Wednesday, February 10, 2016

A Health Hazard Few People Know About

Apparently, it's artificial light, especially the one emitted by various electronic devices, such as TVs, tablets and computers.

Artificial light after dark suppresses the body's production of melatonin, a very important hormone since it regulates, among other things, blood pressure and glucose levels. Melatonin shortage can increase the risk of cancer, diminish your fertility, disrupt your sleeping patterns, affect your immune system and put you at risk for obesity and heart disease.

Laptops and other electronic gadgets are especially dangerous since the blue wavelengths they use are the most disruptive at night. Staring at computer screen after dark is basically equivalent to staring at the bright sun and it's not something you should be doing at night.

There are special programs which adjust the colours of your monitor to the time of day. One of them is called f.lux. Also read this article on the danger of tablets.

It's interesting that while many people are obsessed about their diets few appear to realise that there is danger lurking in something as seemingly innocent as electric lights! If you want to know more on the topic, just google melatonin and artificial light.


  1. Yes! So pleased to see this message becoming more widespread. I would add that it is also important that we get appropriate natural light during the day. Being outside in the morning even for just a little while is important to the melatonin/serotonin cycle as is sleeping in complete darkness.


  2. Yes, it's true about morning light, I forgot to write about it.

  3. I believe it; I've noticed if I'm drowsy, if I sit in front of a computer, I'm suddenly wide awake. We have natural circadian rhythms following sunlight, but caffeine and bright lights allow us to circumvent such. While becoming alert and staying so early on can't be helped with most people's daytime work schedules in our times, staying up too late on a computer or watching TV no doubt is hard on the body.

  4. Yes, it works as a stimulant, no surprise people are so addicted to their TVs and electronic devices. I noticed the difference right after we installed f.lux.