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Glossary

  • This numerical code was created from an event that sounds like a modern fairy tale. Originally, it meant a time: 20 past four in the afternoon. Or, in the English notation 4:20 (pm) - short: 420 or just: 'four twenty'. Nowadays this number is an international and frequently used "code" and can stand for all kinds of things: for cannabis itself, for the use of cannabis, or for the festivities (like Christmas for cannabis friends) that are celebrated on April 20th (English date spelling 4/20 - four twenty).
  • The certificate of analysis provides information about whether the analysed batch of a product meets the requirements or specifications applicable to that product. In the pharmaceutical industry, it is a common document for drugs, but also for their starting materials.Above all, the certificate provides information about essential quality characteristics (such as the content of CBD or other valuable ingredients) as well as permissible and impermissible impurities.In our laboratory analyses you will find information on the content of cannabinoids, among other things. This way you can be sure that you get what you expect from the product (e.g. CBD) and that there is nothing in it that you need to worry about (e.g. THC). Of course we always check for impurities, e.g. heavy metals and pesticides. Current laboratory analyses of our products can be viewed here.
  • The form of administration or administration form describes the way in which a certain substance, usually a drug, is administered or used. For cannabinoids, the following forms of administration are particularly suitable:Buccal (via the oral mucosa), inhalative (via the lungs), oral / peroral (via the mouth), sublingual (via the mucosa under the tongue), topical (usually on the skin; application is localized to produce a localized effect), transdermal (absorption via the skin, the effect is felt in the body)
  • In pharmacology, the bioavailability of an active ingredient is an important measure. It describes the proportion of the substance that passes into the bloodstream (more precisely: into the systemic circulation) and is thus available at the site of action. A 100% bioavailability is achieved by intravenous administration of a substance. If the active substance is administered to the organism by other means, e.g. orally, it is compared with the bioavailability after intravenous administration, and on this basis a percentage is given. Thus, an oral bioavailability of 50% means that, compared to intravenous administration, half of the active substance enters the systemic circulation.
  • A biphasic effect is the effect of an active ingredient when low and high doses of the same active ingredient can cause opposite effects. Alcohol also has such an effect: while small quantities of alcohol can have a stimulating effect, larger quantities of alcohol have a calming to sedating effect. CBD has shown such a profile as an active ingredient in several studies: While e.g. a dose of 300mg CBD had a calming effect on the participants, a significantly higher dose of 900mg CBD not only did not show a calming effect - at this very high dosage the test persons even reported an opposite effect; they not only felt more stressed than test persons who received the lower CBD dose, but also than those who received only a placebo (i.e. no active ingredient).
  • Cannabinoid receptors are, besides cannabinoids themselves and the enzymes responsible for their degradation, important components of our endocannabinoid system. Cannabinoid receptors are distributed throughout the body and are involved in a variety of physiological processes through the central regulatory role of the endocannabinoid system. A cannabinoid researcher summarized these processes as follows: "Relax, Eat, Sleep, Forget and Protect" - hardly any area of our life is not affected in one way or another. In addition to CB1 and CB2 receptors, cannabinoids can also unfold their effects via other pathways. Based on the results of a study, for example, it was suggested to include the receptor "GPR55" in the class of cannabinoid receptors.
  • Cannabis originally refers to the hemp plant - whose full Latin name is Cannabis sativa L..However, in common parlance "cannabis" is also often used to refer to the dried female flower. Dried female flowers are one of the possible end products that can be made from the cannabis plant, some of which are also used for intoxication purposes. Since the medical use of cannabis is back to normal in Germany, the word "medical cannabis" is often used in this context to distinguish it from "normal" cannabis, which is often not used on medical prescription and is obtained from unofficial sources.
  • In plant breeding, hybrid usually refers to offspring resulting from the combination (crossing) of the characteristics of two plants from different, preferably pure-bred (inbred) lines. The offspring of such a breeding, the F1 generation, then combines in the best case all positive traits of both the mother and the father line. One speaks then of heterosis, or the heterosis effect.In cannabis, hybrid is also used to make it clear that a particular cultivar can clearly be assigned neither to the Sativa nor the Indica spectrum. Whether and to what extent all these categorizations (hybrid, indica, sativa) are scientifically tenable is still the subject of lively discussion. The background is that due to the extremely long history of cannabis use (10.000+ years!) original populations, so-called landraces, no longer exist, since genetic material from other geographical zones and/or populations has been crossed in by humans - whether intended or not. Therefore, some argue, all varieties (or cultivars) that exist today should strictly speaking be called hybrids.
  • Cannabis sativa L., i.e. hemp or simply cannabis stands for a plant species within the cannabis family (Cannabaceae). Within this species different varieties (better: cultivars) can be distinguished from each other. They differ not only in their growth form (the so-called morphotype), but also in their own specific profile of cannabinoids and terpenes -- the chemotype. The profile of a variety is as individual as a "chemical fingerprint". In practice, this means that not all cannabis is the same. Different varieties can be grouped in different ways; one of the more common divisions is based on the content of the two "main" cannabinoids THC and CBD. "Type 1" describes THC-dominant strains, "Type 2" refers to strains with a balanced ratio of THC to CBD and CBD-dominant strains are referred to as "Type 3". A still common, but scientifically rather controversial way of classifying different cannabis varieties is the division into "sativa" (or sativa-branched / sativa-dominant), indica (or indica-branched / indica-dominant) and hybrids. The effect of "Sativas" is often described by users as mentally activating, stimulating and also more psychoactive, whereas that of "Indicas" is more physical, calming and relaxing. If one imagines Indica and Sativa as the ends of a spectrum of possible effects, the so-called hybrids lie somewhere in the middle, thus offering the user a mixture of the above mentioned essential characteristics of Indicas and Sativas. The reason for the sometimes very differently perceived effects of different varieties is only partly due to the different contents of cannabinoids -- especially the terpenes are said to have a great influence on the subjective perception of effects.
  • Cannabidiolic acid (A for acid) is one of the many ingredients of cannabis. Although the non-acidic form, CBD, is much better known, the plant itself produces almost exclusively the acid form, CBDA. CBDA is also said to have potentially desirable effects, some of which are even said to be more potent than those of CBD itself. However, research on this is still in its infancy.
  • Cannabigerol, or CBG for short, is one of over 100 known cannabinoids found in the cannabis or hemp plant (Cannabis sativa L.). However, CBG is something special because the starting molecule produced in the plant, cannabigerol acid, is also the basic building block from which all other cannabinoids are produced in the plant. For cannabigerol itself, antibiotic effects against multi-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) have been observed - at least in mice.
  • The vaporization of cannabis concentrates is called dabbing. Concentrates are usually in the form of waxes or resinous oils. These are applied to a piece of metal ("nail") that has been heated to a high temperature, where they immediately begin to vaporize. The vapors are inhaled through a kind of bong (water pipe). In this way it is possible to inhale very large quantities of cannabinoids in a very short time. From a medical and/or health point of view, however, this type of application cannot be recommended.
  • A ready-to-use form or preparation that can be taken without modification is also called a dosage form. On the other hand, this term can also refer to the form of a medicinal product (dosage form), which then also includes the type of application. The dosage form does not always have to correspond to the final preparation.
  • The term edible in the context of cannabis means edible food to which cannabinoids have been added. Mostly THC is meant. Well-known examples are so-called space cakes, i.e. cakes containing cannabis, or cannabis butter ('cannabutter'). Among recent developments in this area, especially wine gums containing cannabinoids are very popular. Edibles" can also mean liquid, i.e. drinkable, cannabinoid containing food, capsules and partly also oils and tinctures. A special feature of Edibles is that although it takes longer to take effect than when cannabinoids are inhaled, the effect lasts much longer. You can find out more about this in our article on the topic of onset of action and duration of action.
  • Endocannabinoids are cannabinoids produced by the body itself. Cannabinoids are part of the endocannabinoid system. Endocannabinoids include 2-arachidonylglycerol (2-AG) and N-arachidonylethanolamide (AEA). AEA is often also called anandamide, derived from the Sanskrit word ananda ("bliss"). Just like the cannabinoids from the cannabis plant (phytocannabinoids), the body's own cannabinoids are able to dock to corresponding cannabinoid receptors (CB1, CB2) that are distributed throughout the human body to exert their effect.
  • Through the special interaction of cannabinoids and terpenes, a special plant synergy can be created, the so-called "entourage effect". Terpenes can influence the effect of the cannabinoids in different ways (and vice versa). This also shows a potential advantage of full-spectrum extracts over extracts or oils that contain only CBD in pure form. The latter lack potential synergy partners; the entourage effect is absent. Even if this is slowly changing at present - terpenes are still considered a "neglected pharmacological treasure chest" in cannabis research, as the "discoverer" of THC, Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, put it, because of their enormous potential with regard to individualized therapy design with cannabis flowers and/or full spectrum extracts.
  • Many substances are not used in their pure form, but in a mixture which, in addition to the main component, also consists of other substances, so-called auxiliary substances. The finished mixture is then called a formulation.Excipients can e.g. facilitate the application through formative properties, make the production more efficient or, as in the case of the liposomal formulation of our hemp capsules, improve the bioavailability.
  • CBD-Isolate is a crystalline solid or powder consisting of almost pure CBD. Just like (full spectrum) extracts, isolate can be obtained from hemp plants containing CBD. During extraction and subsequent purification, all non-CBD components are almost completely removed, so that the final product contains 99% pure CBD.On the one hand, this means that synergies and potentials resulting from the presence of other valuable ingredients of the hemp plant are not utilized. On the other hand, the use of isolate can also be advantageous in certain situations, e.g. due to its flexible application and comparatively low price.
  • Limonene belong to the terpenes and are found in higher concentrations, as the name suggests, in citrus fruits and are responsible for their characteristic smell.Limonene is often used as an inexpensive fragrance, e.g. for cleaning agents, as citrus scent is associated with freshness and cleanliness. It is also used as a vegetable insecticide and in preservatives and cosmetic products.Limonene are considered to be mood-lifting, antidepressant, immunostimulant, antimicrobial and are used in skin therapy.
  • In liposomal formulation, the value-giving component of the formulation (e.g. CBD) is introduced into the interior or into the double membrane layer of so-called liposomes. The advantage of such a formulation is, among other things, that substances can be better absorbed by the body in this way, which in their natural form may be poorly bioavailable. The bioavailability of e.g. CBD, i.e. the proportion of absorbed CBD that reaches the bloodstream, can be effectively increased by this.
  • In Germany, medicinal cannabis is usually referred to as cannabis, which is available in pharmacies upon presentation of a prescription. Particularly in differentiation from normal cannabis (i.e. without the addition "medicinal"), medicinal cannabis is a largely standardised herbal medicinal product. The active ingredient contents (THC and CBD) are defined in the European Pharmacopoeia and are regularly checked. Furthermore, it must be possible to prove with analyses that there are no residues of pesticides in the finished product that exceed the maximum permissible amounts. Not only the cannabis itself, but also the production facilities must meet strict requirements and these are also regularly checked. Depending on the context, medical cannabis may mean not only the dried female flowers, i.e. the "traditional" end product, but also the plant itself and other products made from it, such as extracts.
  • MCT stands for medium-chain triglycerides, i.e. triglycerides (neutral fats) containing medium-chain fatty acids. Medium-chain fatty acids include fatty acids with 6-12 carbon atoms. They are found in coconut oil, palm kernel oil and butter, among other things, but not in their pure form, but in a natural way in a mixture with other triglycerides. MCT oil is mainly used in the manufacture of cosmetic products, foodstuffs and pharmaceuticals.In general, MCT oils are considered a valuable food component in the sense of a holistically health-promoting diet.Unlike other oils, MCT oils can be metabolized independently of pancreatic enzymes, which explains their use in various (mainly metabolic) diseases. MCT fats are also particularly suitable in the context of a ketogenic diet, such as that used in some pharmacoresistant forms of epilepsy.
  • The terpene myrcene is very common in the plant kingdom. In larger concentrations it can be found in pines, ripe mangoes, fennel, juniper, ginger plants, hops and dill. And of course in hemp or cannabis. Here it is considered the main suspect for the so-called "couch-lock" effect, a state of extreme physical relaxation, in which it may seem impossible for the person affected to get off the couch (spoiler: it usually works out after all). Pharmacological interest is focused on the antiphlogistic (anti-inflammatory), analgesic and relaxing to sedative properties of myrcene. Fun Fact: If you always wanted to attract bark beetles without much effort, myrcene is your salvation, because for the beetle this terpene is an almost irresistible messenger (pheromone).
  • In today's terminology, pesticide means any agent that is used to protect (mostly plants) against pests. Pesticides are mainly discussed in the context of pesticide residues in products (mostly food). For pesticides authorised in the EU, there are usually maximum levels for both the amount of pesticide applied and the pesticide residues that may be present in the intermediate or final product.
  • Psychoactive or psychotropic substances are all substances that are able to influence the human psyche. The induced influence can take very different forms and also show great differences in intensity. The spectrum ranges from a barely perceptible stimulation or relaxation, e.g. by a sip of coffee in the morning, to a largely complete change of consciousness, e.g. by psychedelics (LSD, psilocybin, DMT and Co.).Whether the change is experienced as positive or negative depends on a number of different factors and not least on the user himself. Psychotropic drugs are also considered psychoactive or psychotropic substances - the term alone does not therefore say anything about the legality or illegality of a substance.The most frequently consumed psychoactive/psychotropic substance worldwide is caffeine. Caffeine belongs to the group of stimulants. Cocoa contains theobromine, a substance structurally related to caffeine, which is also a stimulant frequently consumed worldwide.
  • This refers to a form of application or administration of a substance. The substance is placed under the tongue (sub "under", lingua "tongue"). The mucous membrane under the tongue is particularly thin and well supplied with blood, which enables the rapid absorption of substances into the bloodstream.
  • Terpenes and terpenoids are very small molecules, some of which are very potent and can therefore have an effect even in extremely low doses. Terpenes occur in nature in great variety and are not only responsible for the aroma and taste of cannabis. The concentration of different terpenes, the so-called terpene profile, is an essential distinguishing feature of different cannabis flower varieties.Terpenes and cannabinoids can work together in a special form of plant synergy, which is then called the "entourage effect".The most common and well-known terpenes in cannabis include limonene, myrcene, linalool, α-pinene, caryophyllene and humulene.
  • A tincture is an alcoholic extract. According to the European Pharmacopoeia, only ethanol in certain concentrations (usually between 20 and 60%) may be used as a solvent during extraction.
  • Topical application refers to a form of application or administration that takes place locally and is therefore intended to have a localized effect. The classic example of a topical application is an analgesic sports gel that is applied to or near a painful joint to produce its (e.g. additional warming) effect.
  • A vaporizer uses heat to enable the vaporization (vapor = vapor) of active ingredients. To prevent combustion, which produces undesirable and often toxic by-products, only enough heat is generated to vaporize the desired ingredients. Vaporizers are used, among other things, to make active ingredients (active substances) from medicinal plants available, including cannabis. Usually temperatures between 180°C and 210°C are recommended. The boiling point of THC is 157°C, that of CBD is slightly higher (160°C - 180°C). Vaporizers can make the active ingredients of the cannabis plant safely and effectively available. With vaporizers, a distinction must be made between devices for vaporizing dry, mostly plant material and devices for vaporizing so-called "liquids". The latter have become known especially in connection with nicotine as an alternative to smoking cigarettes.
  • As the name suggests, at least to the botanists and latinists among you, this terpene is found in large quantities in pine plants (lat. Pinus) (including pines, firs, spruces and of course pines). But also myrtle, dill and caraway contain high concentrations of myrtle.α pines are associated with mental freshness and clarity. The Japanese custom of "forest bathing" (Shinrin yoku) makes use of this characteristic - practitioners "bathe", so to speak, in the forest air saturated with α pinenes and thus consciously make use of their clarifying effect on the mind.In addition, there are indications of antiphlogistic (anti-inflammatory), bronchodilating and memory supporting effects of α-Pinenen.

City Sleep Index 2020

In this hectic world we inhabit, sleep is a sexy word - how much are you getting? How long did it last? How did you feel afterwards? Here at VAAY, we’re on a mission to help people slow down, relax and take care of their inner balance. We know that a good night’s rest is a vital element of a healthy, happy, life, but what’s the best way to go about it? To help us figure this out, we undertook a research project looking into all the different aspects which impact sleep quality.

In doing so, we realised that we could directly compare cultural night-time trends and sleeping disruptors from city to city to establish which people around the world are getting the best shuteye. The result is the 2020 City Sleep Index comparing 75 global cities. We hope that the results will highlight not only what contributes to a restful night, but which locations enjoy the most successful slumber to inspire others to follow their example.

To begin the study, we first created a shortlist of 75 prominent global cities with available and comparable data on the topic of sleep. Next, we consulted studies from the World Health Organisation, Harvard, The Sleep Foundation and more to determine nine factors which impact the quality of our sleep the most.

The study starts with mental well-being, looking at both mental health, and societal stress including data on anxiety in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has impacted so many lives throughout 2020. Physical health is analysed next as levels of activity and obesity impact the quality of sleep, followed by the consumption of caffeine, nicotine and alcohol, which are all linked to poor rest.

Data for overwork, employment and finances were also collated, as anyone who has experienced money troubles can tell you, sleep is but a dream for those in difficult work or financial situations. Next we looked at chronic pain, a major contributor to loss of sleep, and environmental factors such as air, light and noise pollution, which can have long-term impacts on health and sleep.

Finally, since experts at the US National Sleep Foundation have advised adults to get at least seven hours (420 mins) of shuteye a night, we found the number of minutes that people sleep, as well as the percentage who undersleep according to this recommendation. The final results reveal which cities boast the best night’s sleep, and who could do a better job at bedtime.

Instructions for journalists

Each column in the below table is filterable, from highest to lowest and vice versa. Where a column is shown as a score out of 100, the higher, the better. Percentages and minutes are reflective of raw figures. The default ranking for the table is the Total column and the full methodology explaining how each factor was calculated can be found at the bottom of the page.

# City Country Mental Wellbeing (Score) Physical Health (Score) Caffeine, Nicotine & Alcohol Consumption (Score) Overwork + Commute (Score) Employment & Finances (Score) Chronic Pain (Score) Environment (Score) Sleep Duration (Minutes) Undersleep (%) Total
1 Amsterdam Netherlands 100 94.1 67.9 95.8 99 54.3 86.2 435 31 100
2 Auckland New Zealand 88.1 84.4 73.3 77.7 97.1 71.1 97.5 437 29 96.2
3 Glasgow UK 85.7 88.8 76.2 85.2 95.3 57.3 90.5 433 31 88.6
4 Liverpool UK 83.8 88.4 76.2 83.3 96.9 57.3 90.9 433 31 87.5
5 Stockholm Sweden 91.3 95 69.3 89.7 86.4 62.5 93.2 430 33 84.3
6 Dublin Ireland 90 91.7 73.4 85.8 88.4 66.6 88.9 431 32 83.4
7 Dresden Germany 92.9 89.3 54.6 100 98.5 53.3 96.3 425 38 82.2
8 Munich Germany 91.6 88.8 54.6 97.8 98.2 53.3 98.9 425 38 81.5
9 Bern Switzerland 97.3 95.9 51.3 91.1 98.4 50.9 99.6 425 36 81.2
10 Bremen Germany 92.2 90.1 54.6 99 94.8 53.3 98.8 425 38 80.5
11 Ottawa Canada 77.1 91.7 70.8 90.6 89.6 74 88.4 428 32 79.4
13 Manchester UK 83.8 88.6 76.2 75.4 97.6 57.3 86.9 433 31 79.3
12 Sydney Australia 79 91 76.6 68.4 91.6 81 93.9 433 31 79.3
14 Melbourne Australia 76.9 91.5 76.6 71 91.5 81 92.1 433 31 79
15 Dusseldorf Germany 90.2 88.5 54.6 99.4 96.5 53.3 96.3 425 38 78.8
16 Cologne Germany 90.2 89 54.6 98.5 94.2 53.3 98.9 425 38 78.5
17 Graz Austria 96.7 93.4 55.3 96.6 90.2 62.5 93 427 38 77.8
18 Stuttgart Germany 91.5 89 54.6 99.5 98.5 53.3 90.9 425 38 77
19 Oslo Norway 87.5 92 64.8 94.5 90.5 54 91.6 427 36 77
20 Leipzig Germany 92.9 89.4 54.6 98.3 92.5 53.3 96.5 425 38 76.7
21 Helsinki Finland 81.9 96.1 50 93.1 93.3 54.4 87.2 435 30 76.4
22 Portland USA 59.4 90 76 77.8 84.5 67.3 92.7 443 30 74.9
23 Zurich Switzerland 96.5 95.2 51.3 81 100 50.9 100 425 36 74.6
24 Hamburg Germany 91.9 90.4 54.6 95.2 95.7 53.3 92.4 425 38 73.5
25 Oklahoma City USA 56.3 72 78.9 86.2 94.2 66.3 89.5 437 34 72.8
26 Minneapolis USA 65.1 88.4 76.1 74 90.3 71.1 87.4 435 28 72.2
27 London UK 83.8 90.3 76.2 71.7 95 57.3 81.7 433 31 71.1
28 Frankfurt (am Main) Germany 89.9 88.9 54.6 98.4 96.3 53.3 86.7 425 38 70.6
29 Brussels Belgium 86.8 91.4 64.6 92.9 87.4 56.6 80.2 432 34 70.6
30 Berlin Germany 92.7 91.2 54.6 92.5 90.8 53.3 94 425 38 69.5
31 Vienna Austria 92.8 94.1 55.3 97 82.8 62.5 90.9 427 38 69.2
32 Budapest Hungary 82.6 88.9 77.3 88.1 91.1 64 87.9 418 39 67.6
33 Denver USA 60.1 93.2 75.9 74.4 87 68.1 88.9 432 28 67
34 Copenhagen Denmark 94.5 93.9 63.4 99.5 89.9 50 91 402 34 66.8
35 Seattle USA 60.1 90.9 82.4 68.8 89.5 67 87.9 430 29 64.4
36 Austin USA 65.6 77.9 80.3 76.4 95.2 70 83.1 424 30 64
37 Vancouver Canada 68.9 90.9 70.8 84.2 78.3 74 89.9 428 32 63.1
39 Calgary Canada 66.6 91.1 70.8 91.5 76.9 74 81.2 428 32 59.8
38 St. Louis USA 62.3 79.1 74.6 84.6 89.2 66.9 82.6 435 37 59.8
40 Geneva Switzerland 93.5 95 51.3 87.7 86.6 50.9 87.5 425 36 58.7
41 Phoenix USA 62.4 86.7 80.6 79 89.2 65.6 81.3 428 34 58.5
42 Louisville USA 58.6 50 75.3 88.4 95.8 63.8 81.9 432 36 56.6
43 Washington USA 66.3 91.6 70.4 69.5 91.5 72.1 89.1 430 36 56.5
44 Indianapolis USA 56.7 78.1 75.8 82.1 86.1 66.5 82.9 432 35 53.6
45 San Francisco USA 65.6 90.7 81.2 57.3 84.5 69.1 85.3 431 29 53.4
46 Barcelona Spain 79.5 93.2 65 97.2 78.1 62.5 77.5 422 37 53.1
47 Milan Italy 89.4 91.1 73.2 90.3 83 51.1 77 419 40 53.1
48 Houston USA 65.6 78 80.3 68.4 89.6 70 82 430 34 53
49 Atlanta USA 66.4 79.2 81.4 68.6 92.5 68.1 85.6 425 37 52.1
50 Toronto Canada 77.1 91 70.8 76.7 77.6 74 77.7 428 32 51.9
51 Paris France 88.1 95.5 63.3 82 80.7 66.6 69.7 430 35 50.8
52 Memphis USA 58.5 73 76.2 87.7 84.3 66.6 80.7 431 38 50.5
53 Cleveland USA 63.2 79.8 77.1 77.5 79.9 67.2 84.6 431 36 49.6
54 Cape Town South Africa 84 88.9 87.5 60.9 50 96.5 94.4 424 34 46.3
55 Madrid Spain 81.6 93.4 65 92.4 78 62.5 70.9 422 37 45.8
56 Hong Kong Hong Kong 79.4 100 100 58.2 90.6 80.8 73.3 411 42 44.8
57 Boston USA 69.3 88.9 79.1 66 72.7 69.2 86.6 429 35 43.8
58 Chicago USA 74 85.9 78.5 69 76 67.9 75.9 425 33 40.9
59 Lisbon Portugal 64.1 89 68.6 86.2 80 54.1 84.8 418 37 40.1
60 New Orleans USA 72.5 62.5 73.5 83 79.4 66.8 84.6 423 41 39.8
61 Miami USA 57.9 82.1 77.8 67.8 82.7 65 87.2 418 33 39.1
62 Bangkok Thailand 86.6 97.2 88.2 59.7 92.1 87.2 75.6 412 49 39
64 New York USA 64 85.9 81.8 67.9 71.6 67.6 82.7 423 34 36.4
63 Kuala Lumpur Malaysia 77.1 93.2 98.1 55.3 92.1 100 83.4 402 51 36.4
65 Philadelphia USA 65.5 85 77.7 71.8 77.8 65.4 79.6 427 41 33.8
66 Singapore Singapore 75 95.9 97.6 54.5 99.5 85.3 68.2 408 48 33.1
67 Honolulu USA 62.7 90.4 78.3 70.5 79.9 71.1 92.9 413 45 32.3
68 Dubai UAE 93.3 86.8 81.5 52.2 98.1 74.6 50 415 43 20.2
69 Detroit USA 63.9 83.2 76.1 64.8 69.1 69.4 83.6 418 42 17
70 Buenos Aires Argentina 75.4 86.9 70.9 57.3 72.9 84.3 73 413 37 15.3
71 Seoul South Korea 96.2 96.2 85.3 58.3 95.2 74.9 70.3 393 56 14.7
72 Las Vegas USA 51.7 85.1 71.3 84.1 72 66.7 85.7 393 39 12.3
73 Los Angeles USA 65.6 90.7 81.2 50 70.9 69.1 73.6 415 35 11.5
74 Tokyo Japan 73.7 96.4 78.2 59.5 98.7 68.1 83.5 388 61 2.3
75 Sao Paulo Brazil 50 88.1 73.4 70.2 66.1 83.7 74.2 408 42 1

METHODOLOGY


The 2020 Sleep Index compares and analyses the conditions for sleeping quality in 75 cities around the world. The cities were chosen for being some of the most well-known global metropolises, as well as for their availability of extensive and comparable data. The study consists of nine factors that contribute to the overall quality of a person's sleep:

The methods used to find each factor are described in detail below. All of the information collected is based on the latest data available.

SCORING

In cases where a factor consisted of one or more indicators, these were scored and averaged. The equation for scores is as follows:

z-Score = x - mean(X)Standard deviation(X)in short x - μσ

For columns where a low value is better, for example, a low amount of Caffeine, Nicotine and Alcohol Consumption, the score is inverted such that it is attributed a higher score:

z-Scoreinverted = -1*x - mean(X)Standard deviation(X) in short -1 *x - μσ

Where present for a factor, scores are normalised such that 50 equals the lowest value in the final dataset and 100 the highest value in the final dataset. Therefore, the higher the score, the better the city ranks for that factor in comparison to the other cities in the index. The equation for normalization is as follows:

score = (100-50) *x - min(X)max(X) - min(X)+50

FACTORS

Mental Wellbeing Score

The combined rates of mental health disorders and societal stress in a city. The higher the score, the better the mental wellbeing of residents. Mental health and stress are recognised to have significant impacts on sleep quality and can lead to sleep deprivation.

Mental health

Chronic sleep problems have been reported as high as four times more prevalent in people with mental health disorders than the general population, and are more prevalent in people living with conditions like anxiety, depression and bipolar disorder.¹ Prevalence of depression among the general population. Country-level data. Source: World Health Organisation (WHO) - Global Health Observatory (GHO), 2016.

DALYs (Disability Adjusted Life Years) from anxiety and depressive disorders. Country-level data, with US cities using state-level data. Source: Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) - Global Burden of Disease Study, 2017.

Societal Stress

The emergence of the Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in heightened concerns about public and personal health, as well as measures implemented to control the spread of the virus.

COVID-related stress: Country-level survey data on anxiety and psychological stress related to the spread of the pandemic and the conditions that have arisen as a result of the spread. Source: COVIDiStress Global Survey. Results as of August, 2020.

Divorce rates can be seen as a measure of societal stress resulting from the breakdown of the family unit.

Divorce rate: Crude divorce rates at a regional level. Source: Sub-national and national vital statistics departments, latest available data.

Physical Health Score

The combined rates of obesity, physical inactivity and the number of gyms available in a city. The higher the score, the better the physical health of residents. Research has found that physical activity positively impacts sleep quality in young and older groups,² while other studies have found that obesity is associated with an increased prevalence of sleep apnea, potentially causing sleeping problems that reduce sleep quality and duration.³

A lack of adequate sleep has also been suggested to be a contributing factor to a growth in obesity, with most studies finding an association in inadequate sleep and weight gain among children.⁴

Obesity rates: Crude adult obesity rates at national level, US cities use state-level data. Source: World Health Organisation – Global Health Observatory, 2016; Robert Wood Johnson Foundation - State of Childhood Obesity report (adult rates), 2019.

Physical inactivity rates: Prevalence of adult inactivity at national level, US cities use state-level data. Source: World Health Organisation – Global Health Observatory, 2016; Center for Disease Control – Physical Activity database, 2018.

Number of gyms: Quantity of gyms and fitness centres in a city as a proportion of the city population. Search terms ‘leisure=fitness_centre’ and ‘leisure=sports_centre’. Source: OSM Overpass API, data as of August, 2020.

Caffeine, Nicotine and Alcohol Consumption Score

The combined indexes for the intakes of caffeine, nicotine and alcohol in a city. The higher the score, the less stimulants consumed by residents. Certain dietary intake is known to adversely impact sleep quality and duration. These include excess levels of caffeine⁵, nicotine⁶ and alcohol⁷ consumption – especially in the leadup before bed.

Caffeine consumption: Country-level kg per capita consumption of coffee, as well as kg per capita consumption of tea. Source: International Coffee Organization – Trade Statistics database, 2019; US Food and Agriculture Organization – FAOSTAT, 2019.

Nicotine consumption: Smoking prevalence rates and cigarette consumption per capita. Data used is at a country level, US cities use state-level data. Source: World Health Organisation – Global Health Observatory, 2016; Center for Disease Control –State Tobacco Activities Tracking and Evaluation (STATE) System, 2018.

Alcohol consumption: Alcohol consumption in litres per capita. Data used is at a country level, US cities use state-level data. Source: World Health Organisation – Global Health Observatory, 2016; National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism – Surveillance Report, 2018.

Overwork Score

The percentage of the population working over 48 hours combined with the average commuting time in a city. The higher the score, the less a city overworks.

Percent of the population working over 48 hours: Country level data, US cities use state-level data. Source: International Labour Organisation – ILOSTAT, 2019; Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018. Commuting time: City level average minutes commuting one-way. Source: US Census – American Fact Finder, 2019; INRIX – Global Traffic Scorecard, 2019; Numbeo, 2020; Various media sources.

Employment and Finances Score

The combined unemployment rate and monthly living costs in a city. The higher the score, the less financial and career stress experienced by residents. Financial and career stress is a factor which contributes to heightened stress and, by extension, a loss of sleep, with research showing that money worries correlate with sleep problems in older people.⁸

Unemployment rate: Harmonised unemployment figures for June, 2020. Metropolitan crude rates taken where available, otherwise regional data was used. In rare cases national data was used. Source: vital statistics departments, latest available data; International Monetary Fund - World Economic Outlook, 2020.

Affordability: Monthly living costs as a share of household income, after tax. A basket of estimated monthly costs includes: basic utilities costs, groceries, internet connection, leisure activities, clothes, and eating out. Source: OECD – Employment Database, 2018; Numbeo – Cost of Living Index, 2020.

Chronic Pain Score

The impact of chronic pain on the health of inhabitants. The higher the score, the less chronic pain experienced by residents. Chronic pain is understood to have a cyclic relationship with sleep: chronic pain is a major contributor to loss of sleep, and a lack of proper sleep produces fatigue and increases sensitivity to pain.⁹ Global disease studies have reported high levels of chronic pain burden in developed countries (although not exclusively).

Research points to a connection between ageing populations (Italy, Germany and Denmark, for example) and an increase in the burden of non-communicable diseases, as these are understood to increase rapidly with age.¹⁰ It is possible that due to this, countries with a younger population structure will tend to score better in this factor.

Prevalence and impact of chronic pain: Disability Adjusted Life Years (DALYs) resulting from: Back and neck pain; Osteoarthritis; Rheumatoid Arthritis; Migraines and headaches disorders; and Gout. Country-level data, with US cities using state-level data. Source: World Health Organisation — Global Health Observatory, 2016; Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) - Global Burden of Disease Study, 2017.

Environment Score

The combined rates of air, light and noise pollution. The higher the score, the less pollution. Environmental pollution can have significant impacts on the ability to receive adequate sleep duration and quality. The World Health Organisation has warned against the short and long-term effects of excessive environmental background noise (eg. from cars, trains and planes) at night on health and sleep.¹¹

Other research has suggested that light pollution can, among other things, interrupt natural rhythms in the body and delay the release of sleep-inducing hormones¹². Asthma, which can be triggered by exposure to ozone (O3), can seriously impede sleep for sufferers¹³, while other research has suggested a link between exposure to particle pollution in the air (PM2.5/PM10) and sleep apnea (snoring)¹⁴.

Air pollution: Annual median particulate matter (PM2.5/PM10) pollution, and annual median ground-level or tropospheric ozone (O3) pollution at a city level. Sources: AQICN – Air Quality Index historical database, 2019; World Health Organisation – Global Ambient Air Quality Database, 2018.

Light pollution: Average annual night radiance at a metropolitan level, and percent of the urban population exposed to very high artificial night sky light in microcandelas per square metre (>3000 μcd/m2) at a country level. US cities use city-level data. Source: Radiance Light Trends light pollution map, 2016; National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration - VIIRS Day/Night Band Nighttime Lights, 2018; Falchi, et. al. ‘The new world atlas of artificial night sky brightness’, Science Advances, 2016 (DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1600377).

Noise pollution: Percent of population exposed to excessive night-time noise (Lnight ≥50dB) and overall background noise population, as well as severity of hearing loss at a city level. Sources: European Environment Agency – noise exposure database, 2019; US Park Service – sound map, 2019; Mimi – World Hearing Index, 2017; Numbeo – pollution index, 2020.

Sleep Duration (minutes)

The average duration of sleep experienced by inhabitants. Sleep researchers advise people to receive a minimum number of hours sleep in order to reduce the likelihood of sleep deprivation. Experts at the US National Sleep Foundation have advised adults receive a minimum of at least seven hours (420 mins) of sleep a night.¹⁵

Mean sleep duration in minutes, per night. Duration estimates modelled using country-level data, with US cities adjusted using county-level data. Sources: OECD Time Use Survey, 2020; “A global quantification of “normal” sleep schedules using smartphone data”, Science Advances journal (DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1501705), 2016; Economist/Sleep Cycle country sleep study, 2018; Fitbit country sleep duration study, 2019; Jawbone – USA circadian rhythm study, 2014

% Undersleep

The percentage of the adult population getting inadequate sleep on any given night.

US cities employ official county-level data on percent of adults receiving under seven hours of sleep. National figures are modeled estimates from various country-level data sources. Sources: Center for Disease Control, 2019; Sleep Cycle, 2020; Financial TImes, 2018; Barmer – Doctor Report, 2018; YouGov.au, 2018; Aviva sleep study, 2016


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