Good morning, sunshine! Not a morning person? Don’t worry. You don’t have to be cheery about it to reap the rewards of rising early. The health benefits of getting outside in the morning and catching some proverbial “rays” are substantial and well documented, and provide you with an easy way to boost not only your outlook on the day ahead of you, but to make an impact on your ongoing sleep patterns.
In our blog earlier this month, we demystified the concept of circadian rhythm—that 24-hour schedule your body should naturally stick to. But what if it doesn’t? For those who suspect they struggle with circadian rhythm disruptions, the impacts are significant. Advances in genetic studies of circadian rhythms have led to the recognition that the circadian system is tightly coupled with processes controlling both sleep and metabolism.
Jet lag is simply a disruption in your circadian rhythm. And those disruptions can have significant effects on both your physical and mental health. Circadian rhythms are physical, mental and behavioral changes that follow a daily cycle.
We all know the phrase, “Take a deep breath.” Some love it; some hate it. But whether you’re angry, stressed, scared or all of the above, pausing to take a calming breath really can take your blood pressure down a notch. Experts say there’s even more to it than that. The practice of meditation can provide you with a sense of peace and balance that can benefit both your emotional and physical health.
The mind + body connection is a powerful one. Research has shown that exercise like jogging, swimming, cycling and running have been proven to reduce anxiety and depression. Plus, exercise improves mental health by bolstering self-esteem and cognitive function.