Bonus Redux: Sleep is the Boss of You – Matthew Walker, Ph.D., with Dave Asprey

Photo of Matthew Walker
Enjoy this re-release of a fan-favorite episode to kick off the Dave Asprey Sleep Challenge starting Aug. 17. Join at

In this episode of Bulletproof Radio, my guest is Matthew Walker, Ph.D., author of the international best-selling book, “Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams.”

“We’re in the midst of a “catastrophic sleep-loss epidemic,” he says. With candor like that about a subject I’ve talked about and written about for years, I had to have him on the show.

I was eager to to have a discussion about our lack of sleep and examine sleep’s connection to health and brain function. Our conversation covers all that and much, much more. “There is no single system of the body or the brain that isn’t optimally enhanced by sleep when you get it, or detrimentally impaired when you don’t get enough,” Matthew says.

As a professor of Neuroscience and Psychology at the University of California, Berkeley, and director of the Center for Human Sleep Science, his research examines the impact of sleep on human health and disease.

Don’t miss Matthew’s TED Talks on sleep:

Sleep is Your Superpower

Why Sleep Matters Now More than Ever

A Walk Through the Stages of Sleep

Matthew has been featured on television and radio outlets, including CBS’s 60 Minutes, the National Geographic Channel, NOVA Science, NPR, and the BBC, as well as in national and international publications, and on numerous podcasts.

Enjoy the show! And join the Dave Asprey Sleep Challenge starting Aug. 17.

Note: This episode of Bulletproof Radio is a re-release of my interview with Matthew Walker in August 2019, also titled “Sleep is the Boss of You” #616.

Listen on Apple Podcasts or iTunesListen on Google Podcasts

Follow Along with the Transcript

Sleep is the Boss of You – Matthew Walker, Ph.D. – #616 – Re-release – Aug2020


Twitter: @sleepdiplomat
Center for Human Sleep Science:
Book: “Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams”

Key Notes

  • Sleep is the best health insurance policy 00:06:00
  • Quality vs quantity 00:09:45
  • “Sleep is the most idiotic of all evolutionary behaviors” 00:13:40
  • “Technology is fast becoming the greatest assaulting things in terms of sleep” 00:25:55
  • Waking up at 5:30 a.m. to “become a better human” could be killing you 00:31:00
  • How we are failing our children spectacularly 00:37:15
  • No evidence that mushrooms help with sleep 00:46:45
  • “Sedation is not sleeping” 00:52:00
  • Bigger Ideas:
  • Less sleep and disease risk 00:04:50
  • Is there such a thing as too much sleep? 00:07:00
  • Do healthy people need less sleep? 00:08:20
  • The “sleep-depriving rats to death” study 00:11:00
  • What is the “best night of sleep?“ 00:12:15
  • Sleep and human evolution 00:14:00
  • Optimizing your sleep for different physiological effects 00:16:45
  • Techniques or devices that help with sleep quality 00:22:00
  • Sleep and light exposure 00:25:35
  • Morning is at a different time for different people 00:32:00
  • Sleep and sound 00:40:40
  • The role of sleep aids and sedatives 00:48:45
  • Sleep and dealing with trauma 01:01:00

If you like today’s episode, check us out on Apple Podcasts at and leave us a (hopefully) 5-star rating and a creative review.

Go check out my new book Super Human: The Bulletproof Plan to Age Backward and Maybe Even Live Forever and also “Game Changers“, “Headstrong” and “The Bulletproof Diet” on Amazon and consider leaving a review!

Want to help others reach their full potential? Check out the incredible Human Potential Coach Training program I set up with Dr. Mark Atkinson.

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