I don’t know about you, but I love natural light. Living in the UK, we just don’t get enough of it as particularly outside, there isn’t enough of it to really benefit from the health benefits it can bring. My dream home however will be so beautifully built, and include features such as lantern roofs and big windows. Lantern roofs in particular are a architectural feature that I love and when I watch a property show and they put one in it really does transform a home or space. Lantern roofs have been in use since the 16th century in various forms – sometimes made from wood and glass and sometimes metal and glass. I love lantern roofs in particular as they can transform a space, allowing any tiny bit of natural light to come through into the space and in a country with (what appears to have) minimal sunshine, accessing any natural light at all is great!
The health benefits of natural light include:
- Boosting Vitamin D in the body – this nutrient is imperative to our health and survival. It prevents so many health nasties including bone loss, heart disease, and can help prevent and treat some cancers.
- Preventing depression – particularly when the days get shorter and there is less natural light to start with, getting exposed to natural light, indoors and outdoors, helps with our mental health as it really does help to keep our mood high!
- Sleep problems – Our bodies are designed to follow the night and day and so if we aren’t getting enough natural light it can throw out our natural rhythms, thus causing problems with sleep.
Lantern roofs and big windows help with getting natural light into your home or business space but there are other things you can do to improve your health with natural light:
- Mirrors – mirrors lighten a space and allow light to reflect around a space, just make sure you aren’t reflecting sunlight directly on to a flammable material.
- Use light colours – it’s a well know fact that light colours, like mirrors, reflect light and so brighten a space. Darker colours absorb the light and so make a space seem darker.
- Avoid heavy materials – in both curtains, drapes and furnishings. These heavy materials block light from getting in to and around a space.
Depending on the space and layout of your property, it is definitely worth getting an architect or builder to advise you whether a lantern roof would be possible. They can usually go where there is any flat roof. It is important to ensure that you get a legitimate and regulated builder to do any work for you and ensure the work is insured and guaranteed. If you are not able to get a lantern roof, you might be able to get a type of conservatory or skylight instead – these are both great ways of increasing your lighting indoors and are worth looking into in order to find out what would fit your space and requirements as well as your budget the best!