, , , , ,

I promise you that while I was driving to Dunkin Donuts, I had a post all ready to write down in my head. I was going to get my coffee, light with skim milk and sit down and write down what I had crafted in my head. I got my coffee, I sat dowm, logged onto the internet, clicked on WordPress and a BIG BLANK formed in my frontal lobe, or that is what it feels like, a big empty space where the words and thoughts had been not ten minutes ago. Since I can’t remember what I was going to write about, I’ll write about something linked to memory loss; The Doctor Oz show.

Doctor Oz dedicates quite a few shows to memory conservation, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. He either has tips regarding nutrition, exercise or other tools designed to keep your grey cells engaged or at least to keep them from any further decline. This past Monday, he had on a Neurologist that he refers many of his patients to and he has great faith in his abilities as a neurologist. This neurologist just put out a book called “The Brain Grain” and it calls into question many of the previous assumptions that many in the health care field had towards diet and brain health. According to the neurologist, I can’t remember his name, we need to rethink our relationship with carbohydrates, all of them, because they all raise our blood sugar levels and that is toxic to brain health. Instead we should be investing our calories in heart healthy fats such as; olive oil, coconut oil, avocados, vegetables that grow above ground and aren’t considered starchy, fatty fish and lean meats. When Doctor Oz asked about fruits, the neurologist said you can have certain fruit but limited portions such as a handful of blueberries. The neurologist’s reasoning is that starches, both simple and complex carbohydrates, elevate our blood sugar levels, producing inflammation everywhere in our body and especially our brains paving the way for dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Basically he said a fatty stomach means a shrinking brain. He especially counseled against eating vegetables that grow under ground because they convert all of their sugars into starch, a big no no for brain health.

Doctor Oz was a little flabbergasted when the neurologist told him that he needed to amend his food strategies from this day forward and to emphasize healthy fats over any carbohydrates. My mother pointed out that the late Doctor Atkins appears to have been vindicated after all. When he passed away, not too long ago, his diet that emphasized fats and proteins with little to no carbohydrates had undergone a lot of criticism. Now with this neurologist, was Doctor Atkins right?

These contradictory diets are confusing and not because I look to them as weight loss regimes, I am looking to keep what is left of my brain, healthy and intact. Forgetting half of what I read or what people tell me can be a huge annoyance. The things that people tell me and me forgetting them isn’t so bad, I haven’t met anyone who has held it against me and a few of my friends now know that telling me a secret is a guarantee that it will be kept because I will forget what they had told me very quickly. It has nothing to do with me not paying attention, I think that the problem lies with the retrieval system. Mine has gotten rusted or something. On the other hand, the act of forgetting what I read, that is driving me a little nuts. It interferes with my ability to craft strong convincing arguments when I write on my political blog. I used to have all of the information right at my disposal whenever I was preparing to argue one position or another, nowadays my retention has decreased to what I would describe as a trickle whereas in the past I could recall a torrent of information from different sources and construct my arguments by successfully constructing reasoned and logical threads of reasoning, those days are coming to a close. It frustrates me a lot.

Oh well what can you do, all that I can do is to try my best at eating healthy and ingesting the least amount of sugar as I can reasonably do, I genuinely do stay away from candy and processed foods but I can’t completely forgo ice cream. I had been very successful in not indulging for a solid 28 days which I was proud of, I had a nice break and it did disrupt the bad habit before I was completely out of control and eating ice cream every day. I am much better for it.