The Empowering Neurologist – David Perlmutter, MD and Mark Wolynn

The Empowering Neurologist – David Perlmutter, MD and Mark Wolynn

It’s a given that our emotions, behaviors, and responses to our environment are shaped by our early life experiences. I think most of us can probably wrap our arms around the idea that the experiences of our parents may also play a role in how we see the world.

In an interesting new book, Mark Wolynn describes how the experiences of our grandparents actually leave an imprinted legacy on our DNA. He describes his clinical experiences in dealing with people with seemingly unsolvable issues by unraveling events that occurred in their ancestors.

I think you’ll find this interview interesting for sure.

These Bugs May Improve Your Mood

These Bugs May Improve Your Mood

You’ve heard of the term probiotics, and likely prebiotics as well, but now we are hearing about “psychobiotics.” These have been defined as:

living organisms that, when ingested in adequate amounts, produces a health benefit in patients suffering from psychiatric illness.

That’s a pretty impressive new term, and claim for that matter. But the reason that scientists have developed this terminology is because new research clearly demonstrates that certain probiotic organisms have a dramatic effect on regulating mood.

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Health Benefits of Social Interaction

Health Benefits of Social Interaction

According to the World Health Organization, the biggest threats to our health, globally, are now chronic degenerative conditions, not infectious diseases. What a transition! As opposed to various epidemics of diseases that were so common in our history, what is now threatening health, across the planet,  is chronic degenerative inflammatory conditions – diseases that we most fear. These include things like Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, diabetes, coronary artery disease, and autoimmune conditions as well.

So it makes sense that we must do everything we possibly can, from a lifestyle choice perspective, to keep ourselves healthy and lower our risk for these chronic degenerative conditions.

No doubt lifestyle issues like diet and exercise have received a lot of press, but what we don’t hear about so often is the importance of social interaction. Continue reading

The Empowering Neurologist – David Perlmutter, MD and Dr. Daniel Amen

The Empowering Neurologist – David Perlmutter, MD and Dr. Daniel Amen

It’s certainly one thing to report on how making certain lifestyle changes can impact brain function and disease resistance, and even document these changes on various tests of brain performance. But my guest on today’s program has taken it an important step further.

Dr. Daniel Amen not only implements these positive changes into the lives of his patients, but he utilizes the latest technology in brain imaging to document and follow these changes in patients suffering from a vast array of brain issues, including sports-related trauma, depression and other mood disorders, dementia, and even drug abuse.

Dr. Amen’s work was recognized as one of the top 100 science stories for 2015 by Discover Magazine. So please enjoy this interview with one of the most highly regarded thought leaders in brain science of our time. Be sure to also grab a copy of his revised edition of Change Your Brain, Change Your Life, released November 2015.

Probiotic Intervention Affects Mood

Probiotic Intervention Affects Mood

New and exciting research is revealing a strong connection between our mood and the various bacteria that live within our intestines. This is certainly a sobering notion. Think of it: the bacteria living within the digestive system are, to some degree, involved in determining whether we are happy, sad, anxious or even depressed.

In a new study published in the peer-reviewed journal Brain, Behavior and Immunity, researchers in the Netherlands explored the idea that changing the array of bacteria in the gut by giving a multispecies probiotic supplement could have an effect on mood. The study provided the probiotic to 20 healthy individuals, none of whom had a mood disorder, over a four week period. A similar group of 20 individuals received a placebo over the same period. At the conclusion of the study, both groups underwent an evaluation to determine their reactivity, in terms of cognitive function, to sad mood. This is a fairly standard research tool that assesses depression. Continue reading

The Two Fundamentals of a Brain Healthy Diet

The Two Fundamentals of a Brain Healthy Diet

Last week I had the opportunity to participate in a Google Hangout discussing dietary recommendations in response to a case presentation of an elderly woman who was beginning to experience decline in cognitive function.

Basically, the case was selected as she was experiencing mild cognitive impairment (MCI), generally thought to be a harbinger of future Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer’s disease, far and away the most common form of dementia, now affects some 5.4 million Americans, representing the third leading cause of death in our country. This number is predicted to double in just the next 15 years! Moreover, women are disproportionately at risk, representing 65% of Alzheimer’s cases. In fact, a woman’s risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease now exceeds her risk of developing breast cancer. The annual cost for caring for Alzheimer’s patients exceeds $200 billion, and this is a disease for which we currently have no meaningful treatment. Continue reading