Sleep Easy with Melatonin

by | Updated: July 3rd, 2012 | Read time: 1 minute

 We have all occasionally experienced nights when our brains just don't seem to shut off. But there is an all-natural way to promote a healthy sleep-wake cycle that is non-habit forming and does not require a prescription from a doctor.

A good night’s sleep can help restore your body, support healthy immune function and may help support healthy body weight. Melatonin is a human hormone produced deep within the brain by the pineal gland, from the amino acid tryptophan. It has been called the "darkness" hormone because the synthesis and release of melatonin are stimulated by darkness and suppressed by light. Levels of melatonin in the bloodstream are highest prior to bedtime. Since production of this hormone rises at night and decreases by day, melatonin may affect our internal body clock and sleep cycles.

Melatonin is believed to be involved in circadian rhythm and in the regulation of many body functions. Taking a daily supplement that includes melatonin may prove useful for occasional bouts of restlessness.