• Articles

    What Is Melatonin?

    If you have been looking for a natural way to fall asleep faster or improve the quality of the sleep you get, you might have stumbled on the idea of “melatonin supplements”. What is melatonin and why are people saying that melatonin supplements are beneficial?

    Melatonin is a hormone that is naturally produced by your body. It is also known as the “sleep hormone”.

    How does the “sleep hormone” work?

    Hormones are produced by your body’s glands. Different glands produce different hormones, which in turn affect your different bodily functions.

    In the case of melatonin, it basically “tells” your body if it’s time to sleep and when it’s time to wake up. Melatonin is produced by your pineal gland and, what triggers melatonin production is basically the setting and rising of the sun.

    When the sun goes down and your body is “exposed” to darkness, your pineal gland begins producing melatonin and releasing it into your bloodstream. This is your body’s signal that it is time to sleep.

    When the sun rises, your pineal gland decreases the amount of melatonin it produces. So, now your body knows it’s time to “wake up”

    Since melatonin regulates when you feel sleepy and when you wake up, it is a major factor is establishing your body’s circadian rhythm or “internal clock”. It also regulates your temperature, blood pressure, and some hormone levels.

    To help you relax and get sleepy, melatonin binds to certain receptors in your brain to reduce nerve activity. It also reduces the levels of another hormone dopamine, which keeps you awake. Lower dopamine levels ensure that you grow “sleepy”.

    The problem with low melatonin levels

    Because melatonin levels are considered crucial for preparing a body to fall asleep, it’s believed that people who have low melatonin levels may have trouble sleeping.

    There are certain factors that can lower your melatonin levels such as stress, smoking, alcohol consumption, shift work, and aging. But the main factor is usually exposure to too much light (even artificial and blue light from screens) during the night and too little exposure to natural light during the day time.

    Why use melatonin supplements?

    To counter the effects of low melatonin levels and treat certain sleep disorders, many people are advocating the use of melatonin supplements.

    Melatonin supplements are dietary supplements that contain a certain dosage of melatonin. It is believed that taking melatonin supplements can improve the quality and regularity of your sleep and even treat some sleep disorders.

    There have been some studies that show that taking melatonin before bed helped reduce the time it took people with sleep disorders to fall asleep. They also reported that they felt that they had better quality of sleep.

    There is also some evidence that taking melatonin can help with the temporary sleep disorder known as jet lag.

    Jet lag occurs when someone travels to different time zones. Because their natural circadian rhythm may not be in synch with the daylight and night hours of the place they have traveled to, they might have difficulty adjusting. They may feel drowsy during the day and alert during the night.

    Taking melatonin can help sufferers of jet lag adjust quicker as it “levels out” their melatonin levels and allows they to synch up their circadian rhythms to their new time zone.  

    Melatonin is also thought to be beneficial for shit workers, workers who need to be awake and alert during the night.

    Night shift workers might also find themselves feeling drowsy when they need to be awake and having trouble falling asleep after their shift. It’s similar to jet lag in the sense that their rhythms don’t really synch up with the natural rhythms of where they are. 

    Taking melatonin when they get off shift and need to fall asleep can help shift workers get a better “nights” sleep.

    There are a few other health benefits that melatonin may provide:

    • Supports eye health by protecting the retina and lowering the risk of age-related macular degeneration.
    • Help with ulcers and heartburn. Studies have shown that taking melatonin with a common medication for acid reflux, Omeprazole, makes it more effective.
    • Reduces symptoms of tinnitus
    • Increases human growth hormone levels in men.

    Tips on safe melatonin supplement use

    Most people take melatonin supplements in capsule or liquid form. In the US, melatonin isn’t considered a drug so it can easily be bought at a drug store, health store, or grocery store. Some other countries such as the EU and Australia however, still consider it a drug, so you might need to get a prescription for it.

    While there is no set dosage for melatonin supplements, you can usually find supplements that have as low as 0.5 mg to as high as 12mg. The usual dosage, however, is about 3-5 mg and, if you want to use it for better sleep, take it about 30 minutes before going to bed.

    There is currently no evidence that melatonin might have long-term side effects, there are however, some people who might be allergic to melatonin or some medications that might not react well with them.

    Melatonin might interact with the following types of medications:

    • Sedatives
    • Anticonvulsants
    • Antidepressants
    • Blood thinners
    • Blood pressure medication
    • Diabetes medications
    • Oral contraceptives
    • Immunosuppresents

    Because of this, it’s usually best to tell your doctor or a health care professional that you are planning to take melatonin supplements. They can tell you if you are on medication or have any conditions that might be affected by starting melatonin supplements.

  • Articles

    Melatonin Gummies; Your Sleep Gummies

    Melatonin is a hormone produced by the pineal gland which functions in regulating the sleep cycle. Most individuals who experience sleep deprivation, use melatonin as a sort of treatment. In humans, as we progress in age, the production of melatonin in our body decreases leading to an imbalance in our sleep-awake cycle. Melatonin is produced in our body naturally, it is not responsible for us sleeping, rather as it increases in the evening, it keeps us in an inert state while quietly promoting sleep. In some people’s bodies, production of melatonin comes off as an easy task, making sleep easy to come. Whereas for others, they have to take melatonin supplements to induce sleep probably because they’re experiencing sleep disorders like insomnia or they are late sleepers and want to have an early nights rest in order to be very active for the nextday’s activities. Most people who also want to repress jetlag, have been known to take one or two melatonin supplements. Taking 1-3 mg hours before sleep, is a good way to start. While melatonin is good, pregnant women, breastfeeding mothers, individuals suffering from depression or any autoimmune disorders should strictly avoid it, or contact their health care provider before taking it.

    For us to become active and carry out our daily activities well, we need to ensure that we have the right amount of sleep, and this is solely dependent on the levels of the hormone ‘melatonin’. A deficiency in this hormone can result to insomnia, stress, etc. So many factors are responsible for sleep deprivation:

    • Shift work
    • Jet lag
    • High amount of caffeine
    • Blue light from your phone, laptop, or television- This blue light reduces the release of the hormone ‘melatonin’
    • Alcohol
    • Age

    All of these could result to brain fog, lack of concentration, inability to perform task diligently, tiredness, exhaustion, etc. There are ways to correct this and bring balance in the body. If your body is probably not releasing enough melatonin, then you could consider using supplements such as Melatonin gummies as a support system. Melatonin gummies are gummy candies with melatonin infused into them that may assist you in sleeping faster at night, and relaxed through the night, they are non-addictive.

    Benefits of taking melatonin gummies

    Apart from the fact that melatonin gummies are good sleep inducers, there are a lot more that melatonin gummies can offer, they include:

    • They support good eye health
    • They can help treat heartburn
    • Good in dealing with stomach ulcers
    • They can elevate the growth hormone levels in men
    • Can help ease anxiety before surgery and after
    • Good antidote in overcoming jetlag
    • Can help deal with sleep disorders like insomnia

    Below, are some reviews of the best melatonin gummies you can find.

    Natrol melatonin gummies- These strawberry flavored gummies are GMO free, they help you fall asleep faster, longer, and they are absolutely drug free! Natrol melatonin gummies are tasty, gelatin free and vegetarian with a pectin base, so you don’t need to worry about them sticking on your teeth unlike other gelatin based gummies. Natrol melatonin gummies contain zero additives, no artificial flavors, preservatives and sweeteners. Natrol melatonin gummies is exactly what you need to overcome that sleep problem. However, children below the ages of 4 should not take melatonin gummies, also if you’re a lactating mother or a pregnant woman, or you have an outstanding medical condition, you should probably consult your physician before administration. Natrol melatonin gummies has a cGMP certification.

    Olly sleep gummies

    These unique gummies are blackberry flavored and can easily melt in your mouth, each of these gummies, contains at least 3mg of melatonin, L-theanine which is an amino acid that promotes relaxation, chamomile, and lemon balm. These beautiful gummies, carry the USP seal.

    Megafood melatonin gummy

    These gummies come in a beautiful container, they are berry-flavored and help induce sleep giving you a healthy sleep-wake cycle. Each of these gummies contains 3mg of melatonin and wild blueberry and tart cherry as its flavoring. These gummies are delicious, easy to chew and swallow. If you do not appreciate artificial sweeteners in your gummies, then this is the best product for you as megafood melatonin gummies has no artificial colors or sweeteners added to it, it is also free of fructose corn syrup. These gummies cab be taken with or without eating.

     A final note: For one to be productive, one needs to ensure he or she has the right amount of sleep. A decrease in your melatonin levels can affect you in various ways, leaving you disoriented. One of the best ways to boost or increase the levels of melatonin in your system is by taking melatonin supplements such as melatonin gummies. Melatonin gummies are safe for kids and can help in children who face sleep disorder, migraine, anxiety issues, etc. Melatonin gummies are not addictive and they are drug free. Knowing when to consume it key, as taking it in the day can lead to sleep while working or in school or when carrying heavy objects, which could be very dangerous to you and those around you.Hence, it’s advisable to take melatonin gummies 30 minutes before sleep. Also if you’re on any previous medication, visit your doctor first before taking melatonin gummies. There are a lot of melatonin gummy products in the market, search for one that has Passed all necessary testing before taking them. Have a yummy chewable melatonin gummy and get the best relaxation of your life. ENJOY!

  • Blog,  Health

    Natural Sleep Aids; What You Should Know

    Sleep and wakefulness is an essential part of survival; you need to sleep after a very long day at work or when you are just at home working from home. The sleep episode is a long one which contains episodes of Rapid Eye Movement (REM) and a single episode of NREM (Non-Rapid Eye Movement). The longest is usually the non-rapid eye movement where you cannot have a hold of what is in your environment or, in other words, you cannot keep a memory of what is going on in your environment. To sleep is to become healthy; you have to sleep to be refreshed. The consequences of not having a good sleep can range from headache to an exhausted feeling where you would just be thinking of lying down always.

    It is not unusual or, commonly,several individuals cannot climb into their bed and have a sound sleep. It has affected their living in many ways when they stay awake all night and still have to do one thing or the other during the day. The term ‘insomnia’ is the term for when you suffer such (inability to sleep). Many clinical consequences can be attached to insomnia, and one of them is high blood pressure, which is one of the most prevalent chronic conditions. If you don’t get adequate sleep often, then your blood pressure would increase. The next step most people take is meeting with medical doctors to narrate their conditions. After an actual diagnosis, physicians would prescribe sleeping pills starting from over the counter drugs, and if need be, they might have to switch to the prescription-only medicines.

    Without a doubt, sleeping pills, also referred to as hypnotics, serve their function, and they range from short-acting, intermediate to long-acting ones. It defines their timing as to when they clear off from the body system. Especially for the ones with a very short onset of action, you would always want to use them for insomnia due to their fast action. They allow you to forget what is perpetrating insomnia. It is essential to identify the cause and tackle it accordingly. You could place the culprit and try to remove it. Your sleeping environment has to be quiet, with no lightening (it has to be dark), or in cases when you like to have a light on, you can consider other types of light but not blue light. There has always been a misconception about blue light that it aids sleepiness, and to be honest, it does not.

    However, suppose all efforts have been channeled towards identifying the cause of your insomnia. In that case, you are still left with no clue that you might need to patronize medications to allow you to have an excellent night’s rest. It should be known that sleeping pills or hypnotics do not correct insomnia. By knowing this, it would be like using an analgesic without finding the trigger of the pain. There has been a lot of condemnation or, let us call it, advice against the use of sleeping pills. It has been tied to the side effect that these drugs come with and the fact that they could reduce deep sleep duration.

    There is good news, and they have been found in the world of supplements. They are also referred to as Natural sleep aids; it is a loose term covering dietary supplements, melatonin, plant extracts, and other related products. Naturally, melatonin is a hormone found in the human system, especially when the sunsets. That is when the concentration rises. Examples of Natural Aids would be briefed later on.

    Melatonin

    Naturally, it exists as a hormone in the human body. Still, due to its relevance in sleepiness, it has been developed into a sleeping aid that can be taken to correct insomnia. Whenever you take melatonin, you are supplementing what is not enough in your system. Places you can find melatonin are pharmacies and other stores that deal with supplements.

    Plants

    Some plants with individual constituents are capable of inducing sleep, and their efficacy has never been doubted. Few examples include chamomile, lime-flower, orange blossom, etc.

    Essential Oils

    Essential oils have been found to induce sleepiness; they come in a formulation that allows adherence. The form they exist is a spray, which will enable them to be sprayed. Other examples include herbal infusions

  • Articles

    Sleep Can Be Elusive In This Hectic World! Here Are Some Home Remedies To Help You Sleep Better!

    Sleepless nights or sleep that is interrupted throughout the night are a real horror.

    The more someone stresses about not being able to sleep, the less likely they become to fall asleep or stay asleep. This is the paradox!  The worst part of sleepless nights is that they seem to go on forever, and as soon as it is time to wake up, voila, many individuals do fall asleep. Medications such as sedatives exist but these can be addictive.  Supplements exist also such as melatonin, but these also can have side effects and should not be used in excess or for too long a time. So, to overcome sleep disorders naturally, (and insomnia is a sleep disorder), here are some home remedies to help you or a loved one or friend to sleep better. Share these hints and tricks and you will not only help yourself but possibly someone else.  You have nothing to lose.

    Let us get right down to it then.  What home remedies are out there, and should you try them?

    Natural home remedies can all be tried. Unlike sedatives and supplements, these are techniques and natural foods, or substances found in most homes or at supermarkets. At least one in every ten adults experiences some type of insomnia at least once in their lifetime, so having an arsenal of natural home remedies at hand should be considered. 

    Now for the list:

    Epsom Salt Baths:  Epsom salts have been around for centuries and are known for their muscle relaxing and emotionally soothing effects. Pour a generous amount into a warm tub of water and soak right before bedtime.  Towel off gently, slip on your pajamas and go right to bed. Staying up will only rejuvenate the body again.

    Lavender Oil:  This can be poured into a bath same as Epsom salts and has the same calming, soothing effects on the mind and body.

    Lavender Oil and Olive Oil Mixture:  As odd as this sounds, mixing both oils creates a soothing combination that some individuals rub on the soles of their feet for relaxation and calming.  Asian cultures have long considered the soles of the feet to be an important part of well-being, both in the removal of toxins from the body and to achieve relaxation.

    Go bananas with bananas!  This might sound crazy, but bananas contain potassium, magnesium, serotonin, and melatonin, all of which lead to less anxiety and a relaxed approach to life. Plus, they are delicious for most people and of course a child safe way to better slumber. A fussy, colicky baby who will not sleep will benefit from mashed banana during the day.  Eating at least two is a good recommendation for adults. 

    The oldest known recipe is warm milk.  No one knows why it works, but protein mixed with carbohydrates can induce sleep, so milk contains both. Warming it up can make it more soothing, and of course, good for children too.  Add some cinnamon which also can be relaxing, and the effect is enhanced. Do not add cocoa or cocoa powder or chocolate. Nothing with sugar in it as sugar is a stimulant and anything with cocoa does have caffeine

    Change your lifestyle.  Stop working earlier, turn off the television, cell phone and other mobile and tech devices.  Read a relaxing book while sitting quietly in a chair. Dim the lights and allow yourself the peace and calm that surrounds this experience. Any technology recharges the mind, it does not calm it down.  Also do not exercise a few hours before bed.  This only speeds up metabolism and releases adrenalin. Set up a schedule of going to bed at a certain time and awakening at the same time even on the weekends. A person’s body adjusts to routine and sleep will come easier with a set routine. Do not nap during the day, even for a brief while.  Napping even for short periods will lessen a tired feeling but will in the end exacerbate insomnia.

    Drink a cup of chamomile tea or one made with valerian root.  These natural products contain acids that decrease anxiety and enhance well-being. Valerian root also comes in capsules, but the tea is soothing, as is chamomile tea.  Honey can be added to either, but again, not sugar. Put your feet up and drink one or the other an hour before bedtime. 

    Eat a handful of almonds.  Almonds contain magnesium which promotes sleep and enhances more restful sleep. Almonds can help those with chronic reawakening or early morning awakening as they stay in the stomach and the magnesium is released slowly throughout the night.

    Learn to love cherries if you do not already.  Cherries contain tryptophan which is a muscle relaxant and stress reliever. Eating a handful an hour before bed can lead to a glorious night’s rest.

    Try Lemon Balm.  This is not as commonly used as the others as it can cause anxiety and agitation in a few individuals. Speak to a doctor about this ingredient. It is used like Valerian Root and Chamomile and steeped into a tea, but it also can be hard to find and again, can have some side effects. 

    Look into St. John’s Wort.  This also is a centuries’ old home remedy to help you sleep better. It can be steeped into a tea or purchased in any pharmacy or store usually in either powder or capsule. Tea is always the best alternative for the soothing mechanism. St. John’s Wort is said to combat anxiety and depression. 

    If home remedies do not help you sleep better, see a doctor.

    Although most insomnia is caused by overwork and too much worry, some medical conditions such as hypertension and diabetes can also cause insomnia. Insomnia that goes on for too long can lead to heart attacks, stroke, and other diseases as well as cause accidents. Take care of your health! 

  • Blog,  Health

    If a Restful Nights’ Sleep Seems Elusive, There ARE Natural Sleep Aids that Will Assist!

    Insomnia is a real problem for many individuals.  Combatting it is not easy. 

    While some individuals only experience intermittent insomnia, for others it becomes chronic, and does interfere tremendously with their functioning and daily life.  Chronic insomnia not only creates mental health issues such as anxiety and depression but also health issues such as high blood pressure, the inability to focus due to decrease in mental acuity and can even lead to heart problems if it persists for years.  It is hard to determine what causes chronic insomnia, as there are varieties.  These include the inability to fall asleep at night, the inability to stay asleep, waking up many times throughout each night, and waking up way too early each morning.  If the problem persists a sleep specialist or psychologist should be consulted, as depression itself can cause insomnia if left undiagnosed.  In this case it would be difficult to tell if the insomnia caused the depression or if the depression caused the insomnia.  Some individuals who experience insomnia even fall into a pattern of fearing NOT falling asleep which of course then exacerbates the syndrome. 

    In some cases, a physician will prescribe sleeping pills.

    Although some can be addictive, sedatives such as valium and others such as lorazepam can be prescribed.  They are not all that addictive if taken only once each day at bedtime, as going without sleep for too long is dangerous.  Sleep deprivation that is extended creates what is called “brain fog”.  This is the inability to think clearly and can cause vehicle accidents and other types of accidents to occur.  Chronic sleep deprivation also causes less work productivity and those that suffer from it can lose their source of employment.  Falling asleep while driving and daytime fatigue are two big issues also.  Moodiness also occurs, along with loss of appetite and other chronic problems.  Sleep is important as during sleep the cells in both the brain and body rejuvenate themselves.  A lack of rejuvenation that is chronic due to sleep deprivation causes both mental and physical imbalances. 

    A physician may suggest a natural sleep aid first such as melatonin. 

    Melatonin is a natural dietary supplement of the Vitamin B family and has been used by many to achieve peaceful, quicker, more thorough, and more restful sleep.  It comes in tablets, in liquid, and the most popular of all, chewable gummies.  It is not addictive and has very few if any side effects.  Many times, the side effects are caused by additives within the melatonin supplements that are used for shelf life stability and freshness.  The gummies are easy to take right before bed and seem safe some individuals do experience itchiness, dizziness, headaches, or stomach aches.  Some side effects include mood changes such as depression, but these are when others already have a mood disorder of which they are unaware.  Depression and anxiety in particularly can be exacerbated by melatonin and is listed on the side of all bottles of this supplement. 

    A Cup of freshly brewed black tea,escaping steam,warm soft light, darker background.

    Home remedies to help you sleep better are a good alternative to both melatonin and sleeping pills.

    Insomnia is rampant and the reason why many individuals visit a physician every year.  If neither sleeping pills or melatonin appeals to an individual, there are many other ways to relax before sleep and induce longer sleep.  Lavender oil and a hot bath are one alternative.  Simply soaking in a hot bath with a few drops of lavender relaxes both the muscles and the mind. Valerian root is another superb alternative.  Another nutritional supplement, valerian root can take a few weeks before benefits are felt.  Patience is needed with this supplement.  Melatonin as mentioned remains more popular than valerian root.  Other helpful advice includes drinking warm milk before bed, and turning off the television, computer and even cell phone.  Looking at a vibrant screen only energizes one’s mind, the opposite of what is needed before bedtime.  Find time to put your feet up and enjoy a snack.  Doctors are not clear why this works but it does.  It should be a combination of a carbohydrate and protein like nuts and crackers, etc.  Above all else, do not exercise in the evenings, as this pumps adrenalin through the body.  As you can see there are many ways to combat insomnia and all are worth trying!