Melatonin and the Heart
Written by Kathy Lynch, PharmD – Women’s International Pharmacy
Melatonin is becoming more widely accepted by the scientific community as a beneficial hormone for heart health. It appears that melatonin decreases inflammation and positively affects blood pressure and cholesterol. Melatonin has also been identified as a powerful antioxidant.
Not only have low melatonin levels been observed at various stages of coronary heart disease, but the role melatonin plays in normal heart function is well established. Human coronary arteries have melatonin receptors on them, though their exact function has yet to be fully determined.
Melatonin is currently being studied to see if oral doses can protect against damage done when blood returns to a heart previously deprived of blood flow, for example, after a heart attack. Because melatonin has low toxicity and has been proven safe in varying strengths, both oral and intravenous, scientists are interested in studying melatonin for the treatment of heart disease.
For additional information on hormones and their relationship to heart health, please see our publication: Matters of the Heart.