Weight Loss

Morning Light Can Make You Thinner

Timing and Intensity of Light Correlate with Body Weight in Adults

Department of Neurology, Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine

The Research

Researchers from Northwestern University recruited 54 participants with an average age of 30 and, using wrist monitors, kept tabs on their light exposure, activity, and sleep patterns for seven days. They also followed participants’ eating patterns via food logs. The findings: Even after controlling for all non-light exposure factors, the influence of morning light on weight was considerable—it accounted for roughly 20% of the subject’s BMIs, meaning those with earlier light exposure weighed less.

What it Means

Modifying your exposure to light in terms of timing, duration, and intensity could help keep your waistline in check.

The Bottom Line

People aren’t spending a lot of time in essential bright morning light… light that our DNA has been programmed to respond to. Light is clearly a strong ‘weight management’ signal to the body. To reap it’s benefits, the researchers suggest getting at least 20 to 30 minutes of morning light every day. Researchers believe the effect goes directly from the eye to the brain.


The Secret to “Light” Your Metabolic Fire 

—Jacob Liberman, OD, PhD, DSc

Listen to best selling author of Light Medicine of the Future, Dr. Jacob Liberman’s 55 minute interview from the Forget Weight Loss Forever Project. Dr. Liberman shares his early personal and clinical experiences of the health benefits of light and addresses mal-illumination.

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