For about 40 years, scientists have been working on the internal clock. Their goal is to find out the causes for the observed regularity of daily highs and lows, which in extreme cases can fluctuate between top fit and total exhaustion. For hundreds of years, the phenomenon of internal rhythm has been considered by traditional Chinese medicine. The Chinese divide up twelve organs into the day and night organs, assigning each of the organs a functional high over two hours a day. Periodic complaints at certain times of the day are attributed to problems of the active organ at that time.
The day has 24 hours - also our internal clock?
Through experiments, the assumption could be substantiated that our internal clock depends on the daylight. If people spend more than four weeks in a room without daylight, they can not distinguish between day and night and make their rhythm of life in harmony with their inner clock.
Most people then live in a cycle of 25 hours, but some people even have a 30-hour cycle. When these people return to a normal day and night environment, their internal clock approaches a 24-hour cycle.
How does the body organize its daily routine?
Throughout the day, fluctuations in the blood concentration of various substances produced by the body have been known for a long time. For example, the concentration of adrenal hormones, adrenaline and cortisol, increases in the blood at 5 o'clock in the morning. Metabolic processes, digestion and energy production, are in full swing in the morning. The heart activity increases - the body adjusts to the active phase of the day.
Experience has shown that concentration, memory and speech skills work well between 10 and 12 o'clock. At lunchtime, the mental and physical performance decreases. The siesta, which is especially popular with southerners, is a habit that is in harmony with the pudding that the organism puts in around lunchtime. However, the afternoon nap should not last longer than 20 minutes, you want to master the afternoon with verve and verve. Luscious meals can increase the tiredness at noon.
By 14 clock probably increases the blood level of the body's endorphins, which experience, the general well-being increases. At 4 pm, physical and mental performance will increase again. One assumes that one can achieve the largest training and learning successes around this time. In the evening, the body turns to its recovery phase. Blood pressure and body temperature drop. At night, the organs regenerate to be fully operational the next day.
Does the way of life influence the inner clock?
However, the experience of the daytime form fluctuations are highly dependent on the personal lifestyle. Whoever makes the night of the day every day and sleeps regularly at noon until 12 o'clock, will not have his first performance high at 10 o'clock. The body is very adaptable and can change to a changed rhythm. All he needs is some time. Anyone who has ever spent their holidays in a different time zone has experienced on their own body, that it adjusts to the new rhythm of life within a few days.
As a rule of thumb when changing the time zones, the body adapts daily by one hour to the new time. The body of shiftworkers and frequent flyers must constantly change to a new rhythm of life. The bodily functions of these people regularly have to change the rhythm again as soon as they have found a new rhythm.
Recovery periods can be shorter than it is good for the body, which can lead to fatigue, long-term fatigue, and poor performance in the long term. The habitual person who lives strictly according to his fixed schedule will have less problems with it.