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CBD and Melatonin - Part 1

Written by: Arthur Leclerc


CBD and Melatonin

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CBD and melatonin products have been popping up everywhere. Research suggests that they can promote sleep .

We invite you to find out more about how you can benefit from it. We will also talk about their side effects and possible contraindications in a second part.

The benefits of melatonin

Melatonin is a brain chemical that everyone produces and the amount of which decreases with age. It plays an essential role in regulating the body's daily biological rhythms, particularly the sleep/wake cycle.

Newborns have large amounts of it, which explains why they sleep so much. It remains high in most people until adolescence or even college.

The natural production of this substance remains very variable among individuals. There is a genetic component to this, which is likely why insomnia can run very well in some families.

Most people think of it as the sleep hormone, which it is. It is also a natural indolamine, a family of neurotransmitters that also includes serotonin.

These two molecules are closely linked and a deficiency of serotonin can also lead to a decrease in melatonin levels.

Studies in humans show that melatonin promotes sleep quality. It affects falling asleep, sleep efficiency (percentage of time falling asleep compared to total time spent in bed) and waking up.

It has also demonstrated, particularly during A/B tests with placebos, that it promotes the onset, maintenance and effectiveness of sleep.

Other work suggests that melatonin intake improves the depth and duration of sleep. In addition, it does this without generating daytime drowsiness or adverse effects.

Finally, it seems to promote antioxidant activity, cardiovascular health and immune function.


CBD and Melatonin

Benefits for sleep

It affects more when we fall asleep than what allows us to stay asleep .

In other words, melatonin is part of the body's vital time-keeping function, the circadian rhythm.

And although melatonin can be found in the bone marrow, platelets, gastrointestinal tract, eyes, skin, and lymphocytes, it is primarily regulated by the pineal gland (just behind our forehead).

When everything is working well, our body releases a large dose of this hormone shortly before bedtime, to put us to sleep.

However, our lifestyle can cause a certain number of dysfunctions in this system.

One of these obstacles is exposure to light.

We evolved to respond to sunrise and sunset. A melatonin surge occurs about 3 hours after sunset, making you want to sleep. So, if the sun sets at 7 p.m., our body produces the molecule for falling asleep at 10 p.m.

The sun can set before 5 p.m. in winter and after 9 p.m. in summer. In winter, this early sunset can encourage you to go to bed around 8 p.m., which is early. As the effect of melatonin wears off, we often do not feel tired when we go to sleep.

artificial light poses the same problem.

Even brief exposure around 9 or 10 p.m. can delay the natural secretion of melatonin by a few hours, further disrupting our circadian rhythm.

Le CBD et la Mélatonine

CBD, melatonin and sleep

Most research on cannabidiol (CBD) has focused on its potential to treat anxiety disorders and stress .

This research is useful when it comes to sleep problems, since disruptions related to these two symptoms are quite common.

Currently, research clearly indicates that CBD can help us.


The combination of CBD and Melatonin

For some people, using CBD before bed may negatively impact sleep, while consuming it earlier in the day may promote sleep.

This is why melatonin combined with CBD , used at night and for a short period of time, can facilitate sleep, as it can offset the wakefulness effects of CBD.

It should only be used for short-term sleep "resets", for a few nights or a few weeks.

Then, it can be taken more sporadically, as needed, or after a period of time to reestablish a sleep schedule.

This is also the case when combined with CBD.


Why is melatonin not a long term solution?

For most of us, our bodies produce enough melatonin and therefore we do not need to compensate.

However, disrupted schedules, use of screens late at night, time changes can lead to a disruption in the production of the molecule.

Supplementation can then serve as a guide for the body to recalibrate itself. But prolonged use can disrupt our body.

This may result in rebound arousal as the effects of the melatonin supplement wear off. This is why these supplements should only be used occasionally, and while working on other reasons for the inability to fall asleep (for example, managing the sources of our stress).

People who may feel the need to take melatonin more frequently are true night owls or those who work rotations, night shifts and are out of sync with natural waking hours.

So, once a "normal" sleep schedule is established, it is advisable to gradually reduce the amount of melatonin over a period of one week.

A CBD-based product can then be used earlier in the day, to act against stress and general anxiety, in order to promote sleep.

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