Expert on eating disorders to speak at Union Hall, Rockport

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Dr. Mark Gold, an award-winning, nationally recognized speaker will present a talk, “Eating Disorders: Sugar, Pleasure and Weight Gain” at Union Hall, 24 Central Street, Rockport on Wednesday, June 27, starting at 2 p.m.. This is a free talk and open to the public; sponsored by McLean Borden Cottage.

Mark S. Gold, M.D., neuroscientist and leading voice in understanding the science of addiction, has worked for more than 40 years to develop models for understanding the effects of tobacco, cocaine, and other drugs, as well as food, on the brain and behavior.

Gold has been a featured guest and expert multiple times on Oprah, Today, and CNN. His group pioneered the concept of food and sugar as addictions and organized the Yale Historic Conference on Food Addictions. The ideas from this conference were complied into Food and Addiction: A Comprehensive Handbook, edited by Kelly D. Brownell and Mark S. Gold (Oxford University Press, Aug 30, 2012).

"The science is easy to understand and the idea that sugar & pleasure-producing goods cause loss of control, overeating, and weight gain has been described in my work, which has led to PSAs and prevention initiatives and new treatments,” said Gold, in a news release.

Gold is a teacher of the year, translational researcher, author, mentor, and inventor best known for his work on the brain systems underlying the effects of opiate drugs, cocaine and food. He has worked as an advisor to many White House Drug Czars (he won the Lifetime achievement award from the Obama White House), NIDA, and NIMH Directors over his 40-plus year career. He is an author and inventor who has published over 1000 peer-reviewed scientific articles, texts, and practice guidelines.

A Distinguished Fellow of the American College of Pharmacology and the American Psychiatric Association, Gold has also made many recent contributions to the understanding of smoking, the second-hand effects of all drugs that are smoked and the consequences of expired medications. Dr. Gold and colleagues have recently reported on children of Kabul opium smokers and also outcomes of Impaired Health Professionals, especially anesthesiologists and other physicians. Dr. Gold has a career-long interest in clinical hypothesis-driven research as well as research that starts in the lab and progresses to the bedside. He has worked to explain why people drink so much decaffeinated coffee —it's not caffeine free.

Gold's pioneering work on the brain systems underlying the effects of opiate drugs led to a dramatic change in the way opiate action was understood. Gold and his colleagues proved that cocaine was addictive and this work led to a focus on dopamine and pleasure rather than Norepinephrine and withdrawal. While most at the time did not consider cocaine addictive because of the lack of a classic withdrawal syndrome, Dr. Gold proposed a dopamine theory of pathological attachment, loss of control and addiction.

Event Date: 
Wed, 06/27/2018 - 2:00pm