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Kimberley Wilson — Whole Body Mental Health

On Being with Krista Tippett

05/19/22 • 49 min

22 Listeners

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The British psychologist Kimberley Wilson works in the emergent field of whole body mental health, one of the most astonishing frontiers we are on as a species. Discoveries about the gut microbiome, for example, and the gut-brain axis; the fascinating vagus nerve and the power of the neurotransmitters we hear about in piecemeal ways in discussions around mental health. The phrase “mental health” itself makes less and less sense in light of the wild interactivity we can now see between what we’ve falsely compartmentalized as physical, emotional, mental, even spiritual. And so much of what we’re seeing brings us back to intelligence that has always been in the very words we use — “gut instinct,” for instance. It brings us back to something your grandmother was right about, for reasons she would never have imagined: you are what you eat. There is so much actionable knowledge in the tour of the ecosystem of our bodies that Kimberley Wilson takes us on this hour. This is science that invites us to nourish the brains we need, young and old, to live in this world.

Kimberley Wilson has a private psychotherapy and nutrition practice in central London. She co-hosts the BBC Radio 4 podcast Made of Stronger Stuff and is the author of How to Build a Healthy Brain. She came to the attention of many as a finalist in an early season of The Great British Bake Off. She grew up, as she tells it, eating both the West Indian food of her family and over-processed modern British fare.

Find the transcript for this show at

And, this week, an invitation: As you may have heard, after twenty years (!), we are transitioning On Being from a weekly show to a seasonal podcast. We hope you’ll help us celebrate these first two decades, by sharing how you’ve made this adventure of conversation your own.

Is there a guest, an idea, or a moment from an episode that has made a difference, that has stayed with you?

We’ve made it easy (and fun) to record your reflection — and at the same time sign up to stay on top of what’s happening next: Krista will be offering some of her defining memories, too: in a special online event in June, on social media, and more. So — please and thank you — go to

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