Michael Terman and Ian McMahan. New York: Avery, 2013
Sleep problems and depressed mood go hand in hand, forming a frustrating cycle. Michael Terman has analyzed the brain functions that feed these disorders. In Reset Your Inner Clock, he reveals the heart of his findings, a powerful program that recalibrates our internal clocks–our exquisitely designed sensitivity to the timing and brightness of light exposure. He shows how these need to be tuned to the modern demands of a 24/7 society.
CONTENT: Beginning with a questionnaire that pinpoints the problem areas, Terman helps readers decipher when their natural internal night begins and ends. The treatment process then begins, incorporating the power of natural light with supplemental light therapy. His program has brought relief to thousands of sleep sufferers, as well as those burdened by bipolar disorder, seasonal affective disorder, depression, sleep disorders due to shiftwork schedules, and other impediments to vibrant health
Linda Geddes. Profile Books Ltd, London; Welcome Collection, 2019
Our biology is set up to work in partnership with the sun. Little wonder then that humans have long worshipped and revered our nearest star: life itself arose on earth because its relationship with the sun was a special one, and that relationship still affects us well into the era of electric lighting, indoor workdays, and vitamin D supplements.
Content: What are we losing when we sever this ancient biological tie to the sun by spending more and more time inside during the day and surrounded by screens at night? Informed by cutting-edge scientific research and sparkling with memorable characters – from the modern druids who worship at Stonehenge each solstice to the Amish farmers who may have the right idea about healthy sleep patterns – Linda Geddes’s Chasing the Sun analyzes all aspects of our relationship to the sun.
The fascinating stories, innovative science, and unique perspectives in this book make it clear that the ancients were right to put the sun at the center of our world and that it is crucial that we remember this bond as we shape our lives today.
Satchin Panda, Salk Institute for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA. Rodale Books; Reprint edition, 2020
Like most people, you probably wake up, get hungry for meals and doze off in bed around the same time every day. If you’ve ever experienced jet lag or pulled an all-nighter, you know that this schedule can easily be thrown off kilter. But for some people, that imbalance—difficulty sleeping at night, hunger at odd times, or sudden fatigue at noon—is a constant. If you’re one of those people, Dr. Satchin Panda, one of the leading researchers on circadian rhythms, has a plan to reset your body clock.
CONTENT: Beginning with an in-depth explanation of the circadian clock—why it’s important, how it works, and how to know it isn’t working—The Circadian Code outlines lifestyle changes to make to get back on track. It’s a concrete plan to enhance weight loss, improve sleep, optimize exercise, and manage technology so that it doesn’t interfere with your body’s natural rhythm. Dr. Panda’s life changing methods show you how to prevent and reverse ailments like diabetes, cancer, and dementia, as well.
Till Roenneberg. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2012
Winner of a British Medical Association Book Award
A Brain Pickings Best Science Book of the Year
Early birds and night owls are born, not made. Sleep patterns may be the most obvious manifestation of the highly individualized biological clocks we inherit, but these clocks also regulate bodily functions from digestion to hormone levels to cognition.
CONTENT: Living at odds with our internal timepieces, Till Roenneberg shows, can make us chronically sleep deprived and more likely to smoke, gain weight, feel depressed, fall ill, and fail geometry. By understanding and respecting our internal time, we can live better. This explanation of the mechanisms of circadian and sleep timing comes from a scientist who has worked at all levels of analysis—from molecular to mathematical to epidemiological—and complements our emphasis on the bridge to mental health practice.
Russell G. Foster and Leon Kreitzman. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2005
In this fascinating book, the chronobiologist Russell Foster and the journalist Leon Kreitzman explain the significance of the biological clock, showing how it has played an essential role in evolution and why it continues to play a vitally important role in all living organisms.
CONTENT: The authors tell us that biological clocks are embedded in our genes and reset at sunrise and sunset each day to link astronomical time with an organism’s internal time. They discuss how scientists are working out the clockwork mechanisms and what governs them, and they describe how organisms measure different intervals of time, how they are adapted to various cycles, and how light coordinates the time within to the external world. They review problems that can be caused by malfunctioning biological clocks—including jet lag, seasonal affective disorder, and depression. And they warn that although new drugs are being promoted to allow us to stay awake for longer periods, a 24/7 lifestyle can have a harmful impact on our health, both as individuals and as a society.
Russell G. Foster and Leon Kreitzman. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2010
How do plants and animals “know” that the seasons will change? How do seasonal changes affect humans? What happens when the timing of seasonal events is altered? Just as daily events are timed by living creatures through circadian rhythms, so seasonal events are timed through an internal calendar that signals birds to return to nesting grounds, salmon to spawn, plants to flower, squirrels to hibernate, kelp to stop growing.
CONTENT: In this fascinating book, Russell G. Foster and Leon Kreitzman draw on remarkable recent scientific advances to explain how seasonal change affects organisms, and how plants and animals over countless generations have evolved exquisite sensitivities and adaptations to the seasons. The authors also highlight the impact of seasonal change on human health and well-being. They conclude with a discussion of the dangers posed when climate changes disrupt the seasonal rhythms on which so much life depends.
Russell G. Foster and Steven W. Lockley. London: Oxford University Press, 2012
Why do we need sleep? What is sleep? What happens when we don’t get enough? Two chronobiologists seek the answers.
CONTENT: This Very Short Introduction addresses the biological and psychological aspects of sleep, providing a basic understanding of what sleep is and how it is measured, a look at sleep through the human lifespan, and the causes and consequences of major sleep disorders. The book describes dramatic breakthroughs in our knowledge of how sleep occurs, what it does, and what happens to our health if we do not have enough. The authors consider the impact of modern society, examining the relationship between sleep and our 24/7 culture.
Norman E. Rosenthal. New York: Guilford Press, 2012
Dr. Norman E. Rosenthal is the pioneer of light therapy in Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). He reviews the research and provides information about treatment possibilities.
CONTENT: Dr. Rosenthal explains how to evaluate your own level of seasonality, get the most out of light boxes and other effective self-help options, and make informed decisions about antidepressants and psychotherapy. The thoroughly updated fourth edition features a new chapter on different meditation practices and their benefits. Packed with information and insights, this is a tried-and-true survival kit for weathering the winter blues.
Dr. Rosenthal’s Winter Blues Survival Guide (Guilford Press, 2013) is an additional resource for sufferers of SAD. This step-by-step workbook helps the individual to create their own therapy.