Thursday, January 23, 2014

Grain Brain - Review

Put down the sandwich and read this
This book started off strong and offered a lot of information that was easily understandable. Of course, I'm already a believer in the low carb diet as a way to lose weight, so I didn't take much convincing. HS and I dropped a considerable amount of weight back in the day on the Atkins diet and we were surviving on steak, cheese and pork rinds (more or less LOL).

One of my main goals in life is to remain healthy and fit throughout my life. I don't want to be feeble and confined to a rocking chair in my old age. I want to be racing. I want to be the 70 year crossing the finish line to a round of applause from the youngsters. What I hadn't given much thought to was my mental capacity at 70. Reading this book will make you think about it and it will scare the hell out of you!

Rating - "Tired Legs" (see previous post for rating system)

This book started of strong and was very engaging. This may sound odd, but during the early chapters I found it hard to put the book down. I know first hand that too many carbs in my diet gives me a "sugar hangover". I have also suffered from extreme bloating and fatigue from eating more than my fair share of french bread. While I knew all of this was going on, I didn't make the connection to what it was potentially doing to my brain. Grain Brain spells it out for you in clear, understandable language.

Before reading this book, I read Fitness Confidential and had already sworn off sugar and grains. Grain Brain cemented my resolve. After a week without the sugar and grains, I noticed that my belly bloat was gone and that I was also able to focus better at the fog had lifted. I think my noticeable results along with all the fascinating facts I was reading in Grain Brain made the book that much more interesting.

However, the last 25% of the book started to drag on and covered things like meal plans and recipes. I skimmed through this section just to see what they were suggesting...nothing earth shattering in my opinion or much different than how I normally cook. Grilled fish with veggies for dinner? Stop the presses!

Official Summary

Grain Brain by David Perlmutter, MD.

Published Sept. 17, 2013

"The devastating truth about the effects of wheat, sugar, and carbs on the brain, with a 30-day plan to achieve optimum health.

Renowned neurologist David Perlmutter, MD, blows the lid off a topic that's been buried in medical literature for far too long: carbs are destroying your brain. And not just unhealthy carbs, but even healthyones like whole grains can cause dementia, ADHD, anxiety, chronic headaches, depression, and much more. Dr. Perlmutter explains what happens when the brain encounters common ingredients in your daily bread and fruit bowls, why your brain thrives on fat and cholesterol, and how you can spur the growth of new brain cells at any age. He offers an in-depth look at how we can take control of our "smart genes" through specific dietary choices and lifestyle habits, demonstrating how to remedy our most feared maladies without drugs. With a revolutionary 30-day plan, GRAIN BRAIN teaches us how we can reprogram our genetic destiny for the better."

Next Book

NOTE: My daughter suggested that I write a book about my triathlon experiences. Since there are already books about couch potato triathletes, old triathletes, working mother triathletes etc., I was going to write about the perimenopausal triathlete. UGH! Pamela Fagan Hutchins beat me to it! 

Hot Flashes And Half Ironmans (Women's Health and Triathlon) by Pamela Fagan Hutchins

Published April 29, 2012

Middle-aged Endurance Athletics Meets The Hormonally Challenged

Women get older, dammit, and sometimes it sucks, especially for women who pride themselves on athleticism and an adventurous spirit. Hot flashes. Weight gain. Sleepless nights. Yes, it can be hard, but middle age doesn’t have to be a flashing red stop light. It’s perfectly acceptable for women of a certain age, a certain level of hormonal imbalance, and a certain amount of cellulite to don spandex and even enter the rarefied sport of endurance triathlon.

In fact, there’s a huge advantage to aging: much of the potential competition drops out in favor of the couch and a remote control. And the endurance high? The elation of dietary purity and discovering you can have arms like Madonna? The Zen of goal attainment? Better than a good Shiraz buzz. Once you get past the ugly mood swings, chafing on your girly parts, and a “kill your own mother” craving for sleep and a hot Cinnabon, that is.

Pamela Fagan Hutchins has been there and done that, with lessons learned and sense of humor (usually) intact. She completed her first triathlon at 39 and her first Half Ironman at 40. She has her eye on an M-dot tattoo in 2014.