Chasing Life

Chasing Life

Did you know that some people can taste colors and others have a hard time recognizing faces? This season on Chasing Life, Dr. Sanjay Gupta takes listeners beyond the basics of sight, sound, smell, taste and touch to explore unique sensory experiences. Discover why psychedelics might change your worldview, how animals perceive differently than humans, and how biases in taste might impact the future of food production. Join us each week to marvel at how the rich landscape of sensory perception shapes our understanding of the world.

Episodes

December 6, 2022 23 min

Do you ever walk past someone who smells absolutely alluring? Maybe you even do a double take? Scent is a major component of our attraction to those around us, but how much does it actually impact our romantic decisions? Pheromones have long been documented in the animal kingdom, but what about in humans? On this episode, professor Tristram Wyatt joins Dr. Sanjay Gupta for a deep dive into the world of pheromones, how they work and...

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We all know sleep is vital, so why do many of us still find it so difficult to prioritize? CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta speaks with sleep scientist Rebecca Robbins about why we sleep in the first place and how to ensure we get a good night’s rest. And neurologist Ying-Hui Fu explores the latest research surrounding sleep, including what regulates the amount of sleep we actually need and what role genetics might ...

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November 15, 2022 27 min

Can you picture your favorite comfort food? Whether it’s a steaming bowl of your grandmother’s homemade soup or a chewy chocolate candy bar from your childhood, food evokes all sorts of emotions. But the way we experience food also depends on lots of different factors like smell, sound, texture, color and memory. On today’s episode, University of Kentucky Professor Dan Han, teaches us about a new and emerging field called neurogast...

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When psychedelics were first studied more than 50 years ago, researchers noticed that they were useful in helping people explore a greater sense of self. Now, after a half-century hiatus, scientists are studying psychedelics like MDMA, psilocybin, and ketamine as treatment for depression, PTSD, anxiety, and other mental health conditions. So, what promise do they hold as therapeutics? Albert Garcia-Romeu, a researcher at John’s Hop...

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November 1, 2022 25 min

Have you ever wondered why we get hangry or car sick? It happens when our sensory system gets dysregulated. For some people, this happens all the time and can be debilitating to their life. On today’s episode, occupational therapist Virginia Spielmann breaks down the challenges of navigating our world for people with sensory processing disorder. Plus, retired army vet Terry Lashley shares his tips for parenting a neurodivergent chi...

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October 25, 2022 26 min

If you could gain super-human hearing, or even a new sense entirely, would you? Neuroscientist David Eagleman says with the help of technology, this could soon become a reality. On today’s episode, Eagleman talks about an invention he created that helps people who are deaf “hear” through vibrations on their skin. Plus, David explains how he hopes to use similar technology to give humans stronger senses, or even new ones.

To learn mo...

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October 18, 2022 27 min

How do you treat a disease where the cause is unknown and each patient’s symptoms are unique? CNN's Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta talks to pain expert Dr. Carmen Green about what causes chronic pain, how it can be treated, and which patients are more likely to get care. Plus, meet a man who feels no pain and a woman who figured out how to cope with hers. This episode originally aired in November 2021.

To learn mor...

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October 11, 2022 20 min

We’re constantly assaulted by “noise” all around us: crowds, vehicles, social media. As quiet spaces around us dwindle, what is it doing to our minds and bodies? Why do we need silence for our health? Acoustic ecologist Gordon Hempton takes Dr. Sanjay Gupta on a tour to one of the quietest spots in the United States. Plus, quiet activist Vikram Chauhan gives listeners tips on finding quiet even in the noisiest cities.

To learn more ...

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October 4, 2022 22 min

Imagine not being able to recognize the people you see every single day; your coworkers, your friends, your loved ones. “Prosopagnosia,” or “face blindness,” as it’s commonly known, is a disorder that impacts about 1 in 50 people, and some may not even know about it. They may go their whole lives struggling to recognize the important people in their lives, often relying on non-facial information like hair color or gait to distingui...

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September 27, 2022 32 min

Imagine if your morning cup of coffee one day smelled like rotting garbage. Or, if your favorite comfort food had no taste at all. For some COVID long haulers, this is their new reality. What causes these distortions in smell and taste in the first place? And, what treatment options are available for these patients? On this episode, we’ll speak to Stanford University smell expert Dr. Zara Patel, who says olfactory training – or “sm...

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September 20, 2022 26 min

Welcome to Season 5 of Chasing Life, where we’ll explore the five traditional senses – sight, hearing, taste, touch and smell -- and beyond. To kick off the season, Dr. Sanjay Gupta talks to award winning science journalist Ed Yong about his new book “An Immense World, How Animal Senses Reveal the Hidden Realms Around Us.” Ed explains how all creatures live in their own “sensory bubble” through which they experience a sliver of rea...

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Chasing Life is pleased to present the first episode of Anderson Cooper's new podcast: All There Is.  Anderson started recording while packing up the apartment of his late mother Gloria Vanderbilt. Going through her journals and keepsakes, as well as things left behind by his father and brother, Cooper begins a series of emotional and moving conversations about the people we lose, the things they leave behind, and how to live o...

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September 6, 2022 11 min

Why are social interactions so daunting for some of us and what can we do to make things easier on ourselves? Dr. Sanjay Gupta revisits an interview with clinical psychologist Ellen Hendriksen, who offers actionable tips that all of us can put into practice.

To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy

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This week the Chasing Life team is sharing one of their favorite podcasts, In the Bubble with Andy Slavitt. Soon after entering the Kansas City mayoral campaign, Democratic up-and-comer Jason Kander revealed that he suffered from PTSD and depression and walked away from politics and a future White House run. Though he felt his career and ambitions were over, he gained the opportunity to heal from trauma he experienced during his ti...

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August 16, 2022 23 min

 It’s easy to understand the importance of play during childhood but research shows that play is important at every age. In this episode, Dr. Sanjay Gupta speaks with play expert Dr. Stuart Brown, who has studied play for decades, and argues joyful activity is just as important as proper nutrition and a good night’s sleep. Discover why incorporating fun into your daily routine is an essential part of living a healthier and happier ...

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August 9, 2022 27 min

Climate change has long been an existential threat, but for many young people, government inaction and increasing natural disasters are now taking a mental toll. Psychologists describe this phenomenon as climate anxiety, or ecological grief. On this episode, Dr. Sanjay Gupta talks to climate researcher Britt Wray, and climate activist and writer adrienne maree brown, about how to deal with climate anxiety and ways of finding joy am...

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August 2, 2022 31 min

Although we don’t remember most of them, we spend about two hours every night dreaming. Some dreams are similar, others are scary, or anxiety inducing. But while dreams can transport us to places we could never experience in our waking lives, do they have a purpose? On this episode, Dr. Sanjay Gupta talks to neuroscientist and dream expert, Sidarta Ribeiro, about the importance of dreaming, what goes on in our bodies while we’re dr...

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July 26, 2022 33 min

Time heals all wounds, so the saying goes. But that’s not always the case. Sometimes, when a loved one dies, it can feel like we’re stuck in an endless loop of pain. In this episode Dr. Sanjay Gupta speaks to Wendy Lichtenthal, Director of the Bereavement Clinic at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, about why we grieve, how to navigate the grief process, and a new medical diagnosis: prolonged grief disorder. You'll also he...

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July 19, 2022 25 min

What if instead of pills to cure what ails you, you were prescribed a video game? Over at Akili Interactive, researchers are trying to do just that. EndeavorRX is the first ever FDA approved video game for medical treatment, in this case for ADHD in children. We dive into the science behind the treatment and how video games have the potential to be used for other cognitive dysfunctions, including autism, depression and multiple scl...

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July 12, 2022 24 min

It's time to revisit one of our favorite episodes! We’re always waiting for something, whether it’s in line for your morning coffee, on hold with customer service, or waiting for life-changing medical results. So how can we get better at waiting and make it feel less excruciating? Maybe even fun? CNN's Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta talks with waiting expert Professor Kate Sweeny to understand the science of w...

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