Moving the clock ahead one hour this weekend for daylight saving time is saving energy for the conservation fight, but it's also leading to more depression and heart attacks, making it hazardous to your health.
A magazine published by Duke Energy, one of the largest electric utilities in the country, included an article this week that took aim at the clock-changing law, which was updated just over a decade ago by a 2005 energy bill. It pointed out a number of adverse health effects that are a side effect of using 0.5 percent less energy per day as a result of gaining an hour of sunlight.
The practice has ebbed and flowed over the last 50 years, but most states in the U.S. adopted the practice after the policy was updated by Congress. Included in that adoption was Vice President Mike Pence's home state of Indiana, which had been an outlier for years.
The Duke Energy "Illumination" article said Energy Department data showed Indiana actually increased its energy use by 1 percent after the daylight saving time adoption, forcing residents to spend millions of dollars more per year.
But energy use is not the only thing affected by the time change. Studies published over the last decade on the effects of daylight saving time have shown it interferes with natural sleep patterns, which people never truly recover from.
Studies "have found that the time change interrupts sleep cycles, causing fatigue, lack of productivity and sadness," the article added. Even worse, medical studies showed that daylight saving time also can lead to death. "Other studies show that the number of heart attacks spikes in the days following the March time change, and after the November time change, the frequency of heart attacks decreases," the article reads.
It is referring to a 2013 study in the American Journal of Cardiology that showed a small spike in heart attacks on the Sunday following the March time change.
A University of Alabama study done in 2012 showed a 10 percent jump in heart attacks on the Monday and Tuesday following the time change in March.
The Duke Energy article doesn't offer much in the way of policy suggestions. "Whether you like it or hate it, it's likely here to stay."
Hillary Clinton, who lost her bid for the presidency in November, was the only candidate during the last election cycle to say that she would seriously consider changing the policy if elected.