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Chasing Life

Do you ever wonder what makes us tick? The way we act, feel and even process information from the world around us? All of it starts with the brain. CNN's Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta is tapping his decades of experience as a neurosurgeon to explore the many states of the brain – distracted, nourished, concussed, frightened and more. Our brains are in constant conversation with our bodies, so the condition of one can have direct effect on the other. Sanjay will provide insights into how to actually build a stronger brain and keep it sharp.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta
Is There Such a Thing as the Organized Brain? Chasing Life
If you’re feeling anxious or overwhelmed, taking out the trash or doing laundry is normally the last thing on your mind. Therapist KC Davis says that’s by design. Sometimes, brains are too focused on survival mode to complete even the simplest of tasks. So how can we beat this mental block? On today’s episode, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN’S Chief Medical Correspondent, sits down with Davis to discuss the link between messiness and mental health. Plus, Davis shares her approach to tackling clutter from her book, “How To Keep House While Drowning.”
Nov 28, 2023
The Dating Brain in the Digital Age Chasing Life
Online dating has changed the way we approach and pursue relationships. Like so much in modern life, potential partners are at the mercy of an algorithm that decides who we interact with. But has technology actually changed what we’re looking for? Can attraction and desire be predicted? Helen Fisher, a biological anthropologist and Chief Science Advisor at, has been on the front lines of the clash between a centuries-old phenomenon and relatively new technology. In this episode, she talks to CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta about what has and hasn’t changed about the dating brain.
Nov 21, 2023
Treating the Depressed Brain Chasing Life
Nearly one in five US adults are diagnosed with depression at some point in their lives. As the use of antidepressants have steadily risen since their introduction in the 1980s, what have we learned about depression? Is depression truly a “chemical imbalance” of the brain? And why do antidepressants work for some people and not others? Sanjay talks to Dr. Charles Raison, a professor of psychiatry at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, about what we now believe causes depression, and most importantly, what this means for how we treat the illness - from SSRIs to psychedelics and other emerging therapies.
Nov 14, 2023
The Long Journey to Treat the Long Covid Brain Chasing Life
More than three years after the outset of the Covid-19 pandemic, many long Covid patients are still experiencing brain fog, extreme fatigue, and myriad other health issues, leaving some unable to complete even the most basic of daily tasks. How should long Covid patients approach treatment, let alone everyday life? In this episode, Sanjay speaks to David Putrino, the director of rehabilitation innovation for the Mount Sinai Health System. He tells us about his latest research into identifying a possible biomarker for the condition and how we can all help those at high risk of developing it.
Nov 7, 2023
Stephen King on Fiction and the Frightened Brain Chasing Life
The spooky season can be a divisive one. Some of us love being scared, and others avoid it at all costs. Author Stephen King has been terrifying readers for nearly 50 years, and knows what makes us scream. So how does he do it, and what’s happening in our brains when we’re afraid? Does anything frighten the king of horror? Sanjay talks to King, one of his favorite writers, about his latest book, “Holly,” and the benefits of fear in everyday life.
Oct 31, 2023
The Recipe for a Nourished Brain Chasing Life
Many of us have been told that foods like blueberries, salmon, and leafy greens are “good for the brain.” But what does that really mean? Can eating certain foods make us smarter? More alert? Less stressed? Sanjay talks to nutritional psychiatrist and personal chef, Dr. Uma Naidoo about what foods improve brain function and influence the way we feel. She’ll also share her secret sauce: a few nutritious and delicious ways to eat carbs, fats and sugar.
Oct 24, 2023
Paging Dr. Gupta: How to Cope with The Current News Cycle Chasing Life
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the latest news cycle, you’re not alone. That’s why, on today’s podcast, Dr. Sanjay Gupta turns to psychiatrist and author Dr. Gail Saltz from the New York Presbyterian Hospital, Weill-Cornell Medical College, to talk about the toll violent images and videos from Israel and Gaza can have on our mental health – even if you’re watching from afar on the news or social media. They’ll address how to talk to children and teens about the ever-evolving situation and share tips on how to manage stress and anxiety when the news cycle is unrelenting.
Oct 17, 2023
Kids, Sports & the Concussed Brain Chasing Life
From the NFL to youth soccer, sports teams have been forced to reckon with decades of research showing the risks of repeated blows to the head through contact sports. At the same time, participation in organized team sports has been found to be extremely beneficial for the developing brain. So how should parents square those facts and find a safe middle ground for their kids? In this episode, Sanjay speaks to Julie Stamm, a clinical assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Depa...Show morertment of Kinesiology and author of the book “The Brain on Youth Sports.” She explains why even those who don’t play sports should be aware of the risks and shares tips on how we all can keep our heads protected.
Oct 10, 2023
The Good, the Bad and the Unknown of the Menopausal Brain Chasing Life
What happens in the brain during menopause? As it turns out, the brain gets remodeled, and even rewired, during that very specific time of life. And, while menopause often includes symptoms like hot flashes, brain fog, and mood swings... you may be surprised to learn it’s not all bad! On this episode of Chasing Life, Dr. Sanjay Gupta learns from neuroscientist Dr. Lisa Mosconi that there are upsides to this biological phase natural to half the human population. Plus, ways female-identifying people can prepare for it, and a possible link between menopause and Alzheimer’s.
Oct 3, 2023
Michael Pollan Spills the Beans on the Caffeinated Brain Chasing Life
Are you someone who needs a cup of coffee or spot of tea to start the day? Would you be surprised to hear that the key ingredient, the thing that gives you that morning boost - caffeine - is also a psychoactive drug? Whether it’s coffee, tea or soda, people around the world consume some form of caffeine every day. Even kids! But what is it actually doing to our brains? What causes that jolt of energy in the morning, and what are the drawbacks? On this episode of Chasing Life, Dr. Sanjay Gupta talks to science writer Michael Pollan about his research, the history of caffeine – and quitting cold turkey.
Sep 26, 2023
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