Selected methods for the study of biologic time series are reviewed and their relative merits are discussed in the light of underlying assumptions. Their potential applications are exemplified in several fields of biology and medicine. The monitoring of environmental integrity, notably of pollution, is investigated. The need for specifying optimal sampling requirements is underlined. An individualized and time-qualified definition of health by the establishment of reference intervals is required for increasingly rational individualized program for the prevention and/or treatment of disease. With these reference intervals and rhythm characteristics available, one can better interpret with single samples or time series an increased risk of a certain disease or the inception of the disease. For all of these aims the monitoring of environmental and/or personal marker rhythms is essential--to obtain large data bases from which information can be more easily derived for monitoring personal health, to recognize risk as well as to diagnose disease early and to optimize treatment by timing according to rhythms.