melatonin (was: RE: High Technology...)

From: < (
Date: Sat Jan 06 2001 - 00:06:31 MST

>Presuming that you do remember to take it, does Melatonin work? I seem to
>have buckled the wheel on my sleep cycle; I'm all over the place.


Yes, it does work for most people. My mom takes 3mg a night and it works
pretty well for her. And it's a great, cheap anti-aging supplement.

LEF has a lot of info on it. There are some articles on it here:

And following (from
are some abstracts about melatonin and sleep:

Melatonin replacement therapy of elderly insomniacs
Sleep (UNITED STATES) Sep 1995, 18 (7) p598-603,

Changes in sleep-wake patterns are among the hallmarks of biological aging.
Previously, we reported that impaired melatonin secretion is associated with
sleep disorders in old age. In this study we investigated the effects of
melatonin replacement therapy on melatonin-deficient elderly insomniacs. The
study comprised a running-in, no-treatment period and four experimental
periods. During the second, third and fourth periods, subjects were
administered tablets for 7 consecutive days, 2 hours before desired bedtime.
The tablets were either 2 mg melatonin administered as sustained-release or
fast-release formulations, or an identical-looking placebo. The fifth
period, which concluded the study, was a 2-month period of daily
administration of 1 mg sustained-release melatonin 2 hours before desired
bedtime. During each of these five experimental periods, sleep-wake patterns
were monitored by wrist-worn actigraphs. Analysis of the first three 1-week
periods revealed that a 1-week treatment with 2 mg sustained-release
melatonin was effective for sleep maintenance (i.e. sleep efficiency and
activity level) of elderly insomniacs, while sleep initiation was improved
by the fast-release melatonin treatment. Sleep maintenance and initiation
were further improved following the 2-month 1-mg sustained-release melatonin
treatment, indicating that tolerance had not developed. After cessation of
treatment sleep quality deteriorated. Our findings suggest that for
melatonin-deficient elderly insomniacs, melatonin replacement therapy may be
beneficial in the initiation and maintenance of sleep.



Improvement of sleep quality in elderly people by controlled-release melatonin Lancet (ENGLAND) Aug 26 1995, 346 (8974) p541-4,

Melatonin, produced by the pineal gland at night, has a role in regulation of the sleep-wake cycle. Among elderly people, even those who are healthy, the frequency of sleep disorders is high and there is an association with impairment of melatonin production. We investigated the effect of a controlled-release formulation of melatonin on sleep quality in 12 elderly subjects (aged 76 [SD 8] years) who were receiving various medications for chronic illnesses and who complained of insomnia. In all 12 subjects the peak excretion of the main melatonin metabolite 6-sulphatoxymelatonin during the night was lower than normal and/or delayed in comparison with non-insomniac elderly people. In a randomized, double-blind, crossover study the subjects were treated for 3 weeks with 2 mg per night of controlled-release melatonin and for 3 weeks with placebo, with a week's washout period. Sleep quality was objectively monitored by wrist actigraphy. Sleep efficiency was significantly greater after melatonin than after placebo (83[SE 4] vs. 75[3]%,p < 0.001) and wake time after sleep onset was significantly shorter (49 [14] vs. 73 [13] mm, p < 0.001). Sleep latency decreased, but not significantly (19 [5] vs. 33 [7] mm, p (0.088). Total sleep time was not affected. The only adverse effects reported were two cases of pruritus, one during melatonin and one during placebo treatment: both resolved spontaneously. Melatonin deficiency may have an important role in the high frequency of insomnia among elderly people. Controlled-release melatonin replacement therapy effectively improves sleep quality in this population.


This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Mon May 28 2001 - 09:56:16 MDT