If you live in the northern hemisphere you’ve likely noticed there’s a marked change in people’s mood and bodies during winter months, this is commonly known as the Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and it happens because the lack of sunlight really affects human bodies, making them prone to depression and moodiness. In fact, the light and dark patterns we are exposed to each day help our brains regulate bodily functions, with light inducing the production of the hormone serotonin -which helps you stay calm and focused- and darkness, inducing the production of melatonin -the hormone that helps you sleep and rest better.
Similarly, artificial lighting has a special effect on your body; it can help you stay alert or wind down according to how bright and warm it is, if you want to rest better you might want to rethink your current light bulbs and how you place them around the house. Here’s what you need to know:
- Bulbs that emit cool blue light waves act like the sun, helping your body produce serotonin and keeping you awake, alert and focused.
- Artificial lighting can be divided into cool, warm and neutral, according to their temperature.
- Low temperature bulbs produce warm whites, high temperature bulbs produce cool light and neutral lights fall in the middle.
- Temperature is measured in Kelvins, while brightness is measured in Lumens.
LEDs offer many advantages when compared to other lighting sources, because they save energy and money, by using less Watts to produce the same light output than their counterparts. For example a 60 Watts incandescent bulb has a lumen rating of about 800, an LED only requires 8 to 12 Watts to produce the same 800 lumens. Imagine how much you’ll save switching them around the house and over time!
Switching to LEDs is therefore ideal for the planet and your budget, but what’s best for your body? Choose the right LEDs for your home and rest better or boost productivity, according to the room’s needs and environment.
How to Choose the right LED Bulbs for Rest According to Temperature and Lumens:
For Your Bedroom
Soft warm white is ideal for a relaxed atmosphere that supports rest and better sleep. Go for 2,700 to 3,000 Kelvin bulbs with a light output of 1,500 to 4,000 lumens. The higher the lumen the brighter it will be, so stick to the lower lumen rating for overhead lighting and add a bedside task light or reading lamp for nighttime reading.
For Your Living Room
Avoid bright blue lights and instead go for accent lighting, where you can highlight a particular area with recessed lighting or add wall lights to illuminate artwork, while keeping the general lighting within the 2,200 and 3,000 Kelvins with a lumens output of 1,500 to 3,000. This way you can spend time in the room relaxing alone or with friends without disrupting your inner cycle.
You may also want to rethink your late night rituals, reducing the amount of time you spend on your phone and/or laptop; modern phones and laptops emit very bright lights that can also affect the way your brain interprets the time of day, making it harder to fall asleep.
We hope these tips help you get better rest at home and make your switch to energy saving lighting easier! Let us know how it went.