Biological Clocks Linked to Health
BYLINE: Laura Roden
Many people find it more difficult to get up for work on a Monday than the other days of the week. Others struggle to adjust to night shift after working days or vice versa. Jet lag can leave travellers with indigestion or feeling really lousy after having just one alcoholic drink on that first "night" in a new time zone.
The reason for these experiences is the disruption and desynchronisation of biological rhythms with environmental rhythms.
Biological rhythms are not to be confused with biorhythms: biorhythms are to biological rhythms as astrology is to astronomy.
In humans, metabolism, hormone secretions, the expression of some genes, mental alertness, manual dexterity, athletic performance and social interactions all show daily rhythms.
These rhythms have periods of about 24 hours and are called circadian from the Latin circa meaning "about" and dies meaning "day".
A defining feature of all living organisms is that they display biological rhythms, and …
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Publication information: Article title: Biological Clocks Linked to Health. Contributors: Not available. Newspaper title: Cape Times (South Africa). Publication date: April 20, 2007. Page number: 11. © 2009 Independent News & Media PLC. COPYRIGHT 2007 Gale Group.
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