Why We Sleep by Matthew P. Walker

Why We Sleep

A New York Times bestsellerThe first sleep book by a leading scientific expert—Professor Matthew Walker, Director of UC Berkeley’s Sleep and Neuroimaging Lab—reveals his groundbreaking exploration of sleep, explaining how we can harness its transformative power to change our lives for the better.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...

Details Why We Sleep

TitleWhy We Sleep
Release DateOct 3rd, 2017
GenreNonfiction, Science, Health, Psychology, Medicine

Reviews Why We Sleep

  • Emily
    For once, I actually mean five stars in the sense of "everybody should read this book." This book is highly readable but contains stunning information I'd never seen anywhere else (and includes numerous references to serious primary literature).I was reminded (stay with me here) of ancient Egyptian funerary practices. After carefully embalming organs like the heart and liver, and placing them in canopic jars, the Egyptians pulled the brain out wi...
  • Clif Hostetler
    The less you sleep the shorter your life span will be. Do I have your attention yet? If so read this excerpt from the beginning of this book (p3-5), and you will understand why this book caught my attention. This book is divided into four parts. Part 1 defines the nature and types of sleep, describes how the need for sleep changes over a life span, and goes on to discuss the evolutionary origins of sleep. Part 2 describes why you should sleep a...
  • Lubinka Dimitrova
    Hands down, one of the best books I read this year (more like ever, to be honest). So, a miracle drug has been discovered. A revolutionary new treatment that makes you live longer. It enhances your memory, makes you more attractive. It keeps you slim and lowers food cravings. It protects you from cancer and dementia. It wards off colds and flu. It lowers your risk of heart attacks and stroke, not to mention diabetes. You’ll even feel happier, l...
  • Rebecca Foster
    We often hear that sleep, diet and exercise are the three pillars of health, but Walker, a professor of neuroscience at the University of California, Berkeley, goes further: he believes sleep is the platform on which diet and exercise rest. Getting 7–9 hours of sleep a night is not some luxury to aim for but an absolute essential for the brain to process new information and prepare for receiving more the next day. Dreaming is like overnight the...
  • Sad Sunday
    Finally, the book whose author actually said that he will be happy if a reader fell asleep while reading it. Great book!I have to admit, I skipped a few chapters due to my incompetence in sleep science. But I am still rating it 5* stars since it was a great and interesting read. In my opinion M.P.Walker said everything about sleep that could be said. The thing I liked the most was the style - it had a flowing continuity that was easy to understan...
  • Viv JM
    Squeezed by the vise grips of an electrified night and early-morning start times, bereft of twenty-four-hour thermal cycles, and with caffeine and alcohol surging through us in various quantities, many of us feel rightly exhausted and crave that which seems always elusive: a full, restful night of natural deep sleep. This book is a fascinating look at the purpose and benefits of sleep, including the importance of different stages in the sleep cyc...
  • Tamahome
    Wordy but good content. I'm making sleep a bigger priority.p. 164:I was once fond of saying , “ Sleep is the third pillar of good health , alongside diet and exercise . ” I have changed my tune . Sleep is more than a pillar ; it is the foundation on which the other two health bastions sit . Take away the bedrock of sleep , or weaken it just a little , and careful eating or physical exercise become less than effective , as we shall see .sleep ...
  • Ana Vlădescu
    Want to know why consistently sleeping less than 8 hours per night puts you at high risk (I forget the figures right now, but very very high) of heart stroke, cancer, depression, obesity, anxiety? Want to know how sleeping less than 8 hours per night shortens your life by more than just a few years? Want to get super angry and realize that the entire Western, industrialized world is pushing for ways of life that overlook the need for sleep? Readi...
  • Stephen
    My favourite book of 2018 so far and one of my all time non-fiction favourites.So much in there that just makes sense and explains a lot - wish that I had read this 30 years ago when I started my working life but without giving too much away I shall be making sure that I get my 7 to 8 hours sleep every night (if I do have to work late, I'll make sure that I don't have an early start the next day) , refrain from alcohol just before sleep, avoid lo...
  • Lucy Banks
    I received a copy of this book from Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.Detailed yet accessible exploration into all aspects of sleep.As a chronic insomniac, I knew I had to read this as soon as I spotted it on Netgalley. When sleep is elusive, it colours every aspect of your life - from functioning at work to appetite, so I was keen to learn more about it from an expert, and hopefully pick up some tips on how to cut out the dreaded sleep...
  • Liina Bachmann
    People who sleep too little (less than 8 hours a night more or less regularly) are stupid, can't remember stuff, have a weak immune system, die younger, are a burden to the health care system and a threat to other people. Sufficient sleep is the single most important thing you can do for your health and well being but still the "5hour sleep" is glorified, justified and not reacted upon. Well read the book and you won't think it okay to sleep litt...
  • Prashanthini Mande
    We all need 8 hours of sleep. Most of us know this fact but still sacrifice sleep because we do not know the extent of damage lack of sleep can do. Some of us think that they can fully function on 4-6 hours of sleep. A few of us may also think sleeping is for losers. We can sleep when we die. To all of us, I would say, please read this book.The sheer number of problems we face because of lack of sleep is scary. Sleep affects everything - our ment...
  • James Hartley
    This is going to sound naive but it still surprises me that so many scientists can be so vain. I like to imagine them outside and above such concerns but of course they arent: theyre as human as the rest of us. They want to win prizes, "go down in history", have students applaud them in lectures and be popular.Walker is Professor of Neuroscience and Psychology at the University of California, Berkeley and tours, lectures and writes on sleep and s...
  • Frieda Vizel
    I heard Walker on NPR and was promptly brought to hysterics over the danger of sleeping too little. I had a techy friend block the wifi on my home router from 8pm until morning, then I bought a data disabling add-on from my phone carrier for my cell phone to lock that too, and I began to measure my smartwatch sleep metrics like workout results; look at me, nine hours! I also procured the book and fell asleep to it quite a few times, which might b...
  • Jenifer Jacobs
    I would like to thank NetGalley and the publisher for an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. This book is an excellent summary on (as the title clearly states) why we sleep. I don't know why I thought that what I learned in college (from my egregiously egotistic Sleep and Dreaming professor) would still be accurate and relevant but somehow I did. This book set me straight! The author presents the latest research in a readable and e...
  • Brenda
    Startling information about the all-too-real dangers of not getting the necessary amount of sleep night after night. Easy to follow and all the information backed by extensive trials and studies, this book is packed with scientific findings that will make anyone reading this to reevaluate their views on the importance of 7 or more hours of sleep.He goes into details regarding NREM sleep and REM sleep and the health benefits and effects of both on...
  • Toni
    I guess I'm not in the camp of seeing "groundbreaking" information in this book. Valuable information, definitely, but information it seems to me that I've read before. Yes, at least 30-40% (my guesstimate) of adults in industrialized countries do not get enough sleep, compared to other countries, etc. Our 24/7 media bursts available on a multitude of devices has exasperated this problem. Yes. Corporate culture rewards the individual who works la...
  • Yzabel Ginsberg
    [I received a copy of this book through NetGalley.]It took me so long to get to this book (which I also requested late, it didn’t help), and I’m wondering why! Although it *was* definitely scary, it was really interesting—and anyway, the ‘scare’ makes a lot of sense, so I wouldn’t be inclined as to consider it ‘alarmist stuff I can probably safely ignore because all these doctors and scientists write alarming stuff anyway’. I’ve...
  • C.J. Shane
    Without a doubt, this is one of the most important books I’ve read in years. I keep up with health-related news, but I had no idea how important adequate sleep is for maintaining health. I was genuinely shocked to discover just how bad (bad, bad, bad) it is for our health when we’re not getting enough sleep. Lack of sleep doesn’t just make you grumpy. Inadequate sleep has a direct relationship to serious mental and physical health-related p...
  • Ashley Lipps
    I thought I was a believer in the importance of sleep. Holy moly, I had no idea. There’s a lot here, and the book is very readable. This will strengthen your resolve if you’re a sleep lover in a world of folks who see a lack of sleep as a badge of pride. And if you think you’ve heard all of the hallow advice about how and why to get enough sleep, the research and advice in this book actually feels fledged out and meaningful.
  • Rae
    The author maintains that our sleep loss epidemic is the greatest public health challenge we face and that our lack of sleep is a slow form of self-euthanasia. As a woman who loves a good night's sleep and has always been annoyed by society's negative attitude toward "too much" sleep, this was music to my ears! I love that Walker's book is not strident or apocalyptic in tone. He's a neuroscientist who is telling it like it is. I'm going to listen...
  • Lisa
    You might not want to read this book...if you like your short sleep schedule. It's convincing, well-written, and a pleasure to read. Highly recommended for anyone who wants to optimize their physical, mental, or emotion health.
  • Carrie Kellenberger
    I've read a lot of books on sleep because I've suffered from insomnia for over 20 years. A quick scan through my non-fiction list will tell you that this is not a topic I take lightly, and neither does Mattew Walker.This is one of the best books I've read on sleep, and while I think Walker could've expanded and written two books with everything he covered in Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams, I think he did an excellent job wi...
  • Annelies
    Thank you NetGalley for the ARCThis is definitely an interesting book. It really made me consider my own sleeping habits and patterns. Some of the things Walker describes were very recognisable, like that change in your circadian rhythm in your teenage years where you have no problems staying up till late, but it's agony getting up in the morning to be in school by 8AM. I also liked the descriptions of all the research that has been done around s...
  • Snorki
    Astonishing and absorbing book about the science of sleep. New MRI techniques have in recent decades allowed us to study and understand the brain at a new level of detail, and this and other techniques have allowed us to learn more about the mystery of sleep. What is becoming increasingly obvious to sleep scientists are the enormous health benefits associated with a good night’s sleep, from longer life to improved memory and ability to learn. W...
  • Juliana
    I thought this would help explain a few sleep problems I'm having, but it turns out I don't want to know.
  • Amy Alice
    REALLY loved this book. It tells you about the basic set up of sleep, who does it, for how long and how little we know about why we do it. Then all of the thousands of reasons why we should be getting 8 hours a night (or at least giving ourselves the opportunity to get 8 hours). A particularly chilling fact was how much more likely we are of having a car crash or a heart attack after ONLY ONE HOUR LESS OF SLEEP FOR ONLY ONE NIGHT. The day after w...
  • Michael Cayley
    This book, by a sleep expert, is full of interesting facts. It covers almost every aspect of sleep you can think of, including sleep disorders, how and why sleep patterns change from foetus to old age, and the influence of sleep, or lack of it, on physical and mental health. For me the most interesting sections were the openings ones on the biology of sleep patterns and what influences them, the time devoted to REM and non-REM sleep, and how the ...
  • Allys Dierker
    Lots of good information w/ footnotes for many of the ideas if you want to track down original data. Lots of what is now “common sense” suggestions for better sleep (limit devices at night, dark room, cool room, no big meals before bed).Newer news to me was the info about why sleeping pills are a super bad idea, and why alcohol is not far behind. There are also enough facts to make even the most cavalier short-sleeper think twice about missin...