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Episode 04: Till Roenneberg PhD and Sleeping Better Audio Icon

If you’re anything like me, you’re familiar with Monday-itis. A terrible affliction, with symptoms that usually present at the start of the week. You feel tired and flat and you have to drag yourself out of bed. While you might think that this is simply because you don’t want your weekend... Read full article »


If-Then planning template PDF Icon

Your unthinking routines form the bedrock of what you do in everyday life. The more you repeat a behaviour with a consistent environmental cue, the more automatic the behaviour becomes. With repetition, the mental effort to initiate a new behaviour gets easier, and over time the action becomes second nature.... Read full article »


Emotions Tracking Diary Template PDF Icon

Learn to identify your emotions by keeping track of how you’re feeling throughout your day. You can do this by setting a reminder on your phone to buzz every few hours and manually noting down what you are doing in that moment, along with your mood and any associated physical... Read full article »


Food Diary Template PDF Icon

  In the day to day hustle and bustle of every day life, it can be hard to keep track of the bigger picture of what we're actually eating and drinking on a regular basis.  Keep a food diary for a month to get a clear picture of what you’re... Read full article »


Microbiome Recipes PDF Icon

We know that microbiome diversity is linked to human health and we know that while several factors influence our microbiota, what we eat seems to be one of the key influencers. So what should we eat to promote healthy gut microbiota diversity? Our gut bugs eat what we eat. Specifically,... Read full article »


Loving Kindness Meditation

Loving Kindness Meditation, or LKM, is used to increase feelings of warmth and caring for yourself and others. Like mindfulness, this practice is derived from Buddhist principles, but rather than passively observing thoughts, you concentrate on actively directing a feeling of compassion towards yourself and then extend your focus to... Read full article »


Sleep Diary Template PDF Icon

One of the best ways you can tell if you are getting enough good quality sleep, and whether you have signs of a sleep disorder, is by keeping a sleep diary. Download a sleep diary template here. Adapted from NHLBI. Read full article »


Key positivity boosting techniques

Proven Happiness Boosters By examining the characteristics of happy people, researchers have identified activities that can increase people’s happiness. While these exercises are not a cure-all panacea, a growing body of evidence demonstrates that relatively simple changes in our thoughts and behaviours can precipitate meaningful increases in happiness. The following... Read full article »


Recommended Apps

Below is a list of apps I have used and recommend.  Meditation Headpsace Calm Smiling Mind Emotions Tracking coming soon Fitness coming soon Habit Forming coming soon Read full article »


Simple Meditation Exercises

Below are some simple meditation exercises, taken from The Mindfulness Manual, by Dr Craig Hassed. The body scan The body scan is the most widely used mindfulness meditation practice and generally the best one to begin with. Below are some instructions to take you through the practice, or you can... Read full article »


The Subjective Happiness Scale PDF Icon

Professor Sonya Lyubomirsky from the University of California, Riverside has created the Subjective Happiness Scale[1], which you can download here, or from her website here. INSTRUCTIONS For each of the following statements and/or questions, circle the point on the scale that you feel is most appropriate in describing you. To score the scale,... Read full article »


The Stress Mindset Reset Video Icon

In 2008 researchers from Yale University and GoodThink discovered that having a "stress-is-enhancing mindset" can change the way people respond to a crisis psychologically, behaviourally, and physiologically. The following video is based on the information given to their study participants.     By changing the way you view something and by rethinking... Read full article »


Social Support Questionnaire PDF Icon

Social support in general, and the availability of help from family or friends, is positively associated with medication adherence. An assessment of a person’s perception of, and need for, a social support network can be as important as the person’s readiness to change when determining his or her level of... Read full article »


Guided Meditations Audio Icon

Below are some guided meditations, taken from The Mindfulness Manual by Dr Craig Hassed.  1 Minute Meditation 5 Minute Meditation 10 Minute Meditation 20 Minute Body Scan Meditation 20 Minute Combined Meditation Read full article »


Experiment: Smoke Filling Up Room Video Icon

    This video is taken from the paper:  Effective Reaction to Danger: Attachment Insecurities Predict Behavioral Reactions to an Experimentally Induced Threat Above and Beyond General Personality Traits Tsachi Ein-Dor, Mario Mikulincer, and Phillip R. Shaver Read full article »


Depression Scale Questionnaire

The Centre for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale (CESD-R) is a screening test for depression and depressive disorder. The CESD-R measures symptoms defined by the American Psychiatric Association' Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-V) for a major depressive episode. You can take the test below, or from the CESD-R website here. INSTRUCTIONS... Read full article »


In Conversation With Brian Wansink PhD Audio Icon

In the very first episode of The Whole Health Life Podcast, we explore how our health is subtly and unknowingly influenced by the world around us. I’ll be talking to Professor Brian Wansink, who’s research has completely changed the way my family and I approach food. Brian Wansink is a Professor of Marketing and... Read full article »


In Conversation With Art Kramer Audio Icon

I have a little confession to make. Even though I’m a health journalist, and I’ve interviewed countless experts about why exercising is good and important and something we should do every day… I loathe it. Well that is to say, I used to loathe it.   What really changed for me... Read full article »


In Conversation with Sarah Pressman PhD Audio Icon

In Episode #2 of The Whole Health Life Podcast you’ll learn that new research shows that skin heals faster from a flesh wound if you’re more positive and how smiling, even when you don’t feel happy can reduce your stress. This podcast is all about the new research proving there’s a connection... Read full article »


In Conversation With Andrew Weil MD (16min) Video Icon

Shannon Harvey and Dr. Andrew Weil discuss his career, his philosophies on health and the use of both western and alternative medicine. They also cover the power of the doctor patient interaction in healing, the placebo response, the power of belief and what Dr. Weil considers the most powerful tool... Read full article »


In Conversation With David Spiegel MD (28min) Video Icon

Shannon Harvey and Dr. David Spiegel discuss his career, and interest in integrative medicine. They go into detail into his pioneering research into the field of hypnosis and how it can alter the perception of pain, as well as his groundbreaking findings into the power of group support on both... Read full article »


In Conversation With Jon Kabat Zinn PhD (19min) Video Icon

In this video Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD discusses his long career as a pioneering teacher in mindfulness and meditation. He discusses why he founded the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction program (MBSR) and the science behind it. He also discusses how he helps people to cope with chronic pain, as well as the... Read full article »


In Conversation With Craig Hassed MD (20min) Video Icon

Dr. Craig Hassed talks through his extensive knowledge of the latest scientific studies on the mind body connection covering topics such as the role of stress and emotions on health outcomes, depression, epigenetics and cellular aging. He explains why the mind is crucial to healing. Dr. Hassed is an Australian... Read full article »


Reading List - Chapter 1: Stress

Full Catastrophe Living: Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain, and Illness, by Jon Kabat-Zinn The landmark work on mindfulness, meditation, and healing, now revised and updated after twenty-five years Stress. It can sap our energy, undermine our health if we let it, even shorten... Read full article »


In Conversation With Damien Finniss MD (22min) Video Icon

Shannon Harvey and Dr. Damien Finniss discuss the latest findings in placebo research, including defining what placebo is, how it affects your brain and the importance of interactions with your doctor when it comes to health outcomes. Dr. Damien Finniss is a leading expert in the clinical applications of placebo... Read full article »


In Conversation With Herbert Benson MD (22min) Video Icon

Shannon Harvey talks with Dr. Herbert Benson about his career and how he came to make the groundbreaking discovery of The Relaxation Response. They also discuss his more recent research into epigenetics and the implications for people with autoimmune and other chronic illnesses. Dr. Benson is a Professor of Medicine... Read full article »


The Mindfulness Manual PDF Icon

Written by featured expert, Dr. Craig Hassed, The Mindfulness Manual shows you how to make meditation and mindfulness part of your life. BUY NOW WANT TO READ A SAMPLE? GET THE FIRST CHAPTER FREE   DOWNLOAD NOW You'll also join our growing community and receive our weekly email newsletter. Read full article »


Reading List - Chapter 3: Belief

Placebo Effects: Understanding the mechanisms in health and disease, by Fabrizio Benedetti One of the most widespread words in medicine is placebo and placebo effect, although it is not always clear what it means exactly. Recent progress in biomedical research has allowed a better clarification of the placebo effect. We... Read full article »


Reading List - Chapter 10: Lasting Change

The Longevity Project: Surprising Discoveries for Health and Long Life from the landmark Eight-Decade Study, Friedman and Martin For years we have been told to obsessively monitor when we're angry, what we eat, how much we worry, and how often we go to the gym. So why isn't everyone healthy?... Read full article »


Reading List - Chapter 9: Relationships

Triumphs of Experience: The Men of the Harvard Grant Study, by George Vaillant At a time when people are living into their tenth decade, the longest longitudinal study of human development ever undertaken offers welcome news for old age: our lives evolve in our later years and often become more... Read full article »


Reading List - Chapter 8: Healthcare

Placebo Effects: Understanding the mechanisms in health and disease, by Fabrizio Benedetti One of the most widespread words in medicine is placebo and placebo effect, although it is not always clear what it means exactly. Recent progress in biomedical research has allowed a better clarification of the placebo effect. We... Read full article »


Reading List - Chapter 7: Sleep

Internal Time: Chronotypes, Social Jet Lag, and Why You’re So Tired, by Till Roenneberg Early birds and night owls are born, not made. Sleep patterns may be the most obvious manifestation of the highly individualized biological clocks we inherit, but these clocks also regulate bodily functions from digestion to hormone... Read full article »


Reading List - Chapter 6: Environment

Born Together – Reared Apart, The Landmark Minnesota Twin Study, by Nancy L. Segal The identical “Jim twins” were raised in separate families and met for the first time at age thirty-nine, only to discover that they both suffered tension headaches, bit their fingernails, smoked Salems, enjoyed woodworking, and vacationed... Read full article »


Reading List - Chapter 5: Movement

Psychology of physical activity: Determinants, well-being, and interventions (3rd Edition), by Stuart Biddle The positive benefits of physical activity for physical and mental health are now widely acknowledged, yet levels of physical inactivity continue to increase throughout the developed world. Understanding the psychology of physical activity has therefore become an important concern for... Read full article »


Reading List - Chapter 4: Food

What to Eat, by Marion Nestle Since its publication in hardcover last year, Marion Nestle's What to Eat has become the definitive guide to making healthy and informed choices about food. Praised as "radiant with maxims to live by" in The New York Times Book Review and "accessible, reliable and... Read full article »


Reading List - Chapter 2: Emotions

Emotions Revealed: Recognizing Faces and Feelings to Improve Communication and Emotional Life, by Paul Ekman Renowned psychologist Paul Ekman explains the roots of our emotions―anger, fear, disgust, sadness, and happiness―and shows how they cascade across our faces, providing clear signals to those who can identify the clues. As featured in... Read full article »

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EP05: Andrew Holmes PhD and the Microbiome

If you’re a regular listener to The Whole Health Life...

Episode 04: Till Roenneberg PhD and Sleeping Better

If you’re anything like me, you’re familiar with Monday-itis. A...

Episode 03: Art Kramer And The Exercise-Brain Connection

I have a little confession to make. Even though I’m...

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