Archive for the ‘Stories’ Category

How light affects sleep quality

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013

Posted by Maya Pillai.
If you’ve ever stared at the ceiling while your partner slept soundly beside you, you’ve probably investigated most insomnia solutions known.
The question then is, do you know what the impact of light is?
It has become increasing well researched that one of the most important external elements that affect sleep is light. Researchers have found that light controls the timing of our internal body clocks. This happens as the light sensitive cells at the back of our eyes send messages to the brain on whether it is day or night time, thereby setting our wake/sleep patterns. (more…)

How Light Affects the Brain

Tuesday, December 4th, 2012

Have you ever wondered how something as simple and commonplace as the light that surrounds us can influence our body chemistry and state of mind?
In recent years, the impact of light in our lives has been dissected and analyzed. Where once no connection was known between the light you see and your brains response to that light – now the connection is much more fully understood.

Keeping SAD Away

Tuesday, September 25th, 2012

Post written by Maya Pillai.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is the modern name for episodes of depression that occur during the winter months. SAD is found more in women than in men and by people who live in places with long winter nights. Before you next have to cope with a long winter, we’ve put together some ways by which you can keep SAD at bay.

Aging Eyes Blamed For Seniors’ Health Woes

Friday, March 9th, 2012

Source: Slashdot


Title Aging Eyes Blamed For Seniors’ Health Woes


Dr. Martin Mainster has written extensively about the effects of the aging eye on health, estimate that by age 45, the photoreceptors of the average adult receive just 50 percent of the light needed to fully stimulate the circadian system, by age 55, it dips to 37 percent, and by age 75, to a mere 17 percent and recommend that people should make an effort to expose themselves to bright sunlight or bright indoor lighting when they cannot get outdoors and have installed skylights and extra fluorescent lights in their own offices to help offset the aging of their own eyes.

Read more.


Comments: Many of us do not realise that our requirements for light change as we get older. For those planning the lighting for a house for the elderly, they would do well to pay attention to the statistics given above and ensure that sufficient light is available.



Hotel horror: Mirror, mirror, who’s that in my bathroom?

Monday, March 5th, 2012

Source: Detroit Free Press


Title Hotel horror: Mirror, mirror, who’s that in my bathroom?


Gray skin, haggard wrinkles and bags under the eyes. It’s like watching a horror movie, except it’s me. What kind of sadist puts overhead fluorescent lights in a hotel bathroom to terrify the guests?


At least install lights on both sides of the sink, not above. Use regular incandescent lights, or halogen lights, or indirect lights, or LED lights, or at least those full-spectrum, natural daylight fluorescents instead of those glaring, hideous old-fashioned models.


Hotel managers, I will tell you why you must invest in this. A hotel guest who thinks he or she looks good is a happy guest. Happy guests complain less. Happy guests leave better tips. Happy guests will probably come back.

Read more.


Comments: This author is observant enough to notice the difference in light quality in the hotels she has stayed. Her point – don’t make clients suffer through cheap inferior lighting, they’ll be happier if they have full-spectrum light available. Next time you stay in a hotel – take a note and see what you notice.



Jumping Spiders Use Image Defocusing For Depth Perception

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

Source: Webvision


Title Jumping Spiders Use Image Defocusing For Depth Perception


The experiment was one of those experiments that is elegant in its simplicity. When using just green light to illuminate prey, the spiders were always accurate in their strikes, just light in full spectrum light. However, when green light was excluded and red light exclusively was used to illuminate prey, the spiders attacks on prey were typically short.

Read more.


Comments: While nominally about how spiders hunt, we were interested in this article for the information contained on how the eyes of one particular species have evolved to take advantage of different spectrum within the light we see and how they are disadvantaged when even one colour is removed from their available light spectrum. And to think we see all those options as simply white.



Seasonal Vinyasa Yoga for Winter

Sunday, February 26th, 2012

Source: 8 Limbs Yoga Blog


Title Seasonal Vinyasa Yoga for Winter


The main intention behind my winter seasonal vinyasa practices is to help you ward off typical Kapha imbalances by raising your core temperature, enhancing your metabolism, and increasing your circulation and spirit by offering you dynamic, invigorating, rhythmic sequences that keep the earth and water from going out of balance.



Also, try eating less to keep your digestive fire bright, supplementing your diet with vitamin D, omitting sugar and alcohol to reduce mood swings, enjoying a hot bath, sitting by a fire, or spending five to ten minutes in a tanning bed or in front of full-spectrum light bulbs. These are just a few alternative ways to move you towards sukkha, and away from suffering, or dukkha, during this dark season.

Read more.


Comments: This author covers more than just the practice of the asanas (exercises) in how yoga can be incorporated into your life. We are especially interested in the discussion of how light is incorporated into a yoga practice over winter.



5 Tips to Get Your Body Rhythm Back

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012

Source: MindBodyGreen – your guide to wellness


Title: 5 Tips to Get Your Body Rhythm Back


Do you feel like you’re out of sync? Here are some tips to help get your rhythm back…


Tip 3: Make sure you get natural light. Just as we need darkness to support our sleep cycles, we need light — particularly morning sun- for our day cycles. We need the light of the sun to trigger our metabolism, alertness and overall ability to function and perform. And if you spend most of your day indoors, replace your artificial or fluorescent lights with full-spectrum light bulbs.

Read more.


Comments: This article by Dr Frank Lipman covers five different areas you can work on to get your body into it’s unique rhythm. If you have problems sleeping or any other problem that is caused by your circadian rhythm being out of sync, then we recommend you take the time to read the full article and implement some of his tips.

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Illuminating the biological basis of light therapy

Monday, February 6th, 2012

Source: Capital City Weekly


Title Illuminating the biological basis of light therapy


Light therapy has been of medical interest for centuries and many pre-modern hospitals included a solar room for patients. However, only in recent decades is the physiochemical basis of light’s effects on mammals beginning to be understood. Here, we will explore an example of how light affects a biochemical process important for mood and sleep-wake cycles. In doing so, we can gain insight as to how non-light mood enhancers may work through a similar mechanism.

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Comments: This article is an indepth look at the concept of light and what research shows about its effects on us. For those who are interested in the field, this is well-worth reading./i>



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My New Studio

Thursday, February 2nd, 2012

Source: Life’s A Sketch


My New Studio


Whoopie!!!! I’ve just completed moving all my art supplies from our dining room, living room, and spare bed room into my newly renovated basement. The first photo is the finished painted concrete floor. I chose to go this route because having had wall to wall in the past it seemed to be the best choice per reference articles on basement studios. Note the reflective quality which aids in keeping the space bright. I’ve opted instead to lay down smaller area rugs for warmth.


The task lighting is using full spectrum light bulbs and the walls are very light grey so as to not cast any colors onto my work.

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Comments: We love reading about people’s lighting design plans. In this case, as an artist, the writer had quite specialised lighting needs. We’re pleased to see that full-spectrum lighting was able to give them what they needed.



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