So first and foremost, definition of circadian comes from the Latin phrase, circa diem, which means around a day. So essentially circadian means around a day. And these are 24 hour cycles that are a part of our body’s natural internal clock. And it’s important to understand there’s, each of our cells actually has a clock, but there is a master clock that is called the suprachiasmatic nucleus that’s found in the brain that is influenced by environmental cues, especially light.
Light is one of the things that really can help reset the circadian rhythm and proper lighting at proper times can absolutely increase the quality in depth of your sleep. So circadian pacemaker, they call it also known as the suprachiasmatic nucleus, which is a massive mouthful, is the master sleep clock. This is the clock that sinks all the other clocks in the body. And as I mentioned, all of our cells actually have circadian rhythm. They discovered that each of our organs has a circadian clock.
So our bodies are essentially, it’s amazing, it’s that each part of our body has its own clock. Exercise, eating and temperature can affect the master clock. And again, light is the most powerful when we’re talking about sleep and wake cycles. But there’s so many other factors. So as the sun sets the master clock initiates what’s called melatonin. Melatonin is a sleep hormone.
Now, this is usually is taking exogenously for people that have sleep issues, but our bodies naturally produce melatonin. It’s a hormone. And as the sun starts to set that melatonin faucet turns on, and that’s when you start to get sleepy. And that’s when the body temperature starts to drop, and that’s usually your body’s preparing your mind and body for a peaceful night’s rest. So when the circadian rhythm is thrown off, it means that the body systems don’t function optimally, and this can happen again for a number of reasons. This can be cause of blue light, because of technology, because of stress. There’s so many reasons, things that can disrupt our circadian rhythm, and let’s talk about a few of those.
So specifically, jet lag is a big one for people that travel a lot. A social jet lag, meaning like if you go out on the weekends and you’re partying to all hours of the night, then you’re creating what’s called sleep debt, inconsistent sleep, wake schedules, stress, blue light exposure. These are all things that can disturb our natural body’s rhythm, our Circadian clock.
So, how do you maintain a healthy circadian rhythm? Really simply get some sun natural light first thing in the A.M. This really, really, really helps. Very important to when you wake up, get outside, get some sun on your skin. It’ll help that clock stay synced. Follow a consistent sleep schedule. Really, this can’t be stated enough, especially waking up at the same time every day. If you can go to bed at the same time, that’s great too. But waking up at the same time helps keep this clock in rhythm and keep your sleep cycles healthy, healthy lifestyle habits. What’s good for your health is also good for your sleep.
So making sure you’re not eating too close to bedtime, making sure you’re moving your body, making sure you’re staying hydrated, making sure that you’re getting away from electromagnetic frequencies, meaning getting into nature, getting your feet on the ground, doing things that can discharge the mind, body, stress buildup such as meditation or again, being in nature or swimming in the ocean or lakes.
All these little things actually help keep your body in sync. The more you can get in nature, the more you can get back to living naturally, the healthier your circadian clock’s going to be. There was an interesting study done where they took several, a group of people that were having chronic insomnia, and they took them camping and they found that every single one of the people that they took into nature, or a very high percentage, I’m not sure the exact percentage, but I think it might even been every single person that went on this experiment, sleep improved. And that’s because they were connected to the natural rhythms of the earth, the sun setting, the sun rising, candescent light from the fire around the campfire.
All of these things can help our bodies stay balanced. So making sure you take the time to rest, making sure you take the time to honor that rhythm is super important because a healthy circadian clock means a healthy sleep system. A healthy sleep system means a healthy body and mind.
So let me know if you have any questions. If you’re watching this on YouTube, in the comments below, hit the bell, subscribe if you’re watching this on YouTube. If you’re listening to this on the podcast, subscribe and share it with somebody who you feel would benefit from it. All right, I’ll see you in the next episode.