how's your rhythm?
are you out of sync with the natural rhythms of life?
there is a natural rhythm to life, an ebb and flow, the force of which defines all living entities. we're talking about the daily and seasonal cycles of light and dark, of day and night, referred to as, "circadian rhythms."
the biological clocks of all living entities, and yes, that includes us, humans, are conditioned at a cellular level to align with these cycles of light and dark why? survival, baby!
survival is in our genes
all living beings are designed to survive and back in the day, like waaaaay back, (think well before the advent of youtube), the link to our survival was tied to our body's ability to produce melatonin. melatonin regulates our internal biological clock in response to the cyclical nature of light and darkness, of day and night.
and then life happened . . .
and now our circadian rhythms are f'd up (sorry, there's really no polite way to say it)
with the introduction of artificial light, including the melatonin blocking blue light emitted by our tech devices, together with 24/7 access to media, and our hectic, around the clock work schedules, our bodies no longer know up from down, light from dark, day from night.
our connection to the modern world has disconnected us from a physiological need to take our cues from the natural environment.
and we're paying the price.
the currency of which is our health
chronodisruption = chaos
chronodisruption is when our circadian rhythms are disrupted and our biological clock kind of goes haywire. it's linked to heaps of health disorders such as:
poor cognitive function
take a step back to leap forward
first and foremost, if you are experiencing any of the conditions mentioned above, we urge you to consult with your healthcare professional. the information provided here is for informational and educational purposes only. it is not intended as medical advice.
according to ayurveda, (an ancient system of healing) by reconditioning ourselves to sync back up with the natural circadian rhythms, we can:
increase our energy levels
wake up feeling refreshed
eliminate sugar, carb and caffeine cravings
feel healthier as we age
the key is to make the most of the natural flow of the day
and look, we get it.
what follows is an ideal schedule that simply may not jive with your reality. it doesn't jive perfectly with our reality either.
the "tonic" lies in finding the areas where you can tweak your routine, where you can make even one or two adjustments to reset your biological clock and better align with the natural circadian rhythms
6am to 10am
according to ayurveda, the hours immediately following sunrise are like the spring season. spring tends to be watery and muddy. ideally, one should wake before sunrise to avoid feelings of sluggishness, stiffness and congestion. upon waking, drink a glass of warm water with lemon or a drop of lemon essential oil. scrape your tongue to stimulate digestion. go potty and get some exercise in. the heavier quality of these hours provides the strength needed for physical movement and don't forget to fuel the body with a small to moderately sized, nutritional breakfast.
10am to 2pm
ahhh summertime. these hours correspond with late spring to summer. just as the sun burns the hottest during the summer months, so too does our digestive fire burn the hottest during these hours. this means, you'll want to to consume your largest meal during this window of time. and if at all possible, sneak in a 5-15 minute afternoon relaxation to reset your inner rhythms (which we appreciate is tough to do as it is smack dab in the middle of the typical working day)
2pm to 6pm
in ayurveda, these 4 hours correspond with the winter season. the nervous system is more active making it an opportune time for creativity and mental activities. avoid a heavy meal. cravings during these hours may be an indication that you did not properly fuel up during the previous window of time.
6pm to 10pm
during these hours, melatonin rises and cortisol, the stress handling hormone, drops. this means your body is prepping the mind and body for sweet, sweet slumber. dim the lights at sundown and devote a few minutes to a bedtime ritual such as meditation, yoga, MELT or breathing exercises and try to hit the pillow by 10pm.
10pm to 2am
do you get a second wind between 10pm and 2am? according to ayurveda, this window of time mirrors the 10am to 2pm window. during these hours your liver goes into major detox mode. your body is focused on physical repair. if you resist your body's need to sleep, you can disrupt your liver from doing its very important janitorial duties and thwart the regeneration your physical body needs.
2am to 6am
the nervous system is more active at this time and focused on psychological repair. yup, we're talking about the mind. it's not uncommon to feel like you have extra energy during this window and find it difficult to sleep. but sleep you must. the nervous system actually needs this energy for regeneration.