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Home arrow Nutrition arrow Intermittent Fasting arrow Does Melatonin Break a Fast? 5 Uses and Benefits

Does Melatonin Break a Fast? 5 Uses and Benefits

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Written by Edibel Quintero, RD
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Fact checked by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Last update: October 22, 2023
3 min read 1260 Views 0 Comments
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Many people take supplements when practicing intermittent fasting to ensure good overall health. If you struggle with poor sleep, you might be interested in melatonin supplements to get your sleep cycle back on track. The question is whether melatonin breaks a fast. In this article, you can learn all about taking melatonin in fasting periods.

Does melatonin break a fast

When you begin intermittent fasting, you start questioning everything that goes into your body. You know that food and calorie-containing beverages are off-limits during fasting hours, but you may be unsure about supplements and how they might affect your fat loss progress.

Melatonin pills are a particularly popular supplement among adults. As intermittent fasting can temporarily cause sleep problems in some people, you might be tempted to try these sleep-promoting supplements. So, is melatonin a safe supplement to take while fasting?

Keep reading to discover everything you need to know.

Does Melatonin Break a Fast?

No, melatonin does not break a fast. A fast is only broken when you consume calories that trigger an insulin response. Melatonin has little to no nutritional value. It has no calories, carbohydrates, or protein and, therefore, will not generate an insulin reaction. You can continue taking melatonin supplements in your fasting window without hindering your results.

Taking melatonin can be beneficial for your fast. While intermittent fasting can help many people sleep better, some people may experience sleep disturbances. This is usually due to a natural drop in melatonin levels or a rise in cortisol levels from calorie restriction.

Will melatonin gummies break a fast?

Unfortunately, melatonin gummies will break a fast. Melatonin gummies are the tastier, gummy form of melatonin many people prefer over the pill form. They typically contain added sugar or syrups, artificial flavors, and other sweeteners that raise insulin levels and break the fast

Sugar-free melatonin gummies are available on the market, but you should always read the label carefully to check for calories and carbs. If you don’t want to risk breaking your fast and interrupting your weight loss journey, then melatonin pills are the safest supplement choice.

What Is Melatonin Used for?

Melatonin induces sleep, regulates sleep patterns, and improves sleep quality. It benefits those who suffer from sleep disorders, such as sleep deprivation and insomnia caused by multiple reasons, including ketosis. Additionally, melatonin helps alleviate symptoms of jet lag and sleep problems from shift work.

Melatonin is a naturally-occurring hormone created by the pineal gland in the brain. It is known as the sleep hormone because the human body produces melatonin in response to darkness. It is responsible for your sleep-wake cycle and your circadian rhythm.

Circadian rhythm is the internal process of physical, mental, and behavioral changes that occur in a 24-hour cycle. It relates to your body’s biological clock and is fundamental for healthy sleep. Although a natural hormone, people take supplements to boost melatonin levels.

What Is the Best Time to Take Melatonin?

For the greatest benefits from melatonin during intermittent fasting, it’s best to take melatonin one or two hours before bedtime. It needs a couple of hours to take effect, so taking melatonin during this time will help you wind down and induce sleep at a reasonable hour.

The body absorbs melatonin better on an empty stomach, so it’s easy to fit into your intermittent fasting schedule.

4 Benefits of Melatonin During Fasting

Melatonin won’t break a fast, but what exactly are its benefits? Well, there are several perks of increasing melatonin when restricting your food intake.

Here are 4 health benefits of melatonin during intermittent fasting.

#1 Helps you sleep better

Sleep disturbance is one of the most common intermittent fasting side effects. It can cause hormonal changes that disrupt your usual sleeping patterns. For instance, it can trigger a surge of cortisol – a stress hormone that can interrupt sleep and keep you awake at night.

Not everyone will experience trouble sleeping, but melatonin can relieve symptoms for those who do. It is proven to promote healthy sleep habits, which can help you conquer some common adverse effects of intermittent fasting, including fatigue and low energy levels.

#2 Lowers blood pressure

Insomnia and poor sleep can cause your blood pressure to rise, so getting a good night’s rest can help get your blood pressure back to normal levels. As melatonin supports sleep, melatonin supplementation can help regulate blood pressure.

Repeated doses of melatonin at bedtime in hypertensive patients significantly reduced nocturnal blood pressure. Intermittent fasting on its own can help lower blood pressure, so the combination of the two may be beneficial for people with hypertension.

#3 Can act as an antioxidant

Melatonin has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, which can help fight harmful free radicals and limit oxidative damage. Supplementation is proven beneficial for managing elements of metabolic syndrome – a cluster of conditions that put people at increased risk of cardiovascular events.

#4 May help to protect the brain

This hormone may support brain health. It has antioxidant and neuroprotective effects that protect cells from free radical damage. It may protect the cells against cognitive decline and slow the progression of cognitive impairment in people with Alzheimer’s disease.

A Word From Our MD

Melatonin is a natural hormone available as a prescription or over-the-counter medication. It has many health and wellness benefits and may support an intermittent fasting journey. Unlike other supplements, such as BCAAs, melatonin supplements do not break a fast.

They do not contain sugar or other ingredients that might trigger an insulin response. So, you can enjoy the benefits freely without sabotaging the benefits of intermittent fasting. The most important use of melatonin is that it helps you get adequate rest.

Sleep is imperative when sticking to an intermittent fasting schedule. It can help keep your energy levels up, reduce cravings, prevent hunger pangs, and boost mental performance so you can focus on your fast. Better sleep health is associated with weight and fat loss.

Conclusion

Does melatonin break a fast? No, it doesn’t!

You can supplement during the fasting period and continue to lose weight without kicking your body out of the fat-burning mode. Just make sure you avoid the liquid or gummy form, as these products usually contain sugar and carbs that will likely break your fast.

Before taking a new supplement, it’s best to get medical supervision from your doctor, especially if you are fasting for medical reasons.

Written by Edibel Quintero, RD
Edibel Quintero is a medical doctor who graduated in 2013 from the University of Zulia and has been working in her profession since then. She specializes in obesity and nutrition, physical rehabilitation, sports massage and post-operative rehabilitation. Edibel’s goal is to help people live healthier lives by educating them about food, exercise, mental wellness and other lifestyle choices that can improve their quality of life.
The article was fact checked by Rosmy Barrios, MD
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HR_author_photo_Edibel
Written by Edibel Quintero, RD
HR_author_photo_Rosmy
Fact checked by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Last update: October 22, 2023
3 min read 1260 Views 0 Comments
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