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Astral Codex Ten Podcast

Feb 18, 2020


I worry my sleep quality isn’t great. On weekends, no matter when

I go to bed, I sleep until 11 or 12. When I wake up, I feel like I’ve overslept. But if I try to make myself get up earlier, I feel angry and want to go back to sleep.

A supplement company I trust, Nootropics Depot, recently released a new product called Sleep Support. It advertises that, along with helping you fall asleep faster, it can “improve sleep quality” by “improv[ing] sleep architecture, allowing you to achieve higher quality and more refreshing sleep.” I decided to try it.

The first night I took it, I woke up naturally at 9 the next morning, with no desire to go back to sleep. This has never happened before. It shocked me. And the next morning, the same thing happened. I started recommending the supplement to all my friends, some of whom also reported good results.

I decided the next step was to do a randomized controlled trial. I obtained sugar pills, and put both the sugar pills and the Sleep Support pills inside bigger capsules so I couldn’t tell which was which. The recommended dose was two Sleep Support pills per night, so for my 24 night trial I created 12 groups of two Sleep Support pills and 12 groups of two placebo pills.