Happy Mind, Happy Life: 10 Simple Ways to Feel Great Every Day. A science-backed guide to a calmer, happier you.
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My guest today has spent his entire career, trying to understand mental illness. What’s really causing it – and how can we better manage it.
Dr Chris Palmer is Director of the Department of Postgraduate and Continuing Education at McLean Hospital, Massachusetts and an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School.
In today’s episode, he shares some of the profound insights he’s gained over almost 30 years as an academic psychiatrist. He combines years of clinical, neuroscience and metabolic studies into one unifying idea: that mental disorders are not caused by a chemical imbalance. Instead, they are metabolic disorders of the brain, caused by dysfunction in our mitochondria.
It’s a theory that connects physical, mental and emotional health, and it’s the topic of his excellent new book, Brain Energy. Chris doesn’t deny the roles trauma, psychological and social factors can play in poor mental health. But he explains the link between these factors and our metabolism, and how diet and lifestyle interventions can help. Excitingly, Chris explains that making changes to our diet and lifestyle actually offer far more hope for long-term remission than existing treatments, which generally aim to only reduce symptoms.
As Chris reveals, his own experience with trauma and mental illness is what drives him to try and help millions of people around the world who are still suffering. Chris is advocating for a transformation in the way we view and treat mental health. And, if that happens, it won’t just help ease an epidemic of depression, anxiety and other conditions – it also has the potential to address all of the chronic diseases that are underpinned by metabolic dysfunction.
Chris is knowledgeable, passionate and articulate. I thoroughly enjoyed my conversation with him and I hope you enjoy listening.
CAUTION: This podcast discusses ketogenic diets. Always consult a qualified healthcare practitioner before making any drastic changes to your diet.
Disclaimer: The content in the podcast and on this webpage is not intended to constitute or be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.*
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Watch the video version of the conversation here:
*DISCLAIMER: Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have heard on the podcast or on my website.
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