Virus Infections and Melatonin

Virus Infections and Melatonin

Posted by DSDC on Aug 23rd 2023

In past blogs we talked about what supplements you can take to help your immune system deal with any manner of viral attacks. The basics are vitamin C, vitamin D, zinc and melatonin. The following is a summary but for better details you should check out the vitamin C and Covid blog pages.

Cytokine Storm-A Killer

Adding melatonin to your antiviral regimen can help avoid some of the more serious effects of acute viral infections including COVID-19.Turns out that having adequate levels of melatonin helps reduce pro-inflammatory proteins (cytokines). You may have heard the term cytokine storm to describe one of the most serious effects of a COVID-19 infection. A cytokine storm means a cell pathway has been turned on, leading to the production of a number of biological mediators (which are kind of like signal transmitters) that cause changes to the body and interfere with normal cell function. Commonly, this means an excessive number of cytokines are released, which create high levels of inflammation in the area of the body being flooded—so much inflammation, even, that it can be fatal to the cells involved and to the person itself.

At the time of this writing (late 2022), we are still dealing with Covid in various forms but this advice still applies to other viral infections like other types of corona viruses and influenza for example.

2023 update-COVID will be with us for the foreseeable future. It won’t be as easy to irradicate as small pox.

Melatonin is well known for its effect on circadian rhythm but its effects go beyond just helping us maintain sleep and awake times. It can also work to maintain balance in our immune system.

Melatonin can inhibit a cytokine storm

One way that Covid infections can kill is a cytokine storm. The mechanism is too technical for this particular blog so I will summarize. This is a hyper inflammation problem and

Melatonin can help inhibit NLRP3 Inflammasomes.

A Few Covid Basics

First let’s start with some COVID-19 basics. Stick with me as this will lead into some steps you can take to decrease inflammation and increase your chances of health in general, I promise.

  • 1.Initially, the primary organ attacked in COVID-19 was the lungs. Other sites of attacks have shown up but we will focus on lungs although some of the same factors apply to the brain, heart and other organs as well. You will want to avoid ARDS (acute respiratory distress syndrome).
  • 2.SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) can cause important lung problems of adults regardless of age but the elderly with some other health issues are more at risk.
  • 3.SARS-CoV (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) epidemic of 2003 infected 8000 people worldwide in 8 months. SARS-CoV-2 is estimated to be 1,000 times more infectious than SARS-CoV or any other corona virus and infected more than 120,000 people in less than 3 months.
  • 4.Current public testing of COVID-19 seems very inadequate with way too many false negatives. That means you are tested and told that you don’t have the virus when in fact you do. According to an early study coming out of China, in hospitals with a confirmed SARS-CoV-2 diagnosis, the most reliable evidence of the virus was in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and was found in 93% of cases. A tube is inserted into a smaller airway of the lungs to collect samples for help in diagnosis of lung diseases. This procedure is the most accurate for COVID-19 but its invasiveness makes it not appropriate for use on the mildly symptomatic or asymptomatic public.

How else might melatonin help fight virus infections

Many people report sleep problems after a COVID infection. Decreased quality sleep often leads to:

Lower levels of natural killer cells (NK). NKs are white blood cells that kill cells infected with viruses or other pathogens. Low levels of NK cells leads to higher risk of viral infections.

Sleep deprivation also tends to increase levels of cytokines. Cytokines encourage the inflammatory processes. High levels of cytokines in COVID patients tend to have worse outcomes. Remember the cytokine storm referenced a couple of paragraphs ago?

In sleep derived people, the production of antibodies suffers. This will do two things. One you will be less likely to make antibodies in response to a vaccine and two, you will more prone to virus infections in general.

Melatonin helps with sleep and also seems to reduce inflammation on its own as well as through the sleep mechanism.

More studies are coming but several preliminary studies have shown positive results with melatonin treatment. Therefore we recommend making melatonin a part of your daily immune regimen. Melatonin is relatively inexpensive and should usually be taken in small doses. We recommend you start with levels like 1-3 mg at bedtime. Often higher doses like 8-10 mg can dampen the effects so do some experimenting and see how you do with those lower doses before moving on to the higher dose.

Some Melatonin Products

NuMedica Melatonin 3 mg 60 Lozenges

NuMedica Melatonin Liquid Lemon 2 oz

Xymogen Melatonin Peppermint 60t

Thank you for shopping at We work to bring you information and products you can trust.