The Urban Monk Podcast

Many of us spend our lives trying to accrue wealth. We think it'll bring stability and happiness. For some that may be true, but for Jason Wachob, it just led him towards more stress. Pedram welcomes Jason this week to The Urban Monk to talk about his time as a trader on Wall Street and how he left that world to create mindbodygreen and later write the book "Wellth: How I Learned To Build a Life, Not a Resume." That's not a misspelling, rather than focusing on wealth and stability in the past sense of finances, Jason wants to focus on "wellth," as in the well-being of our lives in regards to health, happiness, and abundance. Why do many people focus on financial success at the cost of their own health and happiness? What can we do to get ourselves on track?

For more on Jason Wachob's new book, visit http://www.wellth.mindbodygreen.com/

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Direct download: UrbanMonk034JasonWachob.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:01pm EDT

We've heard it before and some of us struggle and understand deeply the importance of sleep. There's a new book with a lot of new research by someone who's always bringing us the latest news and points of views, co-founder and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post, Arianna Huffington! This week she joins Pedram Shojai on The Urban Monk to talk about her experiences running The Huffington Post, writing books, and even acting while trying to get enough sleep! She mentions that there is a sleep crisis. Are we really in crisis? How many people have issues with sleep? Are people sleeping less on average now than in previous time periods? Arianna dives into "pre-industrial sleep" and how sleep habits were different long ago. But living in the current world, how can we master sleep? What affect did mastering sleep have on people like Andre Iguodala, basketball player for the Golden State Warriors?

For more information on Arianna Huffington's new book, "The Sleep Revolution," visit http://ariannahuffington.com

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Direct download: UrbanMonk033AriannaHuffington.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:00am EDT

We've all had those moments. You know, the ones when we just seem to have failed at everything, nothing is going right, there doesn't seem to be anyone around to help nor would they understand. What do you do when you fail and fail hard? Giving up always sounds like a good plan, but eventually we pick ourselves up. But where do we begin? This week Pedram Shojai welcomes a guest who found herself hitting rock bottom, but turned herself around to become a sports nutritionist and certified personal trainer, Natalie Jill. She talks about her mission and the background that led her to become the person that she is today. How did she rebound from life's disappointments, setbacks, and tragedies?

For more information on Natalie Jill's new book, "7 Day Jump Start: Unproccess Your Diet with Super Easy Recipes" visit http://nataliejillfitness.com/book

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Direct download: UrbanMonk032NatalieJill.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:49pm EDT

Earth Day is tomorrow and to help celebrate, Pedram Shojai has welcomed Tero Isokauppila, co-founder of Four Sigma Foods, to come talk about mushrooms! What could be more earthy than mushrooms? They're a super food that was used by many ancient cultures and are in fact used in about 40% of the medicines we use today! Unfortunately when people think of mushrooms nowadays many think about psychedelic "magic mushrooms" but there is so much more to them than that! What are the myths and misconceptions surrounding mushrooms? Did you know they mushrooms exist in their own kingdom classification? They don't belong to any other plant kingdom and there are literally millions of mushrooms on earth! When using mushrooms medicinally, what can it help? How can mushrooms help adrenal fatigue? What about as a stress reducer or a sleep aid? How can we all introduce mushrooms into our daily lives?

For more on Tero's work and Four Sigma Foods, visit http://FourSigmatic.com

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Direct download: UrbanMonk031TeroIsokauppila.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:00am EDT

What are tonic herbs? As a Doctor of Oriental Medicine Pedram Shojai has a strong interest in tonic or adaptogenic herbs. To help explain what they are is Daniel Moriarty of Sun Horse Energy. He has spent years searching the planet for adaptogenic herbs and blending them to help improve health. What sorts of different herbs are there? What can they be used for? Who discovered tonic herbs and who was using them? More importantly, how do they work? Are they safe? Are they effective? How much scientific research has been done on tonic herbs?

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Direct download: Urban_Monk_Podcast_030_Daniel_Moriarty.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:46am EDT

This week on The Urban Monk Pedram Shojai welcomes a man he met when he appeared on The Dr. Oz Show, Donovan Green. He's a certified ACE and IFA personal trainer, a black belt martial artist, a kick boxing instructor, an integrative nutritionist, and author the book No Excuses Fitness. Donovan is also Dr. Oz's personal trainer! It's hard to imagine that he grew up in a tough part of the Bronx. How did a young man growing up in the Bronx in the mid-1980s amidst the crack epidemic tough it out, resist the peer pressure, and get into the world of fitness? On top of all of that, he wasn't a fit child. How did fitness become a passion for Donovan? Now that he's a very fit person, is training and teaching still a passion for Donovan? How can someone struggling with their environment break through to find their own path to success?

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Direct download: Urban_Monk_Podcast_029_Donovan_Green.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:00am EDT

We all know of its importance, we know how terrible life is if we don't get enough of it, we all know we need to get some sleep! How important is sleep? What sort of health detriments can occur if we don't get enough? To help understand, Pedram Shojai invites Shawn Stevenson to The Urban Monk. Shawn has literally written a book on sleep and talks about the incredible ways getting more and higher quality sleep can affect your body to run at a healthier normal. What other changes can a person make to help get more rest? How do the activities we partake in while awake affect the quality of our sleep? How does sleep help detox the brain? How can caffeine disrupt the sleep cycle? And how can good quality sleep affect the way our bodies operate during waking hours?

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Direct download: Urban_Monk_Podcast_028_Shawn_Stevenson.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:00am EDT

Coming up starting on April 4th is National Youth Violence Prevention Week. What is considered youth violence and bullying? This week Pedram Shojai welcomes various members of SAVE, Students Against Violence Everywhere, to address this complex issue in a roundtable discussion. Joining Pedram are Jim Wise, Kit Evans, Maggie Adams, and Gerard Wheeler. In a national survey, the CDC reports that 8.1% of high schoolers report being in a physical fight in the last 12 months; 6.9% report being threatened or injured with a weapon; 19.6% report being bullied at school; and 14.8% report bullied electronically. What is SAVE and how does the organization work to reduce youth violence and bullying? How has bullying changed over the years? What role does technology play in bullying nowadays? Where does youth violence and bullying come from? Are there signs that can be identified to prevent bullying before it even occurs?

If you or someone you know is dealing with violence, you can reach out to SAVE at NationalSave.org and find a chapter in your state.

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Direct download: Urban_Monk_Podcast_SAVED_27.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:00am EDT

This episode of The Urban Monk is a special one. Pedram Shojai welcomes his kung fu master, Dr. Carl Totton. He is a martial arts grandmaster, a taoist priest, and clinical psychologist. Pedram and Carl discuss the teachings of martial arts and its focus on health, including physical, mental, emotional, social, and spiritual health. Kung fu, despite being popular in movies, has never been about aggression and violence. It's about being in balance, detecting danger, and keeping out of harm's way. What drew Carl to the Chinese arts? What are the origins of the martial arts and what led to its surge in popularity, especially in the 70s? What is "chi" and what is its importance? How can we all be in balance both physically and mentally?


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Direct download: Urban_Monk_Podcast_Carl_Totten_26.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:58pm EDT

Most of us purchase our food. Not very many of us grow every single thing we eat. So then were DOES our food come from? Food companies may make bold claims about the healthfulness of their foods, but are they verified? Can we trust these corporations? This week on The Urban Monk, Pedram Shojai welcomes Ocean Robbins, CEO of The Food Revolution Network, to the show to discuss the state of food systems and what it takes to ensure healthy eating. How does the quality of the foods we buy affect the quality of the planet? Can the items we buy each week really make that much of a difference? What about the difference in purchasing regular foods versus organic food? And what about foods containing Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs)? How do crops of GMOs affect the planet? And what of trying to get more organic foods in regular supermarkets as opposed to having to go to a specialty supermarket or a farmer's market? What actions can people take to help spur this movement on?

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Direct download: Urban_Monk_Podcast_Ocean_Robbins_25.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:00am EDT