tips for a productive morning

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Before Going to Bed
What to do: Pre-program your coffee maker.

What it does: Caffeine works by temporarily blocking the action of a natural, sleep-inducing brain chemical called adenosine, explains Allison T. Siebern, PhD, a sleep specialist at Stanford Sleep Medicine Center. It essentially buys you hours of awake time.

How it makes you more productive: A strong cup of coffee can boost both mental alertness and physical performance by up to 30 percent within 15 to 30 minutes. You might notice the effects even sooner: The aroma of coffee beans alone can alter the activity of genes in the brain to reduce the stress of sleep deprivation, found Korean researchers working with exhausted rodents.