Melatonin is a hormone that is naturally produced by the pineal gland. It is mainly secreted at night during sleep. This hormone plays a significant role in the sleep-wake cycle of animals and humans. As a dietary supplement, melatonin is often used for the treatment of sleep problems such as insomnia caused by shift work or jet lag. An overwhelming body of clinical evidence suggests that melatonin is not just beneficial in maintaining a good sleep pattern but also in different aspects of health.
Overall Health Benefits
- Improves sleep quality [1-8]
- Lowers risk of cardiovascular disease [9-13]
- Prevents cancer [14-18]
- Promotes weight loss [19-23]
- Boosts immunity  [24-27]
- Lowers blood pressure [28-32]
- Boosts brain performance [33-36]
- Improves mood [37-40]
- Improves bone health [41-43]
- Prevents age-related eye disorders [44-49]
- Prevents wrinkles and other signs of skin aging [50-57]
- Accelerates wound healing [58-62]
- Reduces blood sugar levels and treats symptoms of diabetes [63-69]
Proven Health Benefits
Improves Sleep Quality
There are a lot of high-quality studies supporting the primary benefit of melatonin:
- A review of studies suggested that melatonin treatment was effective in treating sleep disorders. 
- A study showed that melatonin treatment demonstrated significant effects in regulating human circadian rhythm and associated disorders. 
- In patients with primary sleep disorders, melatonin was shown to improve the quality of sleep and showed a potential role in treating insomnia. 
- A review of studies showed the efficacy of melatonin in treating sleep problems without any major side effects. 
- A review of studies presented that melatonin successfully reduced sleep onset, delayed sleep phase syndrome, and regulated the sleeping patterns of blind patients. 
- In blind patients and those who take shifts at work, melatonin was found to be an effective treatment in the resynchronization of their circadian rhythm. 
- A review of studies showed that melatonin treatment produced favorable effects on sleep outcomes. 
- In children with severe chronic sleep disorders, oral melatonin administration improved sleeping patterns. 
Lowers Risk of Cardiovascular Disease
Studies show that melatonin can help protect against heart disease:
- A review of studies showed that melatonin can help treat heart disease related to heart muscle injury and low blood supply. 
- A study has shown that low levels of melatonin were associated with increased risk of heart complications. 
- In patients with cardiovascular diseases, low levels of melatonin were found in patients with coronary artery disorder, arterial hypertension, and congestive heart failure. 
- In patients with heart failure (HF), administration of melatonin reversed the HF-associated pathological processes. 
- In rodents and humans, melatonin’s cardioprotective and anti-oxidative actions limited the frequency of heart failure, heart damage, and abnormal heart functions. 
Evidence found that melatonin also has anti-cancer properties:
- A study showed that melatonin administration weakens cancer by inhibiting its development, progression, and metastasis (spread of cancer cells to different body parts). 
- In rats and human tumor cells, administration of melatonin demonstrated anti-cancer activities. 
- In cancer patients, melatonin administration resulted in improved cancer regression and survival, and better tolerance to chemotherapy. 
- In patients with tumors, melatonin significantly lowered the tumors’ overall survival rate. 
- A review of studies found that melatonin improved the efficacy of chemotherapy with reduced side effects. 
Promotes Weight Loss
Melatonin has also been found to be beneficial in overweight and obese patients:
- In obese patients on a calorie-restricted diet, melatonin supplementation resulted in weight reduction. 
- In postmenopausal women, melatonin administration was associated with weight reduction. 
- A review of studies suggested that melatonin supplementation was more effective for weight reduction in children and adolescents. 
- In mice on a high-fat diet, melatonin administration inhibited body mass gain and attenuated obesity-associated metabolic and inflammatory disorders. 
- In zebrafish models, melatonin treatment produced weight loss and regulated weight gain. 
Melatonin can also help strengthen the immune system:
- A study presented that melatonin could play a potential therapeutic role in enhancing the immune functions of individuals with declining immunity. 
- A review of studies showed that melatonin could be an effective immunostimulant that provides an early immune response against viruses and parasites. 
- A study suggested that the anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects of melatonin can help treat influenza. 
- A study found that melatonin can be considered as a treatment for COVID-19. 
- In mice fed with a high-fat diet, oral supplementation with melatonin protected against metabolic and inflammatory disorders. 
Lowers Blood Pressure
Studies suggest that melatonin has anti-hypertensive properties:
- A review of studies concluded that melatonin was effective in blood pressure regulation. 
- In patients with nocturnal hypertension (NH), melatonin treatment before bedtime significantly lowered systolic blood pressure. 
- In patients with NH, the use of controlled-release melatonin was safe and successful in treating the condition. 
- In diabetic patients with essential hypertension, melatonin treatment restored normal blood pressure. 
- In human and animal studies, melatonin consistently demonstrated its nocturnal BP-lowering effects. 
Boosts Brain Performance
Evidence also supports the beneficial effects of melatonin on brain health:
- In elderly individuals, nightly administration of melatonin was found to be effective in treating age-related cognitive decline. 
- In elderly patients, higher physiological levels of melatonin were found to be associated with reduced occurrence of cognitive impairments and mood disorders. 
- In elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment, administration of immediate-release melatonin safely improved some aspects of their memory without any side effects. 
- In patients who received oral melatonin, significant improvements in symptoms Alzheimer’s disease were observed. 
Melatonin also has mood-boosting properties:
- In healthy men, it was found that orally administered melatonin exhibited short but significant antidepressant-like effects. 
- In patients with chronic pain, a daily dose of melatonin improved mood and anxiety levels. 
- A study showed that the resynchronization of circadian rhythm from melatonin treatment offers a new strategy in treating depression. 
- In postmenopausal women with appetite disorders, the combined administration of melatonin and fluoxetine resulted in better mood and sleep quality. 
Improves Bone Health
Supplementation with melatonin has been found to improve bone health:
- A study showed that melatonin plays a role in the development of the teeth and bones. 
- In dogs with dental implants, melatonin promoted new bone formation around the titanium implants. 
- In mice with bone disorders, melatonin significantly improved bone mass by enhancing matrix mineralization. 
Prevents Age-Related Eye Disorders
Melatonin is also essential for optimum eye health:
- In patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD), an eye condition that affects middle vision, daily supplementation of melatonin produced protective effects for the retina and delayed eye degeneration. 
- In rats, melatonin supplementation resulted in reduced risk and severity of retinopathy. 
- A study suggested that the strong antioxidative properties of melatonin present a protective role against AMD. 
- In AMD patients, nightly melatonin supplementation was found to be useful in the treatment of the disease. 
- A study found that melatonin may play a role in the treatment of eye issues like glaucoma and AMD. 
- A study reported that melatonin can help improve eye health by modulating many retinal functions. 
Prevents Wrinkles and other Signs of Skin Aging
Studies show that melatonin has anti-aging effects on the skin:
- A study reported that melatonin exerts its anti-aging effects through its antioxidative properties. 
- In women, skin application of melatonin was found to be effective in improving hydration and tone. 
- In human skin, application of melatonin exerted protective effects against UV-induced solar damage. 
- A study showed that melatonin’s UV protection was able to improve or reverse the signs of skin aging. 
- In rats, melatonin supplementation exhibited anti-aging effects by reducing age-related skin changes. 
- A study reported that decreased levels of melatonin were associated with increased UV-induced DNA damage. 
- In women with aging skin, the application of melatonin-based creams significantly improved skin tonicity and hydration and reduced signs of skin aging. 
- In UV-exposed human skin, nightly application of a melatonin-containing cream significantly decreased skin damage. 
Accelerates Wound Healing
Evidence also suggests that melatonin has regenerative properties:
- In patients with diabetic wounds, melatonin improved wound healing by preventing cell death. 
- In mice, melatonin administration produced beneficial effects in wound healing by improving angiogenesis (the formation of new blood vessels). 
- In rat models, melatonin treatment greatly improved scar formation and quality of wound healing. 
- In diabetic mice, melatonin protected cells against programmed cell death and dysfunction which in turn improved wound healing. 
- In diabetic rats, melatonin accelerated the healing of gastric ulcers. 
Reduces Blood Sugar Levels and Treats Symptoms of Diabetes
Melatonin is also beneficial for people with diabetes and elevated blood sugar levels:
- A study reported that melatonin reduces blood sugar levels by improving insulin secretion. 
- A study showed that melatonin supplementation can treat circadian system disturbance-induced insulin resistance and blood sugar intolerance. 
- A review of studies showed that melatonin administration significantly reduced fasting glucose, a measure of blood sugar. 
- A study also reported that melatonin exerts its anti-diabetic effects by reducing cell death and promoting antioxidant production. 
- In women, lower melatonin secretions were associated with higher risk of type 2 diabetes. 
- A study suggested that melatonin supplementation can help prevent type 2 diabetes caused by disorganized circadian rhythm. 
- A study showed that melatonin could inhibit the development of diabetic complications by regulating the production of free radicals. 
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