It just doesn’t make any sense. The days get shorter, the nights get longer, and as the temperature drops those blankets get more and more inviting.
But there is a reason, and it is weather-related!
Transitioning from summer, it only makes sense that getting to bed for a full night of sleep would be easier.
But those very things you think will help you get to bed are the things keeping you awake!
You see, that vitamin D does a lot more than just helps us grow big and strong. It also helps with sleep cycles.
One 2008 study showed that a decreased exposure to sunlight had a direct affect on serotonin levels in our brains.
That lack of serotonin has a direct correlation to feeling depressed, tired, and even that urge to stuff your face with all of those carbs!
Sunlight plays a role in controlling your body’s melatonin release.
During the shorter days of the year, many of us drive to and from work in the dark. So we don’t get the sun exposure we need.
Without that exposure our bodies don’t get in a cycle and we wind up droning through life in a zombic daze.
Catching Those Z’s
The rest of those fall elements make sleep all that much easier!
Research shows that the ideal sleep conditions are dry and cooler. Temperatures between 60 and 70 degrees usually get the job done.
And with plenty of dark hours, the real external hang-up is just that lack of daytime sunlight.
Interestingly enough, even sunlight exposure through a window is enough to make a difference. One study proved that people exposed to sunlight through a window at work actually slept better at night than those deprived of one of life’s little joys.
But if your boss has you stuck in a dark room or behind frosted glass (like us) there’s still hope!
You don’t need a whole day’s worth of rays to reap the benefits!
- Fair skin – 9 minutes of direct sunlight exposure
- Medium skin – 16 minutes
- Dark skin – 38 minutes
This data comes from a Purdue University study assuming summer sunlight and 25% of the body’s skin exposed.
Now for those non-weather-related answers to your drowsiness, I recommend seeing a professional. Or at the very least, turning off that phone an hour before chasing some shut-eye.
For WeatherNation — Meteorologist Jeremy LaGoo