Your circadian rhythm, or your body clock, is what tells you when it’s time to sleep and when it’s time to wake up. Is more fragile than many people think.
Electronic Light is Messing with Your Body Clock
Our body naturally recognises darkness as our time to sleep. When you use devices such as phones and laptops right before bed this can disrupt your body clock as it can trick your body into thinking it’s still daytime outside and that you should be awake. Similarity, having a really bright light on before bed can also hinder your sleeping pattern.
Camping Could Reset Your Natural Rhythm
Camping could actually reset your body clock, not only does it take you away from the technology that’s keeping you awake, it gets you back in touch with nature. People who go camping for a long weekend tend to reset their natural rhythm and begin waking up as the sun rises. This is because the natural light-dark cycle is recognised by the body.
This technique could be especially good for people who live in the city. This is because the lack of birds, constant noise and unnatural light could be disrupting their body clock.
You Can Give Yourself Jetlag Without Even Stepping on a Plane
You don’t need to travel half way round the world. There’s actually a thing called ‘social jetleg’, which is used to describe disruption to your sleeping pattern through staying up too late or sleeping in – many people tend to do this on the weekend. This could cause your body clock to get confused, leading to difficulty falling asleep on the Sunday night and waking up on the Monday morning.
To avoid this, experts recommend going to sleep and wake up at the same time throughout the week. If due to your lifestyle this is not possible, then ensuring you get a good dose of natural sunlight in the morning can help instead.
Some of the Genes Affect the Immune System
Almost everyone can remember a time where they didn’t get enough sleep too many nights in a row and woke up with a cold. Lack of sleep can really hurt your immune system. Some recent research has suggested that certain genes that are responsible for fighting bacteria and viruses may be controlled by your circadian clock.
Fruits and Vegetables Also Have a Circadian Clock
The fruits and vegetable that we eat may not die when it’s cut down. They have their very own internal clock that keeps on going, even when they’re in the supermarkets. A study has shown that they could still respond to their environment for days after they were picked. When coaxed with light they would actually produce more cancer-fighting antioxidants at certain times.