With the days getting shorter and the temps getting cooler, I can already tell that I’m craving more sunshine. I eat my lunch outside, ditch the jacket when temps permit and simply try to get out in the nature during the daylight hours as much as I can. For me, sunshine is an instant energy and mood boost. And one that I really, really miss in the late fall and winter months.
But now, I have a little bit of sunshine that I can take with me anywhere and everywhere — and keep in my pocket at all times, no matter what time of year it is or what the weather or season is. Technology is seriously cool, guys, and so is the HumanCharger .
This light-therapy device ($219) is simple to use yet high-tech and totally fascinating. The device sends a UV-free blue-enriched light through LED earbuds — something called “earlight” — to the light-sensitive regions of your brain. This is said to do everything from help boost energy levels to improve mood to reduce cravings for carbohydrates and to increase mental alertness, all in just 12 minutes a day.
The HumanCharger is really easy to use, too. You simply charge it regularly via a USB outlet (no software to download), then pop in the earbuds, hit the power button and let the earlight flow for 12 minutes. There’s a cool little countdown feature on the device itself, too — the circle of light on the power button slowly goes away as you progress through your treatment. And at the end of 12 minutes, you hear a faint click/beep and your session is over.
You can walk around, talk or do just about anything when you’re wearing the device, too. (Although, if walking or doing chores around the house, you do need a pocket to put it in — there’s no clip on the device.) But I’ve been using it along with my morning or afternoon meditation. Instead of setting my phone’s timer, I pop the HumanCharger earbuds in, turn it on and meditate while I’m getting the earlight. It not only times my meditation, but it’s also made my meditations even more enjoyable. After using the device almost daily for a few weeks, I do seem to leave every session with a little bit more energy and focus — especially if it’s rainy out or I didn’t get great quality sleep.
I haven’t tested its effect on reducing jet lag yet, but it’s said to help alleviate symptoms of that, too (and you can use it up to four times a day). It’s also said to help shift workers with their changing wake-sleep cycles. I haven’t officially tried it with that either, but with a little one at home who sometimes has me up at all hours of the night, I can say that it does seem to help perk me up on days when coffee just isn’t cutting it.
Ever tried light therapy before? Do you notice your energy levels decrease in the fall and winter, too? —Jenn