Our internal body clocks are regulated by 24 hour cycles (circadian rhythms) which respond primarily to light ☀️ or darkness 🌒 in the environment. .
Darkness signals for the body to drop in temperature and to release the ‘sleep hormone’ melatonin. .
Exposure to light stimulates a raise in body temperature and the release of the stimulating hormone, cortisol, which promotes wakefulness.
The cues from darkness and light stimulate the action of a group of “sleep genes” including CLOCK, PER and MTNR1B. This regulation can be disrupted by genetic variation and/ or environmental interference (like shift work or staring at bright screens late at night) – which can lead to poor or disturbed sleep.
Our VitaGEN report highlights the genes and behaviours that may be affecting your sleep and provides advice on specific actions you can take to improve your sleep!