ECDS helps launch Emory podcast for healthy living

Bergquist with Chase Lovellette of ECDS (center) and Dr. William Foege, emeritus presidential distinguished professor of international health at Emory University and former director of the Center for Disease Control. Photo courtesy Sharon Bergquist.

When Dr. Sharon Bergquist wanted to start a podcast to give people on-the-go access to the latest health and wellness information that could change their lives, she turned to the staff at the Emory Center for Digital Scholarship.

ECDS helped her launch “The Whole Health Cure,” Emory Healthcare’s podcast that aims to inform and inspire using proven lifestyle approaches for preventing, managing, and reversing common diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and dementia. Now in its second year, the podcast has reached a worldwide audience spanning 83 countries and just over 27,500 downloads. As of Sept. 19, the podcast contained 67 episodes.

“The Whole Health Cure” podcast was started by Emory Lifestyle Medicine and Wellness in the summer of 2018 as a way to communicate the latest research and advances at Emory and other institutions. Each week, Bergquist, Rollins Senior Distinguished Clinician and Emory assistant professor of medicine, interviews renowned researchers, physicians, nutritionists and wellness experts in the five pillars of wellbeing: nutrition, exercise, sleep, stress management and emotional health, and purpose in life for spiritual fulfillment. Guests also include experts from other institutions and organizations across the country, which has the added benefit of fostering partnerships beyond Emory and Atlanta.

Dr. Sharon Bergquist with Jenny Bilko, registered dietitian at Emory Executive Health and Emory Lifestyle Medicine and Wellness. Photo courtesy Sharon Bergquist.

Bergquist is pleased with the expertise and knowledge the ECDS staff has brought to the project. Chase Lovellette, ECDS systems lead who served as technical liaison for the project, helped Bergquist get started with recording her interviews in the ECDS recording studio.

“I am so grateful to ECDS for allowing us to use the podcast studio as the ‘home’ for our podcast,” Bergquist says. “The staff, especially Chase Lovellette, have been indispensable with their support, guidance, and knowledge. They have helped us every step of the way, from the technical aspects of recording to editing to launching. We are so fortunate to have such a tremendous resource at Emory!”

Episodes have spotlighted many programs and initiatives at Emory, including the Emory Healthcare Veterans Program, cognitively-based compassion training through Emory University Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion-Based Ethics, and sustainability and local food sourcing for healthier cooking options by Emory University Hospital’s executive chef. Many clinical and research faculty have also discussed groundbreaking work being done at Emory in areas ranging from Alzheimer’s to obesity medicine to women’s heart disease prevention.

With the assistance of ECDS staff and resources, which have enabled recording, archiving, and disseminating the digital audio files, “The Whole Health Cure” podcast is able to offer downloadable episodes from 12 platforms, including Google Play Music, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Simplecast and the Emory Lifestyle Medicine and Wellness website. The partnership with ECDS has opened an avenue to get health and wellness research to the community in a fast and engaging way.

“The project fits our model of public scholarship that really highlights the humanities and medicine, like the work we did with the sickle cell information website and the Journal of Humanities and Rehabilitation project,” says Wayne Morse, co-director of ECDS. “We want to make sure people see the ways we can help them connect with the community.

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