Circadian Rhythm – Our Body-Energy Clock

Our Body-Energy Clock ebbs and flows with energy during a 24-hour day. Every hour of the day our body supplies fluids, nutrients, proteins and removes toxins; this process is referred to as Circadian Rhythm.
Research supported by the National Institutes of Health has shown that the body’s Circadian Rhythm can influence sleep-wake cycles, hunger, cell regeneration, hormone release, body temperature and important bodily functions. Studies show that disruptions to your Body’s Energy clock can effect your sleeping patterns, hormone balance and could be linked to a host of health issues such as heart problems, obesity and depression.
Do you plan your daily activities around our Body-Energy Clock?  Think of lifestyle habits you might modify in order to better synchronize with your Body’s Energy Clock.
A good start is to eat heavier meals early in the day when the stomach is at its peak to catch your body’s warming energy. Eating larger meals of the day early delivers nourishment to the small intestine when it is strongest, which aids absorption and assimilation.
By contrast, have you ever eaten too much in the late evening, and awakened in the wee hours of the morning and were unable to fall back to sleep? Chances are good that you were tossing and turning between the hours of 1 a.m. and 3 a.m. when your over-loaded liver was struggling to do its work.
Before electricity and the light bulb, people ate supper and retired early, allowing time for the last meal of the day to digest so that the liver could be most effective in its peak hours of activity.
The work shift of the liver reinforces the concept of making the last meal of the day a light one that is consumed on the early side. The more time that passes after food is eaten before peak activity of the liver, the better the liver will be able to carry out its myriad functions
In the same way, it is taxing to the system to deal with late-night snacking. When we eat late at night, food is not well absorbed by the small intestine and the liver has little opportunity to do its job of housekeeping.  Between 1-3 a.m., the liver reaches its peak, doing its work to cleanse the blood, while the small intestine, the organ responsible for the absorption and assimilation of many key nutrients, is at its ebb.
When you eat with your natural Circadian Rhythm, you give your body the best chance to do its work well.  You feel better and release your natural energy.

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The science of fitness — from a very fit scientist

Noted researcher Dr. Paul Arciero has devoted his career to helping people get more active and eat more natural, healthier foods.

Naturally, it all started in the dirt of a community garden.

“Some of my fondest childhood memories come from tending that garden with my mother,” Arciero said, recalling the hot summers harvesting in rural Connecticut. “Going there with her, tending to the earth, getting dirty – that was my introduction to healthy nourishment.”

He’s made the most of that early lesson, spending 25 years at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, New York, where he is a professor of nutrition and exercise science and director of the Human Nutrition & Metabolism Laboratory.

Arciero has published over 50 peer-reviewed scientific journals, but his education in the world of healthy living didn’t all come from the classroom or the laboratory.

He was also a top tennis player as a youth, in college – and even in recent years, when he and his brother John were ranked No. 12 in the United States Men’s 50 & Over Doubles. Arciero is also a triathlete who has coached hockey and tennis, among other athletic feats.

“My research has examined and explored the lifestyle strategies of physical activity and exercise training, combined with healthy eating,” he said. “It’s based on human science, not computer science. Having an understanding of the human experience is something I pride myself on.”

An important part of that experience has been family.

Arciero, the fifth of seven children, grew up gathering around for healthy meals and excelling in sports at school.

“My mother was ahead of her time, knowing that eating well is linked to how you feel and how you are,” he said.

In college at Central Connecticut State University in New Britain, Connecticut, Arciero and his brother John were on a three-month tour with the European Satellite Tennis Circuit when his interests in exercise, nutrition and academia all snapped together.

“John helped me develop the ability to be more appreciating and conscious of the power of your mind,” Arciero said. “He was a tipping point of understanding my intellect.”

From there, Arciero went on to receive two masters of science degrees, from Purdue University and the University of Vermont. He earned a doctorate from Springfield College and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri.

The key themes of fitness and family continue with some of Arciero’s latest work as well. He recently developed a new app, with help from his son Nick, a developer and coder. The GenioFit app lets you know what you should eat when, and when you should exercise, Arciero said. He leads exercise videos in the app, as well as guided meditations.

“GenioFit embraces all the fundamental premises and mission of the research I’ve done, the organizations I represent, and who I am,” Arciero said. “It’s imperative that we engage in lifestyle strategies that engage healthy eating and exercise. There’s a synergy that lets us derive a significantly greater benefit when the two are together.”

When he’s not at work, Arciero can often be found – naturally – working with his wife Karen in the large garden in his yard that helps feed them and their three sons.

Source: newsarchive.heart.org ~ By: American Heart Assoc News ~ Image: Courtesy of Paul Arciero

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