So if you budge to and from work under cover of dark and stay indoors over lunch, you’re not doing yourself any favors.
The work that has been done suggests that people who are outdoors at least one hour-a-day report fewer sleep complaints in the general population, says Dr Stephany Biello, senior lecturer in psychology at the University of Glasgow. The evidence suggests that people sleep better and show improved mood if exposed to sun during the day.
Apparently, its all to do with circadian rhythms, the cyclical variations (of about 24 hours) that are evident in many areas of our daily life. These rhythms include sleeping and waking, the rise and fall of temperature and blood pressure, and other factors such as gastrointestinal, renal, and immune system activity to name just a few, continues Dr Biello.
The external light/dark cycle is a primary synchroniser to the internal body clock. We know that seasonal responses in many mammals are controlled by the length of the photo-period. We also know that lethargy, changes in appetite, and loss of sexual interest seen in many small mammals in the winter are mediated by the reduced amount of daylight
The next time your boss asks you why you took two hours over lunch, confuse him with the key phrases circadian rhythm and photo-period and tell him it helps you work better for longer.
It’s also proved that there are some other things which could help you become more productive.
Chances are your nights sleep will become far more beneficial if you find replacements for your mattress and pillows rather than wondering where to name a star. An overhaul is also likely to produce 32 cents in lost coins, a comb and that T-shirt of hers you deliberately lost in the wash.
Orthopedic doctors believe that many back and neck problems are caused by shoddy pillows. Don’t be cheap. You’ll need a pillow that adjusts to your contours, rather than one that retains its shape like a bouncy castle and leaves you waking like you’ve been held in an eight-hour headlock.
As a rule, go for down or feathers as opposed to synthetic fibers. No pillow should see more than ten years service. The same goes for mattresses. If you’re wondering if your mattress has passed its best take a comparison test in your local bed shop.
The difference will be blindingly obvious.
The consumption of sleeping potions is, by and large, governed by common sense. A cup of Oval tine — recommended. A bottle of whiskey — not recommended. However, your local health-food shop may stock several little known helpers.
Valerian Root (tea or tablets) is a powerful natural sedative and muscle relaxant shown in scientific studies to be effective in reducing the time it takes to fall asleep.
Hop teas, used extensively for the treatment of insomnia, can lower tension and anxiety while catnip tea not only wards off mosquitoes but also induces relaxation. A cup of passion flower tea could have much the same restful aftermath.