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Brain Maker

The Power of Gut Microbes to Heal and Protect your Brain – for Life

By Dr. David Perlmutter with Kristin Loberg
15-minute read
Audio available
Brain Maker: The Power of Gut Microbes to Heal and Protect your Brain – for Life by Dr. David Perlmutter with Kristin Loberg

Brain Maker (2015) explains the connection between your health and your microbiome – the bacteria in your gut. It shows you how even diseases that affect the brain such as Alzheimer’s are actually influenced by your microbiome. Importantly, you’ll learn how making some simple dietary decisions can help you keep disease at bay and make yourself healthier.

  • People wanting to improve their health
  • Parents of children with health problems or conditions such as autism
  • Medical practitioners and nutritionists interested in alternative approaches to health

Dr. David Perlmutter is a neurologist and the president of the Perlmutter Health Center in Florida. He is the author of the bestselling book Grain Brain. Additionally, he has written for the Huffington Post, the Daily Beast as well as for medical publications such as the Journal of Neurosurgery.

Kristin Loberg is a writer and editor, and has been a contributing author for many bestselling books, including Rule #1 (with Phil Town), The End of Illness (with David Agus) and Grain Brain (with David Perlmutter). Loberg also holds writing workshops at the University of California at Los Angeles.

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Brain Maker

The Power of Gut Microbes to Heal and Protect your Brain – for Life

By Dr. David Perlmutter with Kristin Loberg
  • Read in 15 minutes
  • Audio & text available
  • Contains 9 key ideas
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Brain Maker: The Power of Gut Microbes to Heal and Protect your Brain – for Life by Dr. David Perlmutter with Kristin Loberg
Synopsis

Brain Maker (2015) explains the connection between your health and your microbiome – the bacteria in your gut. It shows you how even diseases that affect the brain such as Alzheimer’s are actually influenced by your microbiome. Importantly, you’ll learn how making some simple dietary decisions can help you keep disease at bay and make yourself healthier.

Key idea 1 of 9

Your gut microbes can have a considerable impact on the size of your waistline.

The human gut is colonized by tons and tons of bacteria. A thought that’s not only strange, but also perhaps a little gross. Yet here’s another strange fact: these colonies play a huge role in your health.

Let’s start with how much you weigh. Interestingly, the type of bacteria you’ve got in your gut can determine whether you stay slim or become obese.

Two groups of bacteria are accountable for some 90 percent of your gut’s microbiome – firmicutes and bacteroidetes.

While scientists don’t know the “ideal” ratio of these groups, they do know that when you have more firmicutes than bacteroidetes, you can suffer from increased inflammation and potentially from obesity.

Firmicutes are expert at extracting energy from the food you eat, which means that they help you consume more calories. In contrast, bacteroidetes aren’t so much involved with calorie extraction but work to break down plant fibers and starches.

Harvard researchers examined the connection of obesity and a person’s microbiome, focusing on two groups: people living in Western countries and in Africa. Considering that obesity is virtually non-existent in Africa, any differences in microbiome were viewed as notable.  

And what researchers found was indeed notable. Africans had more bacteroidetes in their gut, while Westerners had more calorie-extracting firmicutes. So having more firmicutes may be at least partly responsible for the obesity epidemic in the West.

Your microbes not only help to keep you slim (or fat) but also help support your liver. Many foods contain environmental toxins; it’s the liver’s job to get rid of these once in your body.

Yet a healthy gut can also support the liver in its work, which is why the gut is often called the body’s “second liver.”

Gut microbes help to neutralize toxins that reach the intestines, acting as a first line of defense. In doing so, the microbes take a bit of pressure off the liver, keeping it healthier!

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