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Dr. Tommy Wood - Brain health and mental health

Dr. Tommy Wood -

Episode 112: Dr. Tommy Wood -

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Show notes

In this episode of BE with Champions, Greg Bennett chats with Dr. Tommy Wood.

Dr. Tommy Wood was on episodes 30 and 53 and you really need to do yourself a favor and go check those out.

A quick recap of his background - Dr. Wood received his bachelor's degree in biochemistry from the University of Cambridge, a medical degree from the University of Oxford, and a Ph.D. in physiology and neuroscience from the University of Oslo.

Tommy is currently the assistant professor of pediatrics and neuroscience at the University of Washington. His research program focuses on factors associated with brain health and function across lifespan.

Add to that, he competes in Powerlifting and Strongman and understands the benefits of physical activity for overall health.

Check below for the timestamps and some great quotes.


4:06 - What is a Strongman competition?

9:36 - Is there any truth to the myth that humans only use 10% of the brain?

12:09 - How much negative input can affect the life of our brain and does it weaken our brain if we surround ourselves with negative impact?

15:46 - We are drawn to negativity as a survival mechanism, can we remove stresses in our life?

20:37 - Can we control our thoughts and minimise our stress so that our behaviour and attitude towards stress is more favorable?

26:48 - The term 'Mental Health' seems to be thrown around and generalized a lot these days ... is this a new human thing, or is it simply that we are starting to acknowledge and talk about mental heath a lot more?

29:44 - We're living in a society where we rarely get the chance to 'turn off'. Normal and ecological stresses have changed and we know that the human body becomes more physiologically resilient when it's exposed to brief periods of stress that it's able to recover from. We have to create these stresses like heat or cold or fasting, the body drives adaptation, where in past times these stresses have happened more naturally.

33:12 - Can finding 'purpose' help our mental health?

36:16 - Success is a word that conjures all sorts of different thoughts and can help or hinder our mental health. Is there a way we can train our brains to ensure success is a powering word that creates less stress?

44:47 - The quote that "We become the sum of the 5 people we most surround ourselves with". How true is this?

47:16 - How has Dr. Wood manage the influence social media has?

50:20 - What foods we put into our bodies clearly affect our brain health, how much should we as individuals focus on what we eat from a macro and a micro perspective?

58:23 - EMF's, Wi-Fi, 5G ... electromagnetic devices are around us constantly, what effect are these having on our brain health? When you sleep, what does Dr. Wood do with his phone/ipad/etc?

1:05:02 - What is happening to our bodies chemistry when we physically move our bodies and how does it benefit our brain health?

1:13:42 - Some quick rapid fire questions. If you could sit with three people and have dinner, who would you choose?

1:19:52 - What advice could you give listeners on how to optimize their lives?

1.22.22 Interview ends.


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EDITORIAL - Metabolic health and lifestyle medicine should be a cornerstone of future pandemic preparedness -

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