Health Benefits of Melatonin
Melatonin is a hormone produced by endocrine gland that regulates sleep patterns in both circadian and seasonal sleep-wake cycles and various hormones in the body. Melatonin is produced during darkness to prepare the body for sleep and its production is inhibited during light.
Apart from helping you sleep better, melatonin also strengthens the immune system and helps in slowing down brain aging, protecting bone mass and preventing cancer.
In fact, melatonin has been the subject of preclinical research on many disease applications that go hand in hand with the body’s need for sleep. Melatonin supplements are used in alternative medicine to adjust the body’s sleep-wake cycle and are also known to help with some health concerns. Listed here are some of the health benefits of melatonin.
Melatonin Helps in Preventing Migraines
Studies reveal that people suffering from migraines can reduce both the severity and frequency by using melatonin. A 3 mg dose of melatonin given half an hour before bedtime for three months to migraine sufferers showed that more than 90 percent of patients participated in the study experienced at least 50 percent reduction in their number of headaches per month. The duration and intensity of the headaches was also reduced.
Melatonin Helps in Treating Baldness
Melatonin looks like a promising candidate for treating male pattern baldness. A review of five clinical studies showed that topical melatonin can safely treat androgenic alopecia, or male pattern baldness. Observational studies involving men and women showed that there was a significant reduction in hair loss after topical melatonin was applied for 90 days. Further, the hair density also increased between 3 and 6 months of topical usage.
Melatonin Helps in Treating Insomnia
Even it is only by just 12 minutes, melatonin seems to lessen the time it takes to fall asleep. More number of studies indicate the melatonin supplements should be taken between least half an hour and two hours prior to the desired bedtime. Evidence also suggests that melatonin supplements are more helpful for older adults as they have less melatonin in their bodies.
Melatonin Beats Jet Lag
Travelling across time zones naturally disrupts the circadian rhythm and this is where melatonin come in handy. Preliminary research suggests that melatonin supplements can reduce jet lag symptoms especially in people who are travelling more time zones. It may also help in improving alertness during the day and aid in movement coordination. For best results, the supplements have to be taken on the day of journey and desired bedtime at the destination and should be continued for some days.