Health Contributions | Why Daylighting?

"Mal-illumination is to light as malnutrition is to food."

Natural daylight is an inseparable element in our lives; linking vital biochemical, physiological, and behavioral processes to the chronology of the Earth through our Circadian clock. The human circadian rhythm regulates, or plays an influential role in, biological functions such as sleep, appetite, alertness, cell regeneration, hormone secretion, and more. 1

"Mal-illumination" is a condition coined by light researcher, Dr. John Ott, resulting from a deficiency in natural sunlight and the subsequent effects of this on human health, performance, and longevity. In depth research has cited 'sunlight and vitamin D deficiency' as a major factor in the pathology of at least 17 varieties of cancer as well as heart disease, stroke, hypertension, autoimmune diseases, diabetes, depression, chronic pain, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, muscle weakness, muscle wasting, birth defects, periodontal disease, and more. 2 Put simply, "Mal-illumination is to light as malnutrition is to food."

Health Contributions | Why Daylighting?

According to a recent study, Americans spend 85%-95% of time indoors. With fluorescent lighting currently being used as a primary light source in 92% of commercial buildings 3 , and the vast majority of people spending an average of 7.5 hours per day at work 4 , it is very likely that we all suffer from mal-illumination to varying degrees because we do not get enough exposure to sunlight daily.

Finally, hospitals have noted faster healing times, by as much as 11%, in patients with access to natural light. 5 Not only that, but the U.S. Dept. of Energy found that employees who sit near direct daylight in their workplace show 20% fewer symptoms common to people within "sick buildings." 6


1: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circadian
2: http://www.malillumination.org/
3: www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/cbecs/char95/toc.html
4: http://www.bls.gov/news.release/atus.nr0.htm
5: CADDET Energy Efficiency Newsletter, 2000
6: Smart Business from ZDWire, August 14, 2000