Even small doses of pleasure can raise our levels of immune-boosting chemicals. Recently, at a healthy-living conference, I had one of those quickie-checkups. In five minutes, you get a blood-pressure reading; plus a finger-stick blood draw; a computerized printout of your triglyceride, cholesterol and blood sugar levels; and a mini-analysis of your results from the attending health pro. Amazing!
Tag Archive: dopamine
Q. You’re not the usual OB/GYN, yet you were educated at MIT, Harvard Medical School, and are a board-certified gynecologist. What made you go rogue? A. It’s in my genes to go rogue – my great-grandmother was a radical whole foodist and yogini, decades before there was a yoga studio on every street corner. She would show up at our home in Annapolis, Maryland, not with gum or Barbies like my friend’s grandmothers, but with kale and carob/wheatberry cookies. She drank hot water with lemon and extolled the virtues of fish oil to me at the breakfast table, when I was… 5. But it wasn’t until I was in my 30s that I understood her legacy.
Sugar isn't just sweet, it's addictive. This episode explores the cycle of addiction that sugar causes in the brain, much in the same way as drugs and alcohol.
There's a reason that most so-called primitive cultures have avoided the depression epidemic afflicting industrialized nations. In a provocative book, a clinical psychologist suggests that adopting more "hunter-gatherer" habits can help us escape the blues. According to the latest research, about one in four Americans — more than 70 million people — will meet the criteria for major depression at some point in their lives. The rate of depression in industrialized societies has been on the rise for decades — it’s roughly 10 times higher today than it was just two generations ago. How can people possibly be so much more vulnerable to depression now? And how do you make sense of the fact that even though antidepressant use has skyrocketed in recent years, the rate of depression in the United States hasn’t declined, but rather increased?