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Videos

  • Embracing Hope, Courage, and Compassion in Times of Crisis
    Embracing Hope, Courage, and Compassion in Times of Crisis
  • THE TELOMERE EFFECT: LIVING HEALTHIER, LONGER with Prof Elissa Epel at Happiness & Its Causes 2019
    THE TELOMERE EFFECT: LIVING HEALTHIER, LONGER with Prof Elissa Epel at Happiness & Its Causes 2019
  • Elissa Epel - Can the Mind Heal the Body?
    Elissa Epel - Can the Mind Heal the Body?
  • Generations Over Dinner (Over Lunch)
    Generations Over Dinner (Over Lunch)
  • Dr. Elissa Epel on Telomeres and the Role of Stress Biology in Cellular Aging
    Dr. Elissa Epel on Telomeres and the Role of Stress Biology in Cellular Aging
  • Elissa Epel - How Do Human Brains Function?
    Elissa Epel - How Do Human Brains Function?
  • Conversations on Compassion with Dr. Elissa Epel
    Conversations on Compassion with Dr. Elissa Epel
  • The Telomere Effect
    The Telomere Effect
  • GWS 2017: The Telomere Effect | Elissa Epel
    GWS 2017: The Telomere Effect | Elissa Epel
  • What stress does to your body (it isn’t always bad!)
    What stress does to your body (it isn’t always bad!)
  • Lifespan Expanded: The Scientific Quest For A Fountain Of Youth
    Lifespan Expanded: The Scientific Quest For A Fountain Of Youth
  • Elissa Epel and Rick Hanson: Strengthening Your Body Against Stress
    Elissa Epel and Rick Hanson: Strengthening Your Body Against Stress
  • Food and the Aging Brain: Updates on Nutrition and Cognitive Health in Older Adults
    Food and the Aging Brain: Updates on Nutrition and Cognitive Health in Older Adults

Learn More About Elissa Epel

Elissa Epel, Ph.D, is an international expert on stress, well-being, and optimal aging and a best-selling author. She is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences at University of California, San Francisco where she is vice chair of psychology and directs the Aging Metabolism Emotions Center. She studies the environmental, psychological, behavioral and social factors that impact cellular aging, and is also focusing on climate wellness. She studies how self-care practices such as meditation and positive stress can promote psychological and physiological thriving, and is interested in large scale interventions for communal well-being and health equity. She co-wrote The New York Times bestseller “The Telomere Effect: A Revolutionary Approach to Living Younger, Healthier, Longer” (Grand Central Publishing) with Nobel Laureate Elizabeth Blackburn (translated into 30 languages) and “Stress Prescription: Seven Days to More Joy and Ease” (Penguin Life) which became the #1 new release in Amazon’s stress management category almost instantly. She enjoys leading science-based meditation retreats at venues such as WEF/Davos, Esalen, Blue Spirit Costa Rica, Spirit Rock Meditation Center, and 1440 Multiversity. 

Epel is a member of the National Academy of Medicine, current President of the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research, and co-chair of the Mind & Life Institute Steering Council. She has served as a consultant to NIH, CDC, Facebook, Apple, United Health, and to UC campus wide initiatives on stress and health. Epel’s research has been featured in documentaries and media outlets such as TEDMED, Wisdom 2.0, NBC’s Today Show, CBS’s Morning Show, 60 Minutes, National Public Radio, The New York Times, and The Wall Street Journal.

Elissa Epel is available to advise your organization via virtual and in-person consulting meetings, interactive workshops and customized keynotes through the exclusive representation of Stern Speakers & Advisors, a division of Stern Strategy Group®.

Elissa Epel was last modified: January 26th, 2023 by Justin Louis

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Using Happiness Science to Promote Emotional Well-Being and Health

What does the happiness research really tell us? Where is this field going? And how can we use these research insights in our daily life? In this fascinating presentation, Elissa Epel, Ph.D., who helped to lead the largest citizen science project examining happiness and how it varies by person and country, answers these questions and more. She will share some of the intriguing work of the new NIH emotional well being networks, and will lead highly interactive discussions in which participants will gain actionable strategies for promoting emotional well-being.

The Mental Health Crisis of Our Uncertain Era: Building Institutional and Personal Stress Resilience

According to University of California, San Francisco Professor Elissa Epel, work should not detract from health or add stress. Indeed, work can enhance health, well being, and purpose. In this engaging presentation, she educates leaders on understanding work burnout and the importance of and strategies for promoting mental and social preparedness for the next crises. She’ll explain the mental health and social inequities that were revealed during the Covid pandemic and shares effective blueprints from UCSF’s pandemic COPE program.

Obesity, Compulsive Eating, Sugar and Stress: Insights from the Lab, the Field, and Clinical Trials

Stress and compulsive eating (reward drive) are inter-related and lead to greater obesity, including abdominal fat deposition. In this eye-opening talk, University of California, San Francisco Professor Elissa Epel reveals new findings and lessons learned from clinical trials for healthy weight using mindful stress reduction and mindful eating. She’ll also detail the results of an influential interviewing study on sugared beverages, which is now being implemented across healthcare systems.

Advance Praise for "The Stress Prescription"

“The scientific background and anecdotes from those who have gotten a handle on their stress enrich the advice. This is just what the doctor ordered.”

Publisher's Weekly

“'The Stress Prescription' is an incredibly wise guide with simple, powerful advice. If you incorporate even one of these daily practices it will lower your stress and boost your emotional well-being and health.”

Arianna Huffington, Founder and CEO , Thrive Global

“A preeminent expert sheds light on how to handle the daily hassles of life. It’s not just a manual for managing stress—it’s a toolkit for preventing it.”

Adam Grant, #1 New York Times bestselling author of "Think Again"

“Epel’s decision to make this invaluable material available in such an accessible, practical, and impactful way for the public is a gift to us all. In 'The Stress Prescription', she reveals the often-invisible forces that affect all of our lives, and guides us towards a healthier, happier, and longer life. This is a must-read for our new era of challenges.”

Richard Carmona, MD, MPH, 17th Surgeon General of the United States

“The compassionate and insightful writing in this book, combined with its highly accessible and practical guidance, make it a very valuable resource that will be used and appreciated by many in these uncertain times.”

Elizabeth Blackburn, PhD, Nobel Laureate and New York Times bestselling coauthor of "The Telomere Effect"

“'In The Stress Prescription', Dr. Elissa Epel explores the deep science of how we create biological stress in our bodies by our beliefs, thoughts, and behaviors, which often unwittingly make us sick, anxious, and depressed. And she provides the antidote in a clear, step-by-step, day-by-day set of practices that will rewire your brain and body to become happier, healthier, and more stress resilient. A critical book for us all in an ever more stressful world.”

Mark Hyman, MD, Senior Advisor to the Cleveland Clinic Center for Functional Medicine and Author of "Young Forever"

“'The Stress Prescription' beautifully combines the rigor of science with the wisdom of reflection, to offer a powerful and transformational roadmap for how to live a happier, healthier life. The wealth of ideas and practices presented in this illuminating work has the power to transform our individual and collective lives.”

Shauna Shapiro, PhD, Author of "Good Morning, I Love You"

Praise for "The Telomere Effect"

"Blackburn and Epel demonstrate that how we live each day has a profound effect not just on our health and well-being, but how we age, as well. It's a manual for how to live younger and longer."

Arianna Huffington, Founder and CEO, Thrive Global

"A classic. One of the most exciting health books to emerge in the last decade. It explains how we can slow the way we age at a fundamental level."

Eric Kandel, Nobel Laureate and Author of "In Search of Memory"

"'The Telomere Effect' explains the often-invisible things that affect all of our lives, helping us make better choices individually and socially for greater health and longevity. It will change the way we think of aging and disease."

David Kessler, MD, JD, Former FDA Commissioner and New York Times Bestselling Author of "The End of Overeating"

"A revolutionary set of findings-with a wealth of science-based suggestions-that can transform the way we live our lives, shaping the very health of our cells by how we use our minds."

Daniel J. Siegel, MD, New York Times Bestselling Author of "Brainstorm"

"This book is revolutionary, transforming the way our world thinks about health and living well, disease, and death. It reveals a stunning picture of healthy aging-it's not simply about individuals, it's about how we are connected to each other, today and through future generations. It is hard to overstate this book's importance."

Dean Ornish, MD, Founder and President, Preventive Medicine Research Institute, and New York Times Bestselling Author of "The Spectrum"

"Grounded in cutting-edge science, this is the best book on how to have long-term health that I have read in a very long time. Written with clarity, verve, and heart, it is chock-full of practical suggestions based on fascinating research on our own DNA. Tremendous."

Rick Hanson, PhD, Author of "Buddha's Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom"

"An extraordinary, illuminating synthesis of biological and psychosocial factors that enhance healthful longevity by their effects on telomeres. These new advances in knowledge enable people to attain longer, healthier lives."

Albert Bandura, Professor Emeritus, Stanford University, United States National Medal of Science Awardee

"'The Telomere Effect' gives us, in high relief and with exactly the practical level of detail we need, the long and the short of a new science revealing that how we live our lives, both inwardly and outwardly, individually and collectively, impinges significantly on our health, our well-being, and even our longevity. Mindfulness is a key ingredient, and importantly, issues of poverty and social justice are shown to clearly come into play as well. This book is an invaluable, rigorously authentic, and at its core, exceedingly compassionate and wise contribution to our understanding of health and well-being."

Jon Kabat-Zinn, Author of "Full Catastrophe Living"

"From basic science to practical lifestyle advice, 'The Telomere Effect' is an extraordinary compendium of wisdom from a remarkable collaboration between a molecular biologist and a health psychologist. It is the supreme user-friendly guide to scientific research on telomeres and why knowing about them is important for your everyday life. This book is a must read for anyone who wishes to live with optimal health."

Richard J. Davidson, New York Times Bestselling Author of "The Emotional Life of Your Brain" and Co-Author of "Altered Traits"