If you ever thought you’re the only one battling negative self-talk, or are wondering what the heck is up with the crystal healing craze, you’re not alone. Research shows that about 36 percent of Americans listen to podcasts. And 2016 Nielson ratings revealed that 70 percent of those listeners are ages 18 and 44, physically active and interested in their health.
But what are the best podcasts to keep you informed? Whether you’re looking for something to power you through your commute, your workout routine…or tonight’s dishes, download these seven free podcasts.
The 7 Best Podcasts for Wellness Junkies
Why You Should Listen: You’re sick of everyone acting like they have their act together (like, all the time).
Person A: “How’s it going?” Person B: “Great! And you?” If this exchange sounds so familiar it aches, subscribe to Nora McInerny’s real talk-filled podcast. Terrible, Thanks for Asking will remind you that the truth will set you free — even if it’s not all sunshine and puppies. Her mindset: Tough topics like postpartum depression, infertility, addiction and death hurt. Bad. But they also feel more manageable when we don’t have to deal with them in secret. Minneapolis-based McInerny should know. The author of the memoir, It’s Okay to Laugh (Crying is Cool Too), lost her father, husband and unborn baby within two months.
2. Only Human
Why You Should Listen: The human body has made you think “?!”
With topics as wide-ranging as HIV, political psychology and calories (and how they’re often a total lie), this WNYC wellness show will remind you that health is something you should never take for granted. Hosted by Mary Harris, recent episodes have focused on how the stress of the presidential election affects the body and how it’s possible to laugh through terminal cancer treatment.
Why You Should Listen: You have a morbid curiosity about the history of common foods.
What would you order for your final meal? Host Rachel Belle asks celebrities this common icebreaker question, delves into why they chose these items and then hones in on one dish and its origin. Former Biggest Loser trainer Jillian Michaels says she would opt for junk food, but you might be surprised by sex advice columnist Dan Savage’s choice.
Why You Should Listen: The latest Hollywood wellness trend has piqued your interest.
The Blood Type Diet. Suja Juice. XO Crossover Fitness. Los Angeles-based comediennes Elizabeth Kott and Stephanie Simbari share a #nofilter take on the latest diet and fitness trends. You’ll also get a taste of the holistic, “woo-woo” side of wellness with guests speaking about astrology readings and meditation practices to wellness treatments, like reiki crystal healings, infrared saunas and vitamin IV drips. Kott and Simbari keep even the most down-to-earth fans tuning in with their self-deprecating humor.
Why You Should Listen: You take copious notes during your doctor’s visits.
The husband-and-wife team Justin and Dr. Sydnee McElroy co-host this weekly look at the wild and weird world of medicine. While themes like health insurance and chapped lips might sound a bit dry, Justin’s comedic quips (he has a background in improv) will keep you coming back for more health hints. Sydnee’s family medicine experience will load you up with fun facts about mysterious diseases and will help you distinguish fact from fraud. (Get a taste in this kombucha-crushing episode.)
Why You Should Listen: You need proof that laughter is the best medicine.
In conversations with Andy Richter, Michael Ian Black, Paul F. Tompkins and more, Minnesota Public Radio’s John Moe talks about how and why comedy and depression are often strange bedfellows. Like his guests, Moe has dealt with the latter with the help of the former, and talks candidly each week with comedians about how they cope — and reduce the stigma of mental illness.
7. Dear Sugar
Why You Should Listen: Dear Abby is your dream BFF.
Got relationship questions? Steve Almond and Cheryl Strayed (remember her from Wild?) have answers. And we don’t just mean for romantic relationships. Almond and Strayed have tackled difficult topics, like dealing with loved ones undergoing cancer treatment, sibling rivalries, motherhood, postpartum depression, grief and jealousy. Airing weekly on WBUR Boston, expect love lessons from Almond, Strayed and guests including sex therapists, journalists and documentary filmmakers.