Melatonin is a common nightly sleep aid on shelves here in the U.S., but did you know it's only available as a prescription in most other countries?
Elsewhere, melatonin is only to be taken under the guidance of a doctor. This makes sense, considering that as a hormone that affects the sleep-wake cycle, cardiovascular function, blood sugar, immunity, reproductive health, hormonal health, and more, melatonin plays an essential role in the body. And as functional medicine physician Seema Bonney, M.D., previously told mbg, "Using any hormone regularly can down-regulate your own production of that hormone."
In other words, popping a melatonin supplement nightly can disrupt your body's natural production of this all-important hormone. In turn, it may prompt you to reach for the higher and higher doses of melatonin we are now seeing people take in the U.S.
Just last week, the CDC also sent out a warning call to parents who keep melatonin lying around the house: In 2021, U.S. poison control centers received over 52,000 calls about children consuming high amounts of the supplement, in some cases mistaking them for gummy candy or vitamins. Considering that the supplements have been tested to contain up to 478% more melatonin than is listed on their labels, this trend is even more worrisome.
All of this has many health experts recommending non-melatonin supplements to those who could use a little extra help in the sleep department. Enter sleep support+.