Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams

Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams

A New York Times bestseller

The 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 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.

Title:Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams
ISBN:9781501144318
Format Type:

About Matthew P. Walker

Matthew Walker is Professor of Neuroscience and Psychology at the University of California, Berkeley, and Founder and Director of the Center for Human Sleep Science. He has received funding awards from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health, and is a Kavli Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences. He has been featured on numerous television and radio outlets, inclu


    Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams Reviews

  • K.J. Charles

    This book is genuinely terrifying. The author, a sleep scientist, lists the devastating consequences of getting less than 7-9 hours regularly and it is so much worse than you might have thought. SO mu...

  • 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 numero...

  • 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 a...

  • 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, becaus...

  • 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 me...

  • Lily ?? {semi hiatus}

    “After all, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.” Blog ¦ Bloglovin’ ¦ Tumblr ¦ Instagram...

  • 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 p...

  • 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 c...

  • 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 tha...

  • 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 scienc...