When your lifestyle is at odds with your internal body clock (your circadian rhythm), it can cause everything from fatigue to insomnia, anxiety, depression, weight gain, and more.
Whether or not you’ve disrupted your circadian rhythm yet or not, anybody can begin TODAY to live in better alignment with their circadian rhythms.
For signs that your circadian rhythm may be off:
For causes of circadian rhythm disturbance:
For the importance of sleep on your health:
Sleep disturbance and circadian rhythm disruption is affecting a large portion of Americans. Here are some strategies to help you get your sleep and circadian rhythm back in balance. Make these habits part of your daily routine and let yourself flourish. If you have teenagers and young adults in your family, teach them these habits at a young age so they can avoid these health issues
Here’s how to balance your body’s internal clock::
☀ Get Natural Daytime Light
The most powerful external influence on your circadian rhythm is the 24-hour light-dark cycle. If you expose yourself to bright light shortly after waking in the morning, you will feel more alert during the day and fall asleep more easily at night. Make sure you get sunlight on your skin for 15 minutes three times per week. Just don’t expose yourself enough to get a sunburn. The health benefits of sunlight exposure have been ignored during the past 50 years and it has been to our detriment.
💡 Consider Light Therapy
Light therapy boxes or lamps emit light that simulates sunshine indoors (without the sunburn effects). If used in the morning, they may help to support energy and mood while resetting the circadian rhythm or hormones, like melatonin.
📱 Shut Down Screens at Night
Humans evolved with dark nights, until electricity was invented about a century ago. Screens are especially problematic at night because of the blue light they emit—suppressing melatonin just when it should be on the rise. Ideally, your bedroom should be light free so that your brain doesn’t get confused and not provide you with adequate sleep.
🍏 Try Intermittent Fasting
Our digestion and ability to manage blood sugar levels fluctuate on a daily rhythm. Studies suggest that restricting the eating window to certain hours of the day may align with our internal metabolic rhythms and support healthy metabolism. If you can, avoid eating any solid food for 12 hours until the night prior until you wake up. This will rest your gut and allow your fasting insulin levels to fall to appropriate levels.
I have one more post coming your way on the topic of circadian disruption and it’s all about balancing the rhythm of our hormones with supplements. For other strategies to maximize sleep, read this post:
My website is at www.healthwithoutrisk.com
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I’ll be back soon with one more post on this important topic.
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