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Practice English Speaking&Listening with: BBC 6 Minute English 2018 - Is modern life making us tired

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hello and welcome to 6 minute English

I'm Alice and I'm Neil so Neil did you

sleep well last night

yes thanks why do you ask today we're

talking about how much sleep we need ah

I like a good eight hours myself 10 at

the weekend how about you no 6 is enough

for me

but did you know this humans sleep

around 3 hours less than other primates

like chimps who sleep for about 10 hours

so you're a chimp Neil at the weekends

at least are you ready for the quiz

question ok

I'll assume that means yes right what's

another word for sleepwalking is it a

narcolepsy be restless legs syndrome or

see some numb you ilysm I will go for be

restless leg syndrome since there's a

connection with the legs well we'll find

out whether you're right or wrong later

on in the show so what keeps you awake

at night Neil not much to be honest I

usually sleep like a log and that means

very heavily indeed but sometimes my own

snoring wakes me up and then I can find

it hard to get back to sleep snoring for

those of you who don't know means

breathing in a noisy way through your

mouth or nose while you're asleep like

that how are you very good yes well

that's quite ridiculous anyway for me

it's drinking too much coffee during the

day it's the caffeine in the coffee a

chemical that makes you feel more awake

which can stop you from sleeping at

night but there are so many things that

can keep us awake these days

oh yes radio TV techy stuff like 24-hour

internet computers smart phones I love

my phone it's never far from me well

let's hear what professor Jerome Siegel

from the University of California found

when he studied the sleep habits of

three different hunter-gatherer

communities who have very little

with modern society they don't have

artificial light electricity batteries

or any of the gadgets that we rely on

today their sleep was not that different

from ours the range of sleep period was

about 6.9 to 8.5 hours if you actually

measure sleep in current populations in

the United States or in Europe they're

definitely at the low end of what's been

reported they certainly don't sleep a

lot less than we do but they clearly

don't sleep more professor Jerome Siegel

found that people in these communities

don't go to bed until several hours

after sundown just like us but one big

difference is that very few of them

suffer from insomnia which means having

difficulty falling asleep and staying

asleep now I don't have a problem with

insomnia and hunter-gatherers people who

live by hunting animals and gathering

plants to eat don't either

probably because they take a lot of

physical exercise during the day yes

that's right taking exercise is an

important factor in sleeping soundly or

well at night but these days our minds

can be so active that it becomes very

difficult to fall asleep let's listen to

Professor Kevin Morgan from Loughborough

University here in England talking about

how cognitive behavioral therapy can be

used to help people with insomnia if you

have a train of thoughts which would

otherwise keep you awake one way of

dealing with this is to block those

thoughts what I'd like you to do it

repeat the word the in your mind at a

regular interval the the the the the the

what you'll find it at the mind space

required to do this blocks out almost

everything else

so professor Kevin Morgan suggests

saying one word over and over again at

irregular intervals irregular in this

context means not spaced out evenly

doing it can help to block out the

thoughts that are stopping you from

getting to sleep it sounds like a very

simple solution wonder if it works

hmm there's one way to find out Neal try

it yourself I will okay and cognitive

behavioral therapy by the way is a

treatment for mental health problems

that tries to change the way you think

well I usually count sheep if I can't

get to sleep do you do that Alice no

okay I think it's time for the answer to

our quiz question I asked what's another

word for sleepwalking is it a narcolepsy

be restless leg syndrome or see some

number ilysm and I said be restless leg

syndrome hmm sorry Neal it's actually

see some Namba lism the roots of this

word come from latin somnus means sleep

and angular a means walk narcolepsy is a

condition where you can't stop yourself

from falling asleep especially during

the day the Hep C hmm and restless leg

syndrome is a condition that makes you

desperate to move your legs around

especially when you're sitting quietly

or trying to get to sleep go to sleep

wake up oh hello alone can we hear

today's words again please oh okay yeah

sleep like a log

snoring caffeine insomnia

hunter-gatherers soundly irregular

cognitive behavioral therapy well that

just about brings us to the end of this

edition of 6 minute English we hope

you've enjoyed this program please do

join us again soon bye bye

six news English from the BBC

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The Description of BBC 6 Minute English 2018 - Is modern life making us tired