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Valerian Root vs Melatonin – Which One Should You Take?

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So you’ve decided to improve your health with supplements.

Good on you, my friend.

But which ones should you take?

By my count, there are at least a few dozen supplements worth considering.

So for this reason, I created my Supplement Comparison Guide to help you choose in a scenario like this.

Today’s article features Valerian Root vs Melatonin.

Let’s get started!

What is Valerian Root?

Valerian Root (Valeriana Officinalis) is a herb native to Asia and Europe that’s renown for its relaxation properties.

Its name comes from the Latin verb Valere, which means “to be strong”.

Interestingly, Valerian Root has been used in traditional medicine for thousands of years and is still widely used today for many different ailments.

What is Melatonin?

Melatonin is a powerful hormone that’s naturally produced in the pineal gland.

Its main job is to manage your sleep cycle by regulating your body’s internal clock, so unsurprisingly, many people use it for insomnia.

Melatonin is naturally lower in the morning, which makes you feel more awake during the day, and as the day progresses, it rises naturally making you feel sleepy and tired in the evening.

Benefits

Benefits of Valerian Root

Valerian Root may help you relax

Both animal and human research support the use of Valerian Root to help relaxation.

For example, in one study, rats who consumed Valerian Root before a maze challenge showed less anxious behaviour than rats who consumed alcohol.

In another study, subjects were given 600mg of Valerian Root alongside Lemon Balm during a mentally tough task.

The results showed that this helped them feel calm and less anxious during the task.

(Subjects who were given 1800mg had more anxiety, which may suggest there’s a “sweet spot” dosage.)

Valerian Root may improve sleep

Valerian Root is a proven supplement to help treat insomnia and sleep disorders.

One study looked at how Valerian Root affects the time taken to fall asleep in Insomnia patients.

Interestingly, the Valerian Root takers entered deep sleep 8 minutes faster than the placebo takers.

Another study looked at how Valerian Root affected the quality of sleep.

According to the results, 89% of those who took Valerian Root reported better sleep, and 44% reported perfect sleep.

(Related reading: Phosphatidylserine For A Better Sleep? (My Experience)

Valerian Root may help improve menopause symptoms

When a woman enters menopause, her estrogen levels plummet which may result in some frustrating symptoms, such as:

  • Irritability
  • Hot flashes
  • Mood swings
  • Sleep problems
  • Vaginal dryness

If you’re experiencing these symptoms during menopause, then you may want to give Valerian Root a try.

In one study, menopausal women who took Valerian Root each day for 8 weeks faced less severe and frequent hot flashes.

In another study, menopausal women who took Valerian Root each day for 4 weeks had much better sleep.

(Related reading: 3 Best Fish Oil Supplements For Menopause)

Benefits of Melatonin

Melatonin may help improve sleep

Many people refer to Melatonin as the sleep hormone, thanks to its ability to improve sleep.

In fact, a review of 19 studies concluded that Melatonin increases the amount of sleep, improves sleep quality, and reduces the time it takes to fall asleep.

Furthermore, research shows that Melatonin helps improve insomnia in cancer patients.

(Related reading: Do Cold Showers Help You Sleep?)

Melatonin may boost HGH levels

Human Growth Hormone (HGH) is a naturally produced hormone that’s vital for normal growth.

Interestingly, HGH is widely used by muscle-loving bodybuilders since high levels of HGH may boost muscle size.

If there are any muscle-loving bodybuilders reading this, then Melatonin may be your supplement of choice as research suggests it may boost HGH levels.

For example, a study showed that as little as 0.5mg of Melatonin stimulated HGH release.

Melatonin may help treat GERD

GERD is a nasty condition caused by stomach acid flowing into the esophagus.

This may result in some annoying symptoms, such as:

  • Heartburn
  • Chest pain
  • Bad breath

But as Melatonin can suppress the secretion of stomach acids, it may be useful for treating GERD.

A study compared the usefulness of a Melatonin-containing supplement and a popular GERD drug to treat GERD.

Interestingly, every single person who took the supplement had a reduction in symptoms.

Whereas only 67.5% of people who took the GERD drug had a reduction in symptoms.

Promising stuff, right?

Cost

Valerian Root Cost

Valerian Root is sold in many different forms, including capsules, powder and as a liquid extract.

Typical prices for these are:

  • Powder: $28 for 1 lb
  • Capsules: $7 for 100
  • Liquid extract: $19 for 2 Oz

Melatonin Cost

Melatonin is typically sold in tablets.

For a mid-range Melatonin supplement, you’ll pay around $14 for 120 tablets.

Side Effects

Valerian Root Side Effects

Valerian Root supplements are normally well tolerated, but some folks have reported the following side effects after taking Valerian Root:

  • Headaches
  • Vivid dreams
  • Upset stomach
  • Heart palpitations

Also, the following drugs may interact with Valerian Root, so use with caution and speak to a doctor if you’re taking any of them:

  • Statins
  • Alcohol
  • Narcotics
  • St. John’s wort
  • Antihistamines
  • Antidepressants
  • Other sleep aids

And until further research has been done, young children and pregnant women should avoid using Valerian Root.

Melatonin Side Effects

Like Valerian Root, Melatonin supplements are usually well tolerated by healthy adults, but the following side effects have been reported in some cases:

  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Headaches

Recommendations

My Valerian Root Recommendation: NOW Valerian Root

Click to see on Amazon

Overview

A high-quality Valerian Root supplement from a top, top brand.

NOW Valerian Root gets the gold medal.

What I like about it

With over 1,000 epic reviews, it’s obvious that this is a fantastic supplement that’s used and loved by many others.

Also, NOW are one of my favorite supplement brands.

They’re GMP certified, which means every single aspect of their manufacturing process has been thoroughly inspected for quality.

This is one of many reasons why NOW are one of the most trusted supplement brands out there.

So for its relatively cheap price, this is an excellent budget buy.

Potential Drawbacks

Some users reckon the capsules have an odd smell.

But apparently, this is quite common for Valerian Root supplements anyways.

Check price and read more reviews of NOW Valerian Root on Amazon.

My Melatonin Recommendation: Solgar Melatonin

Click to see on Amazon

Overview

A high-strength Melatonin supplement from a premium brand.

Solgar Melatonin ticks all the boxes.

What I like about it

I’m a massive fan of Solgar as a supplement company.

Like NOW, they pride themselves on high quality products and are trusted worldwide.

It’s great to see so many awesome reviews too, as this shows that this is an effective supplement that’s helped many people improve their health.

And with each purchase providing 120 servings, this supplement will provide you with state-of-the-art Melatonin for many months.

Potential Drawbacks

If I was to be really awkward, it would be nice if these tablets contained less other ingredients.

Check price and read more reviews of Solgar Melatonin on Amazon.

The Verdict

Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this Valerian Root vs Melatonin showdown.

These are both epic supplements that offer such a wide range of benefits, and either would make a solid choice.

You should now have a solid idea of which one you’re going to take, but if you’re still on the fence, then this high-level guide should help:

You might prefer Valerian Root if:

  • You’re stressed out and want to feel calm
  • You’re going through menopause and are sick of the symptoms

You might prefer Melatonin if:

  • You want to reduce GERD symptoms
  • You want to increase your HGH levels

Thanks for sticking to the end, and I’ll see you in the next one 😊

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