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Maintaining Your Body’s Internal Balance- Understanding Homeostasis & Circadian Rhythms


Maintaining your body’s internal balance is one of the keys to optimal health. This balance is a journey, achieved with a combination of regular, quality habits like eating a nutrious healthy diet, maintaining proper hydration levels,  moderate exercise, having a positive outlook, and getting regular sleep.

This isn’t always easy to do given our hectic schedules and often erratic lifestyles, but when we are aware of the importance of balance, we can then be more mindful of why it is so important and how we can achieve this homeostasis.    



What is Homeostasis? Our body’s inner processes function in cycles  called homeostasis which controls our Thermoregulation (body temperature), Osmoregulation (fluid balance) and Excretion (elimination systems). These processes use either positive or negative reinforcement functioning like a thermostat, it is set at a level and runs until it needs to stop. Then turns on again when needed. When we push ourselves too hard or for too long a period of time- our “thermostat” keeps running and the processes to stop it won’t turn it off. That is when we start to notice inflammation or other problems that can potentially lead to autoimmune diseases as the mechanisms to turn processes off is malfunctioning. Maintaining our homeostasis and being mindful of this crucial mechanism is achieved by practicing moderation and balancing our circadian rhythm.    Practice moderation in your diet, lifestyle and temperament while avoiding extremes and excesses helps to maintain your homeostasis.


WHAT IS YOUR CIRCADIAN RHYTHM? Another aspect of our homeostasis is how well our circadian rhythm functions.

·       Circadian rhythm is a biological process that displays an oscillation of about 24 hours, these rhythms are driven by a circadian clock, detected in humans, plants, animals, fungi, and cyanobacteria.

•        Your circadian rhythm is basically a 24-hour internal clock that is running in the background of your brain and cycles between sleepiness and alertness at regular intervals. This Sleep/Wake Cycle is  self-sustained,  adjusted to the local environment by external cues-  light, temperature and redox cycles (oxidation).

•        For most adults, our Biggest Energy Dips are in the middle of the night (2:00am and 4:00am) and after lunchtime (1:00pm to 3:00pm), times can vary if you’re naturally a night owl or a morning person. You won’t feel the dips and rises of your circadian rhythm as strongly if you’re all caught up on sleep. It’s when you’re sleep-deprived that you’ll notice bigger swings of sleepiness and alertness. 

•        A part of your hypothalamus in your brain controls your circadian rhythm, Outside factors like lightness/ darkness can also impact it.  When it’s dark at night, your eyes send a signal to the hypothalamus that it’s time to feel tired. Your brain, in turn, sends a signal to your body to release melatonin, which makes your body tired.

•        Taking Melatonin supplements to go to sleep on a regular basis is not something I recommend you do. Taking herbs that will help you sleep or relax before nighttime, focusing on sleep hygiene. 



In 2017, the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was awarded for discoveries of molecular mechanisms controlling the circadian rhythm. They found very interesting findings to help our understating of why sleep is so important.

The Master Clock in our brains helps us maintain our 24-hour sleep-wake cycle. But in recent years, scientists have made a cool discovery: We have different clocks in virtually every organ of our bodies — from our pancreas to our stomach to our fat cells.

We need regular sleeping and eating schedules to keep all of our clocks in sync. Our Brains Detox During Sleep!!! If we don’t detox our brain, memory issues start, as protein plagues build up that may lead to memory issues, dementia, followed possibly by Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. 




•        Studies show that if we mess with the body's natural sleep-wake cycle  we pay the price.  Our blood pressure goes up, hunger hormones get thrown off and blood sugar control goes south. We can all recover from an occasional all-nighter, an episode of jet lag or short-term disruptions.

•        Beyond weight management, there's evidence that the clocks in our bodies — and the timing of our sleeping, eating and activities — play multiple roles in helping us maintain good health. And different systems in the body are programmed to do different tasks at different times.

Balancing Circadian Rhythms . A part of your hypothalamus in your brain controls your circadian rhythm, Outside factors like lightness/ darkness can also impact it.  When it’s dark at night, your eyes send a signal to the hypothalamus that it’s time to feel tired. Your brain, in turn, sends a signal to your body to release melatonin, which makes your body tired.

•        Taking Melatonin supplements to go to sleep on a regular basis is not something I recommend you do. Taking herbs that will help you sleep or relax before nighttime, focusing on sleep hygiene and understanding that what you are doing during the day affects your sleep.


How We Reset Our Clocks:


•        Regular Sleep Habits, like going to bed at night and waking up in the morning around the same times from day to day (including weekends).

•        Your circadian rhythm will likely change as you get older. And you may not have the same sleep/wake cycle as your partner, child or parents.

•        Through spending less time in natural environments, working long hours, eating at odd hours & all of the other less natural behaviors we conduct we may disrupt these processes. Western medicine uses the term “circadian rhythms” to describe these processes and the changes that happen internally in response to our environment. While researchers do not yet understand all of the rhythms and their effects, we are beginning to explore the relationship between disruptions in these rhythms and the development of illness.




Set Your Clock- “Normalize” that works best for your lifestyle. This helps keep our bodies in balance. Practice your sleep habits! Be mindful of you,  pay attention to your body and notice feelings of alertness and drowsiness. The more time you spend developing good sleep hygiene habits, the better your slumber will be and the better you'll feel.

Work on maintaining your circadian rhythm and being mindful to help increase your energy, improve your health and mood! Learn more about this topic- read my upcoming Sleep Blog and Class; Chakra Classes and Blogs and Podcasts.


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