Abhilash Meesala

Dopamine Nation

Review: ★★★★

Thanks to the recent uptick in the content around Dopamine hacking, I was already familiar with a few aspects of Dopamine’s function. However, my main gripe with a majority of the existing content is that they either

  • throw words like “meso-cortico-limbic-striatal system” casually and expect me to understand it, or
  • they skip the crucial parts and focus on being a listicle on the ways to improve motivation & drive.

Dr. Anna Lembke’s Dopamine Nation was a fair middle ground. She provided an intuition for concepts such as opponent-process mechanisms, neuroadaptance, anhedonia, experience-driven plasticity, etc., without delving too deep into their biochemical processes. The stories and conversations with her patients tied the concepts to real-life implications of addiction and addictive behaviours. Loved that.

Another great thing about this book - the references section at the end. It’s exhaustive. Also, each reference included a one-liner that helped me quickly pick the ones that interested me. I wish all the other books followed this trend.

It’s a must-read if you are trying to learn the lessons of balance in a world where consumption has become the all-encompassing motive of our lives.


Dopamine Nation
  • Dopamine Nation
    Finding balance in the age of indulgence
  • Anna Lembke. MD
  • ISBN: 1472294122
  • ISBN-13: 978-1472294128