Your Body Clock Is Linked To Risk Of Developing Mood Disorders

Individuals with a history of disrupted body rhythm may have higher risks of mood instability

Circadian rhythms are variations in physiology and behaviour that recur every 24-hours, such as the sleep-wake cycle and daily patterns of hormone release.

"How do we take account of our natural patterns of rest and activity and how do we design cities or jobs to protect people's mental health?"

According to a new study, people who routinely had a disrupted night's sleep had an altered 24 hour cycle were more at risk of getting mood disorders, depression, bipolar disease.

Individuals with lower relative amplitude were found to be at greater risk of several adverse mental health outcomes.

Dr. Laura Lyall, the research's lead author, said that the team had found a "robust association" between the disruption of circadian rhythms and the mood disorders.

Interestingly it's not just disrupted sleep that can upset the fine balance of your circadian rhythm, it's also important to be active during the day and inactive at night - so that evening gym session probably isn't for the best.

That is the finding from a study of more than 90,000 people by scientists at the University of Glasgow.

'Previous studies have identified associations between disrupted circadian rhythms and poor mental health, but these were on relatively small samples'.

Professor Smith Professor Smith recommended that people turn their phones off by 10pm to support their body's natural circadian rhythm.

The results held true even after adjusting for a wide range of influential factors including age, sex, lifestyle, education, body mass index and childhood trauma.

Smith explained that this relative amplitude showed that regularity and changes in the routine of rest and activity. This can be due to reduced activity during waking periods or increased activity during rest periods.

The researchers found that lower relative amplitude was associated with a greater odds of reporting lifetime history of major depression or bipolar disorder.

He said: 'But it's not just what you do at night, it's what you do during the day - trying to be active during the day and inactive in darkness.

However, the study had limitations, including that the activity data was only collected during one week, and at a different time to the questionnaire data, and that it did not look at teenagers - an important time of life both in terms of mental health and the body clock.

There was an increase of 6 percent and 11 percent in risk of depression and bipolar disorder respectively with lowering of relative amplitudes.

Related news: