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Welcome to our podcast, UCLA LiveWell!

Hello, my name is Dr. Wendy Slusser and here at the Semel Healthy Campus Initiative Center at UCLA we strive to be trailblazers in building a culture of health and well-being. Starting in our own backyard, Semel HCI transforms ideas into reality to create a campus-wide culture of health by promoting physical, emotional and social well-being. Welcome to our center’s podcast, UCLA LiveWell! 

Join us as we interview leading experts and discover new perspectives on health and wellbeing. Each episode, we will bring to you scientists and world-class operators who will share with you cutting-edge research and practices, and never-before broadcasted tips to live a more healthful life for yourself, community and our planet.


Science and Food

How do you make a soufflé with just chocolate and water? Today we are zooming in to the molecular level of food to answer these questions with Dr. Amy Rowat.

Supporting our Frontline Workers

Join us for a conversation with expert in resilience training, Dr. Brenda Bursch, about supporting our frontline workers and finding glee in the future.

Translating COVID-19 Research

Join us for a panel discussion with three UCLA public health experts on translating COVID-19 research to our everyday lives.

Asian Americans in Pop Culture

Dr. Oliver Wang joins us to share his research on the ways in which Asian Americans participate in different forms of popular culture.

Health Equity Seminar:

Food for All

Join us for this panel discussion on food apartheid, its impact on the health of marginalized groups, and how we can work towards a transformative and healthy future for all.

Health Equity Seminar:

Play & Health Equity

Join us for this post-film panel discussion about the relationship between play and health equity led by Executive Director of UCLA Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), Dr. Nicole Green.

PART 2: Feeding our Planet Sustainably and Equitably with Dr. Hannah Malan

What is a foodprint? And how does our diet impact our planet? Tune in to learn about how we can feed our planet sustainable and equitably, how UCLA students reacted to impossible meat, and what nudge theory has to do with all of this. 

PART 1: Feeding our Planet Sustainably and Equitably with Dr. Hannah Malan

Join us in a conversation with recent Bruin alum, Dr. Hannah Malan about her journey to UCLA and research on the challenges our UCLA students face with food insecurity. 

Being a Changemaker with Savannah Gardner

Join us in a conversation with Bruin alum, Savannah Gardner about her amazing journey as a changemaker for health equity and food justice at UCLA and beyond.

Creating a Culture of Health with Dr. Michael Goldstein

What does it take to create long-lasting culture change? Join us in a conversation with Dr. Michael Goldstein about the origins of the Semel Healthy Campus Initiative Center and how social change begins not with rationality but through social movements.

Disability Culture & Accessibility with Michael Garafola and Carolanne Link

Tune in to hear about how Carolanne Link and Michael Garafola have been leaders at UCLA to create a more accessible and empathetic campus and to learn about their life stories that have brought them together under the Eudaimonia umbrella.

Past to Present: Archeology and Today’s Diet with Amr Shahat

Amr explains how racism and gender inequality intersect with archaeology and how by studying what is left in the stomach of mummies over the centuries can tell us how much fiber we should eat.

PART 2: The Circuitry behind our Social World

Join us in a conversation with Dr. Robles about how social well-being effects the biological processes behind stress, how social media can hijack our reward systems and much more.

PART 1: The Circuitry behind our Social World

In the United States, almost 8/10 members of the Gen Z generation and 7/10 of Millennials reported being lonely in 2019. UCLA social well-being expert, Dr. Robles discusses how stress, social support and close intimate relationships can impact our health.

Ensuring a Food Secure Future with Paula Daniels

When the COVID-19 pandemic broke out in the United States, the existing inequities and vulnerabilities of our food systems were starkly exposed. Join us in a conversation with co-founder of the Center for Good Food Purchasing, Paula Daniels, about how we can meet this moment to make transformative progress in our food systems.

Water: A Public Utility for Health with Andy Gere

What does it take to provide affordable, clean and safe water to drink? How does running a water company relate to environmental stewardship? Join us in a conversation with President and Chief Operating Officer of San Jose Water, Andy Gere, about the ins and outs of running a water company.

The Compensatory Role of Education with Dr. D’Artagnan Scorza

The pandemic and the nationwide uprising against racism have starkly exposed deep disparities and inequities in the quality of and access to basic needs like education and health care. Join us in a conversation with Dr. Scorza about the compensatory role of education and what we can do to address our nation’s inequities.

An Opportunity for “Green Commuting” with Dr. Renee Fortier

Join us in a conversation with Executive Director of UCLA Events and Transportation, Renee Fortier, about how UCLA has responded to COVID-19 ensure safe transportation during these uncertain times, and how this current moment can be an opportunity for more sustainable commuting.

Mindfulness and Meditation with Dr. Dawn Upchurch

Mindfulness and meditation can be a powerful way to stay grounded and take care of your mental and spiritual health. As Dr. Upchurch explains in this podcast, it’s necessary to take care of one’s self to be able to go out and do the work that needs to be done…

Cultural Determinants of Design with Dr. Anastasia Lukaitou-Sideris

Some of us may go to the park to exercise, some to picnic, some to find a quiet space to relax. We all experience and use public spaces like parks in different ways. How do we create public spaces that are designed to meet diverse needs? What are the cultural determinants of design?

Fixing our Food Systems with Galen McCleary

Galen McCleary from Patagonia Provisions talks about how this current moment presents an opportunity to shift our perspective of food towards a more sustainable and healthful one, and how Patagonia Provisions is “rethinking our food chain.”

Diabetes Prevention Programs with Dr. Tannaz Moin

In the United States, every other person over the age of 20 either has prediabetes or diabetes. What exactly is diabetes and what are the risk factors for it? What can you do if you are at risk or have diabetes?

The Health Effects of Media Exposure with Dr. Roxane Cohen Silver

During these uncertain and rapidly changing times, many of us may find ourselves constantly checking the news and social media. Join us in a conversation with Dr. Cohen Silver, UC Irvine Professor of Psychological Science, about the public health consequences of media exposure.

Older Adults and Well-being with Ayesha Dixon

Join us in a conversation with Ayesha Dixon, the Director of UCLA’s Emeriti/Retirees Relations Center, about the effects of COVID-19 on the lives of older adults and what we can all do to help reduce this isolation and loneliness.

The Mind-Gut Connection with Dr. Emeran Mayer

Join us in conversation with Dr. Mayer about what the mind-gut connection is, how it may be affected during these unique times and how we can improve our diet to foster a healthier microbiome.

Resilience with Dr. Chris Dunkel Schetter

Join us in a conversation with with UCLA Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry and co-leader of the EngageWell Pod, Dr. Dunkel Schetter about the importance of perspective and optimism today.

The “New Normal” with Dr. Kee Seng Chia

Dr. Kee Seng Chia, Professor and Founding Dean of School of Public Health, National University of Singapore (NUS), encourages us to shift our thinking from a “subtract” mindset to an “ADD” one. By ADD, he means, “accepting, defining and delighting” in the “new normal”.

Managing Stress and Anxiety with Dr. Bob Bilder and Dr. Nicole Green

How can we take care of our mental health during these uncertain times? Co-leaders of the MindWell Pod, Dr. Green and Dr. Bilder share actionable tips and available resources for you to help manage stress and anxiety in our transition into this new way of life.

Social Engagement with Dr. Ted Robles

UCLA’s Professor of Psychology and co-leader of the EngageWell Pod, Dr. Robles, talks about how we can stay socially engaged and support each other while we practice social distancing.

Empowering Communities to Thrive with Dr. D’Artagnan Scorza

Join us in a conversation with Dr. Scorza about his life journey and the meaningful work that he is doing in own backyard and across the country to empower people and communities to thrive

How can we Save Patient Planet Earth? with Dr. Jonathan Fielding

Join us in a conversation with Dr. Fielding about his insights and perspective on some of the most pressing public health issues our world faces today.

Stress-eating and Weight Stigma with Dr. Janet Tomiyama

Driven by a love for food and a true foodie at heart, UCLA Associate Professor in Psychology, Dr. Tomiyama, believes that there are ways to get healthy without ever mentioning weight.

The Neuroscience of Music with Dr. Bob Bilder

What are the origins of hearing? What is the evolutionary benefit of music? And why do we get chills when we listen to certain songs?

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