Historically it has been suggested that rising early is better for our health. Many of the world’s past and present leaders are supporters of this notion. The most notable being Benjamin Franklin who famously said, “early to bed and early to rise makes and man healthy, wealthy and wise.” But is this actually true and does the early bird really get the worm?
Well when it comes to our health there are definitely some benefits to rising early.
Boosts Mental Health – a prominent study has revealed that gazing at the sunrise boosts happy hormone levels. This is apparently due to the frequency of light emitted from the horizon at sunrise, which hits the back of our eye and causes a release of serotonin. Serotonin not only boosts mood but improves sleep quality as well. Studies have shown ‘morning people’ are often more positive, more optimistic and more likely to experience satisfaction in their lives. The whole process takes around 15 minutes so try taking off your sunglasses in the morning and gazing into the sunrise.
Boosts Fitness – many of us find it difficult to exercise in the evenings after a long day’s work. Often the best time to exercise is first thing in the morning before you have had a chance to talk yourself out of it. Try killing two birds with one stone and exercise outdoors at sunrise. This way you not only boost your fitness but brain happy hormones as well.
Resets Our Body Clock – according to sleep experts, it is important to establish a proper sleep routine to improve the quality of our sleep. This helps to set our body’s internal clock – making it easier for us to sleep and wake naturally. This is why sleeping in and catching up on sleep debt on the weekends may actually be disruptive to our body clock and make us feel more tired in the long run.
Boosts Energy – Often late snoozers tend to skip breakfast which can impact on daily energy. When you sleep your body goes into fasting mode so breakfast is important to ‘break the fast’. This provides the energy we need to think clearly and carry out our activities without feeling tired mid-morning.
So although waking early can initially be challenging the benefits seem to far outweigh the initial discomfort. Before long we will be the early birds singing a healthier, happier tune.
Remember that better health is through simple habits!