The circadian clock, which is a natural expression of time, regulates changes in energy levels from sunrise to sunset. This rhythm influences appetite, energy, and behavior. However, external factors can alter the circadian rhythm and lead to physiological and psychological consequences. Sleep quality and quantity can also affect clock gene expression and sleep duration. Disrupting the sleep/wake cycle by exposing the brain to light at the wrong time can cause misalignment with the circadian clock. It is important to understand these factors to improve the circadian rhythm and make the most of one’s days.
Overconsumption of food disrupts the function of the gut microbiota, which in turn disrupts the circadian rhythm. Intermittent fasting is a feeding style that can reboot this rhythm and regulate hormones to improve energy metabolism. Eating within a natural feeding window earlier in the day when metabolism is at its most efficient for digesting and utilizing food is the most useful and natural approach. Carbohydrates and proteins at the start of the day can increase body temperature and assist in melatonin activation in the evening, which improves the sleep cycle.
Training time can also affect the circadian rhythm. For people who want to lose weight, combining an early feeding time with fasted exercise can create the best metabolic improvements. Athletes, on the other hand, can expect better performance in the afternoon and evening hours when the core body temperature is at its maximum. Recovering through sleep after a day of eating and moving is also essential.
Circadian clocks influence various aspects of daily life, including food intake, nutrient absorption, and gut function. It is essential to tune into one’s rhythm and make changes to improve the circadian rhythm. Habits such as an earlier bedtime, breakfast, or workout can make a giant difference in the way someone carries themselves for the rest of their day. It is important to avoid factors such as exposure to light at the wrong time or overconsumption of food that can disrupt the circadian rhythm. Ultimately, it’s all in the timing.