After Caesar to be sold freely in many countries in Europe and also in the United States, Brazil's melatonin supplement is still unknown since it is considered a drug and is produced only by prescription in drugstores. However, there are several uses for this type of natural hormone, ranging from migraines to sleep disorders. In addition, a Brazilian researcher has shown that melatonin can also help control diabetes and even decrease appetite. Melatonin is a hormone naturally produced by the body. "It's the sleep neurohormone," says Porto, a neurologist at Hospital. "It can help regulate sleep. Since sleep disturbance is one of the main triggers or triggering factors for migraine, those with insomnia or sleep restriction are much more likely to have a crisis," he explains.
Porto states that when sleep arrives, it is relatively stable in most people, and the role of melatonin there is only to promote the change from the waking state to the sleep state. As melatonin is naturally produced by the body at daybreak, those who have normal production and stay away from light sources - especially blue light - tend to have a good biological rhythm. However, there are people who have a deficiency in hormone secretion - the elderly may have a low - or even not produce properly because of their lifestyle. And this is where the melatonin supplement can act quite effectively. "Officially, melatonin is not part of the therapeutic arsenal for the treatment of insomnia disorder", explains Andrea Bacelar, neurologist and coordinator of the Scientific Sleep Department of the Brazilian Academy of Neurology.
However, she recognizes that there is an indication when a person's melatonin production is low. And he explains why: "It is necessary to know if the person has difficulty sleeping because he has insomnia or if he is wanting to sleep or going to bed at a time different from his biological rhythm". If the problem is forcing yourself to sleep at times that your body is not used to, melatonin can even be administered to regulate a person's biological clock, but that requires enormous discipline. "It's not the first night that you decide. You have to be disciplined to use melatonin at the right time, and always lie down and wake up at the same time." A small puncture, like sleeping late on a weekend, can make the whole effort go downhill, since everyone's biological time is defined by genetic issues, and the organism will always struggle to return to its origins. An example is those people who cannot sleep early, but suffer when they wake up to work or study in the morning. For those who really have difficulty falling asleep - and when this is not related to a disregard for their own biological schedule, the melatonin supplement plays an important role in inducing sleep, says Andrea.
Diabetes, obesity and appetite control
Professor José Cipolla Neto, from the Institute of Biomedical Sciences at the University of São Paulo, is a scholar on the subject. According to him, melatonin may play an important role in diabetes, obesity and appetite control. Technology, in turn, has not been an ally of good sleep. Cipolla Neto explains that the reason is the infamous blue light that, emitted by cell phones and computers, almost instantly blocks the body's production of melatonin. Whoever, therefore, accesses their cell phone at night or, for professional reasons, needs to work late, is affected not only by more disturbed sleep but also by an increased risk of diabetes and a greater tendency to obesity. Cipolla Neto shows that melatonin also regulates various points of the energy balance and can help regulate the amount of food eaten in the day, as well as increase energy expenditure. Therefore, this hormone can be considered an important antiobesogenic mechanism.
Further studies are needed to confirm whether melatonin supplementation can be indicated to help control blood glucose, prevent obesity and control appetite. So far, it is known that, unlike in many countries, melatonin pills are only safe if taken under medical guidance. Self-medication, therefore, is contraindicated.
Melatonin can cause other reactions
Finally, there are debates about the effects that melatonin causes in the body besides sleep, such as inducing fasting and lowering blood pressure, for example. In excess and outside the body's natural production schedule, the hormone can also trigger chronic diseases, such as diabetes. " The amount that needs to be administered to the patient in the early evening cannot be large enough to remain (in the body) during the day. Otherwise, it can bring insulin resistance in the morning to the individual, which means starting the development of a diabetic condition ”, said José. Cipolla Neto, professor of physiology at the Institute of Biomedical Sciences at USP and researcher on the physiological effects and mechanisms of action of melatonin, in an interview with UOL VivaBem in January this year.
“ Melatonin is very interesting for several sleep disorders, it can be used and have a good result under medical guidance. But it is not for everyone to take without guidance. There must be indication and follow-up, at least until the studies clarify its functioning ”, concludes Lumertz.
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