Unveiling the Role of Circadian Rhythms, Melatonin, and affron®
Our body is a complex system managed by a delicate balance of biological rhythms and hormones. Among them, the circadian rhythm holds a central place. This internal biological clock orchestrates various physiological processes, especially the sleep-wake cycle, ensuring optimal function in sync with the day-night cycle. Let’s delve into the captivating interplay of circadian rhythms, melatonin, sleep, and the intriguing connection with saffron.
Circadian Rhythms: The Body’s Internal Master.
Circadian rhythms regulate a myriad of bodily functions, from sleep and wakefulness to metabolism and hormone production. These rhythms are primarily influenced by light and darkness, aligning our internal clock with the natural world. Disruption of these rhythms has been linked to various health issues, including sleep disorders, metabolic imbalances, and mood disturbances.
Melatonin: “The Sleep Hormone”
At the heart of our circadian rhythms lies melatonin, often dubbed the “sleep hormone. This naturally occurring hormone is released by the pineal gland in response to decreasing light levels, signalling the body to wind down. Melatonin plays a pivotal role in regulating the sleep-wake cycle, promoting restful sleep, and ensuring our bodies remain in harmony with the day-night rhythm.
The Sleep Connection: Unravelling the Power of Affron®
Recent scientific investigations have put the spotlight on saffron, the exquisite spice derived from the Crocus sativus flower. In particular, affron®, a premium saffron extract, has garnered attention for its incredible potential to positively influence sleep quality. Evidence from a new in vivo study revealed that affron® stimulates the endogenous production of melatonin, enabling the body to naturally generate this sleep-inducing hormone. By enhancing the synthesis of enzymes responsible for converting tryptophan into melatonin and inhibiting those converting tryptophan into kynurenine, affron® empowers the body’s ability to regulate sleep without relying on external melatonin sources.
It’s important to know that only a small proportion of ingested tryptophan is used for melatonin synthesis, while the remainder is largely used for protein synthesis and a little rest for the synthesis of kynurenine and its derivatives, known as the kynurenine pathway (which is exacerbated by pro-inflammatory processes and high cortisol levels associated with high-stress situations). In the aforementioned study, an increase in serum melatonin levels and a decrease in kynurenines levels were observed in rats consuming affron®.
This was confirmed by measuring the expression of genes related to the metabolism of tryptophan into melatonin and kynurenines in the pineal gland and liver. These measurements clearly indicated that affron® significantly enhanced the gene responsible for melatonin synthesis in the pineal gland and helped markedly decrease genes involved in the transformation of tryptophan into kynurenines, both in the pineal gland and the liver, and from kynurenines into kynurenic acid.
Furthermore, evidence showed that the consumption of affron® is safe and does not have any toxic effects on the body. Therefore, we can derive significant benefits from the increase in endogenous melatonin production, thanks to affron®:
- As melatonin production is increased naturally, no side effects, such as headaches, dizziness, drowsiness, etc., are observed.
- It also benefits population groups who do not metabolise melatonin properly, such as the elderly, for example. On the other hand, affron® can be used in adolescents, making it a perfect ally for treating sleep disorders in this age group.
- The metabolism of affron® is not affected by smoking, medication, or whether or not it is taken with food, and both its bioavailability and speed of absorption are very high.
It´s important to note that is the particular composition of affron® (its “fingerprint”) that makes it possible to achieve all of its positive effects on sleep quality.
As we discover the complex mechanisms behind sleep regulation and the vital role of circadian rhythms, it is clear that prioritising a healthy sleep routine is essential for overall well-being. Furthermore, affron®‘s unique ability to influence melatonin synthesis, as demonstrated, underlines its potential as a natural ally in the pursuit of quality sleep.