“Chrono” means time and “Biology” means the study of life. Life continually changes due to the fact that the planet is revolving around itself and around the sun, which means that people are exposed to different conditions, very often but only periodically and cyclically.
Humans are periodic animals – this means health is related to a specific time of the year and certain hormones are released within a specific cycle. For example, we need to release a certain substance in spring because it makes us more resistant and stronger in preparation for physical labor or work that we’ll do in a normal setting in the warmer weather.
During the day a cycle which influences our well-being is called the Circadian cycle. Circadian means throughout the day, or 24-hour cycle, and this cycle is very precise. One very interesting example is that at midnight, there’s a specific function of the thymus and the immune system that allows our body to release more white blood cells. This indicates it’s a time for our body to fight off infections and to reset the matrix. Our body is made of a certain extra cellular matrix that leverages on that specific time between 11pm and 12am to reformat. If there is any infection, then our body will fight more at this time. This is why when we are sick, at night our fever is stronger – and if we have any infections, in our teeth for instance, we’ll feel them much more or have more pain at midnight or during night than during the day. Our immune system is more active and even our thyroid will generate a specific adjustment of temperature through TSH release and is very sensitive. Another example is treating hand problems – if have cold hands or you have De Quervain’s syndrome, the best time for treatment, or to put your arms into a warm bath is around 7pm – 8pm as diuresis is increased. If you are swollen or you have oedema, it’s also the best time to take a bath or to drink some fluids that will make you increase your kidney function. These are just small examples – every single time of the day has a specific peak that can be exploited.
Chronobiology creates a lifestyle according to specific changes which are innate in your body. This means we have an internal clock and this internal clock determines the production of hormones and, when coupled with exposure to light, it creates photoperiodism. The earth rotates so there is sun at midday and when the sun goes down at 6 o’clock for example, there is no more thermal emission, no more ultra violet and, so on. The rhythms are all driven by the fact that we are living on a sphere that rotates, and we have an internal adaptation system – our circadian clock – to try to adapt to these rhythms. The adaptation mechanism in our hypothalamus tries to predict and adapt the temporal rhythms, daily, weekly, seasonally, annually and so on, and coordinates all of our instinctual body clocks.