Why We Sleep by Matthew 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, Audiobook

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...
  • David
    This is such an excellent book, mainly because I had never thought very much about the need for a good night's rest. The first part of this book does not really address "why we sleep". Instead, the book describes "what happens if we do not get enough sleep." Not until about halfway through the book, does the question "why we sleep" really get answered.The author, Matthew Walker, is a professor of neuroscience and psychology. I always prefer to re...
  • Trevor
    So, this book is both a must read and deeply, deeply disturbing. I’ve been having trouble sleeping for the last few years and now I’m going to have to do something about it, simple as that, because the consequences of not sleeping properly are appalling. For instance, it provides you, free of charge, with an increased risk of diabetes, dementia (in all its fun and various guises), weight gain, heart disease and even accidental death. And the ...
  • 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...
  • Bharath Ramakrishnan
    Sleep has been a big mystery for long, as it has been unclear what purpose it serves, and why natural selection did not weed it out. After all, in earlier times, the period of sleep must have been one of considerable danger for humans (and even now for many animals and birds). And yet, sleep is a common requirement across the animal kingdom as well. In fact, birds and some sea creatures have the remarkable ability to sleep half a brain at a time....
  • Kamil
    There's an overwhelmingly positive experience I had with this book. For most of it, Walker talks about his research (and his colleagues) surrounding the sleep and those arguments are fascinating and convincing. However, there are moments, mostly closer to the end of it, when you feel like you are listening to a sales pitch. First of all, I dislike when somebody uses percentage without reference, ie "it's a 150% growth" as it might easily mean it ...
  • Lily ☁️
    “After all, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.” Blog ¦ Bloglovin’ ¦ Tumblr ¦ Instagram
  • Rebecca
    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...
  • Vanessa
    I am obsessed with learning about sleep, and sleep hygiene. I will read article after article on the topic, even if it's just regurgitating the same old stuff. It just feels calming to me. Despite that though, I'm quite bad at practicing what I preach (to my husband and anyone else who will listen).This book is anything but calming however. In fact, it will put the fear of god into you. It is however the most informative text I have ever read on ...
  • 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...
  • Sad Sunday (Princess Consuela Bananahammock)
    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...
  • Paul
    Some are getting too much, most aren't getting enough. No, I don't mean that; what I am talking about is sleep. There are people out there who seem to be able to exist on almost no sleep, people who are in the office at stupid o'clock in the morning and who are still up way after midnight. While scientists knew that we needed food and water and could explain why, no one could adequately explain why we slept, what purpose it served. It is only rec...
  • 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...
  • 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...
  • 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
    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...
  • 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...
  • Darian Onaciu
    If you've ever slept you should read this book.I always thought that sleep was a waste of time which drains away about a third of our life. So why bother with it? Why would I not sleep as little as possible and spend my waking time doing things I like?Well, it seems that there are a throng of reasons why we shouldn't do this, all of them drawn from scientific research.Let me illustrate this with a quote from the book: “Scientists have discovere...
  • Anton
    Great and wonderfully insightful book. Everything you wanted to know about sleep, dreaming and why do we need to do it every night.This book will also make your skin crawl sometimes... being part and parcel of the modern sleep deprived culture it is plain scary what the price we are paying for an early morning in the office, or worse an all-nighter power-through.This is a great nonfiction and i wish more people will discover this read. 5 ⭐ fair...
  • Gumble's Yard
    Really well written and extremely informative book on the science of sleep which is at the same time detached (relying on decades of scientific evidence) , passionate (particularly for the need for a regular 8 hours of sleep opportunity), helpful (for example I found the advice on controlling Jet lag very useful), imaginatively informative (I found the link between bird behaviour in flocks, dolphin sleeping techniques and first nights in hotel ro...
  • 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...
  • Anna
    I should warn you: if you already tend towards anxiety about your health and resentment that wage labour forces you to defy your circadian rhythms, this book will worsen both. It’s a fascinating read, though, and I learned a lot about the mechanisms of sleep. Walker’s perspective is that of a research scientist, explaining with engaging enthusiasm and clarity how different aspects of sleep work, or don’t work. At the end, he presents a sort...
  • Imi
    I very rarely borrow books from friends. For some reason, I have a highly irrational fear that I'll never give them their book back, plus I own so many unread books already, it doesn't make much sense to add to the ever growing tbr list. But when a friend brought up having just finished this book, and I blurted out a rushed request to borrow the book and got ready to beg for it if necessary. I had to read this book, immediately.I don't even know ...
  • Nigeyb
    It took me a while to finish Why We Sleep: The New Science of Sleep and Dreams, primarily because it's so detailed. Far more detailed than I needed or wanted, however it is probably the definitive guide to sleep, everything you could wish to know is here. Most specifically the profound consequences of not getting 7+ hours every day, as well as advice on how to improve your sleep. By the by, to get at least 7 hours of sleep you probably need to be...
  • 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...
  • Nildene
    DNF at 16%•Reading non-fiction is something I'm only just coming into. I've found some topics in science intrigue me enough that I enjoy them (and I'm a person who stopped all science as soon as possible, except for psychology in my last years of high school that weren't counted as literal sciences because that's just how education works) and so, that was a reason I requested this book.The study of sleep was one of my favourite topics in my psy...