The link between Melatonin levels and type 2 diabetes

IAS News 9 May 2013 | 0 Comments

Melatonin is perhaps better known to many of you reading this as a hormone that aids with sleeping patterns. However did you know that low levels of melatonin could lead to a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes?
A quick review of Melatonin will show that levels usually peak about 3-5 hours after we fall asleep, and that it is used to regulate the sleep/wake cycles. However it seems that research released earlier this year shows that it is involved in many other bodily functions, including affecting the metabolism of glucose.
The research was carried out at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. By matching 370 people with diabetes to 370 people who didn’t develop the disease, and testing their blood and urine they were able to investigate any potential link between melatonin levels and type 2 diabetes.
The chance of developing diabetes was twice as high in those who had low levels of melatonin as opposed to those who had higher levels. All other factors were taken into account – including being overweight, a family history of diabetes, diet and smoking.
The reason between this link isn’t clear at the present time, and it isn’t known that if by raising melatonin levels would lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Further studies will be needed in order to prove if any melatonin supplementation will help avoid type 2 diabetes; however studies in rats have shown this to be the case (which doesn’t mean it will definitely work in humans of course!)
Sleep researchers have said that not getting enough sleep, or having sleep or poor quality, or working in shift work are all factors which lead to an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Scarily the number of those suffering from diabetes may increase to 1 in 3 Americans if something isn’t done to slow this trend down. Diabetes can often lead onto more serious medical complications such as heart disease, strokes, kidney issues, amputations and eye complaints.
IAS supplies Melatonin Zn-Se which has been shown to improve sleep / wake cycles, and two forms of treatment to help those suffering from diabetes, Metformin and Dianben.

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