The power of light to change your world for good
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Firstly, wishing everyone of all religions and none a glowing Diwali to celebrate the power of light over darkness, good over evil, and knowledge over ignorance.

You may have noticed lots of press about the menopause recently – October is World Menopause month. Menopausal women are the fastest-growing demographic in the workforce in the UK – Menopause factfile In a recent Chartered Institute of Personnel Survey, 30% of women said they had taken sick leave because of their symptoms. The 2016 Wellbeing of Women survey found one in four women even considered leaving their jobs. Menopause and Employment: How to enable fulfilling working lives


As a man, that may not affect you directly but as an employer it may be worth taking notice: Although not a ‘disability’, the number of menopause-related employment tribunals almost tripled between 2018 and 2021 – Number of tribunals involving menopause triples in three years, research finds


So what’s that got to do with light?

1/ Hot flushes (or VasoMotor Symptoms) – changing the colour temperature can help you to harness the power of the hue-heat effect – Effect of illumination on perceived temperature

2 / Disrupted sleep (and brain fog) get outside, sit by a window and boost with bright light during the day – and make sure the bedroom is dark at night to support melatonin expression – Sleep, Melatonin, and the Menopausal Transition: What Are the Links?

3/ Depression and mood swings – boost serotonin, linked to oestrogen with bright light – An overlooked connection: serotonergic mediation of estrogen-related physiology and pathology

4/ Photosensitivity and Dry Eye Syndrome. Make sure light can be adjusted for comfort , minimise glare and eliminate flicker will help. It may also be worth taking a look at the type of HRT you are using (androgens are most likely to be an issue) – Dry Eye Syndrome in Menopause and Perimenopausal Age Group


It turns out that men experience something similar too – under the marvellous moniker hypogonadism! The male equivalent of the menopause, the formal name is Late-onset Testosterone Deficiency. Like man-flu, it’s real but different. The bottom line seems to be that bright light, particularly the UV wavelengths in daylight and some specialist lamps may help – Andropause: Current concepts

And a note for my horse-riding friends who are seeing their equine companions grow shaggy winter coats.  Here are two papers about day length and hair growth . Essentially, maintaining a regular bright day / dark night cycle reduces winter coat growth – makes sense 😉 The effects of extended photoperiod and warmth on hair growth in ponies and horses at different times of yearCONTROLLING HAIR LENGTH IN HORSES USING EXTENDED DAY LENGTH REGIMES

I’m always a bit skeptical about claims for single-wavelength light, but as our hairlines recede and our waistlines expand, here is a paper is some evidence that red light might help the follically-challenged… – Hair Growth Promoting Effects of 650 nm Red Light Stimulation on Human Hair Follicles and Study of Its Mechanisms via RNA Sequencing Transcriptome Analysis

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