Where you sit during the day could make a big difference in your overall health. Credit: Wikimedia Commons
What difference does a window make? A lot, it turns out.
Office dwellers who primarily work in spaces that have lots of natural light and windows sleep better, exercise more and have a better quality of life than those who work in environments that don't have access to direct sunlight. That's according to a new study out of Northwestern University, which found that employees who worked in offices with windows slept an average of 46 minutes more than those who were windowless.
"There is increasing evidence that exposure to light, during the day, particularly in the morning, is beneficial to your health via its effects on mood, alertness and metabolism," said senior researcher Dr. Phyllis Zee, a neurologist and sleep specialist, in a statement.
The researchers say there's a simple solution to the problem and suggest architects and building managers ensure that all workstations are placed at least 20 to 25 feet of the peripheral walls containing the windows. "Daylight from side windows almost vanishes after 20 to 25 feet from the windows," said study co-author Mohamed Boubekri.