A sleep study by the University in Colorado last July has proven that you sleep better when you’re camping. Our sleeping patterns are controlled by our natural Circadian Rhythm. Let’s describe this as our internal alarm clock controlled by our hormones melatonin and cortisol. Melatonin is your sleep chemical, and cortisol makes you more ‘awake’. You know how sometimes when your stressed from work you can’t sleep? Cortisol.
Our increased exposure to electrical light, and less exposure to natural light, causes humans to stray from our natural circadian rhythms or sleep patterns, and may be one of the contributing factors of poor quality sleep.
This study took eight participants and measured their melatonin & cortisol levels, before and after a two week camping trip without any electrical devices or lights. Their sleep patterns where monitored throughout the study.
What the study found was that without the interruption of electrical light and devices while camping their melatonin “sleep” hormones came on earlier which meant they were sleeping for an average of 2 hours longer each night. The study also found that the participants also went into a deeper sleep which indicated they were getting better quality of sleep. Camping = less stress = less cortisol.
So that’s that… camping is better for your health. If you’re feeling a tired, stressed and overworked the answer is camping! but leave your electrical devices at home… and maybe the kids too!