May 24, 2013 in Health
We pay less and less attention to our natural body rhythms – and our bodies hate us for it!
I felt this deeply and personally after getting on a plane at 5.30 in the morning recently. Every cell in my body screamed “where’s my bed?” Then, closed up in a conference room with no windows on the world for the next day or two, I was running to catch up with which meal I was on, whether it was light outside or not – and mostly, whether it was really nap time or just felt like it.
We ignore our natural rhythms daily. Research shows that our societal tendency to stay up late and get less sleep is physically messing with our body chemistry and may contribute to obesity. Other ailments such as heart attacks and depression have also been shown to be affected by our natural bodily ebb and flow – called circadian rhythms.
But our bodies don’t get fooled forever. I feel it most when I am on holiday: given the opportunity, my body falls into a fairly reliable rhythm of going to bed at around midnight, waking up at around 7 – and supplementing with a gorgeous afternoon nap, preferably in a shady spot under a large tree.
What’s your natural sleep and waking cycle? Do you think we have strayed too far from our natural circadian rhythms?