Melatonin

From our list of ailments, see what Melatonin can be used for:

  • Fibromyalgia

Natural Remedies using Melatonin

The pineal gland secretes melatonin, which aids sleep patterns. It also converts important nervous system messages into endocrine system responses.

Lamberg, L., Melatonin potentially useful but safety, efficacy remain uncertain, JAMA, 276, 1011–1014, 1996.

Fibromyalgia

The Benefit of using Melatonin as a natural cure

inhibitor. In addition, ginger blocks lipoxygenase, another enzyme involved in the body’s production of inflammatory compounds. Ginger also appears to contain trace amounts of melatonin, a hormone otherwise made by the pineal gland; melatonin has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. (Pure melatonin has sleep-inducing properties, so it is not recommended as an anti-inflammatory supplement.) Both ginger and ginger-containing supplements have been found helpful in osteoarthritis, rheumatism, and muscular pain. Ginger has the added benefit of reducing nausea. Although ginger is common in grocery stores, the best form (and most difficult to find) is fresh baby gingerroot, which is especially tender.

Since melatonin is produced from Serotonin, taking supplements of 5-HTP also raises your melatonin levels. When a group of researchers gave 5-HTP to sheep, it increased their serum melatonin levels more than sevenfold within two hours. It may be that some of the benefits enjoyed for 5-HTP are more the result of higher melatonin levels than of higher Serotonin levels.

Tryptophan was a commonly used over-the-counter sleep-inducing agent that enjoyed great success in the treatment of insomnia. Although tryptophan is the precursor to both Serotonin, the neurohormone that mediates sleep, and melatonin, the neurohormone involved in the sleep-wake cycle, tryptophan appears _ to have sleep-enhancing properties unique to itself. Perhaps for this reason, many practitioners have found tryptophan superior to 5-HTP for inducing deep sleep in those not troubled by depression. However, 5-HTP is effective as well, and it is not uncommon to take both tryptophan and 5-HTP together.

If the pattern of migraine attacks suggests a sensitivity to stimuli or to triggers that can be easily avoided, modification of one’s lifestyle may be the best treatment. Steps that can be taken to increase resistance to migraine headaches include regular sleep patterns, a healthful diet and regularly scheduled mealtimes, regular exercise, smoking cessation, relaxation, and meditation. Supplemental 5-HTP can be beneficial in helping to establish good sleep habits, since it is also a precursor to melatonin and is thought to have even stronger sleep inducing characteristics than tryptophan has. If a change in eating habits also requires a reduction in food intake, 5-HTP supplements can help to reduce hunger. In the case of giving up smoking, 5-HTP may help reduce the withdrawal symptoms of anxiety, depression, and irritability.