Do you love watching sunrises and sunset? And did you know it’s one of the best things you can do to regulate your circadian rhythm which is responsible for the rhythm of your bodily functions?
We know that getting outdoor light first thing in the morning is vital for hormone balance and overall health. But depending on where you live in the world, it may not be possible for you to watch sunrises/sunsets on a regular basis, and depending on the climate/season you live in and/or your life circumstances (eg. working early morning/ late night shifts, etc), you may not be able to expose your skin to those therapeutic wavelengths during dusk and dawn. This is when red light therapy can come in as a handy biohacking tool.
So what are the benefits of Red Light Therapy (RLT)?
Boosts collagen production
Normalizes circadian therm
Improves skin health/complexion (also check out my post on mature and aging skin here)
Reduces recovery time
Expedites wound healing
Supports the body in detoxing
Enhances / calms mood (even newborn puppies gravitate to the calming red light!)
Let’s be honest - nothing replaces the real deal - the frequencies of outdoor light first thing in the morning in your retina. But RLT is the second best thing if you live in cold climates and/or are unable to get sufficient outdoor light exposure throughout the day.
Here are 9 tips to help regulate your circadian rhythm throughout the day.
Do what you are able to from this list. Remember that spending as much time outdoor as possible, even if it is shorter intervals throughout the day, is the goal.
LET NATURAL LIGHT IN - open blinds and curtains in your home first thing in the morning and open your windows as well, both to let in fresh air and to allow the sunlight’s wavelengths to flow into your home. Also, ensure that maximal outdoor light streams in your home/office. Do you have a room that has less windows or get less sunlight? Try to arrange your home and furnishings in a way that you spend the most time in rooms/spaces with the most natural light.
ENJOY YOUR MORNING COFFEE?MATCHA/BEVERAGE OUTSIDE - even a few minutes of outdoor time in the morning - regardless of whether or climate - add to the regulation of your circadian rhythm.
KEEP WINDOWS OPEN A CRACK DURING THE DAY / WHEN YOU WORK - fresh air and light during the day helps regulate your body.
EAT YOUR MEALS OUTSIDE WHEN WEATHER PERMITS - a change in the scenery with the added benefit of fresh air and outdoor light helps refresh and recharge the body and mind midday.
DRIVE WITH YOUR WINDOWS DOWN OR SUNROOF OPEN WHEN OUTDOOR AIR QUALITY PERMITS - no explanation needed here:)
GET IN NATURE AS MUCH AS YOU CAN - even a few minutes here and there helps and adds up. Walk the fog, walk around the block, walk to the store, take the trash out. After all, being outside used to be our evolutionary norm…
REPLACE LED LIGHTBULBS IN BEDROOM WITH RLT LIGHTBULBS - the best thing I have done to help me sleep is replacing the LED bulb of the lamp on my bedroom nightstand with RLT bulb. The red light in the evening (when I most use the lamp) is has a calming effect right before bedtime.
WEAR BLUE LIGHT BLOCKING / LIGHT SENSITIVITY GLASSES - in the afternoon as evening approaches, especially if you spend a lot of time on your computer or phone with blue light. Excessive blue light exposure has a very negative impact on our circadian rhythm, tricking our bodies into thinking it is daytime. Mitigating this with glasses with special lenses can help offset this and make a significant improvement in your sleep and overall health.
USE RED LIGHT THERAPY STRATEGICALLY AS A SUPPLEMENT - using RLT in the dawn and dusk hours is the best to mimic nature and reap the most benefit. I use SAUNA SPACE’s PHOTON Full Spectrum Infrared Therapy Light and love it. I use it in the morning and/or evening (depending on how much outdoor light I was exposed to during the day) for anywhere between 5-15 minutes each time. I also use the PHOTON on painful joints or body parts after a hard workout to help with recovery. (Make sure to do your research and find a light that emits low or zero EMF! The Photon emits no UV or blue light, is compact and portable, hypoallergenic, includes one ThermaLight® bulb and emits No EMFs).
Have you tried RLT? If so, in what ways has it helped you?
*Note: Nothing contained here is medical advice. These are simply suggestions based on things that have helped me. You should research what is best for you.
Stay happy and healthy,