Prisons of Our Own Making | Hidden Brain Discussions about healthy living usually revolve around diet and exercise. Social interaction is often left out of the conversation, even though research shows that it's critical to our well-being.
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Prisons of Our Own Making

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Prisons of Our Own Making

Prisons of Our Own Making

Prisons of Our Own Making

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/560293602/561934011" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Donald Iain Smith/Getty Images
Girl using smartphone under bed covers.
Donald Iain Smith/Getty Images

There are some commonly accepted ideas about what it means to be healthy.

Healthy people eat a lot of fruits and vegetables. They don't do drugs, and of course, they exercise. While physical activity and food dominate our discussions about wellbeing, the importance of social interaction is often overlooked.

On this episode of Hidden Brain, we'll explore research on the extremes of social interaction: from the consequences of constant connection, to the high cost of solitary confinement. We'll speak with scientists exploring how social media can shape the way we view our friends' lives, and our own. Later in the show, we'll delve into the darkness of solitary confinement and speak to Keramet Reiter, a criminology professor at UC Irvine and author of "23/7: Pelican Bay Prison and the Rise of Long-Term Solitary Confinement."

Hidden Brain is hosted by Shankar Vedantam and produced by Jennifer Schmidt, Rhaina Cohen, Parth Shah, Laura Kwerel, and Thomas Lu. Our supervising producer is Tara Boyle. You can also follow us on Twitter @hiddenbrain, and listen for Hidden Brain stories each week on your local public radio station.