Melatonin is needed to induce sleep and it is the primary way that the brain detoxifies itself. Chronic disease almost always includes a deficiency in melatonin, for reasons described below, and it’s common to hear that our patients can’t go to sleep until 1, 3, or 4 am. The problem is that it’s a self-promoting cycle: they are sick partly because they can’t detoxify, but they can’t detoxify because they’re sick. Getting people to sleep long and well—not a pharmaceutical-induced knock-out, but real sleep, including dreams and waking well rested—is strongly healing.

A few of the things that block melatonin production:

Light exposure after sunset

The brain thinks that it’s daytime and doesn’t produce the melatonin that makes you sleepy. Many people with insomnia are able to sleep and wake with the sun when camping and this is part of why. Avoid use of screens: phone, computer, and television, and use only low lighting at night. Candle light is ideal and sets the mood for winding down towards sleep.

Disruption of the pineal gland by electromagnetic fields (EMF)

Cell phones should be kept on airplane mode or as far away from the body as possible—never on the bed or nightstand. The new apps that use the iPhone and Android’s motion sensors to detect sleep quality reduce sleep quality themselves, and the brain’s ability to rejuvenate itself at night. Cordless phones should be removed from the house and replaced with land lines. WiFi must be shut off at night. Sensitive individuals or those with sleep problems should also shut off the fuses to their bedroom while sleeping.

Poor diet or digestion and absorption of food

Normally the body makes its own melatonin, but if there is a nutritional deficiency then it doesn’t have the building blocks it needs to do that. Some of the required nutrients are certain amino acids, B3, B6, B9, B12, magnesium, and methyl donors, and many of these are common deficiencies, either because quality protein and vegetables are not in the diet, or because the body isn’t digesting or absorbing them well due to inflammation in the gut, parasites and other dysbiosis, or lack of normal digestive fluid and enzyme production.

Nothing takes the place of fixing the reason that a problem exists in the first place. If there isn’t enough melatonin in the system because the patient has a B6 deficiency, for example, then that’s ultimately what needs to be addressed, but there’s almost always more than one cause, and it may take time to find and address all of them. In the meantime, supplementing a form of melatonin that the body can absorb and use right away, like liposomal melatonin, is a good idea to start detoxing the brain and get the body moving towards a healed state where then it can produce its own melatonin again. See recipe below:

Liposomal melatonin


Lipo-Health powder, Biopure

Melatonin capsules with minimal fillers, we use BioTech

Coconut oil, must be organic

Honey, must be organic

Water, filtered

In a small blender, put:

2 TB coconut oil, 2 tsp Lipo-Health, 7-10 days worth melatonin (your individualized daily dose x 7-10; open appropriate number of capsules into blender), 1.5 tsp honey or to taste, 4 tsp water. Blend until well mixed. You want it to look a little gelatinous and thick enough that it still pours, but slowly. Add water as needed to make product blendable. Add coconut oil if too fluid.

Put into a glass container in ultrasonic jewelry cleaner, following instructions for cleaner, run for 20 minutes. There’s no negative impact on the medication if the oils and water are somewhat separated.

Place in refrigerator, where it should thicken up to resemble butter.

How to take: let it absorb through your mouth by swishing it around to coat insides of cheeks, roof of mouth, etc. for several minutes. Avoid brushing teeth, eating, or taking other supplements for at least 15 minutes.