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EP 475: Former U.S. Surgen General Vivek Murthy

Former Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy says America is facing a loneliness crisis. He discusses the many physical and mental impacts of feeling lonely and reveals that chronic loneliness is just as bad for you as smoking and obesity. He opens up about his bouts of loneliness during his life, how he came to realize that it’s much larger problem than he ever realized, and the U.S. Congressman who confided in him about his own struggle with loneliness. Vivek explains the difference between someone who is genuinely lonely vs. someone who enjoys being alone, how loneliness can often disguise itself as other health problems, and how loneliness once served an evolutionary function but might be hurting us in modern society. Then Vivek weighs in on the President’s handling of the Coronavirus pandemic, shares his insights from when he dealt with the Ebola and Zika outbreaks as Surgeon General, and offers advice for how to improve the quality of our online and socially distanced interactions during the quarantine.

Order Vivek Murthy's book Together: The Healing Power of Human Connection in a Sometimes Lonely World on Amazon, Audible, or wherever books are sold. Follow him at or on twitter at @Vivek_Murthy. Today's episode was sponsored by Capella University. Capella has created flexible doctoral programs that work with your schedule and can help you gain the skills you need to get where you want in your career. Visit to learn more.

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