Changing Your Circadian Rhythm

Circadian Rhythm

Your Guide For a Calm Circadian Rhythm Schedule, Soothing Nights

If you have read our previous articles on “What are Circadian Rhythms?” and “5 Ways To Beat Insomnia”, you probably have a good grasp of how vital circadian rhythms are and the potential circadian rhythm schedule.

In short, the circadian rhythm schedule refers to the biological clock inside our bodies that syncs all our organs with light and dark.

If it is light, your body awakens, your memory and concentration sharpen, and your blood pressure increases. 

At night, organs start to slow down, your circadian rhythm schedule changes, and you feel dizzy and fall asleep.

If you have a normal circadian rhythm schedule, then you probably know how good it feels when you have that long, soothing sleep at night. 

Nevertheless, some people are on the other end of the spectrum and struggle to get things back to a normal rhythm.

If you are suffering, don’t worry, we’ve got your back! In this article, we will go through some valuable tips that you probably have never heard about before to changing your circadian rhythm.

Without further ado, let’s see what to do!

Baby Steps – Understanding The Importance

Before diving into the essential details of changing your circadian rhythm, it is imperative to understand “why” you want to achieve a good circadian rhythm schedule. 

For example, the goal of some people is just to get good sleep.3

However, it is not the most motivating reason that can make you push your limits and go back to the circadian rhythm schedule. 

So, understanding what an abnormal circadian rhythm schedule does to your body is vital. This is what will make you initiate changing your circadian rhythm.

Abnormal sleep and circadian rhythm schedule have been associated with increased risk of heart disease, diabetes, declined cognitive measures, erectile dysfunction, and abnormal moods.

Imagine what that sneaky, lousy habit does to your body! Don’t worry, when you go back to change your circadian rhythm, everything will go back to normal!

With that in mind, let’s see what we have for you today.

These Will Mess Up With Your Circadian Rhythm Schedule

Many bad habits can worsen your circadian rhythm schedule. We won’t go through all of them because we have mentioned some of them in our previous articles on “5 Ways To Beat Insomnia.”

We will go through some points that were not mentioned there, so without further ado, let’s get to it!

Noise

It is true that some people can sleep in noise. This is because the brain can filter unnecessary information (noise) during sleep.

But you should know that not all sounds can impact you the same. For example, the noise of your running air conditioner won’t bother you too much.

However, abrupt sounds, like a notification sound, can negatively impact your sleep and circadian rhythm. 

Also, studies found that sounds that carry meaning, like two people talking, are more likely to wake you up (1).

Noise can’t only make it harder to sleep but can even make you experience low-quality sleep that can further mess up your natural rhythm. You can work on changing your circadian rhythm by working on creating a tranquil environment.

If you must sleep in a noisy environment, getting earplugs can help you a lot.

Heat

Did you know that elevated core body temperature can lead to insomnia by changing your circadian rhythm? 

Scientists found that high body temperature can lead to poor sleep. 

In contrast, reducing core body temperatures can improve sleep (2).

Keep in mind that a low temperature shouldn’t make you feel chilly or uncomfortable. 

A cool temperature that is enough to cool your body but not too severe to make you feel uncomfortable is what is required.

Some people say that high temperature doesn’t prevent them from falling asleep. While that could be true for some people, heat can impair your sleep quality, even more than noise!

So, make sure that your room is cool before going to bed. If it’s winter, use blankets to avoid the excessive cold that can make you uncomfortable and make it harder to fall asleep.

Will Supplementation Help?

If you have read our previous articles, you probably know our answer: YES!

A recent study found that various supplementation with the use of B complex, Gaba, and Magnesium in people who work the night shift resulted in a 20% decrease in circadian misalignment and improved weight and BMI. Melatonin was also shown in studies to help but is not often recommended for long-term treatment. (3)

This highlights the importance of having a healthy circadian rhythm and its implications in different health parameters like weight.

Therefore, if you have tried everything mentioned in this article and previous articles, supplementation can be your to go solution. 

Make sure to consult your doctor before supplementing it, though! Especially if you are on other types of medication too. We look at labs before we make recommendations regarding people’s supplements rather than blindly recommended supplements

Can magnesium help with changing your circadian rhythm?

Yes! Lack of magnesium leads to abnormal circadian rhythms schedule and sleep patterns. This is because magnesium can lower the firing rate of your nerve cells.

When these cells are inhibited, your brain calms, and you are more likely to sleep. In fact, magnesium is used medically to treat seizures!

You can go for magnesium-rich foods like pumpkin seeds, almonds, spinach, cashews, peanuts, cereal, black beans, dark chocolate, and brown rice.

You can also find magnesium as a supplement. Ensure not to exceed the tolerable upper intake level for magnesium: 350 mg.

Vitamin D?

We all know that vitamin D is essential for bones and immunity, but is it important when it comes to sleep? Yes, absolutely!

Many research papers emphasize the correlation between low vitamin D and poor sleep. In fact, one clinical trial found that vitamin D supplementation improves sleep quality and syncs circadian rhythms in people who are vitamin D deficient.

Sun exposure is the first way to get enough vitamin D to your body. If you live in a city where you don’t see the sun that much, you might want to consider vitamin D supplementation.

Eating Your Circadian Rhythm .. huh?

Did you know that circadian rhythms schedule are an essential factor in regulating the hormonal control of blood sugar? 

If you eat the same amount of food daily, but you eat most of it in breakfast and a small part of it in the night, you may see improved blood sugar compared to doing the reverse.

This is because when we have normal circadian rhythms, our body tends to secrete a greater amount of hormones that control blood glucose in the morning compared to nighttime.

Specifically, this hormone is GLP-1. Studies found that people who eat larger portions during breakfast have better sugar control compared to those who eat the same large portions but at night (5).

Also, consuming more of the daily energy intake at dinner is associated with obesity and bad sleep (6).

So, we can say that a good circadian rhythm affects how the body responds to food, and food can affect our circadian rhythm.

If you avoid eating heavy dinner, you won’t only improve your circadian rhythm, but you will also enjoy a better weight and healthy blood sugar!

Take-Home Message

We are glad that you are still reading up here! We are impressed by how motivated you are. 

And well, for a good reason!

In this article, we went through A LOT of information. Here are the main takeaways: 

  1. Abnormal circadian rhythms can negatively impact our health by increasing the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and sexual dysfunction
  2. Avoiding noise and elevated core body temperature is a great way to improve sleep quality
  3. Supplements like melatonin, magnesium, and vitamin D can help with abnormal rhythms
  4. Heavy dinners can impair your sleep and increase the chance of obesity and bad glucose control

Did you enjoy reading that? If yes, let us know in the comments below how you successfully managed to reset your circadian rhythm and the change you experienced in your life!

And as always, stay tuned for more articles on health and wellbeing!

References

1-     https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11163282/

2-     https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22738673/

3-     https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34091954/

4-     https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28475473/

5-     https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25724569/

6-     https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28967343/

Read More

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The best form of magnesium for muscle cramps

Healthy lifestyle habits with Dr. Steele

 

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