Monday, October 29, 2007

Melatonin

I am eagerly awaiting my supply of jellyfish pills. Meanwhile, I reread the three chapters in Protective Strategies for Neurodegenerative Diseases (I could use a good novel!) and wanted to make sure that those of you who are interested in getting your brain intact to the finish line consider taking melatonin.

Melatonin is a hormone naturally secreted by the pineal gland deep within the brain. It is particularly important in setting biorhythms based on dark/light cycles in the environment. It also has the ability to prevent the accumulation of molecular junk that gums up neurons as a result of natural aging and degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.

Mice are raving about their ability to complete crossword puzzles well into their second year as a result of the routine use of melatonin, and lab data strongly supports its antioxidative and neuroprotective properties. While human data is sparse, studies do show that melatonin is effective in decreasing 'sun-downing' in Alzheimers (a night-time increase in dementia symptoms) and in improving sleep in AD patients.

While not everyone finds melatonin useful as a sleep aid, I get a great night's sleep on 3 mg., and it definitely enhances dreaming. I think I'd take it whether or not it helped with sleep considering its many cellular benefits.

2 comments:

Jean said...

So glad I found your blog - you are a fountain of knowledge for me. This,to,I will take and keep it handy for W.
Thank you for sharing all your knowledge and "finds".
Hope you had a good day.

Mauigirl said...

I have always found melatonin to really work in putting me to sleep - we should try giving it to my mother-in-law to make her go to sleep.