Mental Well-being

A curated episode list by

Creation Date November 15th, 2019
Updated Date Updated November 27th, 2020
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Make your insides right
  1. Silicon Valley CEOs, Tibetan monks, and crunchy hippies alike describe meditation as blissful and life-changing, but what does the science say? Can it reduce stress, increase your attention, and improve mental health -- or is all this focus on breathing just a bunch of hot air?  Sit back, get comfortable, and focus your mind as we talk to Tim Ferriss, Professor Gaelle Desbordes, Dr. Clifford Saron, and Dr. Britta Hölzel. Please note: we have updated this episode. We removed a reference to Peter Thiel, the founder of Paypal. He was a guest on Tim Ferriss' show, but didn't discuss whether he meditates.  Our SponsorsEveryday Bravery - Listen to Everyday Bravery, a podcast from Prudential, by going to everydaybravery.comWordpress - go to to get 15% off a new website Credits: This episode has been produced by Shruti Ravindran, Ben Kuebrich, Heather Rogers and Wendy Zukerman. Kaitlyn Sawrey is our senior producer. We’re edited by Annie Rose Strasser. Fact checking by Ben Kuebrich. Music production and original music written by Bobby Lord. Extra thanks to Dr Jonathan Schooler, Dr Florian Kurth Aldis Wieble and Dr. Madhav Goyal. Selected References:CDC Report: Trends in the Use of Complementary Health Approaches Among Adults: United States, 2002–2012Review of Neuroimaging Studies on Meditators Meditation Programs for Psychological Stress and Well-being A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis - JAMA review of Clinical Trials with Active ControlsIntensive meditation training, immune cell telomerase activity, and psychological mediators - Dr. Cliff Saron’s study on telomerase activity after a meditation retreat
  2. We love it. We hate it. BEAUTY CULTURE. Looking good can make us feel decorated, empowered and more confident -- but why? And why are certain groups subtly told to "make-up" for their appearance? What's the line between self-care and oppression? Psychologist and beauty-researcher Dr. Renee Engeln shines a huge bright floodlight on the sometimes ugly machinery of the billion-dollar beauty and "fitness" industry. This is an episode for make-up lovers, haters and the millions of us confused about being both at once. It's also an opportunity for dudes to learn just how how skewed the standards are. Buckle up -- this ologist will change the way you see the world, others and hopefully, yourself. With the companion Bonus Minisode: Kalology -- Your Letters Dr. Renee Engeln's work "Beauty Sick," the book Camp Ologies tickets, September 15 in Portland To become a patron: has hats, pins, totes, shirts, etc. Follow Ologies on Instagram or Twitter Follow Alie Ward on Instagram or More links at Sound editing by Steven Ray Morris Music by Nick Thorburn Support the show: See for privacy information.
  3. Jameela Jamil is an actress, activist, and host who joins Jonathan to talk about a wide array of topics, including how she landed the role of Tahani on The Good Place, the importance of loving yourself, dispelling shame, using her various platforms for good, the struggles marginalized people face, and more. Find Jameela on Instagram @jameelajamilofficial, and on Twitter @jameelajamil Check out I Weigh site here and their Instagram For more music from Quiñ head to Jonathan is on Instagram @JVN. Also Twitter and Facebook. Catch Jonathan on Queer Eye streaming now on Netflix. This episode is sponsored by Freeform's Good Trouble, ADT (, Squarespace ( code: JVN), MeUndies (, and Article (
  4. Could fake medicine actually take away your pain or treat a disease? We dig into the science of placebos to find out more about the power of the mind to heal. We speak to medical researcher Prof. Ted Kaptchuk, neuroscientist Prof. Fabrizio Benedetti and medical psychologist Prof. Manfred Schedlowski. UPDATE 5/13/19: We changed a few things in this episode to clarify facts. An earlier version of this episode implied that the placebo surgery for knee and back pain was really effective in itself. In fact, these studies found that some placebo surgeries work as well as real surgeries. In other words, patients reported less pain after both the real surgery and the placebo surgery. We also said that Pavlov’s studies used a bell to condition dogs. Whether Pavlov himself used a conventional bell is debated in the literature. Some say this was an early translation error from Russian to English. Later studies by his colleagues definitely used a bell. Finally! We have added a caveat into placebo research more generally to highlight that this research is early and that we don’t have many have long-term studies into placebos, so we don’t know how long the placebo effect can last. Check out the full transcript here: Selected References:  Great summary paper on placebo: Cure: A journey into the science of mind over body Ted’s IBS “open label” placebo study with Linda…: Fabrizio’s high altitude headache study: Manfred’s first immunosuppression study with the green drink: Credits: This episode was produced by Wendy Zukerman, with help from Rose Rimler, Meryl Horn, and Michelle Dang. Our senior producer is Kaitlyn Sawrey. We’re edited by Blythe Terrell. Editing help from Caitlin Kenney. Fact checking by Michelle Harris. Mix and sound design by Peter Leonard. Music by Peter Leonard, Emma Munger and Bobby Lord. Recording assistance from Fabian Mirko May, Mary Dooe and Maggie Penman. A huge thanks to all the scientists we got in touch with for this episode, including Dr. Diletta Barbiani, Dr. Cynthia McRae, Dr. J Bruce Moseley, Professor Apkar Apkarian, Professor Jon Stoessl, and others. And special thanks to Lynda McKenzie, the Zukerman family, and Joseph Lavelle Wilson.
  5. Summer season offers a wonderful opportunity reboot our eating habits, remind us of the ease and deliciousness when we eat in season and highlight how eating can be pleasure-filled minus the any guilt. In today's episode of the podcast, this archived episode was in the top five episodes of the first season. Originally airing in the fall of 2014, I hope you enjoy discover the 10 Simple Ways to enjoy food and enjoy the body that takes you through each and every day. Visit the detailed, original show notes of episode #8   ~SIMILAR POSTS/EPISODES YOU MIGHT ENJOY: ~10 Ways to Enjoy Grocery Shopping  ~A Capsule Menu: What It Is and How to Create Your Own ~How to Create an All-Around Healthy Life, episode #208 ~Subscribe to The Simple Sophisticate: iTunes | Stitcher | iHeartRadio | YouTube | Spotify   ~Images via TSLL's Instagram from a recent trip to Bend's Farmer's Market - image 1 and image 3
  6. Every day, your brain tries to save your life by being terrified. Thanks, brain! Also, calm the f*ck down, brain. In 2018, Alie hunted down Mary Poffenroth, an expert in the biological and sociological causes/effects of fear -- and it is riveting. This December, Time Magazine named Ologies a top podcast and recommended this episode specifically. Plus it just so happens that there was an administrative snafu with the podcast network and we're not supposed to have new episodes for two weeks, so enjoy this encore of a truly life changing episode. This actual FEAROLOGIST (which is a real word) talks about how fear is literally killing you, the difference between stress and fear, how to get along with your co-workers, friends, or partner better, and how to talk to your brain when it has needlessly pulled the fire alarm. Part 1 of a 2-part series that will honestly change your life.  For more info on Mary Poffenroth, see:, her Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. More links up at Transcripts & bleeped episodes at: Become a patron of Ologies for as little as a buck a month: has hats, shirts, pins, totes and STIIIICKERS! Follow or Follow or Sound editing by Steven Ray Morris Theme song by Nick Thorburn Support the show: See for privacy information.
  7. Sallie Krawcheck is the CEO and Co-Founder of Ellevest, a company working to help close the gender pay gap by “redefining investing for women.” Sallie received her MBA from Columbia Business School and has a BA in Journalism from the University of North Carolina. She is the former CFO of Citigroup and former CEO of Merrill Lynch Wealth Management and considered one of the highest-ranking women to ever work on Wall Street. She joined Jonathan in the studio to discuss the gender, wealth, and race pay gaps women and people of color face in today’s financial world and why it's so important to intentionally invest.   Follow Sallie on Instagram @Sallie.Krawcheck or @Ellevest and on Twitter @SallieKrawcheck.    To find out more about Sallie’s work, visit   Find out what today’s guest and former guests are up to by following us on Instagram and Twitter @CuriousWithJVN.   Listen to more music from Quiñ by heading over to   Jonathan is on Instagram and Twitter @JVN and @Jonathan.Vanness on Facebook.   Catch Jonathan on Queer Eye streaming now on Netflix.
  8. Optimism is often thought as a disposition, something you're born with or without. So can it be learned? On today's show, Maddie talks with Alix Spiegel, co-host of NPR's Invisibilia, about "learned optimism." We'll look at what it is, the research behind it, and how it might come in handy in certain circumstances, like maybe a global pandemic?
  9. There's a lot to think about right now. Journaling might help — and you don't need a fancy notebook or lots of time. Here's where to start. (This episode originally ran in June 2020.)

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