Cool Temperatures 😎​ & Sleep

In the world of sleep optimization there are COUNTLESS things that you can do to take control of your sleep.

Cool Temperatures 😎 & Sleep

In the world of sleep optimization there are COUNTLESS things that you can do to take control of your sleep. ONE of them is to take control of the temperature in your environment.

The HEAT out here in Thailand is really next level for this East Coaster and when the AC in our hotel started going awry, we learned firsthand the impact that heat can have on your sleep.

EXAMPLE 👇: With AC going in and out during the night (and beeping the whole time 🙄):

EXAMPLE 👇: With AC back on and as quiet as a whisper:

Extreme temperatures (either too cold or too hot) are known to cause “restless sleep” because your body is forced to either shiver to warm up or sweat to cool down. Both ends of the spectrum are distracting to the body’s ability to achieve sustained and uninterrupted periods of restorative REM and Deep Sleep.

But for the purposes of this email, I want to discuss a few methods to help achieve a cool night’s sleep (as mentioned in previous emails, the goal is always to sleep in a “cave-like” environment, i.e. cool, quiet, & dark)


1) Air Conditioning: One of the problems with this option is that air conditioning can act as a breeding ground for pushing mold, dust, and dry air into your environment. Further problems with this method are that it can interfere with your body's ability to undergo heat acclimatization / heat adaptation. So if you are either newly adjusting to a warmer climate or looking to re-wild and go off of AC all together, faux cool air can stifle your efforts (but that is for another email!).

If you choose to use air conditioning to achieve a cave-like environment, remember that the goal here is to achieve a temperature between 60 and 67 degrees. *Also, do not overlook the need for a solid humidifier and air purifier.

2) Gadgets & Gizmos: To avoid some of the negatives that come along with AC (or to use in conjunction with), you could test out some of these:

  1. Bed Jet: I used to have this fancy fan-bed contraption back when I had a normal apartment...I personally did not like it (often felt either too cold or like I wasn’t cool enough), although some people love it. It was designed by a ex-NASA spacesuit engineer.
  2. ChiliPad: This cooling (and heating) mattress pad is a “biohacker” gold standard. Gives you an option for dual settings. Not the cheapest, but many are obsessed.
  3. Moona: I’m VERY curious to try this out after its purported release date in June 2019. It is a cooling pillow insert which I’m curious to see if it could function as a slightly ridiculous, albeit, viable travel option!
  4. Embr Wave: Developed from by 3 students at MIT, this watch "precisely cools or warms the temperature-sensitive skin on your wrist, triggering a natural response in your body and mind to help you feel 5°F cooler or warmer overall."

3) Supplemental Tactics Beyond The Above: These alone are not enough when temperatures are high BUT they can help.

  1. Take a Warm Shower About 1.5 Hours Before Bed: When you take a warm shower or bath, the evaporation of warm water from your skin heat makes this decrease in temperature more intense, helping induce sleep.
  2. Take a Cool Shower If It’s Closer to Bedtime: (*NOT an icy shower, which can have a shocking / energizing effect) One study by researchers in Lille, a city in northeastern France, found that subjects fell asleep faster and had a better overall quality of sleep following behaviors that cooled the body, such as taking a cold shower right before bed.[Dreamland: Adventures in the Strange Science of Sleep]
  3. Cool Your Brain (!) With Ice & Cold Washcloths: Yes, this is a real thing (can also help with insomnia & migraines, too). Most of the studies looking at this looked at “cooling hats” that seem to help with sleep onset. There are not a ton of these caps on the market, which means you’re stuck with chilled washcloths and/or ice packs. Business opportunity for some of you? ;)
  4. Good Ol’ Fashioned Fans: While the downsides of fans is that ultimately they simply re-circulating warm air, many find the light breeze and sound can make a difference in achieving both a calming and cooling effect while they sleep. Here is a list of some decent ones.
  5. Sleep Naked: Nothing else to say here. ;)