Stronger Minds

Stronger Minds

By Kimberley Wilson

Welcome to the Stronger Minds Podcast where I bring you everything you need to know to build a healthier brain and a stronger mind, including food and nutrition, psychology, lifestyle, mental habits and debating big ideas. From Chartered Psychologist Kimberley Wilson. Support this show at

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In this episode I describe the phenomenon of regret: the different types of regret, how it is generated in the brain, what our biggest regrets are, and how to reduce the amount of regret you experience in the future.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
23/02/24·14m 27s

Don't Let Joe Rogan Ruin Your Love Life

There is a growing ideological chasm between the men and women of Gen Z, which is unlike anything we have seen before. What's behind it, what are the implications for society. And what has Joe Rogan got to do with it?RefsKing's College Survey Research Survey this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
16/02/24·13m 10s


If you cannot tolerate your own envy, you will forever make your insecurities someone else’s fault.In this short episode I share some thoughts on understanding and managing a particularly harmful aspect of envy.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
01/02/24·10m 12s

Thinking Space Book Club - Fear Less

Audio from the November 2020 book clubSupport this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
11/04/21·51m 2s

Thinking Space Book Club - Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me): Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts

Audio from the October 2020 book club.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
21/03/21·50m 9s

Thinking Space Book Club -The Book You Wish Your Parents Had Read (and Your Children Will Be Glad That You Did)

Audio from the September 2020 book club.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
14/03/21·51m 3s

Thinking Space Book Club - How to Build a Healthy Brain

Audio from the September 2020 book club.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
07/03/21·49m 13s

Thinking Space Book Club - Hunger

Audio from the July 2020 book club.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
28/02/21·46m 54s

Thinking Space Book Club - Lying

Audio from the May 2020 book club.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
09/02/21·44m 9s

Thinking Space Book Club - Man's Search for Meaning

Audio from the April 2020 book club.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
24/12/20·48m 24s

Thinking Space Book Club - Drink? The New Science of Alcohol and Your Health

Audio from the March 2020 Book Club.P.s. The transition you hear 10 minutes in is my microphone, not your device!Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
30/09/20·46m 0s

Toxic Friendships - Emmie's Story

Good relationships are one of the most important resources for psychological resilience. But toxic relationships can do real harm and seriously undermine mental wellbeing. In this first of two episodes I want to talk about a particularly unhealthy and unhelpful type of friendship: The Frenemy - someone with whom you are friendly or consider a friend but who does not have your best interests at heart. In this episode, my guest, Emmie Harrison-West describes the shocking end of her relationship with her best friend at university and the effects it has had on her.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
15/08/20·53m 9s

Crime & Nourishment - Episode 4: You be the Judge

The evidence of improved behaviour and academic outcomes for children with access to breakfast clubs, of reduced violence with improved nutrition in prison populations, as well as other research from around the world on nutrition, brain and behaviour, is well-established.But we’re still no closer to answering on key question. Why aren’t we doing anything with this information? In this final episode I speak to legal experts to try understand why the UK government and judicial system has failed to integrate biological research into sentencing guidelines.ContributorsProf. Nicola Padfield QC - Professor of Criminal and Penal Justice, University of Cambridge. Life Fellow, Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge.Fabio Tartarini – Chartered Psychologist and Ph.D. Candidate - Prisons Research Centre, University of Cambridge.Luis Navarro – Restaurateur, consultant to prison kitchens in association with Learning Together prison education programme.John Samuels QC FRSA – Retired judge, former Chairman of the Criminal Sub-committee of the UK Council of Circuit Judges, former Chair of the Prisoners’ Education Trust.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
09/05/20·1h 6m

Crime & Nourishment - Episode 3: Food, Brain, Behaviour. The Missing Piece

In this episode we move away, temporarily, from the prison studies to consider other research being conducted around the world showing the profound effects of nutrition on behaviour and mental health including decision-making and protection from stress and PTSD.ContributorsProf. Dr. Soyoung Park - Head of department of Decision Neuroscience & Nutrition and Joint professor of Charité – University Hospital Berlin and the German Institute of Human NutritionProf. Julia Rucklidge - the Director of the Mental Health and Nutrition Research Group at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand, School of Psychology, Speech and Hearing.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
04/05/20·52m 4s

Crime & Nourishment - Episode 2: The Prison Studies

In 2002, a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial showed that nutritional supplementation could reduce violence in prison by 37%. This study has since been replicated in prison populations in the UK, The Netherlands and Singapore. So why, when violence in UK prisons, including assaults on staff, is at an all time high are we not using this cheap, low-risk, accessible intervention? In this episode I speak to scientists behind this inexplicably ignored research.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
02/05/20·1h 1m

Crime & Nourishment - Episode 1: The Kids Aren't Alright

This episode examines the evidence that shows a beneficial effect of nutrition on childhood behavioural disorders, and the surprising and worrying link between hunger and school exclusions.ContributorsDr. Alex Richardson - Founder Director of Food and Behaviour Research, Research Associate, Dept of  Physiology, Anatomy Genetics, University of OxfordCarmel McConnell MBE - Activist and Founder of Magic BreakfastSarah Dove - Strategic Director Phoenix Education Consultancy. President of PRUsAPSupport this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
29/04/20·1h 4m

Crime & Nourishment - Introduction

In 2019 acts of self-harm and violence in prisons across England and Wales hit an all time high. There were nearly 60,000 acts of self harm, over 34,000 assaults, and more than 10,000 assaults on staff. There is something going very, very wrong in the prison system.But what if I told that there is already a scientifically proven way of reducing violence in prison by 30%? At current rates that could mean 20,000 fewer acts of self harm, 11,000 fewer assaults, 3000 fewer assaults on staff and perhaps 100 fewer deaths. And what if I told you that the evidence for this cheap, low-risk intervention has been available for nearly 20 years. Wouldn’t you want to know why this treatment wasn’t being used?Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
28/04/20·2m 30s

Where have I been?! All about the book!

How to Build a Healthy Brain - I realised that while those of you who follow on Instagram will know where I’ve been and what I’ve been up to I hadn’t officially announced it on the podcast. So, in case you didn’t know I have spent the last year writing a book all about taking care of your brain and I thought I would give you a quick audio overview of it.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
09/03/20·14m 14s

Thinking Space Book Club - The Body Keeps the Score

This is the audio recording of the February 2020 book club. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
25/02/20·47m 52s

Thinking Space Book Club - Lost Connections

In this session of the Thinking Space Book Club the featured book is Lost Connections by Johann Hari and in the discussion I give an overview of the biopsychosocial model of depression, The Serotonin Hypothesis, the difference between the colloquial ego and the analytical ego, how trauma can become lodged in the body and outline my manifesto for improving GP assessments.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
29/01/20·49m 20s

Clinic Question: How Can I Accept My Body After Pregnancy?

This week’s clinic question comes in the form of a podcast because I had a lot to say. In my reply I discuss the difference between acceptance and tolerance, the necessary additional features of true acceptance and round off with some thinking exercises for you to try. I hope this is helpful for some of you.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
10/01/20·14m 19s

Listener Q&A with Renee McGregor

This episode is the long-awaited Q&A with specialist performance and eating disorder dietitian Renee McGregor. Renee is the UK’s leading expert in Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport and is on the European Taskforce for Orthorexia. She has managed the nutrition for athletes at the the London 2012 and Rio 2016 Olympics and the 2018 Commonwealth Games, and she is currently working with the Scottish Ballet.In this episode she answers a wide range of questions submitted by you. Everything from how important body fat percentage is for athletic performance, tips on challenging eating disorder beliefs and how to maintain hormonal health during training for sport. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
02/11/19·1h 6m

Thinking Space Book Club - Brain Changer

Food and Mood - The October book was Brain Changer by Prof. Felice. Jacka. Felice was kind enough to give some of her time at the end of a very successful ISNPR conference and joins me for a live Q&A where she answered some audience questions. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
23/10/19·29m 45s

Thinking Space Book Club - On the Shortness of Life

Timeless advice on the art of living well (Penguin)On the Shortness of Life is a moral essay written by Seneca the Younger, a Roman Stoic philosopher. The philosopher brings up many Stoic principles on the nature of time, namely that people waste much of it in meaningless pursuits. According to the essay, nature gives people enough time to do what is really important and the individual must allot it properly. In general, time is best used by living in the present moment in pursuit of the intentional, purposeful life. (Wikipedia)Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
25/09/19·46m 9s

Vegan Brain Health Q&A with Sophie Medlin

This episode is in response to some recent news headlines describing some of the nutrients important for brain health that people could potentially be missing on a diet low in animal foods. I had quite a few questions come in about this and thought it would be good to do a Q&A episode to try to address some of your concerns.I was very grateful to be joined for this episode by Sophie Medlin. Sophie is a consultant dietitian with expertise in colorectal health, and former lecturer in Nutrition and Dietetics at Kings College London. She is a passionate advocate for evidence-based nutrition and works with the media to promote safe and accurate nutritional information.You can find Sophie online at and she is @sophiedietitian on Instagram and Facebook.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
21/09/19·32m 37s

Thinking Space Book Club - 90 Seconds to a Life You Love

90 Seconds to a Life you Love by Joan I. Rosenberg“Sadness, shame, helplessness, anger, embarrassment, disappointment, frustration, and vulnerability. In 30 years as a practicing psychologist, Dr. Joan Rosenberg has found that what most often blocks people from success and feeling capable in life is the inability to experience, move through, and handle these 8 unpleasant feelings. Knowing how to deal with intense, overwhelming, or uncomfortable feelings is essential to building confidence, emotional strength, and resilience. Yet when we distract or disconnect from these feelings, we move away from confidence, health, and our desired pursuits, ultimately undermining our ability to fully realize our ambitions.”Audio from the August 2019 book club sessionSupport this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
04/09/19·54m 3s

Thinking Space Book Club - Attached

This episode is a little different as it is the audio recording of the latest book club session. For those who don’t know I have an online book club called Thinking Space where we look at the psychological themes of a range of books.This month’s book was Attached by Amir Levine and Rachel Heller. The synopsis says: Attached guides readers in determining what attachment style they and their mate (or potential mate) follow, offering a road map for building stronger, more fulfilling connections with the people they love.” Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
01/08/19·46m 33s

Understanding Anger

Anger is one of the most misunderstood and disparaged emotions. It is seen as a sign of immaturity or a lack of control, with people often confusing the emotional experience of anger with the physical act of violence. However, they are not the same thing. More than that, anger can be a driving force for tremendous good.In this episode I explain the psychological function of anger, how to recognise it, how to tolerate it and how to make the most of it.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
20/06/19·30m 6s

Bryan's Story

This is the second follow-up to the Understanding Borderline Personality Disorder episode. In this episode I talk to mental health blogger Bryan. Bryan started tweeting and vlogging about BPD after he noticed that it was rare to see men talking about the diagnosis. In this conversation he sheds light on some aspects of the invalidating environment characteristic of the later development of BPD and describes how his symptoms can impact his relationships. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
30/03/19·52m 30s

Rosie from Talking About BPD

This is a follow-up to the Understanding Borderline Personality Disorder episode. In this episode I talk to Rosie from Talking About BPDRosie is a blogger, writer and artist. Her blog, Talking About BPD, shares the details of her life with a diagnosis of borderline personality disorder (BPD). Rosie hopes that through sharing her thoughts, feelings & ideas, she can help change perceptions of this much stigmatised and often misunderstood mental health condition. She has an MSc in Medical Humanities, is a qualified primary school teacher and currently works in psychosocial support services in a charity. Rosie’s next big project is to write a book based on her blog and she won’t stop talking about her BPD until all people with this condition are treated with respect, compassion and understanding.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
25/03/19·41m 41s

Psychology Bite - Understanding Borderline Personality Disorder

In this episode I want to talk about a mental health disorder that I think is poorly understood and can leave sufferers mischaracterised as deliberately manipulative or attention seeking. This misrepresentation of the illness drives hostility and stigma and can make people experiencing these symptoms reluctant to come forward and ask for help they are entitled to. I will be talking about Borderline Personality disorder, which in the UK is also known as Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder, and in the two accompanying episodes I speak to two people who are living with this diagnosis so that you can benefit from hearing them tell their own stories.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
24/03/19·54m 47s

The Ground-Breaking Science of Food & Mood with Prof. Felice Jacka

My guest is Professor Felice Jacka. Felice is a Psychiatric Epidemiologist working in the new field of Nutritional Psychiatry, which she helped to establish. Her PhD was the first to examine the impact of overall dietary intake (as opposed to individual foods or supplements) on mental health risk and she lead the SMILES trial, a ground-breaking randomised controlled trial using dietary improvement as a treatment for depression. In the episode Felice gives a behind the scenes look at what it was like conducting that research and the reaction from the international science community, and helps shed some light on some nutrition myths.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
02/02/19·1h 15m

New Year, New Name!

This is just a quick to give you the heads up on some changes that you may have noticed around here. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
01/02/19·1m 14s

Breaking Bread - Venezuelan Green Sauce: Food for Thought with Heather Heying

Heather is a scientist, educator, and author. She earned her PhD in Biology from the University of Michigan, where she earned the university’s top honor for her dissertation. On top of that she has a B.A. in Anthropology, which is the study of human societies and behaviour. She has researched the evolution of social systems across a range of organisms, including humans, and her book, Antipode, is based on her experiences in Madagascar while studying the sex lives of poison frogs.In 2017, she resigned from her tenured professorship at The Evergreen State College, where for fifteen years she provided undergraduates an evolutionary toolkit with which to understand what it is to be human, and how to be critical, engaged citizens of the world. She designed courses that prioritized the scientific method, and pushed students outside of their own certainty and comfort zones. And this is most of what we get in to – the relationship between safety and risk, the growing attack on science, and how to improve your critical thinking skills.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
22/12/18·1h 13m

Breaking Bread - Puttanesca: Sex, Feminism & Sex Worker Rights with Juno Mac & Molly Smith

In this episode I Break Bread with Molly Smith and Juno Mac. Juno and Molly are sex workers and activists who campaign for the safety and labour rights of sex workers. They are the authors of Revolting Prostitutes: The Fight for Sex Workers Rights.I was keen to speak to Molly and Juno because I think, maybe now more than ever, there is a need to have thoughtful conversations about difficult or contentious issues, that aren’t just about soundbites and picking sides. We need to be able to understand the nuance and complexities of people’s arguments if we are going to engage with them honestly. They are not advocating that sex work is great work and should be included on the national curriculum. What they are saying is that it exists, and that it is inherently dangerous work that it is made more dangerous by the legal system that surrounds it. They are asking that people – society and the government – recognise their basic human right to safety whilst at the same time we work towards a society where prostitution isn’t necessary as a means of survival for the most vulnerable people at the very fringes of society. I think it is an important discussion and I am grateful that they made the time to talk to me. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
08/12/18·1h 26m

Psychology Bite - Self-Sabotage

This topic is one that 95% of you said that you struggled with so hopefully you’ll get something useful out of it. I'm talking about self-sabotage, what it is and a few of the reasons that it comes about including anxiety and low self-esteem, fear of disappointment and loss, and passive aggression.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
24/11/18·26m 30s

Breaking Bread - Prawn Curry: Food, Love & Sacrifice with MiMi Aye

In this episode I am Breaking Bread with MiMi Aye.MiMi is British-born to Burmese parents, and has spent her whole life soaking up Burmese food, language, and culture through endless trips to see family and friends in Burma aka Myanmar.She is a passionate advocate for Burmese cuisine, the founder of supper club and online community, Burmese Food and Beyond, and author of NOODLE! 100 Great Recipes. Her next book, MANDALAY: Burmese Food & Beyond is out in June 2019 and contains nearly 100 simple but authentic recipes revealing the secrets of the Burmese kitchen.This is a real foodies’ episode. MiMi describes many of the key foods of Burmese culture, their preparation and symbolism. She shares her meaningful food in a story about prawn curry that brought us both to tears, as well as the legends of the illegal prawn procurement and the take of an unwanted edible gift from a military dictator. This episode was really a crash course in the traditions of the Burmese dinner table and cultural food practices, and it was absolutely fascinating. I hope you enjoy sitting around the table with Mimi Aye.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
10/11/18·1h 21m

Q&A: Self, False Self & People Pleasing

This episode follows the podcast on Self, False Self and People Pleasing. I received so many comments and questions after that episode went out that I thought it would be helpful to do a separate episode where I could answer your questions and go in to more depth on some aspects of the theory. So thank you to everyone who submitted your questions and if you haven’t listened to the previous episode I recommend listening to that first as I do refer back to it. I hope you find it helpful.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
13/10/18·29m 42s

Panel Discussion: Eater Talks - The Importance of Diversity [Special Episode]

This is a special episode featuring a panel discussion on the state of diversity, racism and cultural representation in the food industry. The catalyst for this discussion was a series of incidents that took place in July 2018. Members of London’s South East Asian and food communities criticised a series of racist videos and social media posts from White British chef, Shaun Beagley. After initial requests for them to be taken down were not actioned the content was brought to the attention of one of his employers, Andy Oliver, Chef Proprietor of Som Saa, a successful London restaurant specialising in Thai food. It then became apparent that Andy and other prominent London food personalities were already aware of some of this content and, in some cases, had endorsed it.What followed was a huge amount of anger, confusion and disappointment at how people who were preparing and profiting from the food of South East Asia could at the same time be so denigrating of the culture and the people. This incident also raised other concerns about how the food and culture of minority groups is used and represented in London and the food industry in general.Following this, Adam Coghlan, the editor of the Eater London food website hosted a panel discussion on the events and the issues it raised. I was invited to be a member of that panel along with identity theorist Anna Sulan Masing, food and culture writer Jonathan Nunn, and chefs Asma Khan, of Darjeeling Express and Andy Oliver of Som Saa. The event was not recorded on the night but the panel reconvened at my London office for this special episode.The hope is that these events can be the start of meaningful change and improvement in the treatment and representation of the minority people and cuisines on which so much of the success of the food industry is based. Please join this conversation by adding your thoughts, sharing this podcast and raising these issues when you see them.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
04/10/18·1h 30m

Psychology Bite - Self, False Self & People Pleasing

For this episode I want to talk to you about something that I think is incredibly common but that you might not be entirely familiar with. I want to talk to you about a psychological concept called the False Self and how it relates to the more well-known phenomenon of People Pleasing. I'll introduce the concept of the self and how it develops, the conditions that lead to the development and reliance on a false self and what the implications are for mental health and wellbeing. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
25/09/18·27m 2s

Breaking Bread - Hot Sauce & Beach Snacks: Identity, Art & Assimilation with Shivi Ramoutar

In this episode I am Breaking Bread with Caribbean cook, author and presenter Shivi Ramoutar. For this episode I joined Shivi at her home which gave me the opportunity to twist her arm and get her to share some of her wonderful classical piano playing, which you can hear at the top of the episode. And on the theme of music we discuss how, as a black musician starting her music career, she was pigeonholed into performing RnB even though that was not her personal style of music.In the rest of the episode Shivi shares some very funny stories about her family’s addiction to the hottest homemade chilli sauce,she retells the story of her disastrous first round of MasterChef and explains why she was the WORST. LAWYER. EVER.Super multi-talented, warm and such a funny, deadpan story teller. I hope enjoy this conversation even half as much as I did.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
18/08/18·1h 5m

Rose Harissa - Food as a Moment of Light in the Darkness with Ryan Riley

In this episode, I am Breaking Bread with Ryan Riley. Ryan is a food writer and stylist and the founder of Life Kitchen, a charity he launched in memory of his mother, Krista, who died of cancer. About 50% of people who undertake chemotherapy experience changes in taste that can take away the pleasure in eating. Life Kitchen designs recipes and runs cookery classes to help guests enjoy food again.In this episode Ryan describes how he set up Life Kitchen, what his mum would have thought of the endeavour and shares some very touching anecdotes about his close relationship with his best friend.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
04/08/18·58m 26s

Iced Buns: Remembering & Moving Forward with Anna Pancaldi

In this episode I am breaking bread with Anna Pancaldi. Anna is a singer-songwriter from glorious Essex who is being tipped as a rising star in the music world. Though still very early in her career she has toured in Europe and the US, and starred in a campaign for Levis, for which she also wrote the song. I first met Anna at the launch of a charity recipe book that I had written a recipe for and where she was performing. I was so moved by her voice and have been a fan ever since so I am really happy that she agreed to be my guest on the show.In this warm and touching conversation Anna talks about the early roots of her musical career including getting started and her long battle to overcome stage fright. She also discusses what depression is like for her and how song-writing is her way of processing difficult and painful emotions. She also tells me the hilarious story of her worst ever gig and how she recovered from it.Anna is so open and funny and I am sure you will love not just her voice but her too. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
20/07/18·1h 14m

Too Busy To Chew? Honest Review and Thoughts on the Rise of 'Drinkable Meals'

'Drinkable meals' are being touted as the future of food, with the makers claiming they are the perfect nutritional solution for time-poor, ambitious professionals. In this episode of the podcast I take a look at the world of drinkable meals. As well as giving an Honest Review, I look at the nutritional claims, get feedback from other users and think about what the rise of these products says about our changing relationship with food.I'll be asking the following questions:• What are they?• Where did they come from?• Are they food?• What's the point?• Are they any good?• What does they say about how we think about food?Heads up: this is a pretty nerdy episode, it's kind of an audio-documentary, so it might not be for everyone. But if the socio-politics and marketing of food are your thing then I hope you find it interesting!Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
04/07/18·35m 17s

Suicide Prevention with Dr. Sarah Vohra

This episode is an urgent response to some very sad recent news about two high-profile individuals taking their own lives and some very worrying statistics. In the same week as the deaths of designer Kate Spade and chef and TV presenter Anthony Bourdain, a report was published in the UK showing that teen suicides are on the rise and have increased by 107% in London in the last 5 years, which is four times the national average. Recent research from the CDC showed that since 1999 the suicide rate in the US grew by more than 25%. Last week the funeral was held for Tim Bergling, also known as Avicii, who is also believed to have taken his own life.  So, in this episode, I have teamed up with a colleague to help offer some support for people struggling with thoughts of self-harm or suicide or anyone worried about a loved one. Dr Sarah Vohra (@themindmedic) is a Child Psychiatrist, Columnist and Bestselling Author of Mental Health in Children and Young People and we discuss how to identify depression and suicide risk in yourself, children and adults. We offer strategies on how to intervene during the early stages of depression before it reaches crisis point but also describe what the priorities are if you believe someone is at imminent risk of self-harm or suicide. Crucially, we offer practical tips on how to have the very difficult but incredibly important conversation, how to ask someone if they are having thoughts of taking their own lives. We talk about what happens after an attempt and provide resources for people bereaved by suicide.This was a heavy conversation even for us and we understand that these issues are very difficult to think about, talk about and listen to. So please, if you are concerned about yourself or someone else right now, do call emergency services immediately. This episode is for information only and should not be taken as diagnosis or treatment. It does not replace contact with a health professional. If you are feeling particularly fragile it may be best for you not to listen to this episode but to reach out to a friend or one of the resources that I have attached to the show notes that can be found on my website Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
20/06/18·1h 9m

Medjool Dates: Food, Faith & Culture with Salma Haidrani

In this episode I am breaking bread and breaking fast with Salma Haidrani.Salma is a multi-award winning writer and journalist whose work focuses on contemporary faith, food, women’s health and social issues. She writes for national magazines and newspapers including i-D, Vice, Broadly, Cosmopolitan, Stylist, and Time Out London among others. Last year she was awarded ‘Young Journalist of the Year’ at the GG2 Leadership Awards and was the youngest winner of the ‘Best Feature’ award at the End Violence Against Women Media Awards for her work investigating so-called honour killings on British soil.This episode was recorded during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan and, as a practicing Muslim, Salma describes what it means to her and how a month of fasting affects her relationship with food and her faith. Along the way we also discuss the 'rediscovery' and repackaging of traditionally ethnic foods as part of the wellness movement and how, as a result, she is reclaiming dates as part of her heritage.At times this conversation may feel a bit challenging for some listeners. I hope you can stick with it because a) I think it is important for us to have our opinions challenged and b) we can only grow by making room for the experiences of others. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
07/06/18·1h 5m

Kim Kardashian's Bad Science Lollipops

In case you have missed it, Kim Kardashian recently posted an advertisement on her Instagram account endorsing an apparently appetite-suppressing lollipop to her, at that time, 111m Instagram followers. Her caption under the photo said that the lollipops were ‘literally unreal’ and as I describe in the episode that comment couldn’t be more true. Much of the backlash about the post was linked to the effect that promoting a diet product would have on her followers, but I was also interested in the claims themselves. In this brief bonus episode I take a look at the evidence behind this apparently 'powerful weight-loss agent' that the makers claim provides 'spectacular' effects.**NB: Don't hold your breath...Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
18/05/18·19m 37s

Cheese Toasties – The Making of a Wellness Rebel with Pixie Turner

In this episode I am breaking bread with Pixie Turner. Pixie, who goes by the name Plant Based Pixie on social media is a nutritionist registered with the association for nutrition. She can be found across her social channels and often on the news debunking nutritional myths and promoting an evidence-based and balanced approach to nutrition. But it hasn’t always been like that.For around three years Pixie was deep into the very side of wellness that she now tries to protect others from. At the same time she was building a name and a following as a wellness blogger, subscribing to ideas and practices that have no grounding in science despite her background in biochemistry. So how did she get drawn in and, maybe more importantly, how did she get out? In this conversation Pixie tells me her story, in which she describes, amongst other things, the differences between wellness trends in different parts of the world and explains how compelling it is to receive glowing praise from complete strangers.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
03/05/18·1h 19m

Orthorexia: When Healthy Eating Goes Bad with Renee McGregor

My guest is Renee McGregor. Renee is a Performance and Eating Disorders Specialist Dietitian. As part of her very impressive career so far she has been the dietitian for athletes at the London 2012, Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralmpic Games, and the 2018 Commonwealth Games. In addition, she is a member of the International Task Force on Orthorexia. Orthorexia is a relatively new mental health condition which is characterised by a dangerous obsession with clean or ‘perfect’ eating, and its rise has been linked to the growth in wellness bloggers and influencers promoting restrictive diets on social media.In this conversation Renee gives some incredibly touching, and at times shocking, descriptions of the struggles of some of the people she has worked with, really illuminating the seriousness of the challenge of eating disorders and feeding problems and why she, I and others care so much that the information about food, diet and nutrition that is out there on social media is safe and accurate.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
16/04/18·1h 41m

Chocolate Brownies & Fig Cake - Coming Back to Food with Henrietta Inman

In this episode I am breaking bread with Henrietta Inman. Henrietta is a pastry chef, author and cookery teacher, who specialises in whole and heritage grain baking. After graduating with a distinction from the Professional Patisserie Scholarship at Westminster Kingsway College she apprenticed at the prestigious 5 star Lanesborough Hotel in London’s Knightsbridge. She is the author of the book Clean Cakes and her second book, The Natural Baker, is released in March. In this episode we talk about the difficulties and controversies of applying the word ‘clean’ to food. She also opens up about having an eating disorder and how she is reconciling her relationship with food.Henrietta is one of the gentlest, most self-effacing people I have every met and I found this conversation both brave and very touching and I am incredibly grateful to her for sharing part of her story with me and all of you. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
29/03/18·55m 1s

Yogurt Bowls & Turmeric Shots - Food as Recovery with Thomas 'Hal' Robson-Kanu

My guest today is Thomas ‘Hal’ Robson-Kanu. Thomas is a Premier League and Wales International footballer and founder of The Turmeric Co. In this episode we talk about the personal experiences that led to him launching the family business that makes fresh blended turmeric shots, following a series of injuries that threatened to halt his career. We also discuss how he learned to manage his nerves on the pitch and how he copes with the pressures of top flight sports and the scrutiny that comes with being in the public eye. There’s also a little treat for listeners at the end of the episode so listen out for that. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
14/03/18·43m 34s

Sausage Rolls - Emotional Eating & Vulnerability with Felicity Morse.

My guest is journalist Felicity Morse who up until very recently was the online editor of the I newspaper, responsible for all the digital news content. She left that role just before Christmas to focus on investigating and writing about sex and relationships. Felicity is also exploring ideas around vulnerability and in this very honest conversation we talk about her experience of emotional eating and social media addiction. I am enormously grateful to Felicity for her openness and I hope you find the conversation as insightful and fascinating as I did.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
23/02/18·59m 43s

Have We Pathologised Being Full?

In this episode I talk about something that is part observation and part theory in relation to the way that some people think about food and their bodies. A growing number of individuals seem to be worried that a normal outcome of digestion is a sign of physical illness or moral weakness. Have we pathologised being full?Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
02/02/18·26m 9s

Barbecue Seitan - Intuitive Eating & Fighting Diet Culture with Laura Thomas

Laura Thomas is a registered Nutritionist with a Phd in Nutritional Sciences who specialises in Intuitive Eating, Health at Every Size, and non-diet nutrition. Through a non-diet approach she strives to help her clients and followers to develop a healthy and relaxed relationship with food that relies on acknowledging and trusting their own internal body cues rather than external rules and regulations. She was the nutritionist for the 2017 BBC1 documentary Mind Over Marathon, which followed a group of people with a range of mental health concerns training to run the London Marathon.When she's not working with clients 1-1 she can be found calling out nutritional nonsense on her social channels. In this wide-ranging conversation Laura explains why she declared war on Diet Culture and her take down of Women’s Health Magazine. Actually, since then she also launched a successful Instagram campaign to get GymBox to take down a post that promoted exercise as punishment. She also describes the paradigm of Intuitive Eating (and its misappropriation), and the link between veganism and orthorexia.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
19/01/18·1h 15m

Cream of Chicken Soup - Family, Community and Food Media with Clare Knivett

My guest is Clare Knivett. Clare is the last ever food editor of Jamie Oliver’s Jamie Magazine, which published its last edition in December 2017. She took some time out before setting off on her travels to talk to me about the role, what it was like to work with one of the world’s most famous chefs and shares a whole bundle of heart-warming food memories. We have only just met but she has already shown me such openness, warmth and generosity that she is rapidly becoming one of my favourite people. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
08/12/17·48m 54s

The Psychobiotic Revolution - The Gut-Brain Axis with Professor John Cryan

My guest is Professor John Cryan, who is Professor and Chair of the Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience at University College Cork, and along with his long-time collaborator, Prof Ted Dinan, has lead much of the burgeoning field of the gut microbiome and the gut-brain axis.In this episode we talk about what exactly is meant by the term ‘gut-brain axis’, the link between the gut and brain disorders such as Parkinson’s Disease and depression and what you can do to look after your own gut bugs.It is a fascinating conversation full of useful information, and he also answers some questions from the audience, so make sure you have your notebooks at the ready. Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
23/11/17·52m 41s

Guided Meditation from Ashley Hunt

If the last episode left you inspired to explore whether meditation might work for you, here is a free guided relaxation meditation from my guest, Meditation Coach, Ashley Hunt.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
15/11/17·10m 1s

Meditation & Mindfulness

Chronic stress underlies a whole range of physical and mental health concerns, driving depression, anxiety, sleep problems, promoting weight gain and your risk of developing type 2 diabetes. It’s not just a psychological phenomenon but has serious effects on physical health and the actual structure of the brain so anything that can help you to manage stress and reduce your exposure to chronic stress is going to be beneficial. Meditation and mindfulness can be a really helpful to have in the toolbox of brain health. In this episode I talk to meditation teacher Ashley Hunt, who works across the world with individuals and corporations such as Twitter to introduce people to meditation and help them to find space for it in their lives. In this conversation we talk about how Ashley started to use meditation as a teenager and why it was completely useless, but how she later found ways create a mindfulness practice that worked for her, the link between stress and aging and the overlap between mindfulness and therapy.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
24/10/17·54m 56s

On Grief & Loss

Today, I step away from food for a moment and talk about an important issue that almost everyone will experience, but that doesn’t get very much air time. This episode is about grief. It’s a difficult and painful subject that can leave us feeling helpless and lost for words. But we will all experience grief and we will all encounter people in our lives who are grieving and so I think it is really important to think about what is happening in the grief process, what can help and what can hinder coming to terms with loss.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
11/10/17·23m 29s

Cinnamon Rolls: Food as History and Memory with Stella Parks

In this episode I have the pleasure of breaking bread with a food hero of mine. Stella Parks, also known as Bravetart, is a pastry chef who trained at the CIA, the Culinary Institute of America. In 2012 she was named one of Food and Wine’s Best New Pastry Chefs and was this year nominated for a prestigious James Beard Foundation award. Stella is the resident Pastry Guru at Serious Eats, the website renowned for its meticulously researched recipes with a generous dose of the science behind your favourite foods. I have been a fan of Stella’s for years now and really appreciate the time, effort and generosity of everything she puts out. In this episode we talk about how boxes of cake mix set her on her culinary path and the link between Oreos and time travel. Stella also troubleshoots questions from followers on US/UK baking recipes.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
27/09/17·1h 14m

Ships in the Night

In this episode I go back to visit Sheryl Hill and Ellen Carr, the directors behind the Sheryl Talks Obesity theatre production looking at the complexities of living with obesity. In this conversation we talk about some of the feedback the team have had from research and focus groups and what they have learned about how we respond to larger bodies.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
20/09/17·37m 19s

Welsh Cakes - Food as Inheritance and Self-Care with Beca Lyne-Pirkis

In this episode my guest is Beca Lyne-Pirkis. Many of you will know Beca as a fellow baker on my series of the Great British Bake Off, which is where we met and bonded over a shared love of personal challenges and Thai food. After the series Beca secured her own television cookery programme in her native Wales, now in its fourth series, and has another exciting project underway, which I will tell you about as soon as I am allowed to! In this conversation I talk to Beca about her food history, the role of food and cooking in her own childhood and how she passes these important life skills on to her children. We also talk about how she balances being a working mother with two young children and a husband in the military, and how food is an important part of her self-care.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
05/09/17·46m 18s

Sheryl Talks Obesity

In this episode I talk to Sheryl Hill. Sheryl is an independent theatre director and her company, Ships in the Night Theatre, in January launched a new project, part-funded by Arts Council England looking in to the complexities and real-life experience of obesity in the UK. Sheryl describes herself as an obese woman and was frustrated by the way that the public discussion on obesity didn’t seem to relate to her own experience or those of other overweight people that she knew. She and her team are in the process of developing a theatre production that will highlight the varied and individual experiences of overweight and obesity with the hope of opening up a more nuanced and compassionate public conversation on the topic. Sheryl and I found some time to talk while she was in London undertaking some research for her project.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
10/08/17·45m 20s

Tapioca - Food and Identity in Brazil with Franceska Venzon

This episode is a Food Story, where I sit down and talk to someone about what food means to them and what role it plays in their lives. So allow me to introduce you to Franceska Venzon Franceska is a pastry chef who trained at Le Cordon Bleu in Canada before moving to London and working as a sous chef at Ottolenghi (look out for her name in the upcoming Ottolenghi baking book coming out in the autumn!). Hailing from Brazil but with roots in Italy in this episode she introduces me to the wizardry of traditional Brazilian tapioca and discusses how much of the cultural history of Brazil, can be understood by following the movement of cassava, a popular traditional root crop. In this conversation we discuss how food intersects with family and national identity, how leaving her home country made her more Brazilian, and what she considers to be ‘the best thing that England has ever made’. She’s a very funny, intelligent, warm and honest woman and I hope you enjoy our conversation.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
26/07/17·46m 49s

Understanding IBS

Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a complex and common illness that affects the function of the gut, creating uncomfortable and embarrassing symptoms for sufferers. In this episode I give a brief overview of research in to IBS, outline aspects of the brain-gut-microbiome axis in the disorder, and highlight the critical role of psychological stress in driving symptoms.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
15/07/17·22m 31s

Brownies - Food, Identity and Modern Family Life with Gavan Knox

My guest today is baker and activist Gavan Knox. Gavan is a man of many pseudonyms. He has a baking blog and business as Mr. Moms and also answers to The Bearded Baker. Five years ago Gavan and his husband adopted two children, siblings aged four and five. In this conversation we talk about his experience of becoming a father, including the challenges and triumphs, and how food is a way to build family traditions with his children.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
27/06/17·45m 0s

Sweet Drinks - Chabeel Day with Gurmeet Dhillon (Bonus Episode)

Every year in early summer members of the Sikh community take to the streets to hand out cool, sweet drinks to passers-by offering them relief from the heat. In this episode I talk to Gurmeet Dhillon about the significance of this tradition and the broader importance of food in the Sikh faith.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
23/06/17·25m 59s

Fasting & MS: Could Going Without Food Treat This Disease?

New and ongoing research has shown a link between the microbiome and the body's response to fasting on the health and repair of nerve cells. In this episode I report on the latest research on fasting and Multiple Sclerosis (MS) a common autoimmune neurodegenerative disease. Are we standing on the verge of new nutritional interventions for neurological disorders? Tune in to hear what two leading researchers, Dr. Valter Longo and Dr. Jeremy Chataway, think is going on and the future directions of their research.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
13/06/17·19m 32s

Cheesecake - Dairy Foods and Shavuot with Victoria Prever

In this episode I speak to Victoria Prever, food editor of the Jewish Chronicle, the world's oldest continuously published Jewish newspaper. She tells me about the symbolism of dairy foods during the festival of Shavuot and the role of food in Jewish culture.Support this show Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
02/06/17·23m 12s
Heart UK