THE BIOLOGICAL EFFECT OF LIGHT
Light has a direct effect on our activity levels and therefore on our performance and ability to concentrate.
The right light at the right time as we experience with natural daylight allows us to be active and efficient during the day and relax at night-time. The biological effect of light affects all age groups and different spheres of life.
More and more people are seeking ways to stay physically and mentally fit. Light plays a crucial role in this context. That’s because important biological processes in the human body are designed for life with natural light. The problem is that rather than spending time outside in natural lighting conditions, for which our biological system was “programmed” over the course of evolution, most people in highly developed countries like Germany spend some 90 percent of their day indoors.
The lighting conditions that frequently prevail indoors however have been described as “biological darkness”. This can leave us feeling tired during the day, but not able to sleep properly at night, and can also be associated with new syndromes like burnout or depression.
Light for controlling our biological clock
Additional light receptors were only discovered in the human eye in 2001. These light-sensitive ganglion cells send signals to an area of the brain that acts like a biological clock and controls the body's day/night rhythm – a state also referred to as the circadian rhythm. Light influences different hormones – primarily the “sleep hormone” Melatonin, or the “activity hormone” Cortisol – which affect blood pressure, heart rate, vitality and the mood. Light therefore has a direct effect on our activity levels and therefore on our performance and ability to concentrate.