"While our findings can't tell us about the direction of causality, they reinforce the idea that mood disorders are associated with disturbed circadian rhythms, and we provide evidence that altered rest-activity rhythms are also linked to worse subjective well-being and cognitive ability", Lyall said.
"How do we take account of our natural patterns of rest and activity and how do we design cities or jobs to protect people's mental health?" They were given activity monitors to be worn for a week to help the researchers measure the disruption in their internal body clock.
All participants wore accelerometers for seven days between 2013 and 2015 to record their activity.
"The circadian system undergoes developmental changes during adolescence, which is also a common time for the onset of mood disorders", he added.
 Relative amplitude is the distinction, in terms of activity levels, between the active and rest periods over 24 hours. "But I think what's less well-known and what comes out of this work is that not only is a good night's sleep important, but having a regular rhythm of being active in daylight and inactive in darkness over time is important for mental well-being".More news: Tech and health care lead U.S. stocks lower
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However, the new study is the first to use objective measurements of daily activity and is among the largest of its kind, according to Aiden Doherty, senior research fellow at the University of Oxford, who was not involved in the research.
Researchers in the United Kingdom made the conclusion by studying the circadian rhythm: our waking and sleeping patterns throughout the 24-hour sleep cycle.
'This is an important study demonstrating a robust association between disrupted circadian rhythm and mood disorders'.
"This is important globally because more and more people are living in urban environments that are known to increase the risk of circadian disruption and, by extension, adverse mental health outcomes".
Regarding the research, he told: "The next step will be to identify the mechanisms by which genetic and environmental causes of circadian disruption interact to increase an individual's risk of depression and bipolar disorder".
For the new study, an worldwide team led by University of Glasgow psychologist Laura Lyall analysed data - taken from the UK Biobank, one of the most complete long-term health surveys ever done - on 91,105 people aged 37 to 73.