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Sleep is as important to the human body as food and water, but most of us don’t get enough sleep. Insufficient sleep, or disruptions to the sleep–wake cycle, cause fatigue, stress, depression, weight gain and poor concentration.
Did you know?
Even the light from a clock radio is enough light to signal the brain that daylight is coming, and slow down melatonin production, starting the waking process. For quality and restorative sleep we need to naturally produce enough of our sleep hormone (melatonin) throughout the night.
How does melatonin work?
Melatonin is essential to regulate the body’s circadian rhythms (body clock) for regular sleep patterns, waking up feeling refreshed.Melatonin is a hormone released by our brain in small amounts as we wind down at the end of the day. As we prepare for sleep and drift off into our ‘light sleep’, more melatonin is released.Higher levels of melatonin are released when we reach our ‘deep sleep’, usually after 2-3 hours of continuous sleep.
Many of us don’t reach our deep sleep state, waking before we reach it. When this happens our brain does not produce enough melatonin to allow us to sleep through until morning. Melatonin is only produced at significant levels when it is dark. A dark room is imperative, as even tiny amounts of light reduce your body’s melatonin production.