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Is Melatonin safe for long term use?

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pak
 Posted 11/2/2013 3:18:23 PM
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I've heard you should only take melatonin "occasionally" -- whatever that means -- because it can reduce the body's production of it.  But I've also read it may prevent cancer if taken "regularly."  So which is it?  (Only form that helped me a bit is the sublingual one.  But I only averaged 8 minutes more sleep per night -- but I seemed to dream a lot more -- so I don't know if its really worth it for me.)
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 Posted 11/3/2013 6:18:35 AM
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If you would please point me to where you read that melatonin supplementation lowers the body's production of the hormone, i will take a look at the study or studies referenced.  A brief search of abstracts available in PubMed failed to retrieve any that documented a feedback mechanism.  Additionally, i did not see any human studies concerning a lower risk of cancer among subjects who supplemented with melatonin but there are animal studies that indicate a protective effect.

There was also a human study that indicated a lower risk of breast cancer in women who had higher urinary melatonin levels: http://www.lef.org/newsletter/2005/2005_07_20.htm  And a meta-analysis reported in 2005 concluded that melatonin benefits those who already have cancer:  http://www.lef.org/newsletter/2005/2005_09_10.htm


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 Posted 11/3/2013 4:11:57 PM
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I would strongly suggest starting-out with the lowest available dose of melatonin you can take.
The average healthy person's pineal gland produces less than 60 MICRO-grams of melatonin per day (so I've read), and so any supplement out there is far surpassing normal levels. 
I currently take 300 mcg. per night with no apparent side effect one way or the other,  but back when I was taking 20 mg./ night it was causing me to awake way too early, feel groggy all morning, and seemingly caused some weight gain.



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