Dr. David Perlmutter | Brain Wash: How To Create Mental Clarity & Detox Your Mind for Clearer Thinking

“Social media really just locks people into a single frame of reference. In Brain Wash, we really call for this idea of rekindling cognitive empathy which is a function of the prefrontal cortex because the more we lock into the amygdala by being on social media that looks at just one perspective the more we don't get a good night's sleep, the more we eat inflammatory foods, the less we exercise, the less we engage in nature, and the less we meditate.”  – Dr. David Perlmutter

Wellness + Wisdom Episode 367

Neurologist and New York Times Best Selling Author of Grain Brain, and Co-Author of his latest book, Brain Wash, Dr. David Perlmutter, returns to share which healthy habits create mental clarity, how to rewire the brain by offsetting inflammation, how social media blocks our cognitive empathy, what disconnection syndrome is and how to overcome it.

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[click_to_tweet tweet=”‘Even one night of non-restorative sleep is associated with a dramatic uptick in inflammation markers. If it seems like we talk about sleep quite a bit, guess what – there's a good reason. Sleep is so underrated.'- @DavidPerlmutter ” quote=”‘Even one night of non-restorative sleep is associated with a dramatic uptick in inflammation markers. If it seems like we talk about sleep quite a bit, guess what – there's a good reason. Sleep is so underrated.'- @DavidPerlmutter “]

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Listen To Episode 367 As Dr. David Perlmutter Uncovers:


[1:30] The Biggest Challenge Facing Physicians In A Modern World

[14:00] Do You Have Disconnection Syndrome?

  • Why we don't have to be socially distant while in isolation and what we can do about it.
  • What Disconnection Syndrome is and how we will feel more isolated and lonely the more we remain locked in the amygdala.
  • The dire health consequences that occur because of Disconnection Syndrome.
  • How focusing on shifting our mindset with the help of Brain Wash is directly related to enhancing immune function as well.
  • Simple self-care practices you can do today for mental clarity and better health including good sleep, a healthier diet by lowering sugar and refined carb intake, re-exposing yourself to nature, and meditating.
  • The epidemic of young Americans being severely unhealthy by being obese, diabetic, and having high blood sugar.

[21:00] How Social Media Blocks Our Cognitive Empathy

  • How social media brands and apps are literally accosting us as they flood our bodies with chemicals.
  • Why social media is anything but social as it creates antisocial behavior and breeds isolation.
  • Breaking down what cognitive empathy is and how social media is working against it.
  • What happens when we spend so much time in one corner of social media that it only caters to our views instead of exploring others.
  • How social media addiction is leading not only to the isolation of our thoughts but also harming our mental, physical, and emotional health.
  • How holding in trauma can increase our inner child's ability to be in control of our behavior and thought patterns rather than our actual adult, mature selves.
  • What someone can do to shift their mindset when they have experienced trauma.
  • The power of neuroplasticity as we strengthen the prefrontal cortex to help us weaken the traumatic pathways.
  • Breaking down what an engram is and how we activate them with movement and how they impact our mood as well as decision making.

[29:00] Rewiring The Brain By Offsetting Inflammation

[34:00] How To Guard Your Sleep Each Night

  • The simple truth that sleep is so important to our health that we need 7-8 hours of it each night.
  • How to get to the bottom of why you're not getting a good night's sleep and what you can do to change that.
  • Why there's nothing better for decision making than getting a good night's sleep.
  • Their new project to take the best parts of Brain Wash to help doctors improve their patients' decision-making.
  • Why 50-80% of the information and advice that doctors give to their patients ends up never being carried out and acted upon.
  • Getting to the bottom of why so much of society isn't getting enough sleep each night and how we can change this by providing them the knowledge they need to encourage action.
  • How Americans' attention was already being hijacked pre-COVID-19 as we spent an average 6+ hours a day in front of a screen.
  • The impact of screen time as a distraction of not spending enough time moving, cooking healthy meals, sleeping, and spending quality time with other people.
  • How reading constantly about COVID-19 is hijacking your attention even more, building greater fear, and keeping you from living a healthy lifestyle you love.

[43:00] The Healing Inner Work We Get To Do

  • How the inner work and emotional intelligence quotient of healing our inner child relate to the strategies in Brain Wash.
  • What you can do to make the most of COVID-19 to spend time focusing on your personal growth.
  • Exploring what we've inherited from our ancestors including not just genes but trauma as well
  • The steps he and his son, Dr. Austin Perlmutter, have taken to heal something in their family lineage.
  • How he was able to let go of his father's inability to spend more time with him as he dedicated his life to the field of brain surgery.
  • Unpacking the lineage between happiness and being content as we face struggles throughout life.
  • How our modern life is fostering discontent and the idea that we don't have enough or are enough for others.
  • The pause we've been given in 2020 to cultivate greater awareness, gratitude, and what really matters in life.
  • How his view on what wellness means to him has changed since his first interview with Josh 2.5 years ago.


Power Quotes From The Show

[click_to_tweet tweet=”‘Our ability to make good health decisions has been sabotaged by our modern world. Junk food, NSAIDs, antibiotics, poor sleep, and no exercise all fan the flames of inflammation and keep us from rewiring the brain.' – @DavidPerlmutter” quote=”‘Our ability to make good health decisions has been sabotaged by our modern world. Junk food, NSAIDs, antibiotics, poor sleep, and no exercise all fan the flames of inflammation and keep us from rewiring the brain.' – @DavidPerlmutter”]

The Modern World Is Hijacking Our Health

“Our ability to make good decisions to live healthier lives has been sabotaged by our modern world. Our brains tend to get locked into acting impulsively using an area of the brain called the amygdala and it's happening more and more with our shortsighted behaviors from eating sugar and junk food to staying up late binge-watching Netflix. We do whatever it is that's not necessarily in our best interest but we do it because we don't have the ability many times to access the other part of the brain, the prefrontal cortex, that allows us to basically allow the adult back into the room and help us with our decision making.” – Dr. David Perlmutter

The Teeter Totter Between Inflammation & Neuroplasticity

“What works directly against neuroplasticity and neurogenesis, the growth of new brain cells, is inflammation. Whatever we do that increases inflammation will tend to make it more difficult for us to engage neuroplasticity. We really want to do our best in order to allow our brains to rewire to do everything we can to offset inflammation. What enhances inflammation that we need to be aware of? Well, we know that there are plenty of foods that are pro-inflammatory; hyper-processed, ultra-processed, simple carbs, bad fats, omega 6s, etc. Not just a bad diet but also plenty of influence from medications such as antibiotics, acid-blocking drugs, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs; the list contains more than a thousand but lifestyle habits do fan the flames of inflammation.” – Dr. David Perlmutter

Why Sleep Is So Underrated

“Even one night of non-restorative sleep is associated with a dramatic uptick in inflammation markers in our bodies and as much of a 60% increase in activity in the amygdala. If it seems like we talk about sleep quite a bit, guess what – there's a good reason. Sleep is so underrated and it's such a powerful on-ramp for better health. In Brain Wash, we talk about it perhaps being the most important on-ramp these days towards reducing inflammation, reducing cortisol, and regaining a connection to the prefrontal cortex and really rebalancing the immune system.” – Dr. David Perlmutter

Links From Today's Show 

About Dr. David Perlmutter

Dr. David Perlmutter is a Neurologist and Fellow of the American College of Nutrition who received his M.D. degree from the University of Miami School of Medicine where he was awarded the Leonard G. Rowntree Research Award. He is the author of: The Better Brain Book and the #1 New York Times Bestseller, Grain Brain, and Brain Maker, also a New York Times best seller. He is recognized internationally as a leader in the field of nutritional influences in neurological disorders. Over the past 35 years, Dr. Perlmutter has been interviewed on many nationally syndicated radio and television programs including 20/20, Larry King Live, CNN, Fox News, Fox and Friends, The Today Show, The Oprah Winfrey Show, Like with Kelly and Michael, Montel Across America and The CBS Early Show.

The cornerstone of Dr. Perlmutter’s unique approach to neurological disorders is founded in the principles of preventive medicine. He has brought to the public awareness a rich understanding that challenging brain problems including Alzheimer’s disease, other forms of dementia, depression, and ADHD may very well be prevented with lifestyle changes including a gluten free, low carbohydrate, higher fat diet coupled with aerobic exercise.

Unhack Your Brain – Episode #2: Digital Detox


About Josh Trent

Josh Trent lives in Austin, Texas with his love Carrie Michelle, son Novah, daughter Nayah + a cat named Cleo. He is the host of the Wellness + Wisdom Podcast and the creator of the BREATHE: Breath + Wellness Program. Josh has spent the past 20+ years as a trainer, researcher + facilitator discovering the physical and emotional intelligence for humans to thrive in our modern world. Helping humans LIBERATE their mental, emotional, physical, spiritual + financial self through podcasts, programs + global community that believe in optimizing our potential to live life well.

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