Brain health is an important and often overlooked part of everyone’s wellness routine—so take time this month to learn how to take care of yourself and other with these insightful books.
With Kristin Loberg
In Grain Brain, renowned neurologist David Perlmutter, MD, exposes a finding that's been buried in the medical literature for far too long: carbs are destroying your brain. Even so-called healthy carbs like whole grains can cause dementia, ADHD, epilepsy, anxiety, chronic headaches, depression, decreased libido, and much more.
Groundbreaking and timely, Grain Brain shows that the fate of your brain is not in your genes. It's in the food you eat. The cornerstone of all degenerative conditions, including brain disorders, is inflammation, which can be triggered by carbs, especially containing gluten or high in sugar. Dr. Perlmutter explains what happens when the brain encounters common ingredients in your daily bread and fruit bowls, how statin drugs may be erasing your memory, why a diet high in "good fats" is ideal, and how to spur the growth of new brain cells at any age.
Dr. Perlmutter's revolutionary 4-week plan shows you how to keep your brain healthy, vibrant, and sharp while dramatically reducing your risk for debilitating neurological diseases as well as relieving more common, everyday conditions -- without drugs. Easy-to-follow strategies, delicious recipes, and weekly goals help you to put the plan into action. With a blend of anecdotes, cutting-edge research, and accessible, practical advice, Grain Brain teaches you how to take control of your "smart genes," regain wellness, and enjoy lifelong health and vitality.
Several factors play into whether you will suffer from cognitive decline and develop Alzheimer's disease -- lifestyle, health conditions, environment, and genetics, for example. But now there is scientific evidence indicating that diet plays a bigger role in brain health than we ever thought before.
In Diet for the MIND, one of the leaders in this research provides an easy, non-invasive, and effective way to prevent cognitive decline and reduce the risk of Alzheimer's disease through diet and lifestyle. There are specific foods and nutrients that are important for keeping the brain functioning optimally, and also foods to limit because they can cause brain injury. With 80 delicious recipes for every occasion, Diet for the MIND is your roadmap to a healthy brain -- for life.
For readers of Atul Gawande, Siddhartha Mukherjee, and Henry Marsh, a riveting, gorgeously written biography of one of history's most fascinating and confounding diseases -- Alzheimer's -- from its discovery more than 100 years ago to today's race towards a cure.
Alzheimer's is the great global epidemic of our time, affecting millions worldwide -- there are more than 5 million people diagnosed in the US alone. And as our population ages, scientists are working against the clock to find a cure.
Neuroscientist Joseph Jebelli is among them. His beloved grandfather had Alzheimer's and now he's written the book he needed then -- a very human history of this frightening disease. But In Pursuit of Memory is also a thrilling scientific detective story that takes you behind the headlines. Jebelli's quest takes us from nineteenth-century Germany and post-war England, to the jungles of Papua New Guinea and the technological proving grounds of Japan; through America, India, China, Iceland, Sweden, and Colombia. Its heroes are scientists from around the world -- many of whom he's worked with -- and the brave patients and families who have changed the way that researchers think about the disease.
This compelling insider's account shows vividly why Jebelli feels so hopeful about a cure, but also why our best defense in the meantime is to understand the disease. In Pursuit of Memory is a clever, moving, eye-opening guide to the threat one in three of us faces now.
With Eric Hagerman
Did you know you can beat stress, lift your mood, fight memory loss, sharpen your intellect, and function better than ever simply by elevating your heart rate and breaking a sweat? The evidence is incontrovertible: Aerobic exercise physically remodels our brains for peak performance.
In Spark, John J. Ratey, M.D., embarks upon a fascinating and entertaining journey through the mind-body connection, presenting startling research to prove that exercise is truly our best defense against everything from depression to ADD to addiction to aggression to menopause to Alzheimer's.
Filled with amazing case studies (such as the revolutionary fitness program in Naperville, Illinois, which has put this school district of 19,000 kids first in the world of science test scores), Spark is the first book to explore comprehensively the connection between exercise and the brain. It will change forever the way you think about your morning run -- -or, for that matter, simply the way you think.
Award-winning poet Jeanne Murray Walker tells an extraordinarily wise, witty, and quietly wrenching tale of her mother's long passage into dementia. This powerful story explores parental love, profound grief, and the unexpected consolation of memory. While Walker does not flinch from the horrors of "the ugly twins, aging and death," her eye for the apt image provides a window into unexpected joy and humor even during the darkest days.
This is a multi-layered narrative of generations, faith, and friendship. As Walker leans in to the task of caring for her mother, their relationship unexpectedly deepens and becomes life-giving. Her mother's memory, which more and more dwells in the distant past, illuminates Walker's own childhood. She rediscovers and begins to understand her own past, as well as to enter more fully into her mother's final years.
The Geography of Memory is not only a personal journey made public in the most engaging, funny, and revealing way possible, here is a story of redemption for anyone who is caring for or expecting to care for ill and aging parents-and for all the rest of us as well.
by John Hoffman
by Susan Froemke
With Susan K. Golant
This companion book to the HBO Documentary Films series explores the cutting-edge research on Alzheimer's disease that is creating new hope for the future.
Alzheimer's disease is the second most-feared illness in America, following cancer. It affects as many as 5 million Americans, a number that could soar to 16 million by 2050. It is estimated that, unless effective preventions are discovered, 10 million baby boomers will eventually develop this irreversible and devastating brain disorder.
Until recently, medical news on Alzheimer's disease was not comforting. But in the past few years, advances in many scientific areas -- from diagnostic imaging to genetic analysis -- have led to an explosion of knowledge with implications for treatment and prevention. This is an exciting time of discovery in Alzheimer's research.
Through The Alzheimer's Project film series, HBO Documentary Films illuminates the vital breakthroughs occurring in the field. One of the central films in this series, Momentum in Science, brings us inside the laboratories and clinics of the nation's top scientists and physicians who are clearing the path to a deeper understanding of Alzheimer's disease. By capturing the exhilaration of these scientists and casting light on their groundbreaking discoveries, the film seeks to bring a wider understanding of the disease and new hope for future treatment.
This book offers an even closer look at the advances of this scientific frontier. It investigates the complex cascade of events that occurs inside the brain when someone has Alzheimer's disease and shows how scientists are working to interrupt this process and ultimately prevent the disease. In accessible prose, it examines specific evidence of momentous progress, from the triumphant discovery of the unique role of the beta-amyloid and tau proteins, to the use of PET scans to track changes in the brain and the analyses of cerebrospinal fluid to identify biomarkers that will help us predict who will develop the disease in the future. It also looks at current drug development and at what we can do as individuals to potentially reduce our risk of developing the disease.
The Alzheimer's Project: Momentum in Science is a fascinating story of scientific discovery that shows what recent breakthroughs might mean for improving our chances of remaining cognitively vital throughout a long life.
by Zaldy S. Tan, MD, MPH
Do You Constantly...
Misplace your glasses?
Blank out on the names of close friends?
Waste precious time circling the parking lot to find your "lost" car? If so, you are probably plagued by the lingering question: "Am I just forgetful or am I losing my mind?" You can test your blood pressure, glucose, and cholesterol levels. But you, like most aging Americans, have had no way to test your memory-and save your mind from degeneration. Until now. You can detect signs of memory loss or mental deterioration and help slow it down or prevent it-before it's too late-with this revolutionary program.
In this groundbreaking book, Dr. Zaldy S. Tan, director of The Memory Clinic at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School Division on Aging, unveils a proactive plan that takes aim at Alzheimer's and dementia-once thought to be unpreventable-while there is still time. Dr. Tan's unique Memory Stress Test allows you to assess your mental strengths and weaknesses, and his all-new 60-minute brain workout is designed to help you sharpen specific brain functions, from concentration to attention span to recall. Age-Proof your Mind is packed with the latest in cutting-edge research as well as practical tips for keeping your brain healthy.
How you remember and why you forget
Ten simple steps to a healthier mind
How controlling inflammation can help you prevent memory problems
The role of antioxidants like vitamin E in promoting your mind's health
The latest treatment for Alzheimer's and promising information on a vaccine for this disease
Essential diet, exercise, and stress reduction programs that will help improve your mental fitness.
by Martha Lear
So your memory's not what it used to be? You forget people's names, or what you were just about to say, or why you went into the kitchen. Often you forget where you left your keys (your wallet, your glasses, your list of Things to Do Tomorrow). And you worry. You wonder: Could this mean I am losing it? Join the crowd, friend. there are seventy-eight million baby boomers in the country, and memory loss is the number one concern of the boomer generation. The "Worried Well," specialists call them. They worry because they do not know that most memory lapses that begin in middle age are universal and normal.
Award-winning journalist Martha Lear, who gave voice to widespread frustration with medical care in her New York Times bestselling memoir Heartsounds, now explores this kind of forgetfulness--why it happens, and when, and what can be done about it. She interviews distinguished neuroscientists, psychologists, and evolutionary biologists, as well as friends and strangers about their own memory lapses. Interweaving dramatic new findings from brain-scan studies with often-hilarious anecdotes, Lear covers topics as fresh and provocative as the upside of memory loss, the differences between His and Her memories, why we are actually wired to forget, and what the future holds for memory enhancement (you can't imagine what's in store).
You'll learn things you never knew before about why your memory behaves in such maddening ways. You'll find comfort and reassurance. And you'll probably find yourself on every page.
A "courageous and singular book" (Andrew Solomon), Memory's Last Breath is an unsparing, beautifully written memoir -- "an intimate, revealing account of living with dementia" (Shelf Awareness).
Based on the "field notes" she keeps in her journal, Memory's Last Breath is Gerda Saunders' astonishing window into a life distorted by dementia. She writes about shopping trips cut short by unintentional shoplifting, car journeys derailed when she loses her bearings, and the embarrassment of forgetting what she has just said to a room of colleagues. Coping with the complications of losing short-term memory, Saunders, a former university professor, nonetheless embarks on a personal investigation of the brain and its mysteries, examining science and literature, and immersing herself in vivid memories of her childhood in South Africa. "For anyone facing dementia, [Saunders'] words are truly enlightening . . . Inspiring lessons about living and thriving with dementia." -- Maria Shriver, NBC's Today Show
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