Blue light, emitted from your phone, tablet and other electronic devices, can suppress melatonin production, disrupting your sleep cycle. And while yawning through your 9 a.m. meeting with your manager may not be ideal, sleep disruption is actually a much bigger deal than you think. Sleep strengthens our resiliency and makes problems more manageable. In fact, your brain solves problems while you sleep by turning off your prefrontal cortex (where you make decisions) and shutting down production of norepinephrine (which helps you focus on immediate issues during the day). Together, this helps your brain find different associations you may never have noticed otherwise – and you often wake up with new takes on old problems.
A full night’s sleep also helps regulate your body’s hormones. However, when you’re sleep deprived, hunger hormones are thrown off, increasing that feeling of being hungry – and your need for a slice of pizza.
More than triggering hunger (or hanger, which happens to the best of us), recent research found another link between blue light and an increasing waistline. A study from the University of Tsukuba in Japan compared the effects of LED light with OLED light, or organic light-emitting diodes. What they found was a clear difference in the metabolism of study participants exposed to each type of light, with fat oxidation during sleep “significantly lower after exposure to LED compared with OLED.”
So what does this mean? Any disruption to your sleep is harmful, but blue light exposure from devices before bed not only makes it harder for you to get a good night’s sleep, but also could impact how your body burns fat while you sleep.
Who knew that despite your best efforts to work out, hydrate and eat healthy during the day, you could be potentially sabotaging your wellness at night by reaching to refresh your feed one more time? But, hey, we get it! Sometimes screen time before bed can’t be avoided. Luckily, blue light screen protectors like EyeJust are available to help cut blue light at the source, protecting your eyes, skin, and most importantly, sleep!