Both CBD and melatonin are known for their relaxing effects on the body and mind and are used separately to treat various sleep disorders, including insomnia. But what if you could combine them and get a synergistic effect? Is this a really good idea or is it better to just let them do their job on their own? Let’s find out the answers to these questions.
What Is Melatonin, and How Does It Help?
Melatonin is a hormone produced in the pineal gland of the brain, which helps in regulating the sleep–wake cycle of the body. Its highest amounts are released at night, compared to the day, and these fluctuations in the natural melatonin levels manage your sleeping cycles, also called the circadian rhythms.
People resort to synthetic melatonin for treating their insomnia when their natural secretion is not enough. This dietary supplement activates special receptors in your brain called the MT1 and MT2 receptors to help you sleep. (1) Its advantage is that, unlike other sleeping pills, synthetic melatonin does not get you intoxicated, but simply tells your body that it is the time to fall asleep.
Since this hormone is naturally produced in your body, using synthetic product for the treatment of insomnia is called the melatonin replacement therapy. This therapy can come to your aid in several following ways:
- treating insomnia,
- decreasing latency of sleep,
- overcoming jet lag,
- decreasing wake-up time after sleep sets in,
- increasing efficiency of sleep,
- adjusting sleeping cycles for the individuals with partial or complete blindness.
How Does CBD Help in Sleeping?
Like all cannabinoids, CBD interacts with the cannabinoid receptors, which form an important part of the regulatory system of the body called the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The reason why ECS is so important is that it maintains the balance of the body’s natural rhythms and regulates a lot of processes, including mood, stress, pain, appetite, memory, metabolism, immunity and of course sleep.
According to the numerous studies, the effect of CBD on sleep behavior depends on the dosage taken: a low dose can stimulate, while a high dose will induce sedation. The 2017 study has also found that CBD may help in the treatment of REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD), excessive daytime sleepiness and grogginess. (2)
What Is Common between Melatonin and CBD?
CBD helps your body in regulating the sleep patterns through the cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2. They belong to the same group called GPCR (G protein-coupled receptors) as the aforementioned MT1 and MT2 receptors activated by melatonin. This means that CBD and melatonin have similar effect on body processes, which makes them natural allies in promoting better sleep.
Moreover, studies revealed the ability of CBD to interact with serotonin receptors in the brain. The neurotransmitter serotonin derived from the amino acid tryptophan is a precursor to melatonin. It regulates sleep, memory, mood, social behavior, and appetite. Although CBD doesn’t necessarily increase serotonin levels, it can mimic its effects by binding and activating the 5-HT1A and other serotonin receptors. (3)
Can You Take CBD with Melatonin?
Yes, since CBD and melatonin act in the similar way, they can be used as natural complements to each other. Moreover, when they are combined, they can be even more effective, because melatonin helps you fall asleep faster, while CBD improves sleep quality, which together leads to a long and restful sleep.
The best part is that, unlike the benzodiazepines, these two will not end up causing hangovers, addiction and other side effects. The only thing you need to keep in mind is to get the dose right. A good idea would be to use 10mg of melatonin and 20-25mg of CBD, which are the usual dosages taken by most adults, or buy CBD sleep products with the right dosages.
There are two following ways to boost the efficiency of sleep supplements:
- Use dim red lights before sleep. Studies have shown that blue light suppresses melatonin, whereas red light does not have such effect and even boosts natural melatonin secretion. (4)
- Lower your cortisol levels. Cortisol is a stress hormone, that acts opposite to melatonin, which means that lowering its levels will increase the effect of melatonin supplements. Try meditation, gentle exercise, outdoor walking and eating healthy carbs, such as brown rice, sweet potato squash, or quinoa, before going to a bed.
The Best Products
With 5mg of melatonin and 10mg of CBD per serving, these all-natural and vegan gummies are designed to help you sleep better at night and feel more refreshed in the morning.
These spearmint-flavored dissolvable tablets combine 10mg of melatonin with 25mg of cannabidiol to help you enjoy a faster and deeper night’s sleep.