Melatonin is a hormone secreted by the pineal gland in the brain that helps regulate other hormones and maintains the body’s circadian rhythm. This hormone also helps control the timing and release of female reproductive hormones.
Melatonin has been shown to stimulate cells called osteo-blasts that promote bone growth which may be good for women in menopause.
Research shows that after melatonin supplements are administered to ADHD patients; the time needed to fall asleep is significantly reduced and this suggests that quick-release melatonin may be more effective than sustained-release formulations for sleep related conditions.
Researchers believe that melatonin levels diminish as we age.
They also theorize that you may be able to help the process along by taking a melatonin supplement at times when it would be released naturally according to your new time zone or work schedule, although this can vary from person to person and from day to day.
It is reported that this hormone could reset the body’s aging clock, turning back the ravages of time. Research on melatonin continues, and with it, knowledge is increasing about the functions of melatonin in the body and the effects of melatonin supplementation.
Insomnia is a sleep disorder characterized by an inability to sleep or to remain asleep for a reasonable period during the night. Insomnia is one of the most common sleep disorders affecting Americans today.
Low levels of melatonin in humans have been associated with insomnia and may aid in reversing this sleep disorder. Several human studies report that melatonin taken by mouth before bedtime decreases the amount of time it takes to fall asleep in elderly individuals with insomnia.
The first published evidence that melatonin may be useful in Alzheimer’s disease was the demonstration that this neuro-hormone prevents neuronal death caused by exposure to the amyloid beta protein, a neurotoxin substance that accumulates in the brains of patients with the disorder. This hormone may aid in slowing the aging process as well.
Aging is a complex physiological process that involves several biochemical reactions, with molecular changes that are manifested in single cells a by-product of day to day operation.
Aging is associated with a decline in immune function also affecting the innate immune system. Aging is characterized by disorganization of circadian rhythms caused in part by the progressive decline in the activity of the pineal gland leading ultimately to pineal failure.
Many researchers believe that melatonin levels are related to the aging process.
Does melatonin have any effect on aging?
Low dose melatonin treatment in mice enhances the body’s natural antioxidant system, and this may have anti-aging properties.
Researchers believe there is a link between antioxidants and aging.
The decline in the production of a number of hormones associated with aging such as growth hormone (GH), estragon and DHEA, as well as of the pineal substance melatonin, have been proposed to play a significant role in contributing to the decline of one’s immune system and accelerated aging.
Furthermore, melatonin has been studied for the treatment of cancer, immune disorders, cardiovascular diseases, depression, seasonal affective disorder (SAD), circadian rhythm sleep disorders and another dysfunction.
Melatonin has been shown to be effective in treating one form of depression, seasonal affective disorder, and is being considered for bipolar and other disorders where circadian disturbances are involved. It is critical to have normal melatonin levels throughout one’s life.
Anybody can purchase melatonin because it is available without prescription in most cases in the United States and Canada, while it is available only by prescription or not at all in some other countries. Melatonin appears to cause very few side effects in the short term, up to three months, when healthy people take it at low doses.
In conclusion, low doses of melatonin can benefit one greatly not only from better sleep but possibly living long from its antioxidant properties it exhibits. Don’t forget that when you buy melatonin it should be used with caution in people with depression and should be appropriately timed if one is undergoing light therapy. Have you had your melatonin supplements lately?