The city that never sleeps has been abuzz over Neuroscientist, Matthew Walker, and his book Why We Sleep, “How more sleep can save your life.” Promising one will be cleverer, more attractive, slimmer, happier, healthier and ward off cancer, Alzheimer’s, diabetes and heart disease if we sleep more, Walker, who presides over Berkeley’s Sleep and Neuroimaging Lab., backs it all up with solid statistics and clinical studies. He concludes, “Sleep is the single most effective thing we can do to reset our brain and body health each day — Mother Nature’s best effort yet at contra-death.” A healthy night’s sleep lasts about eight hours and is divided between “REM (rapid-eye movement) sleep, in which the brain is active, and NREM (non-REM) sleep, a deeper sleep state that predominates in the first half of the night, and is crucial to memory retention, and to acquiring and refining motor skills. Even napping improved memory and strategic thinking over those who didn’t. Best interview tip, hit the sack.
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