Let the sunshine in for better health

A study from Northwestern Medicine of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign indicates that all-day exposure to natural light, even by means of a window, leads to longer sleep duration at night, as well as increased physical activity and quality of life.
Northwestern Medicine neurologist and sleep specialist, Dr Phyliss Zee says ” There is increasing evidence that exposure to light, during the day, particularly in the morning, is beneficial to your health via its effects on mood, alertness and metabolism.


The study was counducted on otigrapffice workers, and windows in the workplace could mean up to 173% more white light exposure during the day and an average of 46 minutes more sleep at night, researchers concluded. They also noted a trend of workers with more light exposure being more physically active than their counterparts.

In the study, researchers surveyed 49 day-shift office workers, of which 27 workerd in windowless offices and 22 had windows in their offices.

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Quality of life and everything health-related was self-reported whereas sleep was assesssed by means of the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI).A subset of 21 participants was surveyed for light exposure, activity and sleep by means of actigraphy, Then of these participants worked in windowless from workplaces with windows.


PSQI  component

Actigraphy logs ambulatory physiological data, in this case motion and light illuminance, by means of a scientific wearable device.

Sunlight is an important source of vitamin D and a report indicates sun exposure is important even for breast-fed babies, despite the high quantities of vitamin D in breast milk. The study was published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine.
AFP Relaxnews