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The Talks at Google podcast - where great minds meet.

Talks at Google brings the world’s most influential thinkers, creators, makers, and doers all to one place. Every episode is taken from a video that can be seen at

Sep 6, 2022

Most of us eat three meals a day, plus a smattering of snacks, because we think that’s the normal, healthy way to eat. Mark Mattson’s book, “The Intermittent Fasting Revolution,” argues why that’s not the case. The human body and brain evolved to function well in environments where food could be obtained only intermittently. When we look at the eating patterns of our distant ancestors, we can see that periods of fasting are normal—and eating three meals a day is not. In “The Intermittent Fasting Revolution”, prominent neuroscientist Mark Mattson shows that intermittent fasting is not only normal but also good for us; it can enhance our ability to cope with stress by making cells more resilient. It also improves mental and physical performance and protects against aging and disease.

Intermittent fasting is not the latest fad diet; it doesn’t dictate food choice or quantity. It doesn’t make money for the pharmaceutical, processed food, or health care industries. Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern that includes frequent periods of time with little or negligible amounts of food. It is often accompanied by weight loss, but, Mattson says, studies show that its remarkably beneficial effects cannot be accounted for by weight loss alone. Mattson describes the specific ways that intermittent fasting slows aging; reduces the risk of diseases, including obesity, Alzheimer’s, and diabetes; and improves both brain and body performance.

Moderated by Sanders Kleinfeld.

Visit to watch the video.