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GUEST SERIES | Dr. Matt Walker: Improve Sleep to Boost Mood & Emotional Regulation

Huberman Lab

Scicomm Media

Science, Life Sciences, Health & Fitness

4.923.3K Ratings

🗓️ 1 May 2024

⏱️ 135 minutes

🧾️ Download transcript


This is episode 5 of our 6-part special series on sleep with Dr. Matthew Walker, Ph.D., a professor of neuroscience and psychology at the University of California, Berkeley and the host of The Matt Walker Podcast. In this episode, we explain the connection between sleep and mood, emotional regulation and mental well-being. We explain the role of rapid eye movement (REM) sleep in processing emotions and emotional memories and why sleep deprivation causes agitation, impulsivity and emotional reactivity. We also discuss why sleep disruption is a hallmark feature of PTSD, anxiety, depression, suicidality, and other psychiatric conditions. We explain protocols for improving REM sleep and other sleep phases in order to harness the therapeutic power of quality sleep to feel calmer and emotionally restored. This episode describes various actionable tools to improve sleep for those struggling with mental health or mood and those wanting to bolster their overall state and well-being. The next episode in this special series explores dreams, including lucid dreaming, nightmares and dream interpretation. For show notes, including referenced articles and additional resources, please visit hubermanlab.com. Thank you to our sponsors AG1: https://drinkag1.com/huberman Eight Sleep: https://eightsleep.com/huberman LMNT: https://drinklmnt.com/huberman BetterHelp: https://betterhelp.com/huberman InsideTracker: https://insidetracker.com/huberman Momentous: https://livemomentous.com/huberman Timestamps (00:00:00) Sleep & Mental Health (00:01:09) Sponsors: Eight Sleep, LMNT & BetterHelp (00:05:14) Emotions & Sleep, Amygdala (00:17:27) Emotional Memory & Sleep (00:25:48) “Overnight Therapy” & REM Sleep, Noradrenaline (00:29:13) Sponsor: AG1 (00:30:27) Sleep to “Remember & Forget”, Trauma; REM Sleep (00:38:27) Hinge Analogy; Motivation, Impulsivity & Addiction (00:47:08) Tool: Improve REM Sleep, Social Jet Lag, Alcohol & THC, Addiction (00:56:18) Sponsor: InsideTracker (00:57:23) Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) & REM Sleep (01:06:53) Noradrenaline & REM Sleep, PTSD & Prazosin (01:09:40) Addiction, Non-Sleep Deep Rest (NSDR); Liminal States (01:16:46) Anxiety & Sleep, Mood vs. Emotions (01:23:50) Deep Non-REM Sleep & Anxiety, Sleep Quality (01:28:51) Tool: Improve Deep Non-REM Sleep, Temperature; Alcohol (01:34:56) Suicidality & Sleep, Pattern Recognition; Nightmares (01:46:21) Depression, Anxiety & Time Context (01:51:24) Depression, Too Much Sleep?; REM Changes & Antidepressants (01:57:37) Sleep Deprivation & Depression (02:01:34) Tool: Circadian Misalignment & Mental Health, Chronotype (02:04:05) Tools: Daytime Light & Nighttime Darkness; “Junk Light” (02:13:04) Zero-Cost Support, Spotify & Apple Reviews, Sponsors, YouTube Feedback, Momentous, Social Media, Neural Network Newsletter Disclaimer

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Welcome to the Huberman Lab guest series where I and an expert guest discuss science and science-based tools for everyday life.


I'm Andrew Huberman and I'm a professor of neurobiology and ophthalmology at Stanford School of Medicine.


Today marks the fifth episode in our six episode series all about sleep with expert guest


Dr Matthew Walker.


Today's episode focuses on the inextricable link between sleep and our mental health.


For instance, a specific stage of sleep called Rapid Eye Movement or REM sleep is critical


for removing the emotional content of our previous days


memories and in doing so provides a sort of therapy within sleep that allows us to


feel emotionally restored when we wake the next morning. We discuss what happens when you are


deprived of REM sleep to a small or greater degree and we discuss how to


improve the quality and quantity of your REM sleep in order to ensure


mental health.


We also discuss science-based protocols for reducing rumination and negative thoughts before




The information shared by Dr. Walker in today's episode is sure to be critical for anyone that is either


struggling with mental health issues or who simply wants to bolster their


overall mental health. Before we begin, I'd like to emphasize that this podcast


is separate from my teaching and research


roles at Stanford. It is however part of my desire and effort to bring zero


cost to consumer information about science and science related tools to the


general public. In keeping with that theme, I'd like to thank the sponsors


of today's podcast.


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