Why We Sleep

Why We Sleep

Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams

Book - 2017
Average Rating:
Rate this:
15
1
1
" Why We Sleep is an important and fascinating book...Walker taught me a lot about this basic activity that every person on Earth needs. I suspect his book will do the same for you." --Bill Gates

A New York Times bestseller and international sensation, this "stimulating and important book" ( Financial Times ) is a fascinating dive into the purpose and power of slumber.

Sleep is one of the most important but least understood aspects of our life, wellness, and longevity. Until very recently, science had no answer to the question of why we sleep, or what good it served, or why we suffer such devastating health consequences when we don't sleep. Compared to the other basic drives in life--eating, drinking, and reproducing--the purpose of sleep remained elusive.

An explosion of scientific discoveries in the last twenty years has shed new light on this fundamental aspect of our lives. Now, preeminent neuroscientist and sleep expert Matthew Walker gives us a new understanding of the vital importance of sleep and dreaming. Within the brain, sleep enriches our ability to learn, memorize, and make logical decisions. It recalibrates our emotions, restocks our immune system, fine-tunes our metabolism, and regulates our appetite. Dreaming mollifies painful memories and creates a virtual reality space in which the brain melds past and present knowledge to inspire creativity.

Walker answers important questions about sleep: how do caffeine and alcohol affect sleep? What really happens during REM sleep? Why do our sleep patterns change across a lifetime? How do common sleep aids affect us and can they do long-term damage? Charting cutting-edge scientific breakthroughs, and synthesizing decades of research and clinical practice, Walker explains how we can harness sleep to improve learning, mood, and energy levels; regulate hormones; prevent cancer, Alzheimer's, and diabetes; slow the effects of aging; increase longevity; enhance the education and lifespan of our children, and boost the efficiency, success, and productivity of our businesses. Clear-eyed, fascinating, and accessible, Why We Sleep is a crucial and illuminating book.
Publisher: New York :, Scribner,, 2017
Edition: First Scribner hardcover edition
ISBN: 9781501144318
1501144316
Branch Call Number: 612.821 Wal
Characteristics: viii, 360 pages : illustrations

Opinion

From the critics


Community Activity

Comment

Add a Comment
c
cjhf97
Mar 08, 2020

My go to for information

o
orsino81
Mar 03, 2020

I haven't finished it yet, but so far it's an excellent read. It's such good writing for an academic piece - very clear and easily understood language for the layperson. And the insights into sleep are almost unbelievable. My friend has read this three times and taken its instruction about sleep to heart, and after a year says his life has vastly improved. I'm looking foward to finishing it!

f
fldamato
Dec 27, 2019

Great I want to know

s
sparklekeek
Dec 11, 2019

Bill Gates top 5 of 2019

z
zabby21
Sep 24, 2019

This is an awesome book.

r
Russ_A
Sep 15, 2019

This book can be summarized in three words: get enough sleep. Beyond that, there isn’t much in the book that will surprise you. The author does a thorough (too thorough, in my opinion) job of describing all the ways sleep helps your body and how many ways lack of sleep hurts you. It really comes down to the same thing: get enough sleep. That’s what your mother told you. He describes many experiments, some of them ingenious, sleep researchers have done to prove the benefits of sleep. Sleepy drivers are more likely to die in a car crash. Duh. And so on. The workmanlike prose is very readable and understandable to the lay reader. I doubt reading this will change anyone’s behavior, especially since those who believe they function well on four hours a night aren’t likely to read it and will scoff at it if they do.

STPL_Emily Sep 07, 2019

Matthew Walker believes that lack of sleep is one of the biggest health emergencies of our time, and after reading this book, I can't help but agree. If you or anyone in your life has trouble sleeping, this is required reading in my opinion. Walker does a fantastic job of taking his years of sleep related research and communicating the information clearly and engagingly.

c
chamc01
Aug 18, 2018

A must read for your health and the health of you kids.

s
sandraperkins
Aug 18, 2018

This book emphatically makes the points that (1) getting enough sleep is absolutely essential to our physical and mental health and the quality of our life, and (2) most people in today’s world are not getting enough sleep.

How much is enough? Ideally, we should be getting at least 7.5-8 hours of sleep every single night. Even one night of poor sleep has negative impacts on our health. And “making up sleep” is a myth. We can not “make up” the loss from even one night of sleep.

What is the first step to making sure we get enough sleep? Spend at least 8-9 hours in bed every night. If we lie down in bed for only 6-7 hours, we can not possibly get enough sleep to be healthy. (You don’t have to sleep later; you can go to bed earlier. Will you really miss anything important?)

The section called “Why Should You Sleep” opens with the following:

“AMAZING BREAKTHROUGH!

“Scientists have discovered a revolutionary new treatment that makes you live longer. It enhances your memory and makes you more creative. It makes you look more attractive. It keeps you slim and lowers food cravings. It protects you from cancer and dementia. It wards off colds and the flu. It lowers your risk of heart attacks and stroke, not to mention diabetes. You’ll even feel happier, less depressed, and less anxious. Are you interested?”

If this were an ad for a drug, everyone would want it and Big Pharma would make a fortune. But it is not a drug. It is sleep; it is free and available to everyone. It is truly miraculous, and yet most of us do not take advantage of getting enough sleep. We are just not taking sleep seriously enough.

Question for us all: What are you doing with that extra time awake that is more important/beneficial than getting enough sleep? Whatever you are doing, it is not a good trade-off.

h
HanSolo2
Jul 03, 2018

A plethora of information about sleep and its impact on our physical, mental, and emotional well-being. A must read for all!

View All Comments

Quotes

Add a Quote
j
jamesian
Dec 20, 2017

Neuroscientist Matthew Walker, PhD, expands our knowledge and emotional connection to the sleep that occupies so much of our lives. He draws amazing pictures of the work our brain completes during different cycles of sleep, and as a passionate advocate of health, he makes recommendations about public policies that could protect us.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.

Summary

Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.

Notices

Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Recommendations

Subject Headings

  Loading...

Find it at WPL

  Loading...
[]
[]
To Top