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Who is Matt Walker?

Matt Walker is a Professor of Neuroscience at UC Berkeley, trying to understand why we sleep.

What do we need to know about sleep and testicles?

Men who sleep five hours a night have significantly smaller testicles than those who sleep seven hours or more.

Why do we need sleep for our brain?

Your brain needs adequate sleep to absorb, and to retain new memories. Scientist validated these assumptions by comparing a group of sleep deprived students to a group that got 8 hours of sleep before taking a test. The former had a 40% deficit in their ability to make memories. For some children, this could be the difference between getting an A and failing.

What goes wrong within the brain deprived of sleep?

A brain on sleep deprivation shuts down your brain's ability to commit new experiences to memory, according to the MRI images obtained from subjects in study.

Are aging, dementia and alzheimers related?

It is suggested that disruption of deep sleep is a serious contributor to memory decline.

Are sleeping pills any good?

No, they do not produce naturalistic sleep.

Is sleep is essential for the body?

Yes, sleep is essential for our body and specifically for the cardiovascular system. We can measure it during the Daylight Time transitions, where the rate of heart attacks before/after go up and down by 27% each year, indicating that even 1 hour of sleep deprivation can have a tremendous impact on the physiology of our body.

How does sleep deprivation impact our immune system?

If you are not sleeping enough, even as little as only sleeping 4 hours for 1 night, your immune system becomes significantly impacted. The link between lack of sleep and cancer is so strong now, some night-shift jobs are being classified as carcinogens.

How can I fix my sleep?

1 - Regularity. Go to bed at the same time and wake up at the same time. It will anchor your sleep and improve its quality.
2 - Sleep in cool temperature. Your body needs to drop the temperature to sleep; 65 degree Fahrenheit is optimal for most people.

Sleep is not an optional luxury, it is a non-negotiable biological necessity. Treat it that way.

Editor Academy

  • Phrase the questions in abstract, without focusing on the specific guest. Make it relevant for anyone not familiar with this podcast.

    For example, instead of asking "How did Jake learn to ride a bike," change that question to "How can I learn to ride a bike?" and give an answer from this episode, as if it was a statement, "To learn to ride a bike, you have to ... A-B-C...etc.".
  • Consider gender neutrality when possible. Instead of writing "He is extending his feelings onto his partner," write "they are extending their feelings..."
  • When marking a question start time, put the marker at the end of a question s.t. if a listener starts to play the segment, it starts to play right from the beginning of the answer.
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