Can I Take CBD and Melatonin Together?
Posted on August 28th, 2020
In today’s busy world, getting sufficient and quality sleep is essential. It is highly recommended for adults aged 18 to 60 to get at least 7 hours of quality sleep each day. The lack of adequate sleep significantly increases your risk of developing serious medical conditions such as obesity, heart disease, diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure, and mental conditions. As such, insomnia and other sleep conditions isn’t something that should be taken lightly.
While there are many different treatments available, most are prescription medications, which pose adverse side effects. Some prescription drugs have even been found to make the situation worse. As a result, more and more people are turning their attention to natural and safer sleep remedies. When it comes to the treatment of insomnia and other related sleep conditions, melatonin and CBD oil are recognized as two of the most effective natural supplements.
While the use of melatonin has long been backed by science, CBD is still a fairly new entrant in the industry. Even though further research into CBD’s suggested health benefits is needed, it is showing potential as a viable and effective alternative for a wide range of health conditions, including insomnia.
With both melatonin and CBD becoming more widely used and acknowledged as effective natural sleep aids, many people wonder whether they can take CBD and melatonin together for improved results. And if there are any potential side effects to mixing these two substances.
What Exactly Is Melatonin, and How Does It Work?
Melatonin is a type of hormone produced by the body in the pineal gland found in the brain. It plays a crucial role in regulating the body’s sleep-wake cycle, otherwise referred to as the circadian rhythm.
Melatonin is secreted in fluctuating levels depending on the presence of light. The melatonin levels in the bloodstream increase steadily in the evening, peaking between 11 PM and 3 AM. During the daytime hours, the melatonin levels are extremely low, and instead, other stimulating hormones such as cortisol are released into the bloodstream.
These fluctuations help to regulate your sleeping cycles. The changes in hormone levels help you remain awake and alert during the day and feel tired and sleepy once the sun sets. But when your body doesn’t produce enough melatonin, you are prone to suffer from sleep problems.
The production of melatonin in the body is commonly affected by factors such as age and exposure to artificial light. The body is naturally wired to increase its melatonin production when it senses a decrease in light levels in the evening. However, in modern times, our exposure to artificial light during these crucial hours of the day greatly impedes this process.
Numerous studies have also found that the production of melatonin decreases rapidly past the age of 60. This is mainly attributed to calcification of the pineal gland and decreased sensitivity of the melatonin receptors.
This is why people resort to synthetic melatonin to help treat their insomnia. The dietary melatonin supplement works by activating the melatonin receptors in the brain known as MT1 and MT2 receptors, which inform your brain that is is time to sleep.
The use of the synthetic version of melatonin to treat insomnia is referred to as melatonin replacement therapy. However, unlike sleep medications, it doesn’t lead to intoxication. Increased melatonin levels in the body help to suppress stimulating hormones. According to research , melatonin supplements offer a wide range of benefits, including:
- Alleviating jet lag
- Treating insomnia
- Improving sleep efficiency
- Minimizing wake times during sleep
- Reducing sleep latency
- Balancing sleep cycles for people suffering from complete or partial blindness
What Exactly Is CBD, and How Does It Work?
Cannabidiol, or simply referred to as CBD, is a non-psychoactive extract of the cannabis plant. It amongst the hundreds of chemical compounds present in the plant. All cannabinoids synthesized by the cannabis plant are referred to as phytocannabinoids.
Same as with any other cannabinoid, CBD works by interacting with the endocannabinoid system (ECS), a special control and regulatory system in the body, through cannabinoid receptors found all over the body. There are two types of endocannabinoid receptors; CB-1 and CB-2. The CB-1 receptors are more pronounced in the central nervous system, while the CB-2 receptors are more pronounced in the immune system. The ECS regulates many vital bodily functions, which help in maintaining balance within the body. Any imbalance can lead to serious effects on the body. There is no understating how important the endocannabinoid system is to our survival. Some of the processes regulated by the ECS include:
- Pleasure and reward
- Inflammatory responses
- Digestion and metabolism
- Body temperature
- And in this case, our sleep-wake cycles and circadian rhythms
Multiple studies have found that the effects of CBD on sleep may be mainly dependent on the amount of dosage. For example, in small amounts, CBD may act as a stimulant, while in large doses, it may induce sedation. This is why, when using CBD, it is important to determine the right dosage for you. To date, there hasn’t been any evidence indicating that the use of CBD poses any harm to the body .
While CBD has very few reported side effects, higher doses can result in mild side effects such as nausea, headaches, and irritability.
Is There a Connection Between CBD and Melatonin?
As discussed earlier, CBD influences sleep behavior through the cannabinoid receptors CB-1 and CB-2. On the other hand, melatonin influences sleep by activating MT1 and MT2 receptors. CB-1 and CB-2 cannabinoid receptors, and MT1 and Mt2 melatonin receptors all fall under the same group called G-protein Coupled Receptors, which means that they have similar underlying structures and produce a similar effect on body processes. Their benefits on sleep complement each other.
Can I Take CBD and Melatonin?
While further research is needed on the effects of CBD and melatonin, both are considered safe, and as a matter of fact, it may be more beneficial to take CBD and melatonin together. Due to their underlying similarities, the two substances are natural complements to each other. When combined, their use can be more effective. However, be sure to speak with your physician before introducing melatonin, CBD, or a combination of the two into your routine.
Melatonin supplements help you to sleep faster by reversing the effects of hormonal disruption caused by external factors. Meanwhile, CBD helps to improve the quality of your sleep by alleviating problems such as symptoms of anxiety and stress. This way, taking a combination of CBD and melatonin could contribute to achieving long and quality sleep.
In addition, as opposed to medications such as benzodiazepines, CBD and melatonin do not cause hangovers, withdrawal symptoms, or other serious side effects. This is one of the key factors that make these plant-based remedies so appealing to a lot of people.
How to Take CBD and Melatonin Together
While the use of CBD and melatonin is considered safe, the last thing you need is overloading your body with too many sleep-inducing substances. You need to ensure that you get the quality and sustained sleep you need in order to stay awake, alert, and happier during the day.
Thus, the key here is to determine the right dosage for you. The rule of thumb is to start with low dosages to give your body time to adjust to the effects of CBD and melatonin, then work your way up. However, you have to keep in mind that studies have found smaller doses of CBD to have stimulating effects on the body.
Below is a brief guide on how to safely and properly use CBD and melatonin.
Melatonin is often sold in standardized doses of 1-milligram tablets. It is worth noting that even a smaller dosage amount anywhere from 0.3 to 0.5 milligrams is still effective. This means that you can use half a tablet for each night when starting out. However, some people may require higher doses of up to 5 milligrams. Doses higher than 5 mg can cause some mild side effects such as headaches, nausea, weird dreams, and wooziness.
However, according to research, the administration of high doses, above 5 mg, isn’t any more effective than administering regular doses. Thus, taking a dosage higher than 5 mg would likely be unnecessary.
The recommended starting dosage for CBD is much different than for melatonin. Again, low dosages of CBD have been found to have stimulating effects. While 10 mg is a good place to start, the general rule of thumb is to consider 0.25 milligrams for every one pound of body. This means that for average 200 pound adult, the regular dosage would be 50 milligrams.
For a much stronger dosage, you should consider 0.5 milligrams for every one pound of body weight. This means that an average 200-pound adult would require a 100-milligram dosage to experience stronger effects.
With melatonin and CBD becoming more widely used as effective natural sleep aids, many people wonder whether they can take CBD and melatonin together.
Can You Take CBD and Melatonin Together?
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?
- How Does CBD Help in Sleeping?
- What Is Common between Melatonin and CBD?
- Can You Take CBD with Melatonin?
- Useful Tips
- The Best Products
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
CBD Gummies for Sleep with Melatonin
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.
CBD + Melatonin Dissolvable Sleep Tablets
These spearmint-flavored dissolvable tablets combine 10mg of melatonin with 25mg of cannabidiol to help you enjoy a faster and deeper night’s sleep.
Is combining CBD with melatonin really a good idea? Or, is it better to just let melatonin do its job? Let's find out the answers to these questions