Does The Moon Really Affect Our Behaviour? - Hello Student

Does The Moon Really Affect Our Behaviour?

A controversial topic, dividing atheists and believers alike, the lunar effect has long split the modern room. The go-to argument for believing that we are affected by the moon, is that because it controls the tides, it has a gravitational pull on water, and we are made up of around 60% water. Whether you stand your ground as an evolutionist, are committed and devoted to religion, fancy yourself a bit of an astrologist, or anything and everything in between, you’ve probably questioned the powers of the moon at some point. It’s easy to be skeptical and call hippy bullshit, but there is a lot of evidence suggesting otherwise, and a little magic in wondering what if. And sometimes, when your moods are all over the place and your behaviour’s gone west, the moon could be the answer…

By  Rahel Girma

Moods

Loads of people feel more emotional and stressed when there’s a full moon, and are more prone to feeling anxious, erratic and tense. This is probably because we don’t sleep as well during this time. A study found that when the moon was full, volunteers took five minutes longer to drop off, slept for 20 minutes less and spent 30% less time in deep sleep. They didn’t know the purpose of the study and couldn’t see the moon from where they were. This lack of sleep is usually explained by theories that suggest that the moon’s light affects the levels of melatonin (our sleep hormone) that our body produces. However, as the subjects weren’t in the light of the moon, this makes it all a bit more mystic and implies humans are just naturally attuned to perceive the lunar effect. Even if you’re unsure, it’s worth observing if the moon will full around an important time for your work or studies and make sure you get enough sleep!

Cycles and fertility

The moon’s cycle is 29.5 days, which is the same as the average menstrual cycle, and many believe that this is more than just a coincidence. Over 80% of people with periods believe that their cycles have synched up with others close to them, and the most common time for them to sync is during the new moon. In ancient cultures it was said those who ovulated on a new moon and menstruated on the full moon were aligned with the red moon cycle, and those who were most fertile during the full moon and bleeding on the new moon were said to be in line with the white moon cycle. Today, menstrual cycles are affected by many factors, such as contraception, processed foods and pollution, meaning that they’re not completely natural and vulnerable to the lunar effect. However, there is still evidence to suggest that the most common time of menstrual synchronisation is still in line with the moon’s cycle, and 1 in 2 women will have their periods start ±3 days from either the full or new moon. Observe where the moon comes in your cycle, see if you’re in tune!

Violence

The full moon can also affects people’s thoughts and behaviour. Mental illnesses generally exhibit 1.8% more violent or aggressive episodes during the full moon, which is obviously not a considerable amount, but enough to be noted. Anxiety and depression have also been observed to be more severe during a full moon, as well as drug overdoses and hospital admissions. Crime rates are also notably higher at this time – so much so that Senior police officers in Brighton noticed the correlation and deploy more officers when the moon is full.

As the studies, cycles and evidences are inconsistent, it’s possible that it depends on the cycle itself and that different people could be more susceptible than others. Watch out if you’re hitting the town and the moon is high!

Energy levels

You may notice that your energy levels, drive, creativity and enthusiasm vary at different times of the month. In general, when the moon is waxing (growing fuller) it is a time of new beginnings, high energy and growth, and when it is waning (getting smaller) things tend to end and you may find yourself with less energy. Bear this in mind when you’re starting new projects or struggling with completing work and creating, as it may explain why one coffee isn’t doing the job!

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