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Sleep Balance Profile, Urine - ZRT Test Kit

The Sleep Balance Profile gives precise insight into imbalances of melatonin and cortisol circadian rhythms associated with acute or chronic sleep disturbances.

Test Code: ZRTSP

Also Known As:


Specimen Type: Urine


The day prior to testing avoid bananas, pineapple, avocado, nuts and nut butters, alcohol and nicotine, protein powders and protein shakes. Avoid sleep aids for 2 nights prior to collection. Specimen must be sent to lab by overnight mail Monday-Thursday only. Please read patient instructions very carefully and decide the ideal day for you to begin test.

Test Results:

5-7 Days once the lab receives the specimen. May take longer based on weather, holiday or lab delays.


For a long time, proper sleep was considered to be essential to good health. Melatonin, a hormone released during the dark phase of the light / dark cycle by the pineal gland, controls the sleep/wake cycle and the "biological clock". It is now known, however, that it also has free radical scavenging and antioxidant properties and a significant role in stimulating the immune system to defend against the growth of unhealthy tissues such as breast and prostate cancer. Melatonin is neuroprotective, as well. Adequate development of melatonin during the night, as well as suppression of development during the day by daylight exposure, form a combination vital to optimal health. Circulating melatonin is easily and efficiently hydroxylated and conjugated in the liver with sulfate to form its primary metabolite, 6-sulfatoxymelatonin (MT6s), and excreted into urine; this metabolite is measured in the Sleep Balance Profile.

Also known for its diurnal variability linked to the sleep/wake cycle is cortisol, a hormone released by the adrenal glands as a response to stress. This has the opposite trend for developing melatonin in a healthy human. Although melatonin reaches its peak in the early morning hours and rises at night, cortisol is at its lowest levels throughout the night. Upon waking, the development of melatonin dips with the beginning of daylight and cortisol and peaks upon rising for about 30 minutes to 1 hour. Throughout the day, development of cortisol slowly falls, while melatonin starts to increase in the evening as daylight decreases, and the cycle repeats itself. For example, when the cortisol cycle is disturbed due to increased stressors, this may lead to high night cortisol, interrupted sleeping habits, and exposure to more nighttime light, which in turn contributes to lower melatonin levels. Excessive stressors can thus contribute to higher cortisol and indirectly lower melatonin synthesis, preventing melatonin from performing its other beneficial and protective functions.

The Sleep Balance Profile includes Free Cortisol, Free Cortisone, and Melatonin.  The profile should be considered for individuals with:

  • Frequent waking
  • Inability to get to sleep
  • Chronic sleeplessness affecting vitality, cognition, weight and diabetes/cardiovascular disease risks

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