Research Group for ME/CFS, Chronic Disease, Aging and Cancer

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Melatonin: Dosing, Timing, Recommended product?
« on: June 26, 2021, 09:17:27 PM »

    1. What is optimal Melatonin dosing if supplementing? (.3mg is what I've seen)

    2. What is best timing/How does timing work with it? (seen different ideas on this - many people use melatonin as if it's a tranquilizer (because it makes most people sleepy within ~20 mins of taking it, yet it's a hormone signaling sleep/wake cycle, and I've read about people taking it earlier in the day to make sure they fall asleep early etc.)

  • Personally, I usually get sleepy much quicker on it, but also end up waking up at night - is there a way to use it smarter (fixing sleep schedule, staying asleep, other health benefits)? 

    3. What is a product you recommend?

General and protocol-specific answers are welcome, please designate as such. 
hEDS, neuropathy symptoms

Re: Melatonin: Dosing, Timing, Recommended product?
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2021, 12:09:36 AM »
1. depends on your purpose, max waste scavenging = higher doses make sense, now it seems to blunt oxytocin response in amygdala at these higher doses people use so do your research and decide if the cost benefit is worth it


3. i use piping rock it's cheap but works!

Re: Melatonin: Dosing, Timing, Recommended product?
« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2021, 02:19:29 PM »
This is a look at some of the papers around it:

Key facts of use:
  • 2 hours before falling sleep
  • 0.3mg, as low as possible
  • Recommends Life extension and DoNotAge.

I don't last 2 hours, I get sleepy after 20 minutes and really sleepy at 40 minutes (using DoNotAge 0.3mg)
« Last Edit: June 27, 2021, 02:26:14 PM by BrightCandle »

Re: Melatonin: Dosing, Timing, Recommended product?
« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2021, 02:32:27 PM »
Thank you Brightcandle and FckingNameless

So 0.3mg or lower seems to be consensus on optimal dose, and Life Extension, DoNotAge, and Piping Rock seem popular brands, leaving the following questions:

1. If you take it more than 20 mins before sleep (say the recommended 2-3-4 hours as I've seen some places), are you supposed to just tough it out until bedtime, if you get sleepy? And why is it better to take longer time before sleep than the 20 mins?

2. Extended release or regular - seen people say that extended if you have trouble staying asleep - but is it actually A. Effective in keeping you asleep B. Good for you/mimicking natural activity and getting a quality sleep?

3. What's up with the 5-10-12mg doses of melatonin sold and widely used? 

Re: Melatonin: Dosing, Timing, Recommended product?
« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2021, 09:43:09 PM »
Melatonin is melatonin IMO, it's a pretty common compound so I wouldn't be too worried about brands. I have kgs of it from PureBulk that I still don't know what to do with.

1. That's usually based on how long it takes to be absorbed and reach peak concentration. Play around with it and figure out what works best for yourself, IMO - generally 0-30 minutes before bed works fine for me. If you take it and then get sleepy, then.. go to sleep? ;D As a general rule of thumb, I don't take melatonin if I still have important things to stay awake for.

2. I'd try it and see if it works for you.

3. Probably because it's so cheap that filling a cap with 5/10/12mg is almost the same cost as filling it with 300mcg, and the average person buying the widely sold brands will probably think "hmm, brand A costs the same as brand B but has more melatonin in it, so I'll get that one!"

Re: Melatonin: Dosing, Timing, Recommended product?
« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2021, 04:54:43 AM »
Well, interestingly enough - melatonin has important functions which are triggered alongside sleep. It appears to run a nightly "metabolite reset" process, which continues during sleep and allows you to feel "refreshed" the next day. I'd consider a failure of this process as being a cause for ongoing PEM, even in non CFS/ME people, if chronic.

Now.. tryptophan can be scavenged to make Acetyl-CoA (both issues in this disease model)
Likewise N-Acetylserotonin needs acetyl-CoA again (likewise an issue)
..and you need darkness to stimulate melatonin synthesis, so lights, screen time, etc., are not helpful.

Now, it's possible, that someone could take vast amounts of melatonin and potentially force these cleanup routines to run all day.. however they'd likely be falling asleep all day. It's possible that by countering that with some common anti-narcolepsy drug or vast amount of exogenous thyroid hormone, you could potentially counter this sleepiness effect, with favourable results overall and a handful of side-effects. (Chatting with Learner1, she has some really good info on this topic, which I hope she'll contribute.)

My view is that trying to restore the cells to their normal operating conditions is the optimal way forward.

I included a 300mcg dose of melatonin in the v2 and v3 protocol to assist with maintaining sleep, where these pathways are not optimal.
I've recently seen a 6 hour slow-release melatonin product, which drip-feed 300mcg, 750mg or other amounts of melatonin over that period. For unusual cases / unresolved co-infections, this could be helpful, however would need further testing.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2021, 07:54:53 AM by joshua.leisk »
NB. I am NOT a doctor and all information provided is for educational purposes only.

Please consult your physician before attempting anything you read here.

Re: Melatonin: Dosing, Timing, Recommended product?
« Reply #6 on: June 28, 2021, 01:15:27 PM »
All great replies so far, thank you.

Melatonin as is used to "cleanup" and also "DNA dmg prevention" etc. are also benefits for sure. I think as Josh said though, the optimal situation is to fix cell mechanisms so that the body would run these automatically and take care of all that. 

However, I believe most people would be interested in Melatonin as a temporary crutch to help with problematic sleep. 

So in that context, would be great to get more info on:

1. Taking within 15-30 mins before bed vs 2-5 hours before bed

2. Extended-release vs regular 

Since we're talking about sleep - in that context 300mcg seems to be the leading theory on dosage, AFAIK. 

LifeExtension, DoNotAge, Piping Rock seems like recommended brands.