The Empowering Neurologist – David Perlmutter, MD and Dr. Robert Lustig

Over the past several years I have frequently referred to Dr. Robert Lustig’s incredibly important book, Fat Chance – The Bitter Truth About Sugar. Dr. Lustig was one of the pioneers in raising awareness as to the addictive issues surrounding sugar as well as its profoundly detrimental effects on human health.

Today, I’m going to interview Dr. Lustig about his new book, The Hacking of the American Mind. I was honored to be asked to endorse Dr. Lustig’s book, about which I thought:

Our health, resistance to disease, and ability to function on a date-to-day basis have essentially been hijacked, all in the name of corporate profits. Dr. Lustig explores how industry has manipulated our most deep seated survival instincts to motivate our food choices in away that directly undermines our ability to survive. But more importantly, The Hacking of the American Mind eloquently reveals how we can disengage from this influence and reestablish ourselves on a path to wellness.

In this new work, Dr. Lustig really puts a lot of the pieces together, allowing us to understand, in a broader sense, why only our health is deteriorating from a physical and mental perspective. During the interview you will hear Dr. Lustig discuss how the manipulation of our food choices is actually an existential threat, and he does a great job in justifying this statement.

I’m looking forward to all of your comments after you’ve seen this interview. I think it’s important information.

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  • Bill Robinson

    Does the good Dr. L yet understand that all
    carbohydrates turn into sugar in our bodies?
    Has he figured out why, as he says on page 69
    of Fat Chance, he cannot lose the 40 pounds
    he put on in his residency many years ago?
    Does he still advocate government control of
    the marketing of sugar, as he also argues in
    the book Fat Chance?

    • Yiratshamayim

      Doctors are human too!

    • Marley

      And yet the government can wildly subsidize crops that are notoriously turned into health-destroying junk food.
      But don’t let the government regulate harmful products, right?

  • Kat Milacek

    Excellent interview. Have not read/listened (Audible) his book yet, so I’m glad you brought this book of his to my awareness. Very interesting the idea of the dopamine-serotonin seesaw and how we disrupt it by our inherent drive for pleasure (and the way our society has created so many easily-achievable pleasures for us to be driven to get over and over). Definitely can see how it fits into the addictions so many of us have to food, the internet, social media, shopping, TV watching, etc. etc. Didn’t realize the connection however, with that the more you feed the dopamine cycle by going after/being driven to get things that are pleasurable. . the more it unbalances the dopamine-serotonin seesaw that then drives depression, along with our everyday stress. Excellent as always Dr. Perlmutter! Thanks for all you do. Kat

  • jeann brick

    Wow! Thank you so much for this brilliant and thrilling discussion.

    • David Perlmutter

      Thanks for watching Jeann! Appreciate your feedback.

  • Rochelle

    I’d say that Dr. Lustig didn’t really understand your question on dopamine and serotonin, he talked about receptors but not exactly the way you meant… or maybe I am wrong. Anyway, it was a great interview. Thank you for sharing.

  • Lo

    Listening to this interview with Dr. Lustig makes me wonder about the mass shooter in Las Vegas, who was apparently a gambling addict. What may have all these years of round-the-clock gambling done to this man’s mind?

    • WestcoastTexan

      He also never went outside and must have had several hormone deficiency from lack of sun.

  • Janice Trotter

    Dr. Perlmutter.

    You and your guests are amazing. Thank you for your work.

    • David Perlmutter

      Thanks for those kind words Janice. Honored that these folks join me every week for these discussions.

  • Kunk

    SO good! So GOOD! Thank you.
    (BTW, it is also heartening to see you taping again in your study. Glad to see your home was not destroyed!)

  • HenryandKate Berkeley

    Your autocorrect has been working overtime – I imagine Dr Lusting to be an expert in another field!

  • HLB

    Dr. Perlmutter;
    I am writing regarding this interview with Dr. Lustig. Three minutes into the video, he started bashing dietitians. He cited the “academic pushback problem” of the new research not being disseminated by Registered Dietitians. Dr. Lustig goes on to say that we cherry pick the studies which “support our views and minimize the research which assail those views.”

    I have to, respectfully, disagree.I have been an RD for 35 years. Dietitians do not have that type of “power” over then general public and they never did. In the hospital setting, diet orders come from the treating physician. This is also the case in many clinical settings as well. RDs are not autonomous in any way shape or form, even though we have a 4-year degree in nutrition that also includes all coursework for pre-med majors. (Starting in 2017, all RDs will require a master’s degree before sitting for the national licensure exam.)

    In reality, who in the public sector sees a dietitian for a advice anyway? The majority of the population receives their nutrition advice from their family, friends, online websites, from personal trainers, Nutritionists with a “mail order” certificate, body-building magazines, health magazines, books, from cross-fit instructors and from “the grapevine” (e.g. latest fads).

    May I remind you that only 25% of all medical schools in the USA require a nutrition course for graduation? All the other schools prepare their MDs with 6 hours or less of nutrition knowledge over 4 years of schooling. It is, thus, inaccurate and irresponsible, to assign the title of “nutrition expert” to any MD.

    I agree that we all need to continue our education and update our knowledge on a continuing basis (more than what is currently required to renew our licenses). So please don’t put the blame entirely on our RD shoulders. There are many variables in society and the food industry to consider, as you are so well aware.

    When you get in the “trenches” with the public trying to change individual behavior one person at a time, let me know. (I have been doing this for 35 years).You will find that most people have good intentions but, ultimately, do not want to change and do not want to be told what to do. That is called “the human experience”.

    It would behoove all medical professionals to work together toward a common goal–the health of our society. Fighting amongst ourselves serves no one, except our egos.

    • FK Hall

      I agree that there is no one group responsible for the dissemination of inaccurate nutritional information or the current state of nutrition in US citizens. It is also true that medical school barely covers nutrition. However, there are many physicians who have taken their time, effort and money to attend additional courses/conferences to get a broader understanding of nutrition. So to state that no physician could be labeled a “nutrition expert” is simply false.

      When I had a clinical practice and referred newly diagnosed patients with Diabetes for dietary counselling, I had to include in my referral a note to make a diet that contained half the carbohydrates the RD would usually recommend! Why would I do that? It’s because the conventional model was grossly inaccurate and did not serve the patient well.

      There are many causal factors that are involved here. If you want to know the primary factors, follow the money. The other factor that is most troublesome, and that you note, is that people don’t want to change. They want a pill to super size it. So, a huge part of our job is to help people understand that they will never feel like it. I don’t. But, I eat right and exercise regularly anyway. We can help our patients understand that they need to do something. And, each of us can do the best that we can with the tools, skills and resources we have and continue to learn from each other. – FK Hall, MD

  • WestcoastTexan

    Dr. Lustig has been working hard for decades to save the American people and both he and Dr. Perlmutter are heroes. I did see on the internet that the AMA has called Dr. Perlmutter a “quack.” it reminds me of how they trashed the great Linus Pauling, Ph.D.

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