What is Melatonin?
Hello and welcome to today’s article. If you are half as obsessed with health articles as I am then you have definitely come to the right place. Today we will be looking at melatonin and it’s various functions in the body, but mostly in the brain. I’ll share my personal story, and how melatonin helped me to find stability in mental health journey, but first things first, what exactly is melatonin? Why is it produced in the body? For what purpose? Let’s explore a little further by looking at the brain, and most specifically, the human brain.
The brain is one of the most delicate organs in the body, and because of that, it is imperative that we know exactly what goes on up there (or at least some of it). Without further ado, what is Melatonin? What is it’s relationship to the brain?
Melatonin is a chemical hormone that is produced by both humans and animals in the pineal gland primarily in the brain. Melatonin, popularly known for its ability to induce sleep in humans as well as animals. According to Mayo Clinic, melatonin is a primary chemical that plays a huge role in sleep and its production increases as the day.
According to , the production and release of melatonin in the brain is directly connected to time of day, increasing when it is dark and also decreasing when it’s light. Melatonin production is a hormone that declines with age in both humans and animals. Apart from its natural production in humans and animals, melatonin is also produced in the form of supplements, and melatonin produced artificially is usually made in a scientific lab. You can check out our web page for supplements that can be taken to produce sleep.
Melatonin and the Brain
Two months ago, I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, which is a mental condition that is characterized by manic episodes, low mood, and low energy spells and a chemical balance in the brain. For many years, my disorder went had in hand with low mood swings and low energy spells. For many people who struggle with this mental condition, their sleep patterns are affected. Thankfully, there are ways to address bipolar disorder and lessen its blow. Naturally, the human body has a biological clock that acts in sync with the environment that it is in. This has a lot to do with a circadian rhythm.
What is a circadian rhythm? It is a biological process associated with living things, human beings included and it revolves around a 24-hour cycle. The circadian rhythm affects a lot in the body, but most importantly, it influences the sleep-wake cycle of human beings, and this is where melatonin and bipolar disorder are linked. When a person has a bipolar disorder, there is a dysfunction in the sleeping rhythm of the human being, and melatonin helps to balance that equation and create an equilibrium of stable sleep and wake cycles.
Melatonin and Bipolar Disorder
In the last paragraph, we briefly brushed on the topic of circadian rhythms and it’s relationship with mental health and how melatonin comes into the picture, but it is time for us to have an in-depth conversation about bipolar disorder, and how it affects the body in the general sense. The first time I paid attention to Bipolar disorder was when rapper Kanye West shared that he had been diagnosed with a mental condition after living with the condition for over forty years. Ironically, I was diagnosed with the same condition two weeks later, and it helped me to look closely at my behaviors, sleep-wake patterns, and my energy levels. Knowing what was wrong empowered me and gave me a deeper insight into how to handle the issue as well as what medication I needed to take.
One of the many symptoms that I went through were bouts of irritation and restlessness followed by long hours of tossing and turning in my bed helplessly waiting for sleep to come. After my diagnosis, my Doctor prescribed my medication, and one of the supplements that I happened to take was rich in melatonin and this significantly stabilized my sleep-wake pattern. Of course, taking the medication in the evening influenced a positive result as well. If you or a loved one suffer from any form of health challenge that induces sleeplessness, then melatonin is a supplement that you can take to help you. Be sure you talk to your physician about what supplements will
work best for you. For a list of melatonin supplements, head to our website and get your dosage today.
Advancements in Melatonin Research
Thank you for making it down to this section of the article. Stay with me as we look at scientific and medical advances in the medical research of melatonin. According to researchgate.com,
Increasing clinical pieces of evidence suggest that melatonin receptor agonists can represent a fresh therapeutic approach for the treatment of sleep disturbances and depression. A variety of studies also revealed a role of melatonin and its receptors in different patho-physiological conditions. Due to the multiple positive effects of this hormone, the design of new agents able to interact selectively with melatonin receptors has become an area of great interest during the last decade. A comprehensive review of structures recently claimed as melatonin receptor agonists and a broad overview of structure-activity relationships for these ligands suggests that. After 5 decades of research, the field of melatonin receptor agonists comprises of a variety of selected chemical entities, belonging to structurally different classes. Patents filed since 1999 claim new melatonin receptor agonists, characterized either by improved pharmacokinetic or pharmacodynamic properties, compared to those of melatonin receptor agonists are already approved for clinical uses. The results of preclinical studies on animal models show that melatonin receptor agonists can be considered promising agents for the treatment of CNS (central nervous system)-related pathologies.
Although that last paragraph/blockquote was unarguably a lot to take in, it did two things: first, it established what we talked about in previous paragraphs about how awesome melatonin is, and how effective is in the treatment of mental health lapses, namely bipolar disorder or manic depression. I am going to conclude this article by making a list of the different types of food, fruits, and vegetables that have a certain amount of melatonin in them.