Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Why we need to sleep...

Twas laying in bed this morning and a random thought about the Transformers animated TV series found its way in about where a robot newly arrived from whatever their planet was called was going on about how superior they were to humans. One bloke pointed out to the robot that humans don't need to recharge like they do and other issues about rust and shit.

Long story short, it posed the question to me as a young fella about the human version of batteries. We DO need to 'recharge', sure, not energizer bunny type recharge, but we crash without sleep.

So my question: Why?.

What ACTUALLY is it in the human body that is the equivalent to batteries?.

So I turn to Lord Google which I consider a real version of Deep Thought from Hitchkikers Guide to the Galaxy.

Ready for it? (bolded by me to highlight where we're up to in this piece of truth):

"...neurons at the base of the brain begin signaling when we fall asleep. These neurons appear to "switch off" the signals that keep us awake. Research also suggests that a chemical called adenosine builds up in our blood while we are awake and causes drowsiness. This chemical gradually breaks down while we sleep."

Riiight. You don't wanna know what they're telling kids about it.


  1. Basically, sleep's the tradeoff for having big highly active brains with complex brain chemistry.

  2. Watched a doco a while back about people that went days on end without sleep. There are drugs available that fuck with that chemical and so remove the feeling of tiredness.

    There was one guy that basically worked during the night and spent the day with his family. Only really slept on weekends.

    He functioned at quite a high level as well.

    From memory, the theory was that we actually don't really need sleep.


  3. You'd think eh. That's what I was thinking if it's chemical based...I mean, which obviously it is, but ya known what I mean.

    You'd wanna be super fit too but. Muscles need rest etc. Makes ya wonder why they don't use it on troops...

  4. Have a look.


Please leave your name/handle with your comment. It's important to stand next to our thoughts.