Selo Olive Oil

Does Olive Oil Have Melatonin in It?

A woman peacefully sleeping under the shade of olive trees in a Croatian orchard.

The prevailing discourse surrounding olive oil often underscores its well-documented health benefits and significant role in the popular Mediterranean diet. This article will address the less-explored question: Does Olive Oil contain Melatonin? This query stems from the myriad health benefits associated with both olive oil, a product of the Olea europaea tree, and melatonin, an indoleamine hormone.

Olive oil's reputation for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties is widely recognized. Similarly, the Mediterranean diet, replete with olive oil consumption, garners global acclaim for promoting longevity and mitigating chronic disease risk.


Understanding Melatonin

Melatonin, a crucial hormone, plays a pivotal role within the physiological functions of the human body. Primarily produced by the pineal gland, a small endocrine gland located in the vertebrate brain, it is responsible for regulating sleep and wakefulness. The production of this hormone increases in response to darkness and decreases during exposure to light, thus influencing the body's internal clock or circadian rhythms.

These circadian rhythms are fundamental as they regulate an array of biological processes including sleep-wake cycles, hormonal secretion, cellular function and gene expression. Melatonin also serves as a potent antioxidant, neutralizing harmful free radicals and reducing oxidative stress.

A disruption in melatonin production or an alteration in these circadian rhythms can lead to sleep disorders, mood disturbances and may even increase susceptibility to chronic diseases such as cancer, metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease. Hence, understanding the sources of dietary melatonin becomes imperative for maintaining optimum health.

Melatonin in Olive Oil

A paramount part of the discourse on the health benefits of olive oil focuses on its melatonin content. This pivotal phytochemical in olive oil has been the subject of various scientific investigations, revealing intriguing findings about its presence, particularly in virgin and extra virgin variants.

Melatonin Content in Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Extra virgin olive oil, a prime component of the Mediterranean diet, boasts an impressive array of health-promoting properties. An essential aspect lies in its melatonin content. Multiple studies have embarked on a quest to determine this content quantitatively, providing valuable insights into the role of this sleep-regulating hormone in our overall wellness.

One such investigation was conducted by Grao-Cruces et al., who sought to ascertain the melatonin content in various types of virgin olive oil. Their findings revealed that the melatonin concentration ranged from 71 to 119 pg/mL. Indeed, it is noteworthy that these results were obtained from extra virgin olive oils produced via cold pressing. This method is known for preserving the nutritional integrity of fruits and vegetables, thus offering a plausible explanation for these elevated levels.

It becomes apparent that extra virgin olive oil holds a significant place within the Mediterranean diet not merely due to tradition or taste preference but also owing to its considerable melatonin content. This content is believed to contribute substantially to the noted health benefits associated with this dietary pattern, which include improved cardiovascular health and enhanced longevity.

In light of these revelations, it becomes evident that an exploration of melatonin determination in refined olive oil is warranted as well - a point that will be addressed subsequently.

Melatonin Content in Refined Olive Oil

Melatonin determination in refined olive oil necessitates the examination of scholarly research. Studies indicate that the melatonin content in refined olive oil, contrary to the high levels evident in virgin variants, appears significantly diminished. The process of refining, which includes bleaching and deodorizing treatments under high temperature conditions, may contribute to this reduced phytochemical content.

An exploration of melatonin levels across different types of olive oil reveals a marked disparity. Extra virgin olive oil, a key element of the Mediterranean diet, exhibits substantial quantities of melatonin compared to its refined counterpart. This distinction underscores the impact of extraction and processing techniques on the preservation of beneficial compounds.

Specific findings underscore that extra virgin olive oil outstrips refined variants in terms of melatonin content. The highest concentration of melatonin has been detected in extra virgin olive oils produced via cold pressing, with reported values ranging between 71 and 119 pg/mL. Conversely, refined oils exhibit markedly lower values, illustrating the tangible benefits and superiority of virgin oils within the context of melatonin provision.

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Functional Value of Olive Oil

Olive oil, an integral component of the Mediterranean diet, is revered globally for its health-promoting attributes and has gained recognition as a functional food. This term refers to a dietary ingredient that possesses a beneficial effect on one or more target functions in the body, improving health and reducing disease risk.

The functional value of olive oil is not solely derived from its rich content of monounsaturated fatty acids. Instead, it emanates from minor constituents such as polyphenols, tocopherols, and phytosterols that are endowed with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Among these minor constituents lies melatonin - a hormone synthesized by the pineal gland in the brain. Melatonin plays a pivotal role in regulating circadian rhythms and sleep-wake cycles. Although present in small quantities in olive oil, it contributes significantly to its functional value.

Several studies have underscored the health-promoting effects of melatonin. It has been linked with the mitigation of oxidative stress, promotion of sleep quality, and potential reduction of cancer risk. The presence of melatonin in olive oil is thus viewed as an added advantage that enhances its overall health benefits.

In essence, the functional value of olive oil is augmented by the synergistic effect of its minor constituents including melatonin, which work collectively to promote optimal health.

Absorption and Physiological Functions of Melatonin from Olive Oil

Melatonin, a potent indolamine, is not only synthesized in the pineal gland but also found in various plant sources like olive oil. The ingestion of melatonin-rich food contributes to the body's melatonin pool, influencing its absorption and physiological functions. Upon consumption, melatonin present in olive oil gets absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract. It then enters the bloodstream, leading to an increase in blood plasma concentration.

A study by Borisenkov et al. demonstrated a significant elevation in plasma melatonin levels following the intake of melatonin-enriched food products. This implies that dietary melatonin is bioavailable and can contribute significantly to circulating levels of this hormone.

Considering the physiological functions of dietary-derived melatonin, it plays an integral role in circadian rhythm regulation. It acts as a synchronizer, regulating sleep-wake cycles and other biological processes tied to the 24-hour daily period. Additionally, it exhibits potent antioxidant properties that aid in combating oxidative stress and inflammation.

Melatonin derived from vegetable intake has been linked with various health benefits such as improved sleep quality, enhanced immune function, cardiovascular protection, and anti-cancer effects. These findings suggest that incorporating melatonin-rich foods like olive oil into one's diet could potentially confer substantial health advantages.

Bottle of premium Selo Olive Oil displayed on a table next to freshly baked bread, inviting a sensory culinary experience.


The above discussion has clarified that melatonin is present in olive oil, specifically in virgin olive oil, and detailed its potential health advantages.

To recap, melatonin is a hormone produced in the pineal gland that is essential for regulating circadian rhythms. Notably, studies have shown significant concentrations of melatonin in virgin olive oil, a key component of the Mediterranean diet.

The body efficiently absorbs melatonin from olive oil, contributing to its physiological functions and potentially benefiting from vegetable intake. Conversely, refined olive oil contains lower levels of this beneficial hormone.

These insights highlight the functional value of olive oil—a rich source of minor constituents with potential health benefits, including melatonin.

Embrace Wellness with Selo Croatian Olive Oil

The exploration herein invites readers to consider the incorporation of Selo Croatian Olive Oil into their dietary regimen. This exceptional product offers not only the well-documented health advantages of olive oil but also the unique benefit of naturally occurring melatonin.


FAQ: Olive Oil, Sleep, and Melatonin

Does Olive Oil contain Melatonin?

Yes, olive oil, particularly virgin and extra virgin variants, contains melatonin. Multiple studies have shown that melatonin concentration in virgin olive oil ranges from 71 to 119 pg/mL. However, refined olive oil tends to have significantly lower levels of melatonin.

What is the role of melatonin in sleep?

Melatonin plays a crucial role in regulating sleep and wakefulness. Produced by the pineal gland in response to darkness, melatonin helps signal to the body that it is time to sleep. It helps regulate circadian rhythms and promotes deep and restful sleep.

Can olive oil with melatonin improve sleep?

Absolutely! While the concentration of melatonin in olive oil is relatively low compared to other melatonin-rich foods or supplements, incorporating olive oil into your diet can still contribute to an overall increase in melatonin levels, which may lead to improved sleep quality. It's also important to consider the other health benefits of olive oil, such as its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which can contribute to overall well-being and better sleep. Additionally, it's always best to consult with a healthcare professional before making any changes to your sleep routine.

How much olive oil should I consume to improve sleep?

There is no specific recommended dosage of olive oil for improving sleep as it varies from person to person and depends on various factors such as your overall diet, lifestyle, and individual health needs. However, the general recommendation for olive oil consumption is about 2 tablespoons (30 ml) per day as part of a balanced diet. This amount is found to be beneficial for overall health and may contribute to better sleep. It's always advisable to consult with a healthcare professional before making any changes to your diet or sleep routine.

What is the best time to consume olive oil for better sleep?

It is generally recommended to consume olive oil during the day, preferably as part of your meals. This can help your body to absorb and utilize the melatonin and other beneficial compounds in olive oil throughout the day, which may contribute to better sleep at night. However, it's always best to consult with a healthcare professional before making any changes to your diet or sleep routine.