefits of Melatonin
Melatonin is also dubbed the sleep hormone purely on grounds of it helping your body fall asleep. While it is produced naturally, using melatonin as a supplement to help with insomnia and jet lag has proved quite effective. So much so that in some parts of the world you don’t even need a prescription for it. Along with helping people struggling with sleep, melatonin also has other benefits such as acting as an antioxidant, providing relief with heartburn and supporting eye health.
How Does It Work?
Our bodies have an internal clock called the circadian rhythm that lets it know when its time to sleep, wake up and eat. The circadian rhythm isn’t essential hard-coded and is something that adapts with your lifestyle, attitude, and culture. Melatonin works with your body’s circadian rhythm. Melatonin levels rise in your body when it gets dark, thus intimating your body that it is time for sleep.
Similarly, melatonin production reacts to light and during the daytime melatonin production is suppressed letting your body know that it is time to wake up. People suffer from sleep disorders because their body isn’t able to make enough melatonin at night that would help them fall asleep. Factors such as stress, smoking, jetlag and too much exposure to light all pitch in to reduce the levels of melatonin production. In this case, supplements help curb this problem and also normalize your internal clock as well.
Melatonin supplements are also known to improve the quality of sleep as well so you feel well rested and refreshed when you wake up in the morning. Temporary sleep disorders that are caused by a manic disruption of your routine or introduction to new time zones can also be helped with melatonin. Shift workers are especially prone to poor sleep as their internal clock is constantly being disrupted.
Sarah is part of the Team ELC and she helps people discover what makes their life happy, meaningful, and full of ease. She is a writer, meditator and loves painting, an art she happily gets to practice a lot in her spare time.