Get a better night’s rest and transform your health with a simple tech solution.
While you may already avoid caffeine after dark to get a better night’s rest, you could be derailing your efforts by checking your Instagram feed or sending off an email before hitting the hay. According to recent a recent study in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the blue light emitted from electronic devices like tablets, smartphones, and computers could negatively affect sleep quality—and general health—more severely than previously thought.
However, fear not, tech addicts. There is a solution! No, we aren’t going to suggest you quit your late-night electronics habit altogether, since that would be totally unrealistic—and because, with F.lux, it’s also unnecessary. As the day progresses, this free, nifty software gradually changes the color of nearly any electronic device’s glow to a warm red, a hue that minimizes blue light’s stimulating effects. To best reap the benefits, you shouldn’t mess with any of the software settings, however; it does have some override options, which may come in handy if you ever want to watch a movie or edit photos (sans red tint) after dark. It works on both PCs and Macs, although you might have to use your tech savvy to jailbreak your iPhone or iPad if you want to load the program onto one of them.
So why should you worry about blue light emissions, and what makes F.lux such an innovation? According to researchers, basking in a blue-light glow before bed impairs the production of the sleep hormone, melatonin. This makes it more difficult to doze off and shortens the time spent in the restorative REM stage of sleep. But here’s the real kicker: People who are exposed to blue light before bed also report feeling less alert and more tired the next day than those who opt to avoid the blue glow—even after getting a solid eight hours of shuteye. Unfortunately, feeling groggy does more than make it difficult to focus at work; it can also lead to weight gain over time. When you don’t feel rested, ghrelin, better known as the “hunger hormone,” goes into overdrive, increasing feelings of hunger even when the body doesn’t need food. What’s more, research has found that poor sleep is also associated with depression and type 2 diabetes.
The good news is that F.lux is on your side, making it possible to get a good night’s rest without totally falling off the grid after dark. Visit JustGetFlux.com to download the software and start sleeping better tonight.
Fitness + tech head? You’re just getting started here…