Think about your average day, from the time that you roll out of bed in the morning until you turn back in to go to sleep at night. It might look something like this:
If this routine sounds anything like yours, please note: you are constantly being bombarded by artificial blue junk light, which subsequently has a negative impact on your natural circadian rhythm. When your internal clock gets disrupted, your mind and body get confused as to what time of day it really is — making it harder for you to fall asleep at night and function well the next day. High blue light environments are also known for causing headaches, eye strain and migraines.
Now, think about all of the places that you frequently visit outside of your home and workplace. For example:
Most businesses, especially in these types of venues, use artificial lighting to illuminate their buildings. This artificial lighting contains high levels of blue junk light that throw your circadian rhythm off course.
Our team put blue light in common venues to the test, and here is what we found:
Even with skylights in the ceiling, our own office lights emit levels of blue that can disrupt the natural body clock. (That’s why we come prepared to work with our TrueDark Daylights!)
Even in a “natural” grocery store that’s known for its fresh produce and organic food, the levels of blue light throughout the store are very high and disruptive.
Lotions, soaps and other skin care items are often showcased under LED lights. One might argue that it has become common practice over the years for stores to purposefully illuminate the products to guide consumer behavior. The idea being: that as people walk through a store under dimmed lights, and they come across products highlighted by LEDs, their attention is directly on the product(s), they feel soothed, and they are enticed to buy more.
The artificial blue light coming from the LEDs actually has the opposite effect of soothing; it confuses the body and makes you think that it’s noon time when it may really be 9am or 9pm. It also results in the brain getting tired, resulting in poorer decisions…junk food, anyone?
Many financial transactions can now be done right from your phone, but the next time you visit your bank, notice how many lights are turned on all around you inside of the institution. Shown here is the blue light that a bank teller stands under ALL DAY. Yikes!
Taken from inside of a well-established gym chain. You can see all of the lighting fixtures hanging from the ceiling with artificial LED bulbs inside, as well as numerous televisions placed directly in front of exercise equipment. Even when you’re trying to do something good for the body, artificial lighting is in the way detracting from your experience and throwing your natural circadian rhythm off course.
Mmmm…..food. Who doesn’t love going out to eat at a local restaurant? Especially the independent eateries! Our team actually got lucky at the last restaurant we visited, the lights in their venue were emitting very low levels of blue; however, the blue was still slightly there, as you can see from the spectrometer reading.
So, here’s the deal. Society is increasingly living an on-the-go lifestyle that requires us to be active and participate in everyday activities. We can’t stop going to work, using our phones, going to the gym, or buying groceries at the store; however, we can be proactive about limiting our exposure to harmful junk light.
During the day, you want to try and block up to 75% of artificial blue light. By all means, go outside and enjoy natural sunshine. Shoot for about 2-3 hours of natural sunlight in the morning. But while you’re indoors, staring at screens, and sitting under junk light, do what you can to protect your eyes, mind, and body.
At night, it’s even more important to block out as much blue light as possible. Green light has also been shown to be a sleep-stealer if you’re overexposed to it too late into the evening.
We’d love to hear from you!
We invite you to join the cause and stop the junk light around you! We want to see how you protect your eyes, mind and body from the harmful effects of artificial junk light. Upload and tag @truedark in a photo or video on social media for a chance to be featured on our social feeds, be sure to include the hashtag #myTrueDarks 🙂