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When springtime hits and we begin our annual ritual of spring cleaning our homes, it’s important that we don’t neglect one of the most important rooms in it: the kitchen. In this episode of the podcast, Dr. Daniel Amen and Tana Amen discuss how to go about doing a full spring clean of your kitchen, and how to determine what stays and what goes based on the type of diet that’s going to be most beneficial to you and your family.
Daniel Amen, MD:
Welcome to the Brain Warrior’s Way Podcast. I’m Dr. Daniel. Amen.
Tana Amen, BSN RN:
And I’m Tana. Amen. In our podcast, we provide you with the tools you need to become a warrior for the health of your brain and body.
The Brain Warrior’s Way Podcast is brought to you by Amen Clinics, where we have been transforming lives for 30 years, using tools like brain SPECT imaging to personalize treatment to your brain. For more information, visit amenclinics.com.
The Brain Warrior’s Way podcast is also brought to you by Brain MD, where we produce the highest quality nutraceuticals to support the health of your brain and body. To learn more, go to brainmd.com. Welcome back. We are talking about spring cleaning your mind today. I think before we get started, though, we want a review.
I have a review from Canada. Megan Camray. I stumbled across Dr. Amen’s work about a year ago, at the start of the lockdown and his Ted Talk on the results of 83,000 spec scans, and it sparked a journey unlike any other. I was diagnosed with PTSD roughly 15 years ago, along with obsessive compulsive personality disorder, ADD, and later came the fibromyalgial label. From the initial findings of Dr. Amen’s work to today, my life is completely different. I have completed a year of the, EMDR therapy, overhauled most of my dragons and lifestyle factors and returned to school to complete my education in clinical psychology.
It’s incredible what changes can be made from finding that spark of truth in another person’s work. I had the privilege of attending his Zoom meeting for the pre-order of Your Brain is Always Listening, and it reiterated the importance of his work, and the people who do it. We have so much more power than we think. Please check out these podcasts segments. They’re quick, captivating and even addicting. Dr. Amen is about knowledge and shares it in such a way that any person can comprehend and enjoy. Thank you for your work, and I look forward to contributing to the field in years to come. Well, that just gave me goose bumps.
I know. That was amazing.
That just gave me goose bumps.
That’s why we do it.
There’s no way I could do this without you. You make it easy. You make it fun, and I’m glad that we actually take time to spring clean our own minds, right? It just makes, helps you get along better with others when you don’t believe every stupid thing you think.
Spring cleaning, we can’t not talk about food. So, when your spring cleaning, you’re spring cleaning your cabinets and especially during the pandemic, I think a lot of people got lazy. I think there were times we gave in a little bit. We let the kids eat, a little bit … We were a little more relaxed, I think, because you feel like everything got taken away, but I noticed I wasn’t feeling like myself, right? I was feeling a little more, just a little more blech, and just, I mean, I think that’s the clinical term for it, blech. But when we, I mean, fortunately we know that. I was eating more carbs and I decided I do better on a keto-type diet. When I eat a lot of carbs, I just don’t feel right. My brain starts to feel foggy. So, when we did spring cleaning for me, spring cleaning for my mind means reevaluating my diet. I mean, you notice it. When I go back on my program, it takes me no more than two days, and bam, like, I just it’s like Lazarus effect.
So, what should people do when they go through their kitchen?
Well, I don’t think there’s one diet that fits everyone. I think there are some people out there who are vegan. If you are vegan, we’ll help you do it the cleanest way, and the healthiest way that you can. Vegan is not synonymous with health. There are people out there who are cavemen. Okay, fine. Brain Warrior’s Way is more like a modified, it’s close to Paleo, but it’s modified, way more greens. It’s not way more plant-based foods and it’s not … There are some, we don’t believe you can just have a bunch of honey and stuff like that. So, it’s modified, and it’s also based on your brain. So, that’s what I mean by one diet doesn’t fit all. So, I do better with low carb, but not everyone in my house does. Some people need healthy carbohydrates. They need smart carbs. My daughter gets completely just hyper-focused on problems and a little OCD if she doesn’t have some smart carbs.
So, as you go through your cabinets with each item, you just ask yourself good for my brain or bad for it, that it is critical to read the food labels.
Right, and we have a list in Brain Warrior’s Way Cookbook. If you’re not quite sure you want that list, I think it’s actually on my website as well. Tanaamen.com. I think I put it there, a list to help you clean out your cabinets, and we have shopping lists as well. So, I know I have a shopping list on the website to help you. It’s, what do you … It’s replace this with that. So, you don’t want to, you don’t need to erase, you need to replace, right? So, get rid of these things, but replace with this. No one wants to feel deprived, but you want to get rid of processed foods. For most people, they feel better when they’re eating … If you’re going to eat some carbs, make them smart carbs, gluten-free. Not everyone responds the same way to gluten, but a lot, most people feel better when they’re doing-
I think Dr [inaudible [00:06:15] said 100% of people who eat gluten, increase leaky gut.
Yeah, they do. Not everyone feels the same extreme, but it’s not good for anyone. It doesn’t serve a purpose in your health, so I think that’s the point. Dairy, for some people’s very extreme, and for other people, not so much. For me, it’s pretty extreme. So, you want to clean, but mostly get rid of the processed food and the sugar, start there, processed food and sugar. If you just start there, and you start replacing and you start figuring out, do I do better with a heavily plant-based diet and a little bit of clean protein? Do I do better on a more of a plant-based keto, or do I do better on a caveman diet? Figure out what works for you, and then start cleaning up your diet, because within a couple of days, you’re going to feel better and it’s going to change your thoughts. It’s going to change how you think.
So, spring cleaning your mind requires you to eat in a healthier way.
It also requires movement. So, this is a funny story. I love the story. I was talking to a friend of ours, who’s a police officer. I was complaining that I was feeling blech, my clinical term. I’m like,” I just feel kind of blech these last few months of quarantine.” I’m like, “I’m still moving. I’m eating pretty healthy. I’m working out every day.” He goes, “Yeah, but are you?” I’m like, “No, I am. I’m in my gym. I’m moving.” He goes, “Yeah, but here’s the difference.” He goes, “When you were practicing karate every day, you had to adapt to an intense environment. You had to adapt to your environment. Now you’ve adapted to walking on a treadmill and watching Netflix, and you’ve adapted to sitting around in fuzzy socks and watching Netflix all day. You’ve adapted to your environment.
It was like, ding, ding, ding. It was a light switch moment. What I realized is that how you move matters. So, move like you mean it. Move with purpose. Your physiology is one of the fastest ways to change how you feel. It’s one of the fastest ways to change your thoughts and your thinking. So, when I changed my … I shut off Netflix, put on some really inspiring music and started moving with more intensity, with more purpose, and I instantly changed how I felt.
So, if you’re going to spring clean your mind, I like this. This is really important, that don’t accept every stupid thought you have. Challenge them. [inaudible [00:08:45] to think, right. So, spring claim your cabinets, and there’s a lot of junk in people’s cabinets because early in the pandemic, when food-
We’re grabbing everything we could.
We were grabbing things that are still there.
So, getting rid of them is good, right? I always say-
Well, I put them in my-
My decision, not 30.
I put them in my end of world storage. The ones, like the canned goods [inaudible [00:09:12].
Well, a lot of canned goods are fine.
Correct. [crosstalk [00:09:16] And, the ones that are not things you would normally eat, just put them in your end of world storage, your emergency. I know you’ll never be able to say we don’t need that again.
Yeah, and don’t donate them to the poor because why are you going to make the poor eat bad food?
Okay. Well, but they need something. So, if you’re going to donate, I mean, it’s good to donate something, but save your really unhealthy stuff for your end of world, survival-mode type food.
So, spring cleaning your mind, directing your thoughts in a helpful way, eating right, moving right. Did you know, during the pandemic 60%, six out of 10 people, their weight changed fairly dramatically.
40% gained weight.
Some no, and some groups it was 41 pounds.
In younger people, it was actually more.
A lot of people lost a lot of weight-
Because they were anxious.
Because they were anxious and upset, or they didn’t have access to-
Well, and some people didn’t do so badly and they were had, they found time to exercise outside.
Yes, some people used this time to get healthy. More people-
… More anxious-
… became unhealthy. So, spring cleaning your mind is really the first place to start, because if you allow the anxiety to overwhelm you, then you’re going to do all the wrong things. So, we want you to do the right things for you. When we come back, I’m going to give you a very special technique that we’re an end up talking about a lot over the coming year. [inaudible [00:11:16] write it down. Hashtag, BrainWarriorswaypodcast, but highlight it, Spring Clean Your Mind. We’ll be back.
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