Customer Reviews for

Change Your Brain, Change Your Life: The Breakthrough Program for Conquering Anxiety, Depression, Obsessiveness, Anger, and Impulsiveness

Average Rating 4
( 159 )
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5 Star

(66)

4 Star

(37)

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(24)

2 Star

(17)

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 161 Customer Reviews
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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 2, 2003

    May change your brain for the better

    This is a pretty good book that appeals to the broad audience of just about anyone who has suffered from at least mild mental distress, and that includes about everyone. I agree with the doctor's philosophy that most mental disturbances can be attributed to metabolic abnormalities in different regions of the brain, though there's nothing too earthshaking about this idea. Many of the cognitive therapy excercises seem to be derived from ideas that Aaron Beck and David Burns have had, though the doctor does a good job summarizing and presenting these ideas in a practical, easy to use manner. This book also is not anti-medication, in spite of presenting these non-medication methods for improving mental health. Overall, a good read for anyone suffering from any type of mild mental distress.

    23 out of 23 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 4, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Changed My Brain, Changed My Life

    I was working at a book packing company when I saw the cover to this book. I didn't think much of it as the time. I suffered from Panic and anxiety and was really confused with were to go with my life. So when I read the cover to this book and opened it up I skimmed threw it only to find myself being fired for reading on the job, (was a crap job anyway). I picked up the book at a barns and noble not to far from my house and only took 2 days to read it. after I was done it took a couple months to apply it. This book did change my life. I thought I was alone in my feelings but found out there are MANY others with similar issues to mine. The information given in this book saved my sanity and my life. I'm back to who I used to be, only better. I have a more positive outlook on my life. I eat right, exercise everyday, Call my family everyday, hug my lover and let him know I love him and look at life in a brighter state. I stay away from what pollutes my mind and actually enjoy gaining more knowledge by challenging my brain everyday with number and word problems, puzzles, and my behavior. If you feel depressed or have personal conflict issues check out this book! not by any means a cure all but it will try and help to put the pieces together for the self help you have been looking for.

    17 out of 18 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 21, 2008

    A different perspective

    Dr. Amen's understanding of how the brain impacts the mind and emotions is an important addition to two ground-breaking books on mental and emotional competence. I tried his strategies for dealing with impulsiveness and anxiety and they worked. I also had a remarkable breakthrough when I implemented the strategies in Optimal Thinking. Read this book along with Emotional Intelligence by Danniel Goleman, and Optimal Thinking by Rosalene Glickman to get the full picture.

    13 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 26, 2009

    MD Reveals Brain Damage (Even From Too Much Caffeine) Through 3D Spect Scans (Combination of Thermal and Xray of Brain), Also Informative About Areas of Brain Affected and How it Affects Person

    Extremely interesting, and probably a breakthrough nonfiction about the fragility of the brain and its relationship to the environment and to the person. The author explains areas of the brain and their performance along with many SPECT images in 3D of the areas of the brain and what the brain damaged areas look like compared to a healthy brain.

    There are many SPECT images (that look like a combination of thermal imaging and xrays) in the book where the reader can see the areas of the brain affected by different substances and how these damaged areas negatively affect the person--they go along with case studies of many people that suffer from all sorts of brain damage (from mild to severe) from everything from a fall from a cycle, a stroke, different types of substance abusers, and those affected by pollution, ADD victims and more. The author even mentions that his own SPECT was not too good due to his eating junk food (though his SPECT was not included in the book). The author states that these brain damage problems can cause problems in relationships such as leading to divorces and poor performance on workplaces, road rage and more serious crimes and other social problems (thet he details in his case studies). The good news is that the author states the brain does repair itself with a healthy well balanced diet with additives such as green tea, fish oils, chicken, potatoes, relaxing classical music such as Mozart, exercise, and learning a subject such as taking a course at a university--all that are generally known to be good for overall health. He also offers synthetic medication advice suggesting that prescriptive medications are often known not to succeed because of what he calls misdiagnosis--that someone may be diagnosed with depression and given prescriptives, but may actually suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder.

    What is not really answered is that repairing the brain from synthetics such as prescriptive medications--whether the repair is a real repair or an invisible funky repair--it looks okay, but is it really?

    The author is sometimes on public television in the USA. On one aired last year, he said of all of the thousands of people that he did brain scans on (what would appear to be the typical person), only 3% had healthy, normal brains.

    Other literature suggests that if the brain is damaged in an area, another area of the brain takes over the damaged areas responsibilities. This book reveals that it may not necessarily be all true since some people that he works with sufffer from some problems and go to him for help.

    The author does not really push anything, just to be aware of what one is exposed to, and what/how it can negatively affect one. He does not state how much radiation is emitted from SPECT scans, but he does not say SPECTS are necessary. One becomes more aware of what some sports people might have to deal with--such as boxers and football players that receive blows to the head.

    I gave this book five stars because it is such a complex subject, and the author made it such easy reading.

    12 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 11, 2009

    Great Book

    I have discovered it is possible to change my life by changing my brain! I bought the book because I saw Dr. Amen on PBS and I recongnized myself as one of the people he was describing. The book helped me to realize that most of what was causing me to be unhappy wasn't caused by the people around me or by the circumstances of my life. It is caused by the way my brain works. The book taught me what I needed to do to turn my life around. It takes work, but is well worth the effort!

    9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 14, 2010

    EXCELLENT Brain Information

    Great book explaining how the brain works, what might be wrong, how to identify problems, & how they can be treated. And NEVER take a seemingly harmless head injury for granted! All-around open-minded & hollistic (addresses pharmaceutical treatments as well as natural alternatives & psychological/emotional tips & advice). I first learned about Dr Amen & his work on a PBS show & he was very articulate, experienced & informational. Getting this book has been very helpful. I recommend it to those who care about the health & well being of their brains, & also those who are wondering why they or their loved ones continually behave a certain way that can't seem to be changed or stopped. Covers such issues as ADD/ADHD, OCD, anxiety/fear/panic disorders, agression/violence/anger, negative thinking/suicidal thoughts, various types of depression, Alzheimer's/dementia/memory loss, physical brain injuries, drug/alcohol abuse, even the effects of smoking/nicotine/caffeine use & other medications or nutritional deficiencies. Very comprehensive & thorough work. Written in very clear & easily understandable language. Dr Amen makes you feel at ease & gives much peace of mind, confidence & hope.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 18, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Enlightening, Interesting, Helpful

    Daniel G. Amen, M.D., is a clinical neuroscientist and medical director of the Amen Clinic for Behavioral Medicine in California. Dr. Amen has pioneered and developed a unique way of assessing and then treating a host of behavioral problems, using single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), a technology that measures and pictures the level of blood flow and activity levels in real time in the brain.

    The book is fascinating, as it includes many helpful images of the SPECT results for healthy brains and then for those with various personality difficulties. The images graphically show the results of brain trauma (such as accidents), drug or excessive alcohol use, or even inherited characteristics.

    When various parts of the brain are under-performing, or over-performing, distortion in normal thinking, attitudes, and reactions will follow. Particular problems Amen discusses include depression, hyperactivity, anxiety, inability to focus, obsessiveness, anger, and violence.

    This book is especially helpful, not only help for people with family or friends who have a clinical condition, but also for all of us who have some of these problems to a more limited degree. For more extreme cases, medications are suggested that normalize the brain parts affected. For the rest of us, each chapter includes clear and detailed signs to recognize the problem and a series of exercises and practices to help clear it up. We can change our brains!

    Occasionally Dr. Amen refers to his previous paradigm learned from his religious training, that these are spiritual defects or are the result of spiritual forces. He now concludes that they have a physical cause, a cause that can be treated medically or psychologically. Since I teach theology in a seminary, this aspect of his book particularly interested me. I believe in the biblical teaching that there is a nonmaterial soul, but I think the soul uses the brain as its "interface" to interact with the environment. When the brain is damaged, the result is a distortion of the way the soul expresses itself. Repeated choices can affect the brain physically; such effects are consequences of those choices. The relation of the spiritual to the material is a mystery, but I think that Amen's research does not disprove there is such a mystery. Other researchers have explored this phenomenon from a brain imaging perspective (see my review of The Spiritual Brain: A Neuroscientist's Case for the Existence of the Soul, by Mario Beauregard and Denyse O'Leary).

    I found this book very interesting and helpful. In counseling situations we often come across such behavioral problems, and it is helpful to recognize and categorize them. The suggested exercises and ways of thinking constructively are in line with the best wisdom of my own Christian tradition, as well as being demonstrated to be effective in the practice of Dr. Amen and others.

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 24, 2008

    Excellent and easy-to-follow

    This is an outstanding book - helpful, easy to read, and filled with useful facts. For those wanting a guide to how to use the mind-body connection for health and self-healing, I recommend 'THINKING YOUR WAY TO BETTER HEALTH' by Dr. Andrew Goliszek.

    5 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2008

    Richard Giberti reviews Change Your Brain...

    I am a big fan of Dr Amen, my first exposure was attending a brain/ADHD symposium in the late 1990's. He normalizes 'aberant' behavior by showing brain function and structure as the culprit to innapropriate or socially unacceptable behavior. As a researcher and trained therapist, I have seen the types of deep and lasting changes made, which Dr Amen describes. The Brain CAN change, and the results can be magical.

    5 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2006

    Life changing experience!!!!

    It blew me away to find out how holding on to negitive memories can hold us back from living out our full potential and training our minds to automaticly think positive can bring us success and happiness,keep us strong and self confident.My life will never be the same.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 19, 2009

    Great and educational reading!!

    Dr Amen takes us on a journey thru the brain that most people are unaware of.
    The book is well written, easy to understand and certainly holds your interest. He discusses certain behaviors in ourselves which are related to different areas of the brain and helps us understand how the use of drugs, alcohol and other stimulants can affect how well our brains operate.
    He then educates us to the facts of how we can change our behaviors by changing our diets and how by adding certain natural supplements we can change our thinking....and even prevent dementia. Great book!!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 23, 2009

    MENTAL IS PHYSICAL

    Finally, mental conditions are visible! This book should do much to remove the stigma from mental illness by reinforcing and popularizing the fact that mental illness has a physical basis, whether caused by genes, disease, or damage. Although fMRI's aren't easily available to the general population yet (largely because of expense and the unwillingness of insurance companies to pay for them), Amen shows--with many photos of brain scans--the functional damage to affected brain systems in different disorders and injuries. These are quite convincing. Not only could this help in difficult cases of diagnosis, but it could point the way to proper treatment. He even includes certain brain "exercises" and treatments (music, etc.)that,in conjunction with medication, can help strengthen or calm the affected parts of the damaged brain.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 8, 2008

    I LOVE books like this!

    Ok, so I am a little biased, as you can guess from my Headline. However, while I love books like this, I don't automatically do so. 'Change Your Brain, Change Your Life' deservedly earns an OUTSTANDING review! You don't need to have issues or problems to read this, so this isn't just for those who need 'Self Help' books. The techniques and theories in this book are very thought-provoking and result-producing. So, if you like improving your daily life, or understanding how to help others more---pick this book up!

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2010

    an interesting book

    This book has a lot of interesting ideas on how to deal with your anxiety and other mental and emotional problems you could be having. I thought he wrote in a style that was easy to understand.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 6, 2010

    Great read! Very interesting and informative.

    I found the subject fascinating. Dr. Amen writes about a complex subject in a way the average person can comprehend. I believe his theory, and think the book is a good read for everyone.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 8, 2010

    Outstanding Research and a wealth of information

    This book helped my daughter who was misdiagnosed with a psychosis and had been treated by an HMO with psychiatric meds for 10 weeks, get better. After feeling hopeless and then reading this book I took her to the Amen clinic in Fairfield, the doctor believed that she may have Lyme disease from going to Yosemite during the holidays, so we took her off of the psychiatric meds and gave her an antibiotic for Lymes disease. She continues to improve every day. Thank God for the Amen clinic in Fairfield.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 22, 2011

    OUTSTANDING BOOK

    This is the first book I've read that explained in detail some of the problems associated with physiological conditions in the brain. Further it also is the first time I've seen photographs showing actual physical damage caused by drug abuse which helps me to better understand people's problems during and post-addiction. This is an outstanding book for anyone with friends or family who suffer from such issues, and I think that is most of us.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 9, 2010

    Enjoyable Read

    This book came to me with perfect timing. I think anyone that has one or more of the issues from the title will benefit from reading this book. Although the information is very scientific and specific, it is actually an enjoyable read. The author uses humor and stories from real clients to help the reader understand the research. I highly recommend this book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 25, 2009

    Extremely Enlightening and Helpful

    I actually purchased the audio book and listened to it and then lent it to a friend. I am using the paperback book I also purchased of this book to make notes from specific sections to incorporate into my daily life which are extremely helpful.

    It was very interesting reading and I never hesitate to share information about the book with friends and co-workers if it relates to our discussion.

    I recommend this book as reading for teachers of our children (all grade levels, psychology and medical students.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 7, 2004

    AMAZING INSIGHT INTO NEUROSCIENCE AND PSYCHIATRY!

    DO YOU THINK YOU REALLY KNOW WHY PEOPLE ACT A CERTAIN WAY? YOU WILL LIKELY CHANGE YOUR OPINION AS I DID AFTER READING THSIS BOOK. DR. AMEN HAS COMPILED AN EXCELLANT RESOURCE FOR HUMAN BEHAVIOR AND ALSO SHOWS READERS HOW TO HELP THE SPECIFIC BRAIN AREAS. I COULD READ THIS BOOK OVER AND OVER AGAIN!

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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