Why is morning sunlight important?


Morning sunlight plays a crucial role in regulating our circadian rhythms and promoting wakefulness. Here are several insights and benefits as highlighted by on the :

  • Healthy Cortisol Pulse: Early daylight triggers a natural and beneficial increase in the hormone cortisol, promoting wakefulness and supporting a healthy immune system 1.
  • Sets Biological Cascades: Viewing morning sunlight triggers various biological processes vital for organs such as the liver, gut, and heart 1.
  • Circadian Rhythm Regulation: Exposure to morning sunlight helps adjust your internal clock, which is critical for sleep quality and overall health 2.
  • Metabolism and Immune System: The sunlight viewing protocol established in the morning can improve metabolism and potentially has direct beneficial effects or indirect consequences from better sleep 3.

    Morning Sunlight

    Andrew explains the importance of getting morning sunlight to set your circadian rhythms and promote wakefulness. He emphasizes that the short pulse of cortisol that comes with morning sunlight is healthy and promotes a healthy immune system. He also gives tips on how to safely get sunlight exposure and mentions that this protocol applies to animals as well.

    Huberman Lab

    Maximizing Productivity, Physical & Mental Health with Daily Tools | Huberman Lab Podcast #28
  • Suppression of Melatonin: Morning sunlight suppresses any residual melatonin, a hormone that induces sleepiness, thus promoting alertness 2.
  • Resets Sleep Patterns: Light exposure, especially in the mornings, has been shown to reset sleep patterns, making it easier to fall asleep as evidenced by various experiments 4.
  • Mental and Physical Health: Having a morning routine of getting sunlight exposure significantly benefits mental and physical health and performance 5 3.

If for any reason sunlight isn't accessible in the morning, using bright artificial lights until the sun is out, and then trying to get sunlight exposure is suggested. However, artificial light isn't as effective as sunlight in triggering the required bodily mechanisms for wakefulness and sleep timing 6.

It's essential to practice sunlight exposure routinely, 80% of the days if possible, to maintain its beneficial effects 2. If you miss a day, it is recommended to expose yourself to sunlight for a longer duration the following day to make up for it 2.