Why We Sleep – Book by Matthew Walker

Scientists have discovered a revolutionary treatment that makes you live longer. It enhances your memory and makes you more creative. It makes you look more attractive. It keeps you slim and lowers food cravings. It protects you from cancer and dementia. It wards off colds and the flu. It lowers your risk of heart attacks and stroke, not to mention diabetes. You’ll even feel happier, less depressed, and less anxious. Are you interested?

The Fantastical World of Hormones with Professor John Wass

In this documentary, Professor John Wass, Professor of Endocrinology at Oxford University, highlights the importance of key hormones and the stories behind their discoveries. Hormones, a term coined by Ernest Starling from the Greek “haumea”, meaning “to excite”, is a fitting name for molecules which act on target cells resulting in a specific function. To date, more than 80 hormones of varying types, such as amines, peptides and steroids, have been discovered in humans. Professor Wass places prominence on testosterone, thyroid hormones, adrenalin and oestrogen. Moreover, the role of the pituitary gland, pancreas and fat cells in maintaining hormone levels is revealed. The greatly accomplished Professor Wass is a fantastic orator and has delivered a memorable and educational documentary. 

Fun But Flawed Thought Experiment: a Review of Alien Worlds

The new British series Alien Worlds narrated by Sophie Okonedo is a blend of sci-fi and documentary. By applying the laws governing life and basic physics and chemistry on Earth, four imaginary exoplanets (planets orbiting stars outside the solar system) with different aliens living on them are conceived and presented using beautiful computer-generated imagery (CGI) animation.

Review: Three Identical Strangers

Tim Wardle’s Three Identical Strangers documents the meeting of estranged triplets, following the dark experiments conducted by Dr Peter Neubauer to settle the famous nature-versus-nurture debate. With the help of an adoption agency, the psychologist aimed to understand the relationship between mental health, parenting styles and genetic predisposition.

“The beautiful, mysterious science of how you hear” – Jim Hudspeth

Snappy, educational, and only 15minutes long, “The beautiful, mysterious science of how you hear” is a TED talk from Dr Jim Hudspeth about the mechanics of hearing. It makes for a great watch anytime you have a few minutes to spare.