We follow timing and schedule everyday. But how many of us keep time according to our body clock?

Our body actually has an internal clock that regulates the body metabolic process. It is called the circadian rhythm and it regulates the 24 hour cycle of biological process.

The circadian cycle responds primary to light and dark cycle of day and night. It governs the body functions such as sleeping and waking, resting and activities, fluid balance, body temperature, heart output, oxygen consumption and hormonal secretion.

If the circadian cycle is disrupted, health issues arise. Therefore, it is important that we keep time with our body clock.

Here is how the biological process happen according to the body clock:

1) Morning

As dawn approaches, the body clock respond to light and produce  hormones, serotonin to regain conscious and wake up. Cortisol is secreted to wake up the body and get us up and going. Adrenalin is secreted to energize the body for the activities in the day.

The digestive system is active and this is the best time to have a large meal during breakfast. Lung functions peaks in the morning. So, doing aerobic exercises in the morning is best.

2) Mid day and afternoon

The body temperature starts out low in the morning but goes up towards mid day. So does metabolic rate, which, peaks at mid day. The heart works at the optimum to pump nutrients throughout the body. In the small intestine, digestion and absorption is completed.

3) Late afternoon and early evening

The energetic hormones along with the body temperature start to decrease. Metabolic rate slows down. Insulin sensitivity is at it’s lowest. So, it is wise not have a large dinner and high in carbohydrate.

The kidney clears all metabolic wastes from the morning meal and maintains metabolite balance in the blood.  Body muscle strength, hand and eye co-ordination peaks around this time. So, fitness training is optimized at this time.

4) Night

When the sun comes down and night falls, serotonin is converted to melatonin in the pineal gland in the brain. This prepares the body for sleep. Bowel movement is suppressed. The liver function becomes active to detox all toxins generated in the day. Melatonin is produced continuously until dawn breaks and the whole cycle starts all over again.

As you can see that the body metabolic processes follow a certain rhythm and timing. For optimization of the biological processes and good health, it is important that we follow according to this timing.

In my next post, I will write about the consequences if the body clock is disrupted.

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