BONUS | Why Running A Marathon Will Change Your Life with Hugh Brasher 

BONUS | Why Running A Marathon Will Change Your Life with Hugh Brasher 


RE-RELEASE: This episode first aired in October 2021.

To enter to ballot for 2023 click here www.londonmarathon2023.com/ballot

This Sunday 3rd October, I’ll be one of 50,000 people taking to the streets to run the Virgin Money London Marathon. So, in preparation for what I’m told will be a life-changing day, I spoke to its Event Director, Hugh Brasher. But this episode is more than a conversation about running. It’s about the magic that happens when hundreds of thousands of people come together and revel in what’s possible.

We begin by talking about its history, the famous atmosphere, crowd support and many other factors that make the London Marathon experience unique. We also talk about the vision behind the London Marathon, its inspirational aims and objectives that are still based around those drawn up by Hugh’s father, who co-founded the race 40 years ago. And they have more to do with social unity than sporting prowess.

If it’s running tips you’re after, there are plenty of them here. But we also discuss the importance of personal goals – how there’s more to marathon success than a certain finishing time. We talk about making mass-participation events more diverse, supporting the ‘back of the pack’ runners but also how we can use physical activity as a tool for life transformation.

Whether you run, walk, spectate, volunteer, or watch it on TV, I hope this conversation might inspire you to get involved one day with the London Marathon. Or perhaps you’ll seek out an event more local to you. The point, that Hugh makes so beautifully here, is that the sport is almost secondary. This event is about community, commitment, coming together and celebrating the human spirit. I’ll see you on the start line.

To enter to ballot for 2023 click here www.londonmarathon2023.com/ballot

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 this interview – click below.

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Learn more about Hugh:

Hugh Brasher

Enter the 2023 London Marathon Ballot:

How to enter the London Marathon

Interesting Articles:

Related Feel Better Live More podcast episodes:

#42 Parkrun – A Celebration of Community with Nick Pearson

#79 How Running Can Transform Your Life with Sanjay Rawal

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*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.

†Disclosure: All books marked with a † are hyperlinked to an affiliate program. We take part in Amazon’s affiliate advertising program designed to provide a way for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon’s website. You are not charged any extra by using these links to purchase books.





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BITESIZE | Life Lessons from a Brain Surgeon | Dr Rahul Jandial

BITESIZE | Life Lessons from a Brain Surgeon | Dr Rahul Jandial


We can learn so much about living from people who are coming to the end of their lives.

Feel Better Live More Bitesize is my weekly podcast for your mind, body, and heart.  Each week I’ll be featuring inspirational stories and practical tips from some of my former guests.

Today’s clip is from episode 185 of the podcast with one of the world’s leading neurosurgeons, Dr Rahul Jandial.

Rahul is the last hope for patients with extreme forms of cancer. He’s observed humanity at its most raw but also its most robust and, in this clip, he shares some of the powerful lessons he’s learned that are applicable to all of us.

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.*

Click here for more information on our sponsor athleticgreens.com/livemore

Listen to the full conversation with Rahul Jandial here:

#185 Life Lessons from a Brain Surgeon with Dr Rahul Jandial

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*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.

†Disclosure: All books marked with a † are hyperlinked to an affiliate program. We take part in Amazon’s affiliate advertising program designed to provide a way for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon’s website. You are not charged any extra by using these links to purchase books.





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Malcolm Gladwell on trust in medicine and the devaluing of primary care


This week I’m back in Washington DC, attending and presenting educational sessions at the American Academy of Family Physicians FMX (Family Medicine Experience), the first in-person version of this conference since 2019. For me the highlight of this conference is usually the invited celebrity speaker, someone with an inspirational story outside of medicine: past speakers have included political pundits Mary Matalin and James Carville and Aron Ralston, who survived a canyoneering accident in which he had to cut off his own arm to save his life. But this year’s speaker, the author and podcaster Malcolm Gladwell, topped them all. I’ve been a huge Gladwell fan since I read The Tipping Point, avidly listen to his Revisionist History podcast (and featured a past episode on philanthropy on this blog), and couldn’t wait to hear what he had to say yesterday to an audience of family physicians who have spent the past two plus years fighting pandemic misinformation.

The theme of his talk was that the decline in trust in medicine and public health that has manifested as tenacious resistance to Covid vaccination among certain demographics and/or areas of the country may have less to do with true anti-science sentiment and more to do with people having a hard time adjusting to strange new things. He shared several examples of this phenomenon in other fields: focus groups panning pilots of television sitcoms that ended up becoming classics (e.g., the Mary Tyler Moore Show, All In The Family, Cheers, and Seinfeld); the near rejection of the prototype of a mesh office chair that ended up earning billions of dollars for its inventor; and the Marines transforming its service from the misfits of the U.S. military to “the Few, the Proud” elite branch that we know today. Gladwell noted that trust in a profession doesn’t always correlate with its effectiveness, and that pouring billions of dollars into amazing technological solutions to the pandemic (vaccines and antiviral treatments) while neglecting to support the family doctors whose job it is to persuade patients, based on preexisting trusting relationships, to accept these medical innovations was “nuts.” (I made a similar point in an editorial in the Annals of Family Medicine last year). It’s no wonder that many of our patients turned to the well established – but totally ineffective – drugs hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin instead.

Public health holds many stories of initial mistrust in effective interventions. Gladwell talked about how despite clear evidence showing that supplementing water or salt with iodine eliminated goiter, there was widespread public resistance to the idea (“I’ll take my chances with the goiter”). The same thing happened when health officials proposed adding fluoride to water to prevent dental caries. This time, though, one official got clever and announced that fluoride would be added to the municipal water supply on a certain date, then when numerous people experienced adverse effects from drinking water on that date, mentioned that he had actually delayed the date but forgotten to tell anyone. So there is reason to hope that one day, receiving annual flu and Covid-19 vaccines will be less about one’s partisan allegiances and more about following your doctor’s common sense recommendation to protect yourself and others against severe illness and death.



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The Critical Importance of Strength Training and Eating More Protein with Dr Gabrielle Lyon

The Critical Importance of Strength Training and Eating More Protein with Dr Gabrielle Lyon


My guest today believes that the single biggest problem with our health these days is not that we carry too much fat but that we don’t carry enough muscle. She believes that if we start to focus and prioritise our largest organ – our muscle – we can burn more fat, improve our body composition, decrease our risk of disease and increase our energy levels.

Dr Gabrielle Lyon is a family medicine and osteopathic doctor who has specialised in geriatric care. What she’s seen and learned as an end-of-life physician has led her to investigate the importance of skeletal muscle as a means for people to live longer, stronger and better lives. She now focuses her practice on what she calls Muscle-centric Medicine.

In this conversation, Gabrielle makes the case that the quality of our lives is in direct correlation to the health our muscles. Gaining muscle, she explains, won’t just help us slim down. It can change metabolism, reversing insulin resistance and other risk factors for chronic disease such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease. And it’s equally important for reducing sarcopenia (age-related muscle loss), protecting our skeleton, improving mobility and balance, and reducing fall risk with age.

Many of us aren’t aware that we lose muscle mass from as early as our 30s – so for most of us, it’s something we need to prioritise immediately. Gabrielle explains what type of protein we should be eating and how much, we cover what exact combination of exercise Gabrielle recommends to her patients and we discuss why for women in their peri-menopausal years, muscle loss is a very real problem that needs addressing.

Gabrielle is realistic about the amount of effort her recommendations require and I find it really refreshing that she’s not trying to sugar-coat anything to make it more palatable. She’s someone who deeply cares about the health of her patients and wider society and wants to empower us all with practical knowledge that will help improve the quality of our lives.

I really enjoyed my conversation with Gabrielle – I hope you enjoy listening.

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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Connect with Gabrielle:

Instagram      YouTube    

Facebook      Twitter    

Gabrielle’s Podcast:

The Dr Gabrielle Lyon Show

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*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.

†Disclosure: All books marked with a † are hyperlinked to an affiliate program. We take part in Amazon’s affiliate advertising program designed to provide a way for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon’s website. You are not charged any extra by using these links to purchase books.





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BITESIZE | How to Be Confident in Any Situation | Vanessa Van Edwards

BITESIZE | How to Be Confident in Any Situation | Vanessa Van Edwards


We all have times when we lack self-confidence, but loss of confidence can sometimes hold us back and stop us living the life we want to live.

Feel Better Live More Bitesize is my weekly podcast for your mind, body, and heart.  Each week I’ll be featuring inspirational stories and practical tips from some of my former guests.

Today’s clip is from episode 254 of the podcast with Vanessa Van Edwards, an expert in body language, facial expressions, and nonverbal communication. 

Vanessa calls herself a ‘recovering awkward person’. She certainly doesn’t come across like that – she exudes confidence and charisma. In this clip she reveals some of the techniques that helped her transform and that you can start using today.

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.*

Click here for more information on our sponsor athleticgreens.com/livemore

Listen to the full conversation with Vanessa Van Edwards here:

#254 How To Read Body Language and Become More Confident with Vanessa Van Edwards

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*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.

†Disclosure: All books marked with a † are hyperlinked to an affiliate program. We take part in Amazon’s affiliate advertising program designed to provide a way for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon’s website. You are not charged any extra by using these links to purchase books.





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Dr Gabor Maté on Trauma, Illness and Healing in a Toxic Culture

Dr Gabor Maté on Trauma, Illness and Healing in a Toxic Culture


Today I’m excited to welcome Dr Gabor Maté back to the podcast for a third time. Gabor is a fellow physician, author, speaker and friend who brings warmth and wisdom to every conversation we have. He’s a renowned expert on addiction, trauma, stress and childhood development – and someone with a unique understanding of how our spiritual, emotional and physical lives are connected.

Gabor’s latest book The Myth of Normal: Trauma, Illness and Healing in a Toxic Culture is quite simply a masterpiece, which has the potential to help people the world over. It connects two of the most important factors in modern health – individual trauma and the pressures of modern-day living.

During this conversation, we discuss the prevalence and nature of addiction. We ask what ‘normal’ means these days when it comes to health. And why it is that success rarely equates with contentment.

Gabor defines childhood trauma and we discuss how parents can be aware of what causes it – but, importantly, why they shouldn’t look back and feel shame or blame. He shares some very personal insights that demonstrate that he’s as human as the rest of us, and how he’s found peace today.

We talk about self-awareness as a key factor in being a good doctor; why ‘psychosomatic’ should be a diagnosis not a dismissal, and how stress burdens the body, undermines immunity and causes emotional distress. Gabor shares some fascinating new research on the different personality traits that link to chronic disease. And he gives his view on why 80% of all autoimmune disease is seen in women.

This was a very special conversation, one which I hope you will find comforting, motivating and full of hope.

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.*

Click here for more information on our sponsor athleticgreens.com/livemore

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‘Addiction is the most human thing there is; addictions are attempts to gain emotional pain relief.’ Click To Tweet

Connect with Gabor:

Website    Facebook    YouTube    Twitter

Gabor’s books:

Related Feel Better Live More episodes:

#37 How Our Childhood Shapes Every Aspect of Our Health with Dr. Gabor Maté

#106 Gabor Maté: Is Coronavirus Showing Us Who We Really Are?

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*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.

†Disclosure: All books marked with a † are hyperlinked to an affiliate program. We take part in Amazon’s affiliate advertising program designed to provide a way for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon’s website. You are not charged any extra by using these links to purchase books.





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Neurosyphilis, ocular syphilis, and otosyphilis are don’t-miss diagnoses


When a patient with a history of migraine headaches presents with a “severe frontal headache and left-eye blurred vision and pain,” neurosyphilis is unlikely to be foremost in the differential. Even after she mentions a two-month history of a diffuse maculopapular rash, clinicians may feel reassured because it doesn’t involve the palms and soles. But syphilis, the great imitator, was in fact the eventual diagnosis in this patient, the subject of a case report published in Cureus.

In the August issue of American Family Physician, Dr. Jennifer Jones-Vanderleest reviewed detection and treatment of neurosyphilis, ocular syphilis, and otosyphilis, which can occur at any stage of syphilis regardless of immune status. Early neurosyphilis (within the first few years of infection) can present with “headache, dizziness, altered mental status, cranial neuropathies, motor and sensory deficits, meningitis, or stroke.” Neurosyphilis is diagnosed with the combination of neurologic signs and symptoms and reactive syphilis serology and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) tests. The 2021 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Sexually Transmitted Infections Treatment Guidelines recommend that patients with neurosyphilis be treated with 18 to 24 million units of aqueous crystalline penicillin G per day for 10 to 14 days, administered as a continuous infusion or 3 to 4 million units intravenously every 4 hours. These patients should be tested for HIV and be offered HIV preexposure prophylaxis if HIV negative. After treatment, normalization of the serum RPR titer predicts normalization of CSF parameters; thus, repeated CSF sampling is not needed unless the patient is HIV positive and not receiving antiretroviral therapy.

As I discussed in a previous post, the incidence of syphilis in the U.S. has been rising steadily for the past two decades (beginning in my third year in medical school and continuing throughout my family medicine residency and practice) due to stagnant health department funding for contact tracers and the recent impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Far from being ancient history, “in 2020, 133,945 cases of all stages of syphilis were reported, including 41,655 cases of primary and secondary syphilis,” according to the CDC. Although a disproportionate number of cases occur in men who have sex with men, rates in women have increased sharply since 2016. A current review of the epidemiology, natural history, diagnosis and treatment of syphilis is available in the Journal of Lancaster General Hospital.

A draft recommendation statement from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) reaffirmed the importance of screening adolescents and adults at increased risk for syphilis infection. The USPSTF also recommends that all pregnant patients be screened for syphilis as early as possible in pregnancy. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommend rescreening women at high risk for syphilis at 28 weeks of gestation and again at delivery to prevent congenital syphilis.

**

This post first appeared on the AFP Community Blog.



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BITESIZE | 3 Steps to Reverse Ageing and Live Longer | Professor David Sinclair

BITESIZE | 3 Steps to Reverse Ageing and Live Longer | Professor David Sinclair


What if you could prevent ageing or even reverse it?

Feel Better Live More Bitesize is my weekly podcast for your mind, body, and heart. Each week I’ll be featuring inspirational stories and practical tips from some of my former guests.

Today’s clip is from episode 208 of the podcast with one of the world’s leading scientific authorities on ageing – biologist and Harvard professor, David Sinclair.

The key to staying young, he explains, is inducing hormesis, a state of survival in our bodies, and, in this clip, he describes some simple habits that can help to switch on our bodies’ longevity genes.

CAUTION: This podcast discusses fasting and its advice may not be suitable for anyone with an eating disorder. If you have an existing health condition or are taking medication, always consult your healthcare practitioner before going for prolonged periods without eating.

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.*

Click here for more information on our sponsor athleticgreens.com/livemore

Listen to the full conversation with David Sinclair here:

#208 Why We Age and Why We Don’t Have To, with Professor David Sinclair

Subscribe to Feel Better Live More:

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*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.

†Disclosure: All books marked with a † are hyperlinked to an affiliate program. We take part in Amazon’s affiliate advertising program designed to provide a way for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon’s website. You are not charged any extra by using these links to purchase books.





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The New Science Of The Body Clock And How It Can Revolutionise Your Sleep and Health with Professor Russell Foster

The New Science Of The Body Clock And How It Can Revolutionise Your Sleep and Health with Professor Russell Foster


The tired brain remembers negative experiences but forgets the positive ones. Is there a more powerful statement in favour of going to bed earlier and prioritising our sleep? Modern life has seen us push into the night, staying up later and extending our social and work lives around the clock. But this, says today’s guest, goes against what our bodies are wired to do.

Russell Foster is Professor of Circadian Neuroscience at Oxford University and author of the fantastic new book, Life Time: The New Science Of The Body Clock And How It Can Revolutionise Your Sleep and Health. In this conversation, Russell explains that living out of sync with our circadian rhythms doesn’t just lead to sleep disruption and tiredness. The further we stray from them, the more we become vulnerable to chronic conditions such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, cancer, suppressed immunity, dementia and even mental illness. But he’s not here to scare us – rather share the strategies that we can all use to get back on track.

During this compelling conversation, we cover the science behind exposure to natural daylight at the right times. We talk chronotypes – and if there’s anything you can do to change being a lark or an owl. Russell explains the dangerous phenomenon of ‘microsleeps’ and why 4am is the most dangerous time to be on the roads. And we cover the unique problems faced by night-shift workers and new parents, including what they, their families and employers can do to mitigate their health and safety.

We also chat about the value of sleep trackers and blue-blocking glasses. Russell busts the myth that we all need eight hours’ sleep or that you mustn’t read a Kindle before bed. And he reveals the best time of day for sex (clue: it’s different depending on whether you want to conceive or relax). And for all those insomniacs who go to sleep fine but wake during the night? There’s some wisdom towards the end of our conversation that you’ll want to hear!

This is a fact-filled episode, full of fascinating insights. I hope you enjoy listening.

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.*

Check out our sponsor boncharge.com/livemore

Find out more about our sponsor calm.com/livemore

Click here for more information on our sponsor athleticgreens.com/livemore

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Connect with Russell:

Twitter

Russell’s book:

Life Time: The New Science of the Body Clock And How it Can Revolutionize Your Sleep and Health

Related Feel Better Live More episodes:

#70 Why Sleep is the Most Important Pillar of Health with Professor Matthew Walker

#147 How To Improve Your Sleep and Why You Should with Professor Matthew Walker

Subscribe to my weekly newsletter

Click here to subscribe to Friday Five

Subscribe to Feel Better Live More:

Support the podcast and enjoy Ad-Free episodes. Try FREE for 7 days on Apple Podcasts. For other podcast platforms click here.

Dr Chatterjee’s books and resources:

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*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.

†Disclosure: All books marked with a † are hyperlinked to an affiliate program. We take part in Amazon’s affiliate advertising program designed to provide a way for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon’s website. You are not charged any extra by using these links to purchase books.





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Hot topics in health policy


Last night, in a short talk to medical students and residents on “Health Policy in Family Medicine,” I outlined three paths to become involved in the health policy space as a family physician, paralleling the ways that policy has intersected with my own career:

1. Clinical guidance and practice guidelines. How do research findings make their way into clinical practice recommendations? Where evidence is lacking or inconclusive, how are the judgment calls made and who gets to make them? Examples include my experiences as a medical officer for the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, a guideline panelist for the American Academy of Family Physicians and collaborating specialty groups, and a member of the HHS Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Breast Cancer in Young Women.

2. Advocacy for patients and population health. Advocacy can take many forms: interpersonal (e.g., lobbying local, state, or federal officials), writing opinion pieces, or serving as a source for a news story. I consider Common Sense Family Doctor and my Twitter account to be my main advocacy platforms, though on occasion I’ve written editorials in high-profile publications such as JAMA. During the COVID-19 pandemic, I spent a good deal of time pushing back against vaccine hesitancy and anti-vax sentiments in my community and online.

3. Advocacy for health professionals and primary care. While at Georgetown, I directed a health policy fellowship that trained recent family medicine residency graduates in research that demonstrated the value (and financially undervalued nature) of primary care. I continue to support the Robert Graham Center’s work by publishing an ongoing series of Policy One-Pagers in American Family Physician.

Health policy isn’t an abstract subject for me. In my medical career, I’ve seen firsthand the benefits to patients of the 2003 Medicare Modernization Act (which provided prescription drug coverage to millions of older adults), the 2010 Affordable Care Act (which extended access to affordable health insurance to tens of millions and provided consumer protections and guaranteed preventive services to all), and this year’s Inflation Reduction Act, which allows Medicare to negotiate the prices of a limited number of expensive drugs, caps Medicare patients’ out-of-pocket insulin costs at $35 per month and their total prescription out-of-pocket costs at $2000 per year. In addition, the IRA extended enhanced health insurance marketplace subsidies that were set to expire this year through 2025, which will preserve the affordability of private plans for lower-income patients who are self-employed or work for small employers that don’t offer health care benefits. This legislation will make a major difference in many of my patients’ lives by making it easier for me to provide them with the best care possible.



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