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Home > Anti-aging Research > Light Therapy

Light Therapy

Specific Recommendations:

  • I did a lot of research on lighting for our home owners association.  See http://qualitycounts.com/fp/lights.htm.  The closest fluorescents to actual sunlight are the ones with 5000 or 6500 Kelvin rating.  The lights advertised as "cool white" are around 2700 Kelvin.  I've always felt that the "cool white" phrase was just a gimmick to sell what was cheap to make.

News & Research:

  • Blue light may fight fatigue around the clock - Science Daily, 2/3/14 - "Researchers compared the effects of blue light with exposure to an equal amount of green light on alertness and performance in 16 study participants for 6.5 hours over a day ... participants exposed to blue light consistently rated themselves as less sleepy, had quicker reaction times and fewer lapses of attention during the performance tests compared to those who were exposed to green light. They also showed changes in brain activity patterns that indicated a more alert state"
    • lue light has a dark side - Harvard Health Publications, 5/12 - "Blue wavelengths—which are beneficial during daylight hours because they boost attention, reaction times, and mood—seem to be the most disruptive at night. And the proliferation of electronics with screens, as well as energy-efficient lighting, is increasing our exposure to blue wavelengths, especially after sundown ... LED lights are more efficient than fluorescent lights, but they also produce a fair amount of light in the blue spectrum ... Expose yourself to lots of bright light during the day, which will boost your ability to sleep at night, as well as your mood and alertness during daylight"
  • Room light before bedtime may impact sleep quality, blood pressure and diabetes risk - Science Daily, 1/13/11 - "exposure to electrical light between dusk and bedtime strongly suppresses melatonin levels and may impact physiologic processes regulated by melatonin signaling, such as sleepiness, thermoregulation, blood pressure and glucose homeostasis ... researchers evaluated 116 healthy volunteers aged 18-30 years who were exposed to room light or dim light in the eight hours preceding bedtime for five consecutive days. An intravenous catheter was inserted into the forearms of study participants for continuous collection of blood plasma every 30-60 minutes for melatonin measurements. Results showed exposure to room light before bedtime shortened melatonin duration by about 90 minutes when compared to dim light exposure. Furthermore, exposure to room light during the usual hours of sleep suppressed melatonin by greater than 50 percent" - See melatonin products at iHerb.
  • Bright Light Therapy Eases Bipolar Depression For Some - Science Daily, 1/3/08
  • Does Your Mood Take A Nosedive Each November? - Science Daily, 9/28/07
  • Bright Light Therapy Also Looks Promising For Primary Insomnia - Clinical Psychiatry News, 11/05
  • How Light Therapy Works in the Body - WebMD, 11/8/05
  • Light Therapy as Effective as Fluoxetine for Seasonal Affective Disorder - Medscape, 10/18/04
  • Bright Light Therapy Relieves Depression - WebMD, 4/5/04
  • Bright Light Therapy May Boost Testosterone - WebMD, 4/22/03 - "early morning light therapy caused a surge in a pituitary hormone called luteinizing hormone (LH) that raises testosterone levels in men ... Previous studies have shown that bright light therapy of daily exposure to specially designed, high-intensity light boxes can alleviate many symptoms of depression, especially among people who suffer from seasonal affective disorder (SAD) during winter months"
  • Bright-Light Therapy Effective In Non-Seasonal Depression - Doctor's Guide, 5/23/02
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