The world is now a more dangerous place – thanks to Daylight Saving Time! Most of us made the switch Sunday the 10th, moving our clocks ahead an hour. But the effects of that change go way beyond getting a bit more daylight in the evening. It has a big impact on health and safety! Here are a few facts you should know:
- The change is hardest on night owls. Because daylight lasts longer – they may stay up even LATER because their sleep hormone, melatonin, won’t start kicking in until later. And because the sun will rise later, they’ll have a harder time waking up in the dark.
- In general,losing an hour of sleep is a lot harder on everyone than gaining an hour in the Fall. It makes people more restless at night and can disrupt sleep patterns for a week, leaving people groggy and more prone to accidents. In fact, car crashes the week after the time change go up 6 percent.
- There’s also a spike in heart attacks the first week after we “spring forward.” It’s because we’re sleep deprived and that messes with our immune system, making us more vulnerable. In fact, in Kazakhstan, they abolished Daylight Saving Time because it was a health hazard!
So, why is it so difficult to adjust to a one-hour time change? Because when you get up before the sun, your brain doesn’t get its cue to stop making the sleep hormone melatonin, and you end up feeling groggy all day. To make the adjustment a little easier, go outside as soon as you can in the morning every day this week.Even if it’s cloudy or rainy, it will help your body to re-set its internal clock.
If the day turns you into a Worry-Wart, listen up! Schedule deep breathing sessions at 1pm every day. And all you need is 10 minutes. Our anxiety peaks around 1pm because that’s when our nervous system is most active – and the day’s stress starts accumulating. So pencil in a few minutes of deep breathing (inhaling 4 seconds through your nose, holding 7, exhaling 8 seconds through your mouth) which works to slow your heart rate and decrease stress hormones. And if you do it consistently, your blood vessels will become more relaxed, generally speaking, which will reduce your overall blood pressure.
Ready? Ahhh….especially because you’re sharing this today from The John Tesh Radio Show!