Lose weight, have more energy, sleep better and have more balanced moods by following your body’s clock? Almost sounds too good to be true but it’s not.
Your biological clock (circadian rhythm) is nothing new, but most people don’t consider it too much in their day to day life.
Circadian = originates from the latin word “circa” = around and “dies” = day – “Around the day.”
Scientists and health experts have been talking about the body’s internal clock for a long time.
Jeffrey Hall, Michael Rosbash and Michael Young were researchers and won the Nobel prize in 2017 in physiology and medicine for their discoveries of molecular mechanisms controlling the circadian rhythm. There has been a lot of research over decades with fruit flies and mice and even plants showing that all of these animals and living creatures have internal regulating clocks for sleep, eating and much more.
Back in the 1800’s the astronomer Jean Jacques d’Ortous de Mairan discovered that plants have an internal clock as well, when he noted that they opened their leaves at a certain time of day (with daylight). He placed the plants in the dark and found that they still followed their usual cycle and opened their leaves at the same time although they were kept in the dark.
Our circadian rhythm follows the sun rise and sunset schedule. When the sun rises our cortisol increases and wakes us up and should lower throughout the day as the sun sets (unless you’re perpetually stressed then we gotta work on that as your cortisol can get out of whack).
When we fly and travel and look at TV’s and computer or phone screens and have tons of artificial lighting in our homes and environment, you can guess how this can affect our internal clock.
Our body can mistake all of the artificial light as sunlight thereby messing with our internal clock rhythm.
Here’s a short n’ sweet video which explains about your body’s clock as well:
Things that mess with your circadian rhythm:
- Travelling across different time zones (jet lag)
- Staying out late at all hours of the night (social jet lag)
- Irregular sleep schedule
- Shift work (eg. policeman, nurses, etc)
- Irregular eating schedule (eg. eating 16 hours a day or eating super late at night)
- Lack of natural sunlight (eg. wearing sunglasses or if you’re always indoors)
- Artificial light (computers, TV’s, house lighting)
Why you should follow your internal clock:
Our internal biological clock is extremely important and connected to our energy, hormone health, sleep/wake cycle, stress response, metabolism, immune system, appetite, cravings and even our body weight.
Your body likes to run on a consistent internal clock and if you choose to support that, research shows that you will be less likely to have chronic disease, illness, weight gain, and mood issues. When they studied mice and messed with their internal clocks they found that the mice were much less resilient to illness and more likely to gain weight, get sick and have lower immunity. (Check out the book “Circadian Code” by Sachin Panda for a ton of research evidence!)
Want to follow your circadian rhythm?
TIPS to begin following your circadian rhythm (internal clock):
- Start by following a consistent sleep schedule eg. get to bed no later than 11 pm
- Stop eating at least 2 hours before bed
- Eat on a consistent schedule and try to practice time restricted eating eg. a 10-12 hour eating window to start with. Eg. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are 4-5 hours apart at consistent times each day and finish eating ideally by 7 pm
- Exercise at the same time daily
- Rise at the same time daily
- Try this for 2 weeks and see how you feel.
People often lose weight naturally by following their inner clock and have better sleep, happier moods and better health… and its not a crazy lifestyle change – it’s doable!
This isn’t a diet, it’s about getting back to our roots and creating sustainable long term wellness. It’s a lifestyle! 🙂
As you know, that is how I roll – I am all about the sustainable long term habit changes, no quick fixes around here. 😉
Let me know – have you tried following your internal clock ? Will you give it a try?
As always – if you’d like some help and guidance with your health concerns, feel free to book yourself a free discovery session so that I can learn more about you and see how I can help!