Introduction of Melatonin:pinecone or N-acetyl-5 methoxytryptamine.

Popular Herbs. ✵The article gives records of the herb Melatonin, its English name, common name, its botanical source, origins, the features of the herb Melatonin, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.


 English Name: Melatonin.
 Common Names: pinecone.

 Brief introduction: Melatonin is a hormone secreted by the tiny pineal gland at the base of the brain. The pineal gland starts to excrete melatonin at the fall of darkness around 9 P.M., with peak output occurring between 2 A.M. and 4 A.M. At the appearance of light in the morning, melatonin excretion drops off. Dietary supplements containing both synthetic melatonin and melatonin extracted from animal pineal glands are available.

 Source: In higher animals, melatonin is produced by pineal gland cells in the pineal gland. Melatonin produced by the pineal gland is an endocrine hormone that will enter the blood, And the retina and gastrointestinal tract produce paracrine hormones. The suprachiasmatic nucleus of the hypothalamus receives daily light and darkness from the retina, thus affecting the production of melatonin.

 In the human body, 5-hydroxytryptamine (also called serotonin) reacts with acetyl CoA under the catalysis of N-acetyltransferase to convert it into N-acetyl-5-hydroxytryptamine, which is then methylated by S-adenosylmethionine to melatonin under the catalysis of acetyl serotonin O-methyltransferase.

 Some plants, such as rice, also produce melatonin. After mammals eat foods containing melatonin, melatonin will be absorbed and dissolved into melatonin in the body.


 Origins of Melatonin: Melatonin, also known as pinecone, its chemical name is N-acetyl-5 methoxytryptamine, is an indole heterocyclic compound found in animals, plants, fungi, and bacteria. Melatonin is synthesized by the brain gland-pineal gland in the human body, and its secretion has an obvious circadian rhythm. It is inhibited during the day, active at night, and finally metabolized in the liver, and its level gradually decreases with the increase of age.

 Pharmacological actions: ①.hasten sleep and minimize jet lag; ②.sleep regulating; ③.relieve insomnia of blind people; ④.readjust to new time zone difference; ⑤.alter hormone levels; ⑥.relieve seasonal affective disorder; ⑦.antioxidant and fight cancer;etc.

 Melatonin is effective in hastening sleep and minimizing jet lag, it can help individuals who have trouble staying asleep. Melatonin 0.3 to 1 mg brings less time to fall asleep, initiate a deeper sleep, and experience rapid eye movement.

 Melatonin sleep-regulating properties are helpful for blind people, as blind individuals whose melatonin production is not set to a twenty-four-hour cycle because light and dark do not affect them the same way they do sighted individuals, blind individuals suffer from chronic daytime drowsiness and fatigue, took 5 mg melatonin supplements at bedtime for three weeks relieve nighttime insomnia and daytime drowsiness in blind individuals.

 Taking melatonin for jet lag is to help your twenty-four-hour cycle readjust to the new time zone more quickly, take melatonin help an individual recover from time-zone switches more quickly, relieves fatigue, and improves mood. But taking melatonin at the wrong time could worsen jet lag. Experts recommend taking a small dose, such as 0.5 mg in the middle of the afternoon the day before flying from west to east, so your body can prepare for an earlier fall of darkness. Take it again on the day of departure, but two hours earlier.

 Melatonin can alter female hormone levels involved in menstruation, it can inhibit ovulation.

 Melatonin secretion is related to the melancholy and other symptoms that people suffering from seasonal affective disorder (SAD, mood disorder characterized by recurring depression in autumn and winter, separated by periods of nondepression in spring and summer.) experience during the long winter months of sunlight deprivation, melatonin supplements have been recommended for such cases.

 Melatonin has shown promise in fighting cancer, it stimulates natural killer cells within the body and exerts antioxidant activity, antioxidants help to remove toxicity by-products and contribute to the formation of cancer cells.

 Medicinal efficacy: Melatonin is involved in setting your internal "clock" and is responsible for the sleepiness you feel at night and your wakefulness during the day. With age, natural levels of melatonin decline. Melatonin is famous for its purported ability to sight jet lag and insomnia. It also slows the aging process, elevates mood and relieve certain types of depression, protects the body against toxin, as an antioxidant, reduce the release of estrogen, boost immune system function, and relax the body.

 Administration of Melatonin (pinecone): 
Reference: Administration Guide of Melatonin (pinecone)
Herbal classic books: Dosage: Melatonin is commonly taken in doses of 0.5 to 6 mg, depending on the desired effect. People are often advised to begin with a low dose and increase the dose if necessary. Use the commercially prepared creams and sprays according to package instructions.
 Contraindications, Precautions and Adverse Reactions: Most studies in humans report no major adverse reactions to melatonin and no side effects with a small dose, for example, 3 mg or less. But minor side effects are observed with doses up to 8 mg, such as headache, transient depression, a sensation of heaviness in the head, and worsening of depression in depressed psychiatric individuals. Common recommended dosages are lower, 1.5 to 3 mg of melatonin. Despite these promising data, much still remains unknown about the potential for adverse reactions to melatonin, especially with long-term use, and the FDA has not yet conducted standard safety tests. Pregnant or nursing women should avoid melatonin, and other individuals with kidney disease, depression, epilepsy, diabetes, or autoimmune disease. Women trying to conceive may want to avoid melatonin, as it can function as a contraceptive at high doses. Children under 12 years old should not take it.

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