Skip to content

Essential Near Infrared Light (NIR)

  • by

Humans have evolved under sunlight and they make use of solar energy to thrive. Given that more than 50 percent of this energy is due to near-infrared radiation, we are clearly risking our health and well-being by using lighting that emits no near-infrared radiation whatsoever.

Nature is opportunistic and that over millions of years our cells have evolved to take advantage of the 60% of the spectral energy our eyes…  don’t see. In a mere 200 years we have moved from a predominately agrarian society where we spent 90% of our time in the sun compared to now where we spend 90% of our time indoors under artificial lighting.

Compared to sunlight, modern-day electric lighting, and in particular LED lighting, is sorely deficient in near-infrared radiation. LEDs and indeed, common “full-spectrum” or white light LEDs, provide no near-infrared light (NIR) whatsoever. The same is true, of course, for fluorescent lamps. Given how much time most people spend indoors, we have been depriving ourselves of essential near-infrared radiation.

Interestingly, the medical community is publishing over 400 peer reviewed papers per year on NIR treating everything from dementia to wrinkles while the lighting community has ironically eliminated NIR from our lives!

“One third of the energy your body consumes comes from the food you eat. The vast majority of the energy your body needs to maintain systemic equilibrium comes from environmental infrared light exposure.”

— Dr. Alexander Wunsch, MD, PhD

  • NIR and red light helps reduce the risk of retinal-inflammation by priming the cells in the retina for “repair & regeneration.”
  • NIR is critical to the production of ATP, the fuel cells need for metabolism and all vital functions.
  • NIR is essential for the production of “subcellular” (mitochondria) as well as “circulatory” (pineal gland) melatonin.
  • NIR is especially beneficial at night to prepare for sleep and a “must” when using computers and other electronic screens.

“LED light exposure that is not balanced with full (spectrum) sunlight loaded with the red parts of the spectrum is always damaging to your biology.”

— Dr. Alexander Wunsch, MD, PHD

SOLshine Photo Nutrition