The Importance Of The Sleep Hormone Melatonin

If you have been having trouble sleeping lately, it could be a result of a decrease in the production of melatonin. Melatonin is a sleep hormone, produced when the body senses that it is getting dark outside. As it gets later, the body starts to increase melatonin levels until it peaks at around 3am, when the body’s temperature is at its lowest. Produced by the pineal gland in the brain using amino acids from the diet, melatonin helps the body to control sleep cycles and regulates the natural urge to fall asleep.

The Importance Of The Sleep Hormone Melatonin

These days we are much more likely to stay up late watching TV or use our phones while we’re in bed – this can hugely disrupt the natural circadian rhythm of the body, which responds to environmental factors. Artificial light can throw our natural rhythm off balance, causing a lower melatonin production and a more restless night’s sleep.

Health Benefits

Research shows that the benefits of melatonin are numerous. The hormone has been shown to:

  • Combat obesity
  • Reduce risk of diabetes, heart disease and osteoporosis
  • Reduce risk of reproductive cancers
  • Combat inflammation
  • Encourage anti-ageing of the brain and skin
  • Boost immune function

How to Naturally Increase Melatonin Production
If you think you might have a decreased production of melatonin, following these guidelines should help you to naturally boost your sleep hormone production;

Sleep in darkness
As your natural circadian rhythm responds to light, it is vital that you keep your bedroom in complete darkness. Cover up the light from your alarm clock or phone, use blackout blinds or wear an eye mask.

Eat the right foods
Stocking up on the right foods before bedtime can give your body a huge boost of melatonin. Make sure you eat plenty of pineapples, bananas, oranges, oats, sweet corn, rice, tomatoes and barley, which have all been shown to increase melatonin naturally.

Get outside more
Getting exposure to bright, natural light will help your pineal gland to appreciate the difference between night and day.

Avoid checking your phone or laptop in bed
These devices emit a blue light which tricks your brain into thinking it’s daytime. Avoid using them from 9 pm onwards to avoid this.

Use a sleep tracker
Using a sleep monitor will help you to identify any periods of restlessness so that you can adjust your sleeping patterns and improve the production of melatonin.

It has been suggested that meditating before bedtime can help the body to boost production of melatonin.

If you would like to find out more about how the REM-Fit Sleep Monitor can help you to get a better night’s rest, please get in touch with our experienced, knowledgeable staff by calling 020 8731 0020 or email us via  

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