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Confessions of a Building Biologist

You have probably heard the proverb `The Cobbler’s children have no shoes`.


There are two interpretations of this. One is that whilst taking care of others’ needs people are not always good at attending to the needs of those closest to them. The other is that we are sometimes too busy doing what we need to do to satisfy our customers and make a living that we don’t have the time and energy to devote to the well-being of our own nearest and dearest.


This is exactly what I have done (or more like what I have not done) in regards to managing my blue light exposure after dark.


Blue light in the range of 400-450nm is a very short and strong wavelength. This type of light can cause eye damage, like macular degeneration, due to its ability to penetrate the retina in the eye. Blue and green light ranging from 450-550nm has a direct effect on the the brain's ability to produce melatonin, a hormone very important for sleep and overall health and wellbeing.


Melatonin is often referred to as the sleep hormone, but it does so much more than just prepare us for bed. Melatonin has free radical scavenger, anti-inflammatory and antioxidants effects. It is indeed a powerful hormone that can reduce natural oxidative stress. So when talking about optimising your melatonin production naturally by managing your blue light exposure after dark, it’s not just for sleep benefits…but so much more.


I am extremely diligent with my EMF exposure: we have no Wi-Fi at home (everything is hard wired, including the Fetchbox), no electronics in bedroom, making sure no wiring runs near the bed/sofa we use, mobiles go to airplane mode after working day, also on airplane mode when in car etc. But for some reason (even though I cover this in all my EMF reports..) I had not done anything about blue light.


To be fair, I have always (read: since I learned about blue light and related issues) used a special app for my computer screen that filters out blue light after the sunset. Same with phones, very easy to change the mode and block out blue light. See how to do this HERE.


But there were still many conventional light bulbs in our house that are high in blue light. There was also the TV, which in all honesty we do not watch much, but it still gets occasional use.


So I thought I would fix the areas we use last in the evening before going to bed.


For bathroom and toilet I got the Motion Sensor Night Lights, which are rechargeable and entirely devoid of blue and green light. These are flicker free, extremely low EMF and have up to 8 hours battery life. Brushing teeth and taking off my contacts was bit strange at first, but in few days one can easily get used to doing all those things without bright light. Toilet in the other hand, was great to use, such a soothing and calming light. Plus it comes VERY handy when there is a need to use this room in the middle of the night.


Blue light blocking reading (clip) light for bedroom - this works great as a bedside lamp and very easy to clip on any book you want to read at night time. Besides this lamp, we also use plant based and non-toxic wax powder (PowderCandle) in few vessels, need to keep the romance alive, right?!


Replaced living room and wardrobe light bulbs with red light bulbs.


But there were still conventional light bulbs in kitchen, office (yes, I tend to work long hours) and hallway.... more red light bulbs needed...Which will all add up and you end up spending a small fortune on this.


Then I came across brand called Bon Charge and their blue light blocking glasses. Reason they really stood out for me is that all their glasses are available in non-prescription, prescription and readers. Wow! What a surprise! I hadn´t even thought about this option. Blue light blocking glasses, sure...but prescription blue light blocking glasses! I have been wearing contacts since I was a teenager and tend to be very lazy with switching them to glasses at night time. This was about to solve two problems for me at once - getting me off from wearing contacts at night time and fixing the issue with any other conventional light bulb in the house.


Gone are the days when your blue light blocking glasses looked like bulky safety goggles...now there are tens of different styles to choose from and these frames look very nice and stylish.


Denver frames for Kuno and Cali frames for myself. And this is how we look wearing them, not too shabby I think.


These glasses are made in an optics laboratory meaning experienced optical technicians create each lens. Frames use the highest-grade materials available which gives them the perfect fit and comfort when wearing them. Often, cheaper pairs use low quality acetate which will feel heavier and uncomfortable when you wear them.



So do I actually feel any difference wearing them? I have to be honest..it took a few days getting used to them. As I am very poor with wearing glasses, I tend to get a headache from them quickly. Same thing happened here, but only for the first two nights, after that it felt very light and easy wearing them. It also takes a little bit getting used to everything being bit more darker than normal. Again, it only took few nights and I have no issues wearing them at office, cooking the dinner or even walking the dog after dark.


I didn´t think there was a huge difference on how I felt (as you know even if you don´t feel or notice these things, your body still feels and reacts) wearing them. Until I forgot to put them on one day. And all of a sudden I realised how bright everything is without them. Putting them on makes my body and mind to relax and start to wind down.


Another example is a recent visit to friend´s house, it was fairly late at night, they had all the lights on, TV on, numerous wireless devices being used...and we both developed a headache and were tired more than we normally would be. Got back home, put our glasses on and half an hour later felt back to normal again. One thing for sure, we´ll be taking our glasses with us when vising anyone late at night.


Now being used to wearing them every night, it is bit uncomfortable watching TV without them. Wearing amber lenses will change certain colours on the television or computer screen. Blue colours will appear black or green and greens will appear a lighter green colour. The remaining colours will stay the same. Having some colours changed in the evening is well worth it as you will protecting your quality of sleep from the dangers of blue light from your television.


A lot of people believe blue light is only present in smartphones. This is not true, blue light is everywhere that has an LED component, think car headlights, TV, fridge, router, alarms, street lamps, computers, the list is endless. When you ask the question, should I wear blue light glasses when watching TV, you should ask yourself can I see the colour blue on this TV screen. If the answer is yes then you need to me wearing blue light glasses when watching TV. This blue light will disrupt your sleep so wearing blue light glasses when watching TV is essential for improving your sleep.


To take this step further, I also ordered us sleep masks from Bon Charge. Wearing a blackout mask to bed can potentially increase the quantity and quality of your sleep. This study showed that it’s possible to get more REM Sleep by wearing a Sleep Mask. Sleeping masks are essential in a brighter, busier world. The human body was designed to sleep in total darkness until the sun rose.


There are few different options available, THIS video will help you to choose the most suitable mask for you.


We got one Cotton Blackout Sleep Mask and one Blackout Contoured Sleep Mask.

We took turns and tried them both and the verdict is that we both like the Cotton Blackout Sleep Mask, mainly because it has adjustable eye pads and just feels softer on the face.


Putting them on I suddenly realised how much artificial light there is in our bedroom...we have fairly big lot of land and bedroom is tucked away from the street, closest street light is about 100m away. But as we have high windows, apparently it is still not completely dark...even thought it had felt dark before. When I put on my sleep mask, I realised it´s not the case. First words from Kuno´s mouth after wearing this mask to bed very first time - this is THE shit! He claimed he had slept more soundly and felt like his body from last night´s workout session had recovered much better than it normally does.

I also felt so well rested and wide awake as soon as the alarm went off and another difference I felt is that I was able to sit in the cold pool way longer than I had been before. I also started to use the mask while meditating and this really helps to go deeper faster.

Now after a few weeks of using these masks, I must say we are completely hooked and I have no idea how we lived without them. I do feel it is the combination of the blue light blocking glasses and sleep masks that has made a massive difference (which was bit unexpected as I thought I already have a good quality sleep routine).



They say good sleep is not a privilege but a right. And I wholeheartedly agree! It is a foundation of good health and should be taken very seriously.

I also believe we need to be improving as humans all the time, this means it is perfectly fine to tweak your habits/conditions continuously and if needed then learn, unlearn and relearn things. I know that I am constantly upgrading myself. The way I am today, will be very different from the way I will be in 12 or 24 months. I like the saying by Ray Dalio: if you look back on yourself a year ago and aren´t shocked by how stupid you were, you haven´t learned much.


***

Lovely people at Bon Charge have given me a discount code to share with you.

HHS20 gives you 20% off from the entire store. Enjoy!





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