Ask Susan: Melatonin, Tryptophan, B6, and Knock Me Out
Ask Susan: Melatonin,
Tryptophan, B6, and Knock Me Out
Over the course of her research and development career, Susan Beck has produced over 300 evidence-based products for the dietary supplement, nutraceutical, functional food/beverage, and cosmeceutical industries. Before joining goop to lead our product development, she spent time working for the largest food company in the world. Susan holds a PhD in nutritional science and a master’s degree in traditional Chinese medicine. She’s also an acupuncturist and a nutritionist.
Susan is the person we go to when we’re falling down a Google search spiral and we need to know if X, Y, or Z supplement, tech device, or practice is going to save our lives or not. She spends a lot of time sifting through scientific literature and research. Plus she’s a brilliant formulator. Most recently, she’s responsible for goop’s nutritional soft chews—Knock Me Out, Perfect Attendance, and Nerd Alert—which she created to address common complaints, like sleep. Or rather, lack of sleep. Made with melatonin and two of its natural partners (tryptophan and vitamin B6), Knock Me Out is a bite of mint chocolate formulated to help you rest easy.
A Q&A with Susan Beck, PhD
Most people have the occasional sleepless night now and then. Either we have a hard time falling asleep or we have a hard time staying asleep. So we wanted a solution for those evenings that bring with them a sneaking suspicion that tonight might be one of those restless nights.
You’ve probably heard of melatonin. It’s a hormone the brain produces to help regulate our circadian rhythm—the internal clock that controls our sleep-wake cycle. Our body’s melatonin production is governed by our exposure to light; darkness increases production, and bright light, like daylight, decreases it. So ideally melatonin should naturally increase before bedtime, helping get us to sleep, and decrease when we wake up in the morning, making us feel alert and awake. But exposure to bright light from our cell phones or computers before bedtime or even just turning on the bathroom light in the middle of the night can disrupt our circadian rhythms and make it more difficult to sleep. Melatonin levels can also decrease as we age.
That’s why we combined melatonin, which has been clinically shown to help people fall asleep and stay asleep, with two other natural elements of your sleep cycle: tryptophan and vitamin B6. Tryptophan—commonly associated with that Thanksgiving turkey nap—is an amino acid precursor for both melatonin and serotonin production. Vitamin B6 is part of the melatonin production chain, too: It helps convert tryptophan into melatonin. That way, these synergistic ingredients create a formula that can truly “knock us out” for those times when we need it the most.
You can expect sleepiness or drowsiness: exactly what you’re looking for. If you’re not a regular melatonin-taker, you’ll want to start with just one chew—or even half of one—and work your way up to two as your body adjusts to continued use.
Of course, take Knock Me Out only when you’re ready to knock out for the night. You don’t want to doze off in a meeting or in any situation that could put you at risk, like behind the wheel of a car.
These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.