Eric Ganz dvate at dvate.win.net
Tue Apr 12 21:58:51 EST 1994

                                                           Melatonin and Sleep
                The following is a reprint

Citation:    New Scientist, Feb 29, 1992 v133 n1810 p20(1)

Title:       A glass of urine a day keeps the stress away. (hormone melatonin
             present in considerable quantity in early morning urine can
             induce mild sedation)

Authors:     Vines, Gail
Subjects:    Melatonin_Physiological aspects
             Urine_Therapeutic use

Reference #: A12118103


Full Text COPYRIGHT IPC Magazine Ltd. 1992

Drinking your own urine first thing every morning may "promote tranquility
during meditation", according to two Australian researchers.  Urine is rich in
melatonin, a hormone which can make people feel slightly sedated.  This could
explain why traditional yogis of the Indian subcontinent recommend the
practice, known as amaroli (Medical Hypotheses, vol 36, p 195).

Melatonin is released by the brain's pineal gland during the night; its
production is shut off by light shining into a person's eyes.  No one is quite
sure what melatonin does, but it plays some role in setting our various daily
(circadian) rhythms and may even be part of the body's "master clock".  A dose
of melatonin can act as a modest pain killer and can make people feel sleepy.
It seems to lessen the trauma of jet lag if taken at bedtime after a flight.

M. Mills and T. Faunce of the University of Newcastle in New South Wales,
speculate on why yogis drink urine.  They say that taking melatonin, in urine
or otherwise, just as you wake up, may "convince the body that it has had more
sleep".  This is handy if your daily regime includes meditation at 4 am.  It
might also reduce the pain of sitting absolutely still for two hours, say the

Melatonin must be taken regularly for several weeks to reset sleep cycles, and
similarly the traditional yogic texts urge that "auto-urine" be taken daily
over a month.  Melatonin might also slow brain-wake activity, so enhancing
meditative practices, say the researchers.

It might even be true, as the yogis maintain, that quaffing the urine of
prepubescent children is even more effective than drinking your own.  Mills
and Faunce say that the night-time production of melatonin falls at puberty as
sleep quality declines.

The psychologists speculate that drinking one's own urine before dawn could
restore blood melatonin to night-time levels.  They suggest a double-blind
experiment to test their theory.  In the experiment, some yogis would drink
their night urine while others, unbeknown to themselves or the scientists,
would consume their stored daytime urine instead.  A comparison of the levels
of melatonin in their blood and their mental states should then settle the


Hope this is of some help,Eric

" Hard work never killed anyone...........But why risk it?.."

More information about the Neur-sci mailing list

Send comments to us at biosci-help [At] net.bio.net