We put these melatonin drinks to the test to see if they helped us sleep better — it turns out they actually made a difference

We put these melatonin drinks to the test to see if they helped us sleep better — it turns out they actually made a difference

View the original article at businessinsider.com
  • Som Sleep claims to be a drug-free, non-habit-forming beverage that helps support sleep.
  • The formula includes melatonin, magnesium, vitamin B6, L-theanine, and GABA to promote relaxation, maintain a normal sleep cycle, and support healthy sleep patterns.
  • It's labeled as gluten-, dairy-, GMO-, and sugar-free as well as vegan and NSF-certified.
  • We tried it, and it did help us get to sleep (even for testers with noted insomnia or light sleeping habits), but some of us also noticed a groggy wake-up.
  • You can pick up 4, 12, or 24 cans on Amazon from $10 - $60.

Few things in life rank as frustrating as finally getting into bed after a long day and laying awake.

Som Sleep, a relatively new dietary supplement, is a beverage that might be able to help. The formula utilizes ingredients naturally found in the body and a healthy diet (like magnesium, vitamin B6, and melatonin) to promote a normal sleep cycle, healthy sleep pattern, and relaxation. The result is a sleep aid free of many of the concerns frequently raised; it claims to be drug-free, non-habit-forming, gluten-, dairy-, and GMO-free, and NSF-certified. And depending on which formula you buy (Original or Zero Sugar), it can also be free of sugar.

The company sent a 24-pack of the Original and Zero Sugar formula to our team, and we tested them out. The overall opinion is that they really do work — and we wouldn't chalk it up to a placebo effect.

As vice president of Insider Picks Breton Fischetti said:

I popped open a can of SOM expecting it to be something of a placebo drink — perhaps the fact that I told myself I was drinking it would make it easier to sleep. However, within about 20 minutes I was noticeably drowsy. I crawled over to bed, was asleep within seconds, and slept fully through the night. Also worth noting, for someone who doesn't usually remember dreams, the ones I had when I used SOM were especially vivid.

In another instance, as someone who deals with insomnia, I found Som Sleep to be similarly effective.

Personally, I had almost never taken a sleep aid — of any kind. I am one of those odd people who can fall asleep nearly anywhere, and, at the end of a long day, it doesn't take more than some incense and dim lighting. But I've recently been trying to transition from 20+ years of being semi-nocturnal to being a chipper, gym-going "morning person." These are helping me make a 9PM bedtime easier to adjust to. And one of these plus a warm shower knocks me out into the sort of sleep that I still associate with the exhaustion of post-finals week in college.

The company recommends you make sure you set aside 7-8 hours of sleep time after drinking Som Sleep, and we would emphasize this. Though Som Sleep does help you get to sleep faster and to sleep deeper, we did notice that waking up we did feel groggier than on a morning without Som Sleep (though that could be affected by being awoken out of deep sleep to alarms rather than naturally). Breton noted that there was a longer adjustment period: "I did find that I was especially groggy and struggled to get my brain function back up to speed at my usual rate. Overall I would say that it's a useful tool if you'd like to do everything you can to guarantee a good night of sleep and you don't have too much to do the following morning." So, just to be cautious, you might not want to make Som Sleep a daily practice. But if you've got a block period for some quality sleep and recuperation in your life, then you might find a great, purportedly non-habit forming aid in Som Sleep.

On the plus side, at $30 for 12 (~$2.50/can) it won't break the bank if you want to keep some around the house for nights you really need a good rest.

The original formula has quite a bit of sugar (8g per can), so each of our testers gravitated towards the light blue cans of their sugar-free formula. For reference, the Original (with sugar) has 40 calories per can, and the Zero Sugar option has 10 calories per can.

If you're looking for a stronger sleep aid than chamomile tea but might appreciate trying out something inexpensive and non-habit-forming first before anything more intensive, Som Sleep might be worth checking out. We found that it did help us get to sleep faster and deeper. If you have to wake up early or hate the grogginess that can accompany waking up from a deep sleep, you might want to pass.

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