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The Peter Attia Drive

Oct 28, 2019

In this special episode, Matthew Walker returns for his second AMA episode where he provides his expert insight on numerous sleep-related questions directly from listeners. He answers a wide range of questions from the gene that causes the short sleeping phenotype, to the ideal sleeping position, to the optimal temperature for best sleep, to how fasting affects sleep, plus a full dissertation on sleep apnea, and much, much more.

We discuss:

  • DEC2—A genetic mutation that produces a short sleeping phenotype [11:00];
  • What is the best position to sleep in? [22:45];
  • Should you consider a “sleep divorce” with your partner? [27:00];
  • The challenge of kids wanting to sleep in bed with their parents [28:45];
  • Is there an ideal type of pillow? [32:30];
  • Any data on hammock sleeping? Should adults be rocked to sleep like a baby? [34:45];
  • The optimal room temperature and body temperature for the best sleep [38:30];
  • Do humidifiers help? [50:40];
  • How do high altitudes affect sleep? [53:15];
  • What is the data on weighted blankets (e.g., the Gravity blanket)? [57:00];
  • Caffeine—How much, and in what way, does it affect sleep? [58:15];
  • How does sexual activity relate to sleep quality? [1:04:00];
  • Should we be sleeping in two phases? First sleep & second sleep? [1:06:30];
  • Napping—Is there ideal duration? Should we be napping or not? [1:08:30];
  • Advice for new parents dealing with sleep deprivation [1:12:00];
  • Understanding your sleep chronotype [1:16:15];
  • If you drink too much alcohol in a given night, is there anything you can do to make sure your sleep isn’t wrecked? [1:20:45];
  • How postmenopausal women can manage their sleep problems with (and without) hormone replacement therapy [1:23:00];
  • Could a daily practice of Wim Hof's breathing method help or hinder quality of sleep? [1:29:15];
  • Why do some people paradoxically feel more tired the more they sleep? [1:31:15];
  • Sleep apnea—How to know if you have it, the different types, the causes, and helpful resources [1:33:15];
  • Is there such a thing called “sleep eating”? [1:45:00];
  • If Matt was “sleep czar”, what changes would he make to society to improve sleep? [1:46:15];
  • Catch up sleep: Explaining the difference between retrospective damage and prospective benefit [1:48:45];
  • Does poor sleep really speed up the aging process? [1:50:30];
  • Is medicated sleep better than no sleep? [1:53:00];
  • Does vivid dreaming disrupt the sleep cycle? [1:56:45];
  • Is there potential benefit to using “binaural beats” or some type of sound to induce better sleep? [1:57:45];
  • How is sleep affected by fasting and time-restricted eating? [1:59:45];
  • Is there any evidence that polyphasic sleep (e.g., "Uberman") works? [2:03:30]; and
  • More.

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