“Remember, food is not just calories; it is information. It tells our genes what to do. You see, the real cause of the epidemics of mental and physical illness in this country is our SAD diet – the Standard American Diet – which is nutrient-deficient and packed with chemicals that poison our bodies.”
Read this book by Dr. Hyman – it is terrific overview of the importance of Function Medicine (and I will be blogging an overview of the book over the next 2 months). Functional/Holistic Medicine looks for system problems so it can catch things early and treat root causes rather than symptoms. Imbalances in the seven basic core systems of your body – nutrition, hormones, immune function, digestion, detoxification, energy, metabolism, and mind-body – explain most all the symptoms and diseases we think are “brain” or other problems. Functional Medicine personalizes treatment based upon a person’s unique needs. We take out the bad stuff and add the good stuff by – optimizing nutrition, balancing your hormones, cooling off inflammation, fixing your digestion, enhancing detoxification, boosting energy, and calming your mind.
“The UltraMind Solution” by Dr. Mark Hyman
Broken Brains – a twenty-first century epidemic
- we refer to our broken brains by many names – depression, anxiety, memory loss, brain fog, attention deficit disorder, autism, dementia, bipolar, just to name a few
- we don’t have a Prozac or medicine deficiency, but root causes and chemical imbalances (like mercury or lead toxicity, vitamin deficiencies, bad GI bacteria and “leaky gut” = intestinal permeability, and more)
- the body directly and powerfully affects the brain, and changing your diet, nutrient levels, sleep patterns, the substances you use, the amount of exercise and playtime you have, getting rid of toxins in your system, balancing your hormones, correcting imbalances in your digestive tract, boosting your cells’ ability to produce energy, and fixing food sensitivities or allergies can all radically transform your mood and brain and body function!
- even if you feel you don’t have a brain disease, you should and can feel alert, focused, happy, energetic, unstressed, and mentally sharp – IF you know how to care for your brain
Every day we at Excell and Dr. Hyman witness miracles!
Nutrigenomics = a new approach to understanding food
The most powerful tool you have to change your brain and your health is your fork. Food is not just calories or energy. Food contains information that talks to your genes, turning them on or off and affecting their function moment by moment. Food is the fastest-acting and most powerful medicine you can take to change your life.
Myths of Psychiatry & Neurology
- Myth: If you know your disease name/diagnosis, you know what’s wrong with you. (The name has nothing to do with the root cause. One disease of depression has many causes – such as vitamin deficiency, low thyroid, food allergy/sensitivity low sex hormones, mercury toxicity, etc.)
- Myth: Drugs are the answer to mental illness. (Depression is NOT a Prozac deficiency, ADD is not an Adderall deficiency, etc.!)
- Myth: You can talk or meditate away your mood and brain problems. (Though counseling and therapy can be essential parts of an overall mental health plan.)
- Myth: Once you lose brain cells they are gone forever. (Studies show that the brain can heal, renew, repair, and regenerate itself. We know that hormones, growth factors, new learning, neurotransmitters, and physical exercise can promote new brain formation. We also know that stress, drugs, toxins, and anything that causes inflammation can damage and kill brain cells.)
Why You Are Suffering From Brain Damage – stop insulting your brain!!!
- High Fructose Corn Syrup/Sugar: This potent form of sugar is sweeter than regular sugar, increases appetite, promotes obesity, is more addictive than cocaine, is tied to many mental disorders, and leads to diabetes and an inflamed crusty brain. So get off sugar and save your brain!
- Trans or Hydrogenated Fats: Trans fats come from processed foods, baked goods, most fried foods, margarine, and virtually any product that comes from a factory. They damage cells, increase inflammation, and interrupt normal brain function… Stay away from them!
- Brain trauma: even a slight concussion, can have long-term consequences for your brain.
- Lack of Sleep: Sleep is when your body repairs and heals. Lack of sleep has been linked with many diseases, including Alzheimer’s, and lack of it leads your body to produce more stress hormones.
- Sedentary Lifestyle: Exercise releases IGF-1 and BDNF (which help you build new brain cells and connections) and dopamine and serotonin. In fact, exercise beats or equals Prozac or psychotherapy as an anti-depressant in head to head studies!
- Your Stressed Brain: Chronic stress increases cortisol, which kills brain cells, shrinks the brain, and leads to dementia… People who meditate regularly actually have increased brain size and cortical thickness.
- Toxic drugs: The four top things purchased in American supermarkets are all mood altering drugs: SUGAR, CAFFEINE, ALCOHOL, and NICOTINE…
- CoQ10 Lowering Medicine (CoQ10 makes energy for your cells so if you are on a medicine, take 100-200mg/day) – cholesterol lowering statin drugs like Lipitor or Zocor, and some diabetic medicines like Glucotrol.
- B Vitamin Lowering Medicine: PPI acid lowering medicine like Prilosec (and they lower Mg, decrease protein absorption, and increase risk of intestinal infections), aspirin, estrogens and birth control pills, water pills, seizure medicine, and anti-inflammatory medicine like Ibuprofen.
- Glutathione-lowering Medicine (Glutathione is your body’s last stand against toxins, inflammation, and free radicals- you can boost it by eating from the broccoli and garlic family and taking n-acetylcysteine): acetaminophen = Tylenol
- Metal Containing Medications & other metal exposures: especially Mercury and Lead (found in medicines, vaccinations, dental fillings, imported toys/paints, etc), and possibly Aluminum (linked to a higher risk of Alzheimer’s – found in deodorants, antacids, our cookware). Mercury is the 2nd most toxic substance known to human biology on the planet (only plutonium worse) – and found in medicines, fish, dental fillings, imported toys, and environmental toxins. It is estimated that 40% of Americans have toxic levels of metals high enough to cause physical damage – such as lowered IQs, neurological problems (loss of memory, depression, dementia, Parkinson’s, and more), and even lead to heart attacks and strokes.
- Toxic Chemicals: More than 80,000 chemicals have been introduced into our society since 1900. A recent study of umbilical cord blood found 287 toxic chemicals (2 17 were toxic to the brain and central nervous system)… We live I a sea of toxins! “Green Housekeeping” by Sandbeck is a good resource for cleaning up your home.
- Additives and Toxins in Our Food: The average American consumes literally pounds of hormones, antibiotics, food chemicals, additives, artificial sweeteners, and MSG each year (and each of them has been shown to harm the brain). The average person consumes a gallon of neurotoxic pesticides and herbicides each year by eating conventionally grown fruits and vegetables.
- Toxic Mold Exposure: can lead to asthma and allergies, decreased immunity, and even memory loss and mood changes
- Toxic Waves: it is hard to tell the damage from cell phones, computers, microwaves, wireless networks, televisions, and other electromagnetic devices (a safe headset is one that has an air tube to diffuse the EMF)
The Seven Keys to UltraWellness – these influence every feeling, thought, emotion, behavior, and memory we have (not to mention our physical health and weight) = Optimize Nutrition, Hormone Balance, Cooling Inflammation, Fixing Digestion, Enhance Detoxification, Boost Energy Metabolism, and Calm Your Mind
…more next blog!!! Prayers for your great health and faith, Dr. Lisa