#13 Professor Robert Sapolsky

Professor of biology and neurosciences at Stanford University

Why do we behave the way we do? The answer may surprise you. In his new book, “Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst,” Professor Robert Sapolsky explains that the answer is more complex than we may think. It doesn’t just have to do with our neurobiology or hormone levels at the moment we act, but rather is influenced by days, weeks, years, even generations of experience. It is fascinating to apply this concept to modern topics such as justice, or even my favorite, health. In this interview, we talk about his book, Behave, and we also talk about his prior book, “Why Zebras Don’t get Ulcers.” This is a fascinating description of the effects stress has on our biology, and how stress management techniques may or may not be beneficial in different contexts. And not to dwell on the serious too much, we also explore why we cannot tickle ourselves, and why we don’t like new music after we turn 35. This was a particularly special interview for me, as I had the pleasure of sitting in more than one of Professor Sapolsky’s classes as a Stanford undergrad more than 25 years ago. This one brought back great memories! I hope you enjoy this interview as much as I did, and I thank you for listening.


Music: Surfing Day by Marcos H. Bolanos

Music can be found at freemusicarchive.org. Music has be altered and repurposed for and by Bret Scher of The Boundless Health Podcast.


© 2017 Bret Scher. All Rights Reserved.

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Bret Scher, MD FACC

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