We all have a natural rhythm that governs all of our actions and even our very existence. Our living spaces are a direct reflection of our personalities, with their natural rhythm and aura. While our lives are guided by cycles, such as summer and winter, day and night, sunrise and sunset, all of these cycles have rhythms that detect the direction of our lives whether we are aware of it or not.
This article will teach you everything you need to know about light and rhythms, specifically circadian rhythm lighting and how it can affect your overall quality of life.
We will cover:
1. How does Circadian rhythm work?
2. What is Circadian rhythm lighting?
3. How does light affect circadian rhythm?
4. Circadian rhythm and lighting design
Benefits of Circadian lighting for homes
Best light bulbs for circadian rhythm
1. How does Circadian Rhythm work?
You may have heard about “circadian rhythm” before in the holistic or biophilic design fields, but we are here to give you a simple breakdown of the entire concept. Circadian rhythm refers to the changes that occur within us as a result of a 24-hour cycle, such as our daily sleep-wake cycle.
Circadian is a combination of the Latin words 'Circa' and 'Diem,' which mean 'Around' and 'Day,' respectively. Everything is more streamlined when it comes to circadian rhythm, which is controlled by light and darkness, or the day and night cycle. Your body system has various circadian rhythms that are all synchronized with your brain's master clock, and light is one of the most important environmental cues that influences this master clock. People have been observing circadian rhythms for decades, but circadian rhythm lighting has only recently gained significant attention.
2. What is Circadian Rhythm Lighting?
Circadian rhythm lighting is lighting that is designed to influence our body's natural circadian rhythm. It does this by sending signals to a tiny part of our brain (the master clock) in the hypothalamus region, telling it whether it is day or night and how to react. Disruptions in our daily routines, as well as the lighting technologies we are exposed to on a daily basis, have a negative impact on our circadian rhythm.
This disruption of our natural circadian rhythm has been linked to a variety of health problems, including cancer, depression, anxiety, and others. A healthy circadian rhythm promotes much better sleep at night and improves our overall health, which has a long-term effect on our body function. Circadian rhythm lighting is a successful attempt to restore our bodies' natural circadian rhythm. It regulates our exposure to light in order to expose us to the appropriate spectrum of light at the appropriate time.
3. How does light affect circadian rhythm?
The human eye is made up of various parts, each of which serves a specific purpose. When it is day or night, the retina is in charge of receiving light and communicating with the brain. The cells in the retina are extremely sensitive to blue light, and exposure to it sends a signal to the hypothalamic master clock (MC).
When the MC receives the message, it secretes a hormone called melatonin, which starts the cycle of hormonal release that leads to sleep. Melatonin secretion allows us to have a healthy sleep cycle. In both natural and artificial lighting, there is a color spectrum; during the day, light shifts from a warm white spectrum to a blue spectrum and back to a warm spectrum at night. The blue light spectrum tells our brain when it's time to be active, while the warm color spectrum tells our bodies when it's time to sleep.
Our eyes and brain work together to receive signals from the natural day and night cycle, informing our bodies when to sleep and when to be awake. Exposure to this spectrum of blue light at night can disrupt our sleep, just as exposure to warm light during the day can reduce our alertness.
4. Circadian Rhythm and Lighting design
Lighting designers continue to improve the blue and warm lights they design as technology advances and various types of research are conducted in this field. Circadian rhythm lighting is essentially an artificial sunset to sunrise that helps control our body's natural circadian rhythm.
Circadian rhythm lighting is essentially an artificial sunset to sunrise that helps control our body's natural circadian rhythm.
The use of electric light to support our health systems and natural rhythms is the focus of circadian rhythm lighting. Exposure to blue light at specific wavelengths has been shown in studies to be detrimental to melatonin production. This concept of lights and rhythms is new and still gaining traction, but it has proven to be effective. The goal of creating circadian rhythm lights is to have lights that work in sync with your natural body clock, whether or not the natural cycle is present.
This synchronization improves your comfort and alertness while also creating a more relaxing and healthy environment. This sync is achieved by changing the wavelength of the light without changing the color of the light significantly. Circadian rhythm light investigates the depth of the wavelength shift and how changes in lighting temperature affect our overall well-being and health.
1. Benefits of Circadian Lighting for Homes
Lighting products for the home have transcended beyond the common electric bulbs. Thanks to new technology, you can now enjoy biophilic home decor and designs that positively impact your circadian rhythms. Everything in your home, from the decor to the design, can influence your mental health and overall well-being. We must take care of our natural rhythms because we spend more than half of our lives at home, which serves as a safe haven where we entertain guests and share some of our most memorable experiences.
This is why it is critical that your home allows you to perform optimally at all times. To function optimally, your body requires a specific type of light, and circadian rhythm lighting....
The benefits of circadian rhythm lighting for homes include, but and are not limited to:
Increased alertness and better productivity
Better Sleep Cycles
Increased Cognitive Processing
Lighting designers are continuing to learn about how your body reacts to different light spectrums in order to create circadian lighting for homes and lighting products that will allow you to live your life to the fullest.
2. Best Light Bulbs for Circadian Rhythm
If you’re considering circadian lighting for your home, not just any light bulb will do. There are specific light bulbs that were created to align and synchronize with your natural circadian rhythm. The best light bulbs for circadian rhythm are not restricted to only hanging lights, they can be wall lights or even desk lamps, what matters is that their intensity can be controlled.
There are two ways light bulbs' can achieve circadian rhythm synchronization; tunable lighting, spectrally optimized LED solutions and color tuning. Color tuning has to do with the control of white light from cool white-blue light to warm white- a yellowish hue and neutral white. The intensity of the light can also be adjusted for the different hues.
Some of our favorites are the Canela Vines Hanging lights; it’s a tunable light bulb with an aesthetic oak holder and vines to connect it to your ceiling. It has the ability to improve the mood of your room. All of our lighting fixtures from 2023, will be created with circadian rhythm.
Final note: Lights and Rhythms
From the beginning of this article, we tried to show you how your natural circadian rhythm can affect your overall well-being and health. Your natural circadian rhythms exist, whether you realize it or not, and they detect the flow of our lives. To live life fully, you must use circadian rhythm lighting to stay in sync with your body.
Circadian lights can be anything from hanging lights to wall lights, but what matters most is that the light intensity and tone can be adjusted.
Forest Homes has everything you need for a well-designed home. A home that is well-suited to your needs and preferences. We offer a variety of options for incorporating circadian rhythm lighting into your home, ranging from tunable bulbs to products that inspire your biophilic interiors.