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Struggling To Sleep? Go Camping For A Week!

November 05, 2019


Camping as a cure for insomnia? Read more!

Growing up in South Africa, there are plenty of opportunities to head into nature for a camping trip. Whether it’s deep in the woods along the Garden Route, along the rocky shores of the Western Coast, in the hills and valleys of Mpumalanga, or the vast open reaches of the Tankwa Karoo, there is something wonderfully cleansing about spending time away from the bustle of everyday life. 

As such, it’s not too surprising to learn that researchers from the University of Colorado-Boulder published a study in 2013 that found that a week spent in the wilderness without any artificial light is all it took to recalibrate the circadian rhythms and increase the natural levels of melatonin in their test subjects. 

In scientific terms, the circadian rhythm is a roughly 24-hour cycle in the physiological processes of living beings, including plants, animals, fungi and cyanobacteria. It is directly linked to our exposure to sunlight. In layman’s terms, this rhythm tells your body when it should be awake, and when it should be getting sleepy. In our modern-day lives, the use of electric light and devices with blue-spectrum light (i.e. TV screens, laptops, tablets, cell phones, etc.) have a huge impact on our bodies’ ability to adhere to this natural rhythm. 

When CU Boulder integrative physiology professor Kenneth Wright and his team took their test subjects on a camping trip in Colorado's Cache la Poudre Wilderness and exposed them only to natural sunlight and the warm glow of a fire in the evening, it was found that their melatonin had risen far beyond that of their control subjects that stayed home and went about their regular routines. Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone that is key to sleep and the sleep-wake cycle in humans and animals. 

In short - when you unplug from all devices and spend your days rising and going to bed according to the sun, moon and stars, your body will naturally recalibrate itself, resulting in better sleep. You can read more about the study here

Keep an eye on the blog in the coming weeks and months if you would like to learn more about the science of sleep. In the meantime, why don’t you visit us in-store to take advantage of our new tech-forward Comfort Solutions Lab®? This innovative system uses unique pressure-point technology that allows us to point you in the direction of the mattress that is best suited to your comfort requirements. It’s the ideal way to find a sleeping surface that will pave the way for restorative rest.


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