Development of cutting-edge, wearable technologies to combat jet lag

NEW YORK: Researchers have devised a method to combat jet lag by offering individualised suggestions via the use of smart wearable technology. This innovation may assist those who travel regularly between time zones in obtaining higher levels of quality sleep.

According to the findings of the experts, including those from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in the United States, jet lag is caused by disruptions in the circadian rhythm, which is the body’s internal clock.

They went on to say that this internal clock helps govern a wide variety of our physiological activities, such as sleeping, metabolism, hormone production, and even how our brains operate.

A series of algorithms were demonstrated by the researchers in the study that was published on Wednesday in the journal PLOS ONE. These algorithms are able to analyse the biometric information that is recorded by a smart device and then recommend the optimal combination of sleep and light to assist a person in resetting their circadian rhythm.

“We are able to calculate the optimal light for adjusting your circadian rhythm and promoting your wellbeing by using these algorithms in conjunction with a mathematical model of a person’s circadian rhythm. This allows us to help you feel better. This paves the way for the creation of an environment that is both intelligent and healthful” Agung Julius, a co-author of the research from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, made this statement.

Julius said that the new software also makes suggestions on the appropriate quantity and timing of a person’s sleep, in addition to the kind of sleep that is required.

According to the findings of the study, people’s levels of energy and alertness, along with other biological processes, may be negatively impacted when their circadian rhythm is out of sync with the time zone they are attempting to adhere to.

“Your mental state and how awake you are are also intimately connected to the circadian and sleep processes that take place in your body. If you attempt to do a task when it is not the optimal time of day, your level of alertness will not be as high as it will be if you complete the task when it is the optimal time of day, as determined by your circadian clock “Julius stated.

In most cases, the variance in a person’s circadian rhythm is assessed by utilising the data obtained from a blood or saliva test that analyses levels of the hormone melatonin.

According to the researchers, this method had a flaw since it required a significant amount of time to collect the test results and did not allow for immediate interpretation.

The researchers employed algorithms that they had devised in order to analyse the data that was obtained through wearable smart technology. This data included things like the subject’s heart rate and body temperature.

They explained that these algorithms took the data from the wearable device and transformed it into an estimate of the circadian rhythm variance of a person.

The researchers found that the estimations produced by the algorithms were consistent with the methods of hormone measurement that are used in clinical research facilities.

Julius posed the following query: “The question is whether that sort of data can give you an estimate that is as accurate as the clinical standard.”

According to the findings of the study, the newly developed technology makes it possible to make effective use of light in order to improve and preserve the health and performance of humans.

Published at : 10 Aug 2022 10:52 AM (IST)

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