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Brief Review: Sex Sleep Eat Dream. A Day in the Life of Your Body by Jennifer Ackerman

Sex Sleep Eat Drink Dream: A Day in the Life of Your Body

Ackerman takes you through a day starting with a detailed description of waking in the morning and finishing with just as detailed a description of going to sleep in the evening. Throughout she mixes observations, quips, and the reports of scientific studies to keep the reader interested and entertained. Here’s an example: “It’s true the brain is good at processing sound while we sleep; that’s why we buy audible alarm clocks. We don’t buy odor alarms for equally good reason. Though some people swear they are aroused from┬ádeep sleep by the putrid stink of skunk or the heady aroma of percolating coffee, a new study suggests otherwise: Scientists at Brown University documented a complete failure of response during all but the earliest phase of sleep to powerful odors such as peppermint and the distinctly noxious pyridine, a component of coal tar often used as a herbicide for firewood. Don’t count on the nose as a sentinel system, say the researchers: “Human olfaction is not reliably capable of alerting a sleeper.”

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