In this boiling political climate, many of us are finding ourselves glued to Twitter or other online news sources to keep up with everything that’s going on. But at what point are we merely “doomscrolling” and causing harm to our brains? In this episode of the podcast, Dr. Daniel and Tana Amen discuss the phenomenon of doomscrolling, and then tell you specific strategies you can use to keep this harmful form of social media addiction at bay.
Daniel G 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 BrainMD, 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. If you are new to The Brain Warrior’s Way Podcast, The Brain Warrior’s Way Podcast is really based on the book you and I wrote together, The Brain Warrior’s Way.
Right, which is based on MASTERY.
We love the whole brain warrior concept and the idea behind it is you’re in a war, and never more true than now. Watch The Social Dilemma on Netflix, and it’ll clearly give you the idea.
Well, we’re not even out of a pandemic yet. We’ve been quarantined, people are getting sick, the social uprising, the political nonsense, it’s clear.
That you’re in a war.
Especially for your mental health.
Everywhere you go, someone is trying to shove bad food down your throat, that will kill you early. That we often say, the real weapons of mass destruction are highly processed, pesticide sprayed, high-glycemic, low fiber, food-like substances, stored in plastic containers.
But now I actually feel like the news is neck and neck, if not ahead.
Well, the news, in fact, in the next episode, we’re going to talk about something called doom scrolling. I mean, you got to ask yourself, why has America been hit so hard with the coronavirus, including coronavirus deaths? And I would submit, it’s because we’re one of the unhealthiest places on earth, with 72% of the population overweight, 42% obese. Diabetes, or pre-diabetes, effecting 50%, 5-0% of the population. That hypertension actually affects 60%, of the population is hypertensive or prehypertensive. This is not okay. And in The Brain Warrior’s Way, we talked about the answer to these epidemic problems, is not to see them as single or isolated disorders, but to see them as the same expression of the unhealthy lifestyle, that we have been gifted by our society.
And if you are going to survive and thrive, you have to become a brain warrior. And in the book, we talk about this concept of MASTERY. Where M is mindset? Are you a sheep or are you a sheep dog? Do you follow the crowd? Do you do what everyone else says? Or do you think for yourself? Are you highly trained? And pets now completely need to be sheep dogs, and you’re my favorite sheep dog.
Right, I mean, we have a beautiful light shepherd. He’s not a sheep dog, he’s a therapy dog.
He is the sweetest thing ever.
Aslan, come here. For those of you that are watching, we’ll introduce you to Aslan.
This is Aslan.
He’s so sweet.
He doesn’t have an aggressive bone in his body though.
He’s a therapy dog.
And sheep dogs are gifted with the gift of aggression, just like wolves are, the difference is, their intention.
[inaudible [00:04:31] for protection. And the A is assessment.
That you have to know. I mean, that’s why we do imaging at Amen Clinics. Or you can go to our brain health assessment, and know your brain type, and how healthy your brain is. We also say, and the beginning of the year is a great time to get your important health numbers done. Your best defense against COVID is your immune system.
Yeah, that’s the thing I’ve been working the hardest on because that’s what got hit so hard for me. After 10 surgeries for medical issues, and going through so many treatments, and having the cancer come back, and all the medications they put me on, I knew, when I heard about COVID, I’m like, “Okay, immunity is my strongest defense.”
We need to protect you.
But immunity is my strongest defense.
Right, a good vitamin D level. We, BrainMD has a new product we love, Neuro-C. It’s a liquid vitamin C.
It is a liposomal vitamin C, which is the important type of vitamin C to take.
Along with Smart Mushrooms and Happy Saffron, which is by far my favorite BrainMD supplement, I take it every,
But it contains zinc, right?
It contains zinc.
So that’s another important one.
And saffron, a brand new study out, showing that saffron actually attacks the spike protein that is found on COVID-19. Your best defense is your immune system.
And I’m shocked that people, they’re still studying people who get COVID, especially the ones who get it really badly, that don’t have it like a cold, right? That they get really sick and get hospitalized. They’re still finding that these people are low in these nutrients, but they’re low. And I’m like, “We have such an ability now to spread this news.” For the average person, these supplements aren’t expensive. And for some people, we get it, for some people they are. But I feel like we need to do a better job of making these available to everyone, because this is going to save us so much in the long run.
As is sustenance, which we talked a lot about, eating the right food. So avoiding the weapons of mass destruction, and basically, think of a plate, as many plants as you can put on that plate, that are colorful, high quality protein, healthy fat.
Lots of fiber.
And fiber. Fiber is just so good to strengthen your gut health and your [crosstalk [00:07:04].
It’s got prebiotics, you want the right kinds of fiber too. Which, if you’re eating the right foods, you’re going to get it. But you want to be feeding those good bugs in your gut. You not only need the good bugs in your gut, you got to feed them, and fiber does that.
The T is training. You have to train your brain. You have to train your mind to do the right things.
Right. [crosstalk [00:07:28] I often say one of the reasons that I chose the metaphor of a warrior when I was sick and I felt so weak, and I felt like I was out of control, my life just felt out of control, was because I thought, what is the opposite of me? Because I need something the opposite of me right now. And so I latched onto this idea of being a warrior because I was just so fascinated with just the sheer power, and ability, and agility, of these people that protect us. And so that’s kind of what I latched on to. And one thing, when I started practicing martial arts, that you learn is, warriors don’t show up on fight day and think they’re going to win, unless they’ve been training every day. And so that’s how you need to think about your health. That’s how you need to think about your mental health. You don’t show up on fight day when there’s a war going on and think you’re going to win, if you have not been training every day.
E is essence, which is basically, why you care.
You wrote most of that chapter in the book, it’s about turning pain into purpose,
Which is why I wrote my book, the one that just came out, The Relentless Courage of a Scared Child. It’s about using those terrible stories, the things you’ve been through, your trauma, to be someone else’s transformation.
R is responsibility. Brain warriors are responsible that you are modeling hell, or you are modeling illness by your behavior. Now, responsibility, as Tana always says, is not about fault.
It’s not about blame, it’s about the ability to respond.
Right. But let us not forget, it’s not just about us. It’s about generations of us. When a baby girl is born, she’s actually born with all of the eggs she’ll ever have. So when you had Chloe, you are actually carrying the genetic material of your grandbabies. And this is so important to think about, that’s why we need to be brain warriors. And Y is years long. This isn’t a program to lose 10 pounds. This is a program to get control of your brain and your body, for the rest of your life. And so once you’re a warrior, you don’t stop being a warrior. It’s something you take in, and I’m 66 now, that is, I get into my seventies, eighties, nineties, I needed to be more serious about my health, not less serious.
I love my four children and my five grandchildren, but quite frankly, I never want to have to live with them. I never want to [crosstalk [00:10:26] be dependent on them, and I don’t want to be a burden. But the only way that’s going to happen, as I go into my older years is, if I take good care of myself.
And I did a great video recently with Natalie, who is the director of our social media, and she’s amazing. The minute I met her, I knew I had to hire her. She at 15 years old, broke her neck and was a quad- She’s a quadriplegic, not what was, is. Find an inspiration. She’s one of my people that I look to for inspiration, because it’s hard, especially in a pandemic, there are days, I’m constantly in pain, which I never had before. I’ve got constant back pain now, I won’t take anything for it, it’s just who I am. And there’s this tendency to want to go, “Okay, I’m going to baby this, I’m going to give into this.”
Now, don’t get me wrong, I want to protect myself. I don’t want to cause more damage, but whenever I think I can’t do something, or just I’m not going to do it today, I always think of Natalie. Natalie is a quadriplegic and every single day she gets up and works out. They told her she’d never walk again. She can walk with a walker, across a room. I mean, she’s astounding to me. So whenever I think I can’t do something, I think of someone like Natalie, and I’m like, “I can do something. I may not be able to do everything. I may not be able to do what I normally do. I can’t go do karate today, but I can do something. So find someone that inspires you.
On what you can do.
And find a mentor.
That’s the mindset of a brain warrior.
And so just basic training for brain warriors, mindset, are you a sheep or a sheepdog? Assessment, we have to assess, our brains and our bodies. Sustenance, what you eat matters. Training, we have to train our brain to look for what’s right, rather than what’s wrong. Essence, know why you care. Responsibility, it’s not about you, just about you. It’s about generations of you and years long, it’s not for six weeks, it’s for the rest of your life. What did you learn? Write it down, post it on any of your social media sites, #brainwarriorswaypodcast.
The Relentless Courage of a Scared Child, out this week, January 5th.
Thank you. If you either take a screenshot of this, if you are watching right now, take a screenshot of this. Or you can go to relentlesscourage.com, get a screenshot of the website with the cover on it, tag 10 friends, send it to 10 friends, tag them, then tag me @TanaAmen, or you can go to brainwarriorswaypodcast.com, and send me a message there, letting me know you tagged 10 friends. Show me that, that screenshot. And for the month of January, I will send you a signed copy.
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