Episode 44: Sweet Dreams

Sleeping Kitten

This week’s image was uploaded by to stock.xchng by ukapala.

There’s nothing quite like a good night’s rest to recharge the body and restore the spirits. Today’s show looks at the science of sleep—and insomnia. We start off with the sun’s role in establishing human biorhythms. Next, we look at modern medicine’s approach to the ancient problem of snoring. Producer Catherine Giradeau wraps up the show with a piece on caffeine, the unregulated wonder drug that can perk you up or knock you out. Element of the Week: Helium.

Show Clock

00:00 Opening Credits
00:31 Introduction
01:28 Element of the Week: Helium
03:15 Mystery Solved! Snoring
06:44 Caffeine and Wakefulness
10:38 Quote: C. S. Lewis
11:02 Closing Credits

Resources and References

For more on the Green god Helios, see this entry in the ever-useful Encyclopedia Mythica.
We learned more about seasonal affective disorder from the Mayo Clinic.
Take a tour of the Museum of Snoring.
This detailed article from Scientific American filled us in on the dangers of snoring.


Special thanks go to Anke Timmermann for researching the show.

Our theme music is composed by Dave Kaufman. Additional music from the PodSafe Music Network. Additional music is “Awasoruk,” by Adhesion, “Lion Sleeps No More,” by Amaryoni, “Le rêve de Zeus,” by Drum and Didje Group (Paris), “Sleep,” by Hip Hop Anonymous, “Coffeesong,” by Francisco Daum, and “Cold Coffee,” by Roddy Gordon.



Posted In: History | Society

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