These are interesting and informative resources associated with wellbeing and health. As they are produced by third-party organisations such as the BBC, we cannot take responsibility for their content. They are intended as an interesting way of discussing some key questions that people have on the subject of health and wellbeing. You can listen to these podcasts at your convenience. Enjoy!
Trees and plants have been quietly growing in the background of our everyday lives for as long as we’ve existed. Now, as millions of us move into densely populated cities for work, school and healthcare, our green neighbours have been replaced by brick, concrete, steel and glass. We know that plants are vital for absorbing our waste carbon dioxide and providing us with oxygen. Would remote rural forests do that job for us, or is there more to living alongside greenery?
Singing can lift our spirits, but research suggests it could also benefit our health, improving breathing for people with lung conditions and helping us cope with dementia. Could it even have a preventative effect?
For decades, people suffering from chronic depression have relied on medicines that affect the levels of chemicals in the brain like serotonin, which regulate mood and emotion. But ten percent of people don’t benefit from any of the existing treatments for this devastating condition. Are there other options?
As scientists keep finding ever more fascinating facts about the invisible housemates that share our homes, what might be lurking in quiet household corners or under our beds? How can they impact our health?
There are very good reasons to sleep: to regulate the body’s metabolism, blood pressure and other aspects of health. But do we actually need to dream? Is there an evolutionary reason for it?
What would happen if we didn’t dream? What purpose do dreams serve? Can we really interpret them meaningfully, or are they merely random signals from the brain? The latest research says talking about them could be more important than we realise.
A racing heart, blushing, feeling sick - most people experience symptoms of shyness in certain situations. But some of us are much shyer than others, and if it gets on top of you, shyness can really limit what you get out of life.
Is there anything that can be done to overcome shyness – and on the other hand, could being shy actually have some benefits?
For some it's a way to get closer to God, for others a tried and tested way to lose weight - but does fasting have any other, unexpected health benefits?
Do your joints ache when it's raining? Are you blighted with headaches when the wind picks up? If the answer’s yes then you're definitely not alone. People have been linking their health to the weather since the time of the Ancient Greeks - but is the effect real?
Short-sightedness is reaching epidemic proportions around the world. The way things are progressing, one-third of the world’s population – 2.5 billion people - could need glasses by the end of the decade. And scientists are beginning to understand why: children spend too much time indoors, bent over screens and books. In Singapore, where rates of myopia are one of the highest in the world the government is curbing the condition with an array of tools, from eye-drops to sunshine remedies.
Dementia affects nearly 50 million people worldwide – but doctors are still struggling to find a cure. Why is this particular group of brain diseases so hard to treat, from the difficulties around diagnosis to why the drugs just don’t currently work.
In the absence of a medical solution is it time to take a new approach?
A billion people across the world smoke cigarettes, and many would agree it’s the hardest habit to quit. Why is giving up so difficult? Discover how nicotine tricks smokers into thinking tobacco’s good for them. And listen to ex-smokers at a weekly therapy session aimed at retraining the brain.
The World Health Organization ranks migraines as the second most disabling neurological disorder in the world and in people under the age of 50, it is the single most disabling medical condition. What are the causes and can they be combated?