How lighting affects our daily lives
The importance of circadian rhythms
Although we may not be aware of it, almost everything in our lives revolves around lighting and, as a result, we adapt our day-to-day lives to the type of lighting that surrounds us. Every factor in light has an impact on us, however small it may be. An example of this is the two time changes we experience throughout the year, which can sometimes disrupt our internal biological clock.
This is due to what are known as circadian rhythms, “physical, mental and behavioural changes that follow a 24-hour cycle,” the National Institute of General Medical Sciences reports on its website, and which are governed by the hours of light and darkness.
Circadian rhythms, in turn, are related to the internal biological clock, located in the hypothalamus of the brain, which is responsible for synchronising and adapting rhythms 24 hours a day.
For example, when we travel to another time zone we talk about jet lag, or jet lag in English, which means that our body clock is at a different time than other parts of our body, such as the intestine, the liver, the brain, etc. Therefore, we usually need time to adapt to the new situation.
This is not only true for people, but also for animals, plants and microbes.
How circadian rhythms influence our lives
In that sense, circadian rhythms have an impact on various functions in our body. As in:
- Body temperature.
- Hormone release.
- Eating and therefore digestion habits.
And, of course, in sleep where the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) is the centre for regulating circadian rhythms and controlling the production of melatonin, the hormone that produces sleepiness. It receives information about the type of light entering the optic nerves and transmits it from the eyes to the brain.
When our body receives less light, the NSQ signals the brain to make more melatonin to generate sleep.
This is why during the autumn and winter seasons, when we are exposed to less sunlight, we may feel more tired and in a lower mood. The type of lighting affects us not only physically, but also psychologically.
In fact, one of the reasons why it was proposed to eliminate the two time changes we experience every year was for that reason. However, in the end, this will not be done and we will make the change in the early hours of 30 to 31 October, where 3:00 will be changed to 2:00.
Ceiling fans to regulate circadian rhythms
To help regulate the biological clock due to the changes in the hours and lighting to which our body is subjected, ceiling fans with colour temperature regulation (warm, neutral and cool) are increasingly in demand, as they help us to balance our circadian rhythms.
Imagine that you have a BORA PRO ceiling fan in your bedroom, you have just woken up and you select the colour temperature with the remote control of the article, choosing a neutral tone. Then you go into the shower, start to get dressed and turn the light up a notch, this time to cool light.
What do we achieve by doing this? We help the body to gradually adapt, especially our internal organs. If you are one of those people who get up and can’t eat breakfast, it is for this reason, because your body is probably not yet activated. It has been proven that cold light, as it resembles natural light, is associated by the brain with waking up and being active, while warm light is recommended for rest.
Sometimes we leave the house to go to the office at night and come out of the office without light again. That is why it is important to have lighting at home that allows you to dim and change the temperature of the light.
Most of our ceiling fans take into account the importance of this and therefore incorporate dimming and 3 colour temperatures:
- Warm light: 3000K.
- Neutral light: 4000K.
- Cold light: 5500K.
Tips for balancing our biological clock
As we have explained, circadian rhythms mark our daily lives, so it is important to have a series of guidelines that help us to balance our internal clock:
- Avoid using screens before going to sleep, as the type of light emitted by mobile phones, for example, puts our brains on alert and keeps us awake.
- Try to incorporate a warm light in your bedroom that favours the relaxation of your body. The easiest thing to do in this case would be to incorporate a dimmer to play with the type of lighting according to the activity you want to do.
- Whereas, for work or concentration, use cool lights, which are ideal for greater concentration and productivity.
In short, our body is a great biological clock that needs a timetable, which is why it is important to live according to the natural rhythm of light and darkness, as the various changes in our circadian rhythms can not only affect our sleep, but can also lead to other types of medical conditions.
Discover our colour temperature ceiling fans
Discover our ceiling fans with 3 colour temperatures to regulate circadian rhythms.