Dr. David Perlmutter

Friday Favorites: Catch this Popular Gab with the Gurus Podcast to Find Out How Grains are Messing Up Your Brain

PerlmutterIf you’re into breads, chips and other carbs, it’s time to get your brain blown away.

Find out about how gluten and carbs from renowned neurologist David Perlmutter, M.D., author of the fabulous book, Grain Brain: The Surprising Truth About Wheat, Carbs, and Sugar — Your Brain’s Silent Killers, who appeared on my Gab with the Gurus Show.

Dr. Perlmutter — a board-certified neurologist and Fellow of the American College of Nutrition — has come to recognition for blowing the lid off a topic that’s been buried in medical literature for far too long — grains are destroying your brain.

But he’s not talking about just unhealthy carbs. He’s also talking about whole grain.

On this Gab with the Gurus show — a listener favorite — you’ll discover how:

  • You can choose not to become diabetic by cutting back on carbs and eating more fat.
  • Wheat bread is higher on the Glycemic Index than a candy bar, pure sugar or white bread.
  • Even whole grains are dangerous.
  • You can grow new brain cells at any age.
  • Even so-called healthy carbs such as whole grains can cause dementia, ADHD, anxiety, chronic headaches, and depression.
  • Eating grains can make you gain weight.
  • The more overweight you are, the more rapidly your brain will shrink.
  • To recognize hidden sources of carbs.
  • There’s a little-known connection between ADHD and grains.
  • High blood sugar increases your risk for dementia, for which there’s no current medical fix.
  • Fats are healthy and how diabetes soared three-fold when people began to cut out fat.
  • Exercise can help your brain.
  • Your brain thrives on fat and cholesterol.
  • 10 percent of those with schizophrenia can be cured without drugs by going gluten-free.
  • You can take control of your “smart genes” through smart dietary choices and lifestyle habits.

Dr. Perlmutter will tell you on Gab with the Gurus:

To tune into the show either live or later, go here.

Join the Conversation: What was your biggest Ahah?

The Best Superfood is Cacao (Chocolate), But It Doesn’t Need Sugar

21 Reasons Cacao is One of the Best Superfoods: Share Your Favorite Recipe

Today is National Chocolate Day.

You may be surprised to learn that I’m a huge fan of real chocolate (cacao).

Now, bear in mind that I’m not recommending creamy, sugar-filled, calorie-laden, commercially processed stuff.

No, I’m referring to the real stuff — to deep, dark, sophisticated, raw, sugar-free cacao or Theobroma cacao, “food of the gods,” which is the source of original, natural chocolate.

And I bring you great news:  When you cut out sugar or even dairy, you can still enjoy amazing, tasty, healthy cacao.

Many health experts consider cacao, which is rich in minerals and plant compounds such as polyphenols and flavonoids, the healthiest food in the world.

Of course, back in 1998, before I quit sugar, the kinds of chocolate I overate — and which, I imagine, you overeat — were full of those vegetable oils, GMO soy lecithin, milk and sugar.

Now, I’m so impressed by cacao’s remarkable resume. Thease are some of its many wonders:

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Take Garlic to Fight Colds

Oops! I've Been Sick -- Now Taking More Garlic

Maybe you’ve been on a plane. Or in a restaurant or mall. The sound in the air isn’t music playing. It’s the never-ending hacking of those, who are suffering with colds.

Unfortunately, for the past two weeks, I’ve been recuperating from my own monstrous, end-of-winter upper respiratory bug. (That’s why I had to take time to recuperate and therefore haven’t posted lately. There’s nothing like getting sick to make you do lots of planning. So I’ve laying the groundwork for some exciting programs. Stay tuned for details.)

Lately, since I eat so healthily, I’m trying to figure out what I could have done differently (other than those couple of nights when I didn’t get enough sleep). Oops. I overlooked garlic.  I just couldn’t follow my friend’s advice to inhale it before catching a plane. (No one would have wanted to sit near me!)

Now I want to share some fascinating facts about this powerhouse, which I’ve been putting into in soups for the last couple of days.

Indeed, garlic is a great way to avoid your dripping nose and loud cough in the first place.

Indeed, according to a study done by British scientists who tracked 146 healthy adults over 12 weeks, those who selected to receive a daily garlic supplement came down with 24 colds during the study period, compared twitch 65 colds in the placebo group.

Here are some juicy tidbits about garlic and why it’s one of your best stay-healthy weapons:

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Delay Away Your Sugar Cravings (Creatively Procrastinate)

Stop Sugar Shock Blog Here's an article I wrote to help you those of you, who are sugar addicts or junk food junkies, who need help to sweetly say, "No, thank you!" when offered those tempting, unhealthy "treats."

Delay Away Your Sugar Cravings™: Creatively Procrastinate to Ditch Your Sugar Addiction & Excess Weight

By Connie Bennett, MSJ, CHC, ACC, CPC

Whenever people meet me, join my Sugar Freedom Now program or work privately with me or read my book SUGAR SHOCK!, they almost immediately ask me (either in person or via e-mail), "How can I overcome my sugar cravings?"

It can be challenging to say "No, thank you!" when your favorite, tempting dessert is right there, in front of you.

Because it's what you do in that very first one or two minutes that can make or break your diet, I'm determined to help you get over that "Must-Have Sugar Now! hurdle."

Let me share a tactic that helped me on many occasions (back in 1998) and that now helps my clients and Facebook Smart Habits Now fans.

One of the most powerful and effective strategies is so simple that you’ll wonder why you never tried it in the first place.

It's this: Simply DELAY before you put any sugar or dessert foods in your mouth. That's right, DELAY before you something that you'll later regret such as when you look at your scale a day or two later or when your pants don't fit anymore or when you become edgy and unfocused after your Sugar High.

Let's be honest: If you do mindlessly nosh on those fast-acting sweets or much-like-sugar carbs™ into your mouth, won't you become feel headachy, wiped out, spaced out, moody, depressed or even angry at yourself (and maybe your loved ones)?

Let me introduce you to the Delay Away Your Sugar Cravings Method (also called Do Creative Sugar Procrastination™).

Delay Away Your Sugar Cravings, and Sweetness Will Fill Your Life Instead. — Connie Bennett

Think about it: Most of us excel at putting things off or procrastinating, right?

We have every good intention to clear off our desks, donate old clothes, organize our drawers, ditch (recyle) those not-needed papers, help kids with their homework, throw out the garbage, etc.?

Clearly, all of us have things we've been planning to do but we just haven't got around to doing it. 

Well, I invite you to take a positive look at procrastinating. It can be a wonderful, Won't-Have-Sugar-Just-Yet Strategy.

I hit upon this incredible simple technique back in 1998 when I reluctantly kicked sweets and refined carbs on doctor's orders. To this day, I continue to be amazed at how easy, effortless, and darn effective it is to just delay.

What's so wonderful about this Delaying Now Method is that people of all ages—unless maybe you’re a tot—can easily cultivate this tactic.

So, here's how to do it: Just promise yourself to delay eating that tempting "treat" for a certain amount of time, say 10 minutes. You can do that, of course!

In other words, you will Delay Away Your Sugar Cravings for 10 minutes at a time. Then, you can delay over and over again — for another 10 minutes — for a while, like an hour even. It's that easy!

Now think ahead to the next morning when you're so relieved and proud of yourself that you didn't cave into your cravings.

Here are 7 ways Delaying or Creatively Procrastinating becomes your ally to help you pull the plug on your unwanted sugar addiction. (Delaying is one of the "7 D’s” that I developed to help “Sugar Kickers.”)

  1. First delay 10 minutes before you eat that cookie, candy bar or brownie that's calling out to you. When you do that, you begin to detach from your destructive impulses.
  2. When you delay for 10 minutes, then another 10 minutes, and another 10 minutes, your cravings will subside while you get involved with other things. At that point, you'll also be able to put your cravings into proper perspective. 
  3. When you Delay Away Your Cravings, you're taking powerful, positive, health-promoting action by simple inaction. Yes, doing absolutely nothing can be pivotal when you kick or cut back on sweets and quickie carbs. See how simple this is? 
  4. When you delay, you turn procrastinating into a useful, proactive skill. Procrastinating becomes a good thing!
  5. When you delay, you can take time to find out which foods—if any—you’re really craving. Is your body really needing cookies, cake, and pretzels? Of course not! Your Amazing Body might instead be begging you for water, fresh vegetables and fruits, high-quality protein or healthy fats?
  6. When you delay, you can get in touch with your true feelings. By putting your sugar binging on hold for 10 minutes or more, you can figure out what the heck is really going. Ask yourself, "Why do I feel like I must have these sweets now?"
  7. When you delay, you'll be so proud of yourself! You'll be filled with a longer-lasting joy than the very short-lived, self-defeating immediate gratification you'd get from a cookie. What is your real goal? Are you seeking to shed excess weight, get more energy, concentrate better, improve your health and boost your libido? So delaying gives you a chance to think about what you really want rather than suffer the consequences of your moment of weakness.)

Want more simple techniques from Gurus Galore and me? Just join the juicy, life-changing six-week Sugar Freedom Now course, which starts June 14. This session will feature renowned experts such as mindfulness expert Dr. Lilian Cheung and Law of Attraction Expert Christy Whitman. Plus, you'll be able to listen to other inspiring people on the private membership website.

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Can You Go a Year Without Candy? Join Blogger Dana Kennedy

Dana Kennedy - img-author-photo---dana-kennedy_162145297637 Can you go a year without candy? Specifically, can you quit your favorite candies, cookies, cakes, ice cream, pastries and any sugar-based desserts for 365 days running? Not only that, but can you chronicle your candy-curbing adventures publicly, doing so with panache, humor and even literary aplomb? 

That's exactly what talented journalist Dana Kennedy is now doing on her entertaining, insightful, healthily addictive A Year Without Candy Blog, which she began on Feb. 28.

Now one month into her sugar-squashing mission, Dana — who contributes to AOL News, People Magazine, TIME and other outlets – began her blog announcing her "choice to abstain from" her "addiction of choice – candy, ice cream,
cakes and all manner of sweet treats – for at least a year." A few days later, she also humorously announced her candy-cutting mission on the Huffington Post blog, admitting being "as hooked on cheap and delicious American candy like Hershey bars, Junior Mints and candy corn (bite it, dessert snobs) as I am on creme brulee, moelleux au chocolat and tarte tatin."

Candycorn If, like most people, you can't resist the urge to indulge in sweets (either often or periodically), I urge you to follow A Year Without Candy Blog, where the former correspondent for ABC News, Fox News and MSNBC offers a compelling mix of confessional moments (like the time she was Dreaming of Red Twizzlers and Relapses or when chocolate lured her on Wicked Wednesday); tangible accomplishments (such as when she survived three weeks without candies); and scary motivational tidbits (such as Dr. Nancy Appleton’s eye-opening list of 146 ways that Sugar Can Kill You).

However, Dana is at her best when she dishes out original, self-mocking observations or quirky musings that illustrate her fun-loving nature, such as when she asked on Day One: "Is there a less-sexy addiction than being Anne-francis-smoking-film-noir-sweater-girl a sugar freak? Or a more infantile one? Doubtful.

"Have you ever seen a film noir with the possibly-murderous icy blonde reclining on a sofa and waiting for the next sucker to lure into her evil web – while pulling on a Twix bar?

"Or have you ever gone a hot date with a cool guy and after dinner,
leaned back seductively, locked eyes with him, reached into your purse
and said, `Do you mind if I… toss down a few Gummi bears?' How wholesome. How very
not treacherous femme fatale."

The articulate, anti-candy crusader graciously took time to share how her blog has been an ally in mission to kick candy.

Connie:  Dana, what made you decide to quit candy and to announce publicly, on a blog?

Dana: The idea to stop eating candy and blog about it came to me like a bolt out of the blue the night of my birthday on February 27. It's almost as if a power greater than me to stay on the straight and narrow was to go public with this.

I've tried to quit candies and sweets so many times before – always beginning with the greatest of intentions – and then I’d last anywhere from 4 days to 2 weeks, but I’d always find some reason to go back to it. I would then lose my motivation, and that'd be the end of it. And it set up the cycle of being discouraged that I couldn’t get the monkey off my back.

Connie:  Well, you certainly came up with a clever way of holding yourself “accountable,” to use life-coaching parlance.

Dana: Well, what motivates me more than anything is the idea of a challenge, and the blog is a public challenge to myself. The blog is like my conscience. People could tell me all day long how bad candy is for me, what emotional effects it has on me and what [nutrient-poor] ingredients are in it, but what gives me more motivation is having to be held accountable to somebody or something — in this case, the blog.

Unwittingly, I did the perfect thing for my personality, which is to issue a public challenge to myself. Although I know that if I fall off the wagon tomorrow and close my blog, I'm sure the world would go on, but in my mind, I would have failed with this personal challenge. The blog is really me saying to the public and to myself — this is what I'm going to do — please support me.

Connie:  Has your blog led to any unexpected reactions?

Dana:  Yes. What’s been really surprising is the number of people, who have reacted positively to the blog and who wrote to say that they were inspired and that they’ve [been helped by] things they’ve learned on the blog. I’m really surprised that people like it.

Connie:  I’m not surprised. It’s a fabulous, fascinating blog. Dana, again, let me congratulate you for surviving a month without candies. That’s a major accomplishment. How were you able to pull it off?

Dana: Support has helped me keep going — which is the name of the game if you're trying to give up any kind of addiction.

Connie:  Now that you’ve gone a month being candy-free, how have things changed for you?

Dana:  Lots of things have changed. First off, I’ve been helped by lots of people [whom I’ve connected with] because of the blog, including you. I've received a lot of support that I didn't expect to get. It’s a completely different experience [to quit sugar while writing a blog] than to kick sweets by yourself. If you're an alcoholic, you can go to AA every night and be with people who have your issues all the time, and it's taken seriously. But if you say, “I wish I could have some fudge,” [many] people who don't understand look at you [with confusion].

Connie:  How else do you feel differently now that you’re not eating sweets?

Dana: I feel lighter – and not just weight-wise – although I’ve lost 5 pounds so far.  I feel happier. And I feel like people are easier to get along with. I feel like I’m starting to conquer my candy addiction – and that makes me feel lighter.

Connie:  That’s awesome, Dana. Keeping your blog can be eye-opening to people, who think they’re alone. Many people don’t realize that you can get addicted to sweets.

Dana:  Yes, most people don’t talk about having a candy addiction. [Initially,] I didn’t think that many people could relate.

Connie:  So, now you’re discovering that people around the world identify with you?

Dana:  Yes, I’m really surprised at how alike we are. Most of the time I’ve been the only one I know who's a candy addict.

Connie:  What was a typical day before you chose to cut out candies?

Dana:  On a typical day, I’d eat a candy bar like a Bounty or Mars bar for lunch, another candy bar after dinner and/or a couple of packages of Haribo.  Maybe I’d also have a scoop of ice cream from a delicious French ice cream shop or dessert whenever possible.

Connie:  Some people may think that isn’t really an addiction.

Dana: True, but I felt addicted. It weighed heavily [on me]. I was a candyaholic. Just like there are different kinds of alcoholics such as the skid row alcoholic or the binge alcoholic, [there are different kinds of sugar addicts]. If I were going to compare myself to an alcoholic, I was like someone, who has to have two to three glasses of wine every day.  But it’s up to you whether or not you [consider] yourself an alcoholic or sugar addict. Yes, I never went on a binge or went off to eat candies in secret. This is not a story of me in a closet chowing down on cookies. I’m just somebody who likes candy too much. It sounds like nothing.

But I always had sweets every day—even if not in huge quantities. The fact that I wanted candy or sweets every day is not Dana blog swimming-piglet good. There was never a day that went by that I didn’t have candy bar. And I felt bad about having it [because] I know that candy’s not good. You don’t have to be a binger or classic overeater to have issues with a substance. If I could have a candy bar only once or twice a week, then we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

Connie:  Dana, I’m sure your readers will want to know, as I do:
Why do you often use a photo of a piglet on your A Year Without Candy
Blog?

Dana:  The piglet is my alter ego. The piglet is
trying to keep her head above water. Anyone who eats candy every day
has a bit of piglet in them.

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Sugar & Its Dangers Hit the News, Thanks to Dr. Robert Lustig’s YouTube Video & Nightline

Recently, both DeGeneres and Jeff Garlin spoke out against sugar and declared that they were off the sweet substance, as I recently wrote about in this opinion piece for AOL News.

Lustig-Sugar-1 Last night, sugar and its dangers hit the news again, thanks to ABC’s popular show, Nightline, which, last night, aired a compelling story spotlighting sugar’s role in the obesity crisis. 

In his “Sugar Wars” piece, correspondent John Donovan offers a fascinating look at the views of esteemed pediatric endocrinologist Dr. Robert Lustig, whose YouTube video — entitled “Sugar: The Bitter Truth” — has garnered more than a quarter of a million hits to date and clearly brought Dr. Lustig into the limelight.

In this Nightline segment — which you can watch below — Donovan calls Dr. Lustig “a man at war with sugar,” because he argues that too much fructose and not enough fiber are to blame for our obesity crisis and metabolic syndrome.

“Fructose is the cause of the current epidemic,” insists Dr. Lustig, director of UCSF’s Weight Assessment for Teen and Child Health (WATCH) Clinic and
UCSF Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology.

Nightline correspondent Donovan also includes quotes from the pediatric endocrinologist about how fructose confuses people’s brains into thinking they’re hungry and about how low-fat foods such as SnackWells cookies and fruit-flavored yogurt are filled with sugar. Dr. Lustig even argues that teens should be carded when buying sugary foods.

In the Nightline “Sugar Wars” piece, Donovan strives to be unbiased by allowing Dr. Lustig’s ideas to be refuted by three pro-sugar advocates — one from the American Beverage Association (formerly called the National Soft Drink Association) and two from the Corn Refiners Association, including a cardiologist, who has done studies funded by PepsiCo, the manufacturer of sugar-filled soft drinks.

Understandably, correspondent John Donovan seems to be like millions of Americans, who have a sweet tooth. In fact, the reporter readily admits that strolling with Dr. Lustig at San Francisco’s Pier 30  (a hot spot filled with sugary foods such as waffle cones) can be “at times, well, a bit of of a downer. Because we love sugar, don’t we, most of us?”

Donovan is absolutely correct in his assessment. Most Americans — and people around the world — are so keen on sugar that they imbibe it to their detriment. Unfortunately, the Nightline reporter did not mention that obesity is only part of the sugar story.

The average American’s sugar consumption — about 170 pounds per year per person — also has been linked with heart disease, cancer, severe PMS, memory loss, depression, fatigue, headaches, infertility, low libido, polycystic ovary syndrome and many other ailments.

In addition, regretfully, the Nightline piece did not point out that Dr. Lustig is in good company. His views are shared by many of us concerned health advocates. For instance, esteemed pediatric endocrinologist Dr. David Ludwig — who was previously interviewed along with me for a “CBS News Sunday Morning” segment, “Is America Too Sweet on Sugar” — is among those frightened by the massive consumption of sugar, particularly high fructose corn syrup, in this country and around the world.

Others sounding the sugar alarm include:

Now, I invite you to watch the eye-opening Nightline segment below.

I also encourage you to watch Dr. Lustig’s YouTube video, in which he argues that the current obesity epidemic is due to the marked increase in people’s consumption of fructose over the last 30 years. He also points out that fructose is toxic in large quantities, because it is metabolized in the liver in the same way as alcohol, which drives fat storage and makes the brain think it is hungry.

Finally, I invite you to watch this 3 Minute Ad Age segment, in which I reveal that if you’re eating processed foods, it’s virtually impossible to take in high fructose corn syrup in moderation, as the Corn Refiners Association ads assert.

FYI, this increased awareness about sugar’s dangers comes at an exciting time for me, because next month, I celebrate my 12th year off sugar. If you’d like help to conquer your sugar habit and other bad habits, join the Smart Habits Fans on Facebook to get daily tips

You’re also invited to learn about my new 5-week, Break Free With Connie teleseminar program, which begins April 20. In honor of my 12th year kick-sugar anniversary, early-bird rates are now in effect.