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Melatonin is among the most popular natural sleep supplements. While it is available in a wide range of forms, including tablets and sprays, melatonin gummies have risen in popularity as a tasty way to settle in for the night.
Given the size of the supplement market, it can be challenging to pick the best melatonin gummy for your needs. Choosing a gummy involves personal preferences — such as dosage, flavor, and price — as well as factors such as the manufacturer’s reliability. Familiarizing yourself with the facts about melatonin and potential safety concerns will allow you to select melatonin gummies with confidence.
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Shoppers looking for high-dosage melatonin gummies with a short ingredient list and no other active ingredients are likely to appreciate these extra-strength gummies from Vitafusion. Most of the ingredients used are natural, though the melatonin itself is synthetically derived, like most melatonin supplements.
Naturally flavored with blackberry and sugar, colored with blueberry and carrot concentrates, and set with tapioca syrup, gelatin, and pectin, these gummies are a good choice for people who avoid artificial colors, dyes, and flavors. Unlike many other gummies, they are also free of high-fructose corn syrup.
Each gummy contains 2.5 milligrams of melatonin, with a serving size of 1 to 2 gummies. If you find that higher dosages work best for you, this will cut down on the number of gummies you take each night and potentially save you money. If the dosage is too high, each gummy can easily be cut in half to customize your dose.
Since Vitafusion’s melatonin gummies contain beeswax and gelatin derived from pork, they aren’t suitable for vegans or people who avoid pork products. The company also sells sugar-free gummies and products with both higher and lower amounts of melatonin per gummy, which are available in flavors other than blackberry.
Best Extra Strength
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While melatonin on its own can be helpful for some people who struggle to sleep, many people find that combining melatonin with sleep-supporting herbal extracts has a better effect.
Vicks ZzzQuil PURE Zzzs Triple Action Gummies offer 3 milligrams of melatonin per gummy, along with an herbal blend that allows you to forgo buying multiple bottles of individual supplements. Each gummy can be cut in half for a smaller dose.
While the company doesn’t disclose the amount of each ingredient, the herbal blend uses extracts of ashwagandha root, lavender, valerian root, lemon balm leaf, and chamomile. Each of these herbs is thought to help promote both sleep and relaxation, potentially making these gummies a good choice for people who lay awake due to stress or anxiety.
The gummies have a blackberry vanilla flavor, though some customers report a slight bitterness due to the herbal extracts. Since the gummy base uses pectin rather than gelatin, they are suitable for vegans and people who avoid pork products.
The herbs used aren’t suitable for everyone, so make sure to speak with your doctor before taking these gummies, even if you’ve previously discussed melatonin usage.
Best Melatonin & L-Theanine Combo
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OLLY’s Restful Sleep Gummies combine melatonin with an array of botanical ingredients, such as chamomile, passionflower, and lemon balm. Each gummy also contains 50 mg of L-theanine, which is an amino acid intended to promote relaxation.
Those who avoid artificial coloring and flavors will appreciate that the gummies have a natural blackberry-mint flavor and are colored with carrot and blueberry juices. The gelatin used in the gummies is derived from pork, making them unsuitable for vegans or those avoiding pork products.
OLLY recommends a dosage of one to two gummies 30 minutes before bed, with each gummy containing 1.5 mg of melatonin. The gummies are certified by NSF International and are also gluten free. The gummies should be stored in a cool, dark place as they may melt when exposed to temperatures higher than 85 degrees.
The company offers a range of sleep supplements, including special formulations for children, those who need a stronger dose, and those who wish to add immunity support to their melatonin regimen.
Known as the sleep hormone, melatonin is produced by the pineal gland, located in the center of the brain. The pineal gland is highly sensitive to light, with darkness prompting melatonin production and light causing its production to slow and stop. Through this mechanism, melatonin plays a critical role in regulating the circadian rhythm that tells us when to sleep and wake.
While your body creates its own melatonin, you can also take this critical hormone in the form of supplements, including melatonin gummies.
Supplemental melatonin is either natural or synthetic. Natural melatonin is extracted from the pineal glands of animals or made with microorganisms and is less common than synthetic melatonin. While many people are interested in naturally sourced supplements, synthetic melatonin produced in a laboratory is indistinguishable from the natural hormone.
Melatonin gummies are usually made with a sweet, chewy base. Their effect is generally the same as taking melatonin in pill or tablet form.
Most melatonin gummies have a fairly long shelf life before expiration, but they should be kept in a cool, dark place.
It is crucial to speak with a medical professional before adding melatonin to your child’s sleep routine. Melatonin is generally considered safe for short-term use in children and adolescents, but it may have side effects such as bedwetting or dizziness. There is also some evidence which suggests that long-term melatonin use may delay puberty. Infants should not be given melatonin.
The melatonin gummy market is crowded, making it difficult and confusing to decide on a brand. There are a number of important factors to consider, and learning more about what makes a product effective can make it easier to choose the best melatonin gummy for your specific needs.
Some supplements are more effective than others. In the case of melatonin gummies, effectiveness often comes down to the reliability of the supplement company to supply the advertised dosage of melatonin. However, other factors — such as flavor, price per gummy, and determining the correct dosage — are also important but are dependent on your unique circumstances. By considering your needs and choosing a reliable brand, you’ll be far more likely to select a melatonin gummy that works well for you.
Most melatonin gummies are available in doses of 1 to 3 milligrams, sometimes expressed as 1,000 to 3,000 micrograms (mcg). A serving is usually 1 to 2 gummies. While it might seem like a good idea to choose the highest dosage available when you need help sleeping, melatonin dosage is highly personal, and smaller amounts may have a better effect for many people.
Starting with a low dose and increasing it until you feel the effect is often a good way to find your appropriate dosage, but your doctor can offer advice specific to your personal circumstances.
Other Active Ingredients
Melatonin supplements often contain other active ingredients that may help promote sleep. Deciding whether to choose one of these varieties is primarily a matter of personal preference. However, the presence of additional components may make it more difficult to accurately determine what melatonin dosage is effective for your needs.
Some active ingredients may also be inappropriate for you or cause unwanted side effects, so speak to your doctor before switching to a multi-ingredient variety.
While melatonin tends to be an affordable supplement, melatonin gummies are usually more expensive than tablets or pills. Some products may have higher prices due to their brand name, additional active ingredients, or other factors such as marketing costs. As long as you choose a reliable brand, there’s no reason to stretch your budget when buying melatonin gummies.
Flavors & Gummy Types
Different brands of melatonin gummies use natural or artificial sources to provide a wide range of flavors. Gummy varieties with various textures are also available, including vegan products made from fruit pectin. None of these factors make the gummy more or less effective, so the best approach is to choose a melatonin gummy that suits your palate and that you will enjoy taking.
The Food and Drug Administration does not regulate supplements like melatonin, so it is important that you choose a melatonin gummy made by a brand you trust. Some melatonin supplements have been found to contain a higher or lower dosage than stated or include impurities or potentially dangerous compounds such as serotonin.
Reputable brands often use third-party testing or have certifications from organizations like NSF International, ConsumerLab.com, or U.S. Pharmacopeia (USP).
While it can vary depending on the dosage amount and a person’s individual needs, melatonin should generally be taken about an hour before bedtime. Most melatonin supplements start working within half an hour, but you may want to experiment with timing to find what works best for you.
In general, melatonin should be taken for short-term adjustment or to help alleviate jet lag. People with delayed sleep-wake phase disorder may also benefit from melatonin, though they should consult their doctor before starting any new supplement. While some research has indicated that melatonin may be useful for shift workers or people with insomnia, these studies are not always high-quality, and some research has discovered conflicting results.
Most adults experience few side effects when taking melatonin, so it can be tempting to assume that there’s no harm in taking it regularly. However, both manufacturers and doctors stress the importance of speaking to a medical professional if you want to take it regularly or for long stretches of time.
Ongoing sleep difficulty can also be a sign of sleep conditions that may require further treatment, so your doctor may also want to make sure that your sleep problems have no underlying causes before signing off on a melatonin regimen.
Practicing good sleep hygiene involves having a collection of pre-sleep habits and routines that encourage, rather than impede, healthy sleep. Avoiding electronics before bed, restricting your bedroom activities to sleeping and sex, limiting caffeine later in the day, and adhering to an appropriate sleep schedule are all steps that can help you sleep better.
Before you start taking melatonin, you should make sure you are practicing good sleep hygiene. This may alleviate the need for a supplement altogether, but it will also make melatonin more effective by providing the right circumstances for you to drift off.
Melatonin is generally thought to be safe for short-term use in children and adolescents, as long as it is under the guidance of a medical professional. While melatonin may help with childhood sleep issues, including those associated with ADHD and autism spectrum disorder, it may also cause side effects such as headaches or bedwetting. Long-term use may also delay puberty.
Because of these potential issues, the American Academy of Pediatrics stresses the importance of medical guidance when adding melatonin to a child’s bedtime routine.
Melatonin gummies appear to be as effective as melatonin tablets or pills, but not everyone stands to benefit from taking a melatonin supplement. Evidence suggests that melatonin may be effective for jet lag and delayed sleep-wake phase disorder, while research is sparse or conflicting for conditions like shift work disorder and insomnia.
While melatonin is generally considered safe, it is important to speak with your doctor before taking any new supplement. Melatonin can interact with certain medications, such as blood thinners, and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends that people with dementia not take melatonin supplements. There is also very little research into melatonin’s safety for people who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Melatonin may also remain active for longer in older people, leading to daytime drowsiness and the need for a lower dose.
Melatonin overdose leading to death has not been reported, but it is still essential to immediately contact a medical professional if you have taken significantly more melatonin than recommended. Cases of melatonin overdose appear to mostly cause lethargy and confusion. Still, melatonin is pharmacologically active, and high dosages can raise the amount in your body far above what is natural.
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