Shedding Light on Shedding Weight

Shedding Light on Shedding Weight
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Randomized, controlled trials of phototherapy (morning bright light) for weight loss.

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Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

If weakening our circadian rhythm can cause weight gain, might strengthening it facilitate weight loss? In our child’s swing analogy, regular morning meals can give our cycles a little daily push, but the biggest shove comes from our exposure to bright morning light. Similarly, exposure to light at night could be analogous to nighttime eating. Yes, we’ve had candles to illuminate our nights for 5,000 years, but flames from candles, campfires, and oil lamps are skewed towards the red end of the light spectrum, and it’s the shorter blue wavelengths that specially set our circadian clocks. Even incandescent electric lighting starting a little over a century ago consisted of mainly low-level yellow wavelengths, replaced over just the last few decades with fluorescents and LED lights that now contain extra blue wavelengths, which is more similar to morning sunlight, and has the strongest effect on our circadian rhythms.

Using wrist meters to measure ambient light exposure, researchers found that increased evening and nighttime light exposure correlated with a subsequent increased risk of developing obesity over time. This was presumed to be due to circadian misalignment, but may be instead a sign that they’re not sleeping as much, and maybe that’s the real reason they grew heavier. This was controlled for in a study of more than 100,000 women, which found that the odds of obesity trended with higher nighttime light exposure independent of sleep duration.

Compared to women who reported their rooms at night were too dark to see their hand in front of their face, or at least too dark to see across the room, those who reported that it was light enough to see across their bedrooms at night were significantly heavier. It’s not that they were all sleeping with nightlights on; without blackout curtains on the windows, many neighborhoods may be bright enough to cause circadian disruption. Using satellite imagery, scientists have even been able to correlate higher obesity rates with brighter communities. There’s so much light at night these days that, outside of a blackout, the only Milky Way our children will likely ever see is in a candy wrapper.

Although sleep quantity could be controlled for, what about sleep quality? Maybe people sleeping in less dim bedrooms don’t sleep as soundly, leaving them too tired to exercise the next day or something. You can’t know for sure if nocturnal light exposure is harmful in and of itself––until you put it to the test. When that was done, those randomized to exposure to bright light for a few hours in the evenings, or even a single night, suffered adverse metabolic consequences.

The more intriguing question then becomes: can circadian syncing with morning bright light therapy be a viable weight-loss strategy? Insufficient morning light may be the circadian equivalent of breakfast-skipping. Indoor lighting is too bright at night, but may be too dim in the day to robustly boost our daily rhythm. Light exposure from getting outdoors in the morning, even on an overcast day, is correlated to lower body weight, compared to typical office lighting. So, some doctors started trying “phototherapy” to treat obesity. The first case reports started to be published back in the nineties. Three out of four women lost an average of about four pounds over six weeks of morning bright light exposure, but there was no control group to confirm the effect.

Ten years later, the first randomized controlled trial was published. Overweight individuals were randomized to an exercise intervention with or without an hour a day of bright morning light. Compared to normal indoor lighting, the bright light group lost more body fat, but it’s possible the light just stimulated them to exercise harder. Studies show that bright light exposure, even the day prior to exercise, may boost performance. In a handgrip endurance test, exposure to hours of bright light increased the number of contractions until exhaustion from about 770 to 860 the next day. While light-induced improvements in activity or mood can be helpful in their own right, it would be years later still before we finally learned whether the light exposure itself could boost weight loss.

Following an unpublished study in Norway purporting to show a dozen-pound weight loss advantage to 8 weeks of 30 minutes of daily daylight compared to indoor lighting, researchers tried three weeks of 45-minute morning bright light, compared to the same time sitting in front of “ion generator” that appeared to turn on, but was secretly deactivated. The three weeks of light beat out the placebo, but the average difference in body fat reduction was only about a pound. This slight edge didn’t seem to correlate with mood changes, but bright light alone can stimulate serotonin production in the human brain, and cause the release of adrenaline-type hormones, both of which could benefit body fat, aside from any circadian effects.

Regardless of the mechanism, bright morning daylight exposure could present a novel weight-loss strategy straight out of the clear blue sky.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Free-Photos via Pixabay. Image has been modified.

Video production by Glass Entertainment.

Motion graphics by Avocado Video.

Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

If weakening our circadian rhythm can cause weight gain, might strengthening it facilitate weight loss? In our child’s swing analogy, regular morning meals can give our cycles a little daily push, but the biggest shove comes from our exposure to bright morning light. Similarly, exposure to light at night could be analogous to nighttime eating. Yes, we’ve had candles to illuminate our nights for 5,000 years, but flames from candles, campfires, and oil lamps are skewed towards the red end of the light spectrum, and it’s the shorter blue wavelengths that specially set our circadian clocks. Even incandescent electric lighting starting a little over a century ago consisted of mainly low-level yellow wavelengths, replaced over just the last few decades with fluorescents and LED lights that now contain extra blue wavelengths, which is more similar to morning sunlight, and has the strongest effect on our circadian rhythms.

Using wrist meters to measure ambient light exposure, researchers found that increased evening and nighttime light exposure correlated with a subsequent increased risk of developing obesity over time. This was presumed to be due to circadian misalignment, but may be instead a sign that they’re not sleeping as much, and maybe that’s the real reason they grew heavier. This was controlled for in a study of more than 100,000 women, which found that the odds of obesity trended with higher nighttime light exposure independent of sleep duration.

Compared to women who reported their rooms at night were too dark to see their hand in front of their face, or at least too dark to see across the room, those who reported that it was light enough to see across their bedrooms at night were significantly heavier. It’s not that they were all sleeping with nightlights on; without blackout curtains on the windows, many neighborhoods may be bright enough to cause circadian disruption. Using satellite imagery, scientists have even been able to correlate higher obesity rates with brighter communities. There’s so much light at night these days that, outside of a blackout, the only Milky Way our children will likely ever see is in a candy wrapper.

Although sleep quantity could be controlled for, what about sleep quality? Maybe people sleeping in less dim bedrooms don’t sleep as soundly, leaving them too tired to exercise the next day or something. You can’t know for sure if nocturnal light exposure is harmful in and of itself––until you put it to the test. When that was done, those randomized to exposure to bright light for a few hours in the evenings, or even a single night, suffered adverse metabolic consequences.

The more intriguing question then becomes: can circadian syncing with morning bright light therapy be a viable weight-loss strategy? Insufficient morning light may be the circadian equivalent of breakfast-skipping. Indoor lighting is too bright at night, but may be too dim in the day to robustly boost our daily rhythm. Light exposure from getting outdoors in the morning, even on an overcast day, is correlated to lower body weight, compared to typical office lighting. So, some doctors started trying “phototherapy” to treat obesity. The first case reports started to be published back in the nineties. Three out of four women lost an average of about four pounds over six weeks of morning bright light exposure, but there was no control group to confirm the effect.

Ten years later, the first randomized controlled trial was published. Overweight individuals were randomized to an exercise intervention with or without an hour a day of bright morning light. Compared to normal indoor lighting, the bright light group lost more body fat, but it’s possible the light just stimulated them to exercise harder. Studies show that bright light exposure, even the day prior to exercise, may boost performance. In a handgrip endurance test, exposure to hours of bright light increased the number of contractions until exhaustion from about 770 to 860 the next day. While light-induced improvements in activity or mood can be helpful in their own right, it would be years later still before we finally learned whether the light exposure itself could boost weight loss.

Following an unpublished study in Norway purporting to show a dozen-pound weight loss advantage to 8 weeks of 30 minutes of daily daylight compared to indoor lighting, researchers tried three weeks of 45-minute morning bright light, compared to the same time sitting in front of “ion generator” that appeared to turn on, but was secretly deactivated. The three weeks of light beat out the placebo, but the average difference in body fat reduction was only about a pound. This slight edge didn’t seem to correlate with mood changes, but bright light alone can stimulate serotonin production in the human brain, and cause the release of adrenaline-type hormones, both of which could benefit body fat, aside from any circadian effects.

Regardless of the mechanism, bright morning daylight exposure could present a novel weight-loss strategy straight out of the clear blue sky.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Free-Photos via Pixabay. Image has been modified.

Video production by Glass Entertainment.

Motion graphics by Avocado Video.

78 responses to “Shedding Light on Shedding Weight

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      1. According to Mantak Chia, to stay one entire week in a totally dark room induce brain chemistries similar to psychedelics. It is part of some ancient taoist training.

  1. 3-23-2000
    Sunlight

    Sunlight,
    Sun so bright,
    Guide me down the path,
    Spare me needless wrath.
    Everywhere I go,
    You bathe me in your glow.
    Be my companion throughout my days,
    And I will continue to love you with praise.

  2. Beautiful lead-in photo of a sunrise (or sunset?)!

    It’s interesting that some computer operating systems now offer an “evening” mode where the computer screen turns more towards the red end of the spectrum rather than the blue wavelength. Evidently, the software engineers are keeping up with these physiology studies regarding the connection between different kinds of light exposure and our ability to sleep well.

      1. Just a heads up, I used to use F.lux too…..and a few years back my Macbook Air got corrupted with a bad virus. I am very savvy about phishing and other computer scams and never click on suspicious links, etc. The Apple guy I took my laptop too for wiping mentioned f.lux is suspicious in the Mac community for potentially piggybacking viruses. He recommended only using apps obtained from the App or Android store (depending on your OS) as they are certified clean. There are many screen dimming apps free at both these places.

        1. Thanks for the information Mims. I use this on my desktop computer only (MS PC) … I’m also very careful and never had any problems – but there’s always a first time, I guess. I have a very good security program which I’ve had for years as well.

          1. Dr. Poop (Oz) had a guy on his show today who showed how easy it is to get your smart-phone (mine is a dumb one) hacked. People who charge their phone batteries in public places can get all their personal data, including bank account, personal phone numbers, all their email contacts, etc., stolen from them. You name it, the hackers can pick it up.

            I’m in no rush to get one of those so-called smart jobs. Probably never will. I think car drivers “need” them more than those who get around by other means (public transportation).

            1. YR, Thanks for that info. I’m seeing those free phone charging stations in a lot of public places, too. They seem innocuous since you think you’re only adding power to the battery, but when one thinks about it, when you plug in a USB connector, data can be transmitted back and forth, also.
              Kinda scary. I’ve never used a public charger, but when I first saw them, I thought that it was a nice idea, but now knowing the threat, I’ll stick to my trusted personally owned chargers! A safer work-around would be to get an A/C to USB converter plug (only cost a couple of dollars) and find an ordinary A/C outlet.

              I’m also starting to see public electric car chargers where I live. I’ll bet they have a similar vulnerability! A nefarious person could remotely lock down your car until you paid a ransom … yikes!!!

              1. Wait until we get Neural Link (Elon Musk: TED) implants in our brains. Then we will be servo-mechanisms for the state, much like China is controlling its citizens with their smart (dummy) phones now.

            2. The Singularity is coming. Okay, I’ve got an ancient clam shell, Samsung Rugby II–and proud of it, It can be replaced for $30 and its been through my washer and dryer.

            3. YR,
              There is a reason Warren Buffett the 3rd richest guy in the world uses a basic dumb flip phone and has 140 billion dollars in cash
              and not invested at this time.
              I had to go the dentist 2 weeks ago for a basic check up at tooth – irty pm and there was a reason the dentist had to tell me
              he has been married to a manicurist and they have been fighting tooth and nail ever since.

            4. YR, I have one of those ‘smart phones’, but I don’t do any business on it, and never enter any information beyond a few phone numbers.
              One of my sons is a software engineer. He insists everyone should have a dedicated computer to do finances, taxes, etc. If you’re going to do email, FB, internet searches, have another one to use.

              1. Marilyn, I have a regular desktop computer and refuse to do anything financial even with IT. It’s no big deal for me to take the bus over to the credit union and do all my money transactions in person. Eyeball to eyeball.

  3. I’ve just read Professor Satchin Panda’s recent book, The Circadian Code which covers this subject along with time restricted eating. It was an excellent book and I will now try to apply it.

    1. Dr. Panda is great. For anyone who’s interested, he did some very informative YouTube interviews with Dr. Rhonda Patrick. He enrolls ordinary people in his circadian rhythm research by getting them to record their sleep and eating times in an app.

  4. Boy, I am so turned around in some of these things that it just is taking my whole life to learn enough to figure it out.

    Thanks for the help.

    Even when I am awake in the morning, I generally don’t get anywhere near an hour of light.

    And, even though I slept over 8 hours last night, I do have a lot of light from street lights where I am.

    I used to have blackout curtains but changed to really beautiful window coverings. Oops.

    I did buy a sleep mask but keep forgetting to use it and no longer know where it is.

    Wondering if that would be enough.

  5. This particular video helps me considerably.

    When I was looking at places with the midnight sun in the Summer and very dark in the Winter, it was the dark Winter when they had insomnia, not the bright Summer.

    So far, just getting Vitamin D has helped me sleep – with only one night of insomnia since the Vitamin D blog, but they fixed insomnia with lightboxes and that had caused me to put Vitamin D and light in two separate categories and we need BOTH. AND we ALSO need DARK at night.

    Three separate categories.

  6. If it was just insomnia people were solving for, all I had to figure out is what helped people in the midnight sun Summers because they didn’t have insomnia then and it was going to be either light or Vitamin D.

    But I am not just wanting to solve for insomnia.

    1. “Sorry for batch-posting again.”
      – – – – – –

      “The Usual Suspects” are pretty used to you by now, Deb. You follow where your next thought goes. And report back to us on what you find.

      I suppose the rest of us could do the same if we felt like it. :-)

      1. YR,

        Yes. But I have a sense that the rest of you have spent your whole lives figuring all of this out.

        I think it was the movie, “Stripes” where there is a line, “But you aren’t as confused as _______ is….”

          1. YR,

            NONE of it has worked. That is why I am here.

            Whole Food Plant-Based no matter how perfectly I have tried to do it hasn’t helped losing weight.

            And every blue blocker glasses, earplugs, eye mask, lightbox, blackout blinds, pillow, mattress, comforter, and supplement and gadget has failed for sleep.

            It is because it isn’t working. That is why I post circles around everybody else trying to figure it out.

            Vitamin D is the best so far.

        1. I just scroll past the batch post and don’t give it an ounce of thought or attention. Someone else’s stream of consciousness isn’t worth it as this is a science-fact-based site, . . . not public therapy. Someone’s stream-of-consciousness-batch-posting just takes up space.

                1. You’re clearly a believer in the old adage

                  ‘Don’t wait till your deathbed to tell people how you feel. Tell them to f… off today.’

    1. Lucy, you should follow your own doctor’s advice on the matter. Presumably your doctor will want to investigate further as to the cause of the higher reading. They may wish to retest you without taking supplements to see if your levels drop somewhat.

      1. Barb,
        Thanks…..my doc saw the reading and made no comment about it.
        As I tried to google info about it I came across a lot of conflicting and confusing information.

        1. Lucy, when going over lab results I stop the doctor to ask questions about abnormal results. That’s the time to ask too what foods, medications or supplements could have had an impact on your results? There are more than a few of them.

          Or more on this very question, please see this link.
          https://nutritionfacts.org/video/flashback-friday-how-to-prevent-a-stroke/
          Scroll down the comments to almost the end. There is a lengthy exchange between myself and Fumbles on this topic. We include links /studies/ topical videos for you to explore. It’s an important topic and in the news these days.

        2. High normal is still normal. What you are doing seems to be delivering good results – why not just keep on doing what you doing?

  7. On another topic:

    This article was posted yesterday on the bbc about a trial that was published in 2016. Doctors were comparing the use of stents versus bypass surgery in left main disease. https://www.bbc.com/news/health-51539112 Turns out that the patients were followed for 3 years… and there is some discussion now around why that is. Turns out
    that after 3 years, more patients with stents were dying, and the question is about why those results were not included.

      1. Yes YR, but you have to take plavix with bypass surgery too. Aspirin, statins, bp meds, plavix, plus whatever. The plavix was $350 for 1 month for me, so I get why some people have issues with meds. They don’t tell ya this stuff beforehand…
        All of that is factored in though YR… the reason why I posted was not to debate stent or bypass (i refuse to have stents), but because it’s another case of odd goings-on with studies.
        Dr G often mentions these things to beware of when talking about studies. misleading study titles, study funding, study design, controls, etc. Here, it is manipulation of data giving the impression that stents were as good, and they were not (in this study)

        1. I vaguely recall reading somewhere that you shouldn’t take B12 with post-stent medications eg

          ‘European researchers find an opposite effect and report that patients who took folate, B-6, and B-12 following stented angioplasty actually had a higher risk of renarrowing than those getting placebo drugs. After studying 636 patients, they report in this week’s New England Journal of Medicine that:

          35% of those put on vitamin supplements for 6 months experienced outright stent failure, compared with only 27% who took placebo pills.
          16% of vitamin-treated patients needed subsequent procedures to reopen arteries, compared with 11% of those getting the phony drugs.
          The arterial openings in vitamin-taking patients shrunk more, to an average of 1.59 millimeters compared with 1.74 millimeters in the placebo group.’
          https://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/news/20040623/b-vitamins-risky-after-heart-surgery#1

          1. Tom,

            That is interesting.

            The second page may come more in-line with what Barb posted.

            “While the overall results of this study show a negative effect from these vitamins, that detrimental effect was not present in patients who had high homocysteine levels.”

            Another possible explanation for the study findings: At the start of Lange’s study, the use of cholesterol-lowering statin drugs such as Lipitor and Zocor were used by a surprisingly low number of patients — only 38% of those getting the vitamins and 42% of those on placebo drugs.

            “And that may have been enough to shade the results,” Siegel tells WebMD

        2. Barb,

          That price is ridiculous that they withheld death data.

          Plus, the price of the Plavix is also ridiculous. That range is what my Diabetic friends are paying for some of their meds. When we tried to get my grandmother on dementia meds, it cost her whole monthly social security. My uncle was paying thousands of dollars per month for pain meds when he had brain cancer.

          Cost being so prohibitive may be a big factor for the delay.

          YR, that 30 days study is so scary.

          30 percent of stent patients neglect to start taking Plavix (clopidogrel) as directed within three days of hospital discharge. This can triple their risk of heart attack and quintuple their risk of death over the following 30 days, the study authors said.

    1. I watched The Doctors on TV recently and that was the topic. They reported a study showing no difference in life span comparing stent to no stent. It might have been mentioned that stents cost over a billion a year. It makes sense to have accurate health care for all, not more of useless procedures.

    2. Barb,

      Well, there is this: “ All the main doctors working on the trial, and the lead doctor writing the guidelines for left main disease, have declared financial contributions to either themselves or their institutions from companies that manufacture stents.”

      Also: “ stent treatment may be helpful for some, but may have limitations or pose risk for others. A stent can be lifesaving for people who are having a heart attack, but may not be the best way to prevent a heart attack.”” (https://www.health.harvard.edu/heart-health/when-do-you-need-a-heart-stent) As in, prevent another heart attack? Or, prevent the first one? “stents don’t prevent heart attacks any better than optimal medical treatment.” I guess in preventing a first heart attack. But would that also apply to preventing a second, follow-up heart attack?

      1. Well over 90% of doctors are taking money, trips, meals from interests conflicting with yours. This topic was on the Dr. Oz show (Oz has been hauled before Congress himself). There are two websites that report on what doctors are taking. It is easy to find on the Net that results for many surgical procedures (knees, stents, bypass) are no better than placebo.

  8. The stroke Webinar was EPICally helpful.

    Regarding a few questions in the Q&A

    I wanted to post a link on homocysteine and Vitamin D supplementation

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/30442234/

    Regarding Vitamin D and sleep apnea, low Vitamin D is correlated with sleep apnea.

    I can’t copy a second link to post here and I am not going to do a batch post.

    They hypothesized C’s effect on muscles and hypothesized it’s effects on things like infections and asthma, etc.

    Anyway, that one was more about correlation and potential mechanisms, not a double blind study.

    Also, I tried to find spray or sublingual USP B12 in Cyano and there is only one or two kinds on Amazon and there weee zero at Vitamin Shoppe before it closed.

    One of the GMP types had lactose in it.

    Is time-released okay?

    Do I have to wait for the Webinar?

      1. I have been enjoying and appreciating his recent videos on circadian rhythms, chronobiology, health, and weight loss. Since he did the first two videos on the correct chronobiological dietary patterns (Breakfast like a King, Lunch like a Prince, Dinner like a Pauper, and no food after 7pm), I have lost weight and noticed other positive changes in my evening energy levels, sleep, hunger levels, mood, water weight, and so on. It’s about time that people become more aware of this so more people can benefit like I did. Thank you Dr. Gregor! You made a positive impact on me!

        I’d love to see your research and interpretation on how living in alignment with natural circadian rhythms can help people’s moods and brain function.

        On the topic of this video, from my experience, getting proper sunlight (especially in the morning) slightly boosts my overall sense of well being, energy, and mood, so I can see how it may help with weight loss. If light therapy helps increase serotonin, then it theoretically can decrease cravings and excess snacking which therefore will cause weightloss.

  9. I have been enjoying and appreciating his recent videos on circadian rhythms, chronobiology, health, and weight loss. Since he did the first two videos on the correct chronobiological dietary patterns (Breakfast like a King, Lunch like a Prince, Dinner like a Pauper, and no food after 7pm), I have lost weight and noticed other positive changes in my evening energy levels, sleep, hunger levels, mood, water weight, and so on. It’s about time that people become more aware of this so more people can benefit like I did. Thank you Dr. Gregor! You made a positive impact on me!

    I’d love to see your research and interpretation on how living in alignment with natural circadian rhythms can help people’s moods and brain function.

    On the topic of this video, from my experience, getting proper sunlight (especially in the morning) slightly boosts my overall sense of well being, energy, and mood, so I can see how it may help with weight loss. If light therapy helps increase serotonin, then it theoretically can decrease cravings and excess snacking which therefore will cause weightloss.

  10. This is off-topic but people may be interested in this review article on the modern fad for high protein diets which among other things comments that

    ‘Given these and other data, it is time to unleash the taboo and make it loud and clear that a high-protein diet is not as safe as claimed, as it may compromise kidney health and result in a more rapid kidney function decline in individuals or populations at high risk of CKD. While more studies are needed to shed greater light, and while we expect that discussion will continue on this and other taboo topics,[17] it is prudent to avoid recommending high-protein intake for weight loss in obese or diabetic patients or those with prior cardiovascular events or a solitary kidney if kidney health cannot be adequately protected.’
    https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/924423?src=wnl_edit_tpal&uac=129079FG&impID=2283951&faf=1

    Interestingly, one of the studies discussed looked at both animal and plant protein consumption and found no protective effect from plant vs animal protein consumption.

    1. Tom,

      Which study is that about the plant versus animal protein.

      I did try to read the article myself and got down to the “Is plant protein sufficient….” sentence but I am missing the line saying that plant proteins are not more protective.

      1. It is towards the end of the paragraph immeduiately following Figure 1

        ‘ These data did not find a superiority of plant- versus animal-based proteins, which may be related to the fact that two-thirds of the average ingested protein was animal-based, making differential analyses less reliable.’

    2. From your link:

      “How often have you been told to eat more protein and less carbohydrates to stay healthy?”
      – – – – –

      Eeeeek! Well, I’ve been told to eat more protein and FEWER carbohydrates, never less.

    1. Fumbles, if by “lighten up” you mean take a drag on something resembling a coffin stick, fergit it. *choke choke*

      (Also off the subject, over here in so-called civilized country, the Dems are scratching the eyeballs out of one another. Popcorn time! :-)

  11. Is there any difference in your recommendations of the daily dozen servings for men and women? I need to lose a lot of weight at 57 and the 3 servings of beans and grains are a lot for me to try to consume daily along with the other recommendations.

    1. Janet, when I first started I posted the Daily Dozen in the kitchen and ONLY ate from the list. I didn’t get all required servings of beans in at first until I had developed a variety of recipes/ meal ideas that incorporated them. Sometimes it is just a small handful of beans and lentils in minestroni soup. I also use soy milk (1 cup) which counts as 1 serving of beans. Serving sizes are small, so beware! 1/2 cup of beans, (as in chili), or 1/4 cup hummus.

      Same with the grains – 1/2 cup servings. I eat oats for breakfast, 1/3 cup raw, so cooked I already have 2 servings checked. Leaves me 1 piece of bread to eat with soup , or 1/2 cup cooked rice to eat with beans etc. So as you can see, it is not as overwhelming as it seems. I don’t eat nuts or nut butters, but that’s a personal decision I made to keep weight off. I generally eat more fruit and veg than what the Daily Dozen suggests on a given day and usually have a thick veggie soup as my lunch and/or dinner. Having something made in the fridge ready can make the whole process go a lot smoother. Good luck!
      https://nutritionfacts.org/video/dr-gregers-daily-dozen-checklist/

  12. Dr Greger,

    I want to thank you for covering the EPIC-Oxford. Most of the vegan community did a defensive reflex. I was waiting for your voice and you did not disappoint. You looked at it head-on again and helped to clarify things at a much higher level.

  13. I wouldn’t recommend blackout curtains due to the chemicals used…..I do use a silk eye mask if struggling to go back to sleep and definitely sleep deeper wearing it. I have an usual sleep pattern of 10-12 hours a night, any less I can’t function due to M.E. I don’t think I’ve seen Dr Greger mention M.E. yet.

    Interesting about daylight, I can’t bear dreary lighting and suffer with S.A.D so always put a daylight lamp on if it’s not a sunny day.

  14. So maybe I missed it but the type of light and when being good/bad is what gets to our eyes not skin? So if your not supposed to get blue light at night while awake then blue light blocking glasses would cover that?

  15. I find that sometimes when we look at a study very closely, it makes it out to be bigger than it is which leads me to my thoughts on the video… First, great information and very helpful. Natural light is so important and I personally begin to feel uneasy when all the lights are on at night… I feel much calmer and happy when the lighting is minimal when the sun is going/has gone down. And I find it very sad how much artificial light there is in the world and humans just keep BUILDING for the sake of building and tearing down forests and fields and it’s horrible… there is no lid… just if you can sell it they can buy it and build, it’s truly sickening and so disturbing and your milky way comment was very sad and profoundly true.

    All that being said, I cannot and never could sleep well in pitch black. There has to be faint lighting coming from either a window and the natural moonlight (ideal!) or from another room sort of emulating moonlight–but now I have a sound soother with a very tiny bit of light that barely glows in a corner of the room that suffices for me. It’s not that I’m afraid of the dark lol, I just always found it to make me feel closed in and trapped when it was pitch black. And if you think about it, even in nature, it is never completely pitch black out even during the darkest nights of the new moon… granted peoples’ night vision varies. I am thin, fit and very healthy and can’t imagine that sleeping in pitch black would benefit me more but perhaps be a negative in my case if I found it harder to fall asleep or stay asleep if I woke up to the closed-in feeling of the pitch black room.

    Some light can actually be calming and soothing, I find. My light bulb to my himalayan salt lamp is a regular light bulb, but filtered through the pink himalayan salt, it emits this incredibly soothing, calming glow that is so relaxing it can help me be ready to fall asleep if I’m in a room with it so it’s perfectly to read to at night. Also, fire is obviously different than artificial light as described, but in any case I find firelight to be so calming and relaxing. Faint light itself is incredibly calming to me… I have a flashlight lantern that fills a dark room with a very calming lighting that relaxes me.

    Also, what about hormones? Light plays a huge role in hormones so what if it’s more that getting enough light and not flooding yourself with unnatural light at all hours is good for balanced hormones than circadian rhythms or do these things simply go hand in hand… I would think they would–all of our functions are connected.

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