Grain Brain: The Surprising Truth about Wheat, Carbs, and Sugar—Your Brain's Silent Killers [NOOK Book]


A #1 New York Times bestseller--the devastating truth about the effects of wheat, sugar, and carbs on the brain, with a 4-week 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 healthy ones like whole grains can cause dementia, ADHD, anxiety, chronic headaches, ...
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Grain Brain: The Surprising Truth about Wheat, Carbs, and Sugar—Your Brain's Silent Killers

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A #1 New York Times bestseller--the devastating truth about the effects of wheat, sugar, and carbs on the brain, with a 4-week 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 healthy ones 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 4-week plan, GRAIN BRAIN teaches us how we can reprogram our genetic destiny for the better.

GRAIN BRAIN is a #1 New York Times bestseller and a finalist for a 2013 Books for a Better Life award.
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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

For more than a decade, health experts have been probing links between whole grains and maladies including heart disease and intestinal health; and connections between refined grains and obesity. Now prominent neurologist David Perlmutter takes a giant step forward with his carefully documented contention that wheat, whether whole or refined, can impact your general health and your mental and emotional well-being. In Grain Brain, he draws on recent research that shows how sensitive our brains are to wheat, carbs, and sugar, exposing us to risks including Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia; headaches and depression; and ADHD. Cutting edge science that separates the wheat from the chaff, (Sorry; couldn't resist.)

Library Journal
Carbohydrates create inflammation and ultimately degenerative disease, says neurologist Perlmutter; the book focuses particularly on the brain. (LJ 11/1/13)
From the Publisher
"Dr. Perlmutter outlines an innovative approach to our most fragile organ, the brain. He is an absolute leader in the use of alternative and conventional approaches in the treatment of neurologic disorders. I have referred him patients with wonderful results. He is on the cutting edge and can help change the way we practice medicine." —Mehmet Oz, MD

"Dr. Perlmutter takes us on a detailed tour of the destructive effects that 'healthy whole grains' have on our brains. Modern wheat, in particular, is responsible for destroying more brains in this country than all the strokes, car accidents, and head trauma combined. Dr. Perlmutter makes a persuasive case for this wheat-free approach to preserve brain health and functioning, or to begin the process of reversal." —William Davis, MD, author of Wheat Belly

"If you want to boost your brain power, keep your memory, and lift your mood and energy, as well as heal from a host of other common complaints, Dr. Perlmutter is your guide. This is the definitive instruction book for the care and feeding of your brain!" —Mark Hyman, MD, author of The Blood Sugar Solution

"Dr. Perlmutter's work has helped me better understand ways to maintain and improve brain function and to prevent and treat diseases of the nervous system that are not managed well by conventional medicine." —Andrew Weil, MD, author of Spontaneous Happiness and True Food

"Dementia and many other brain diseases are not inevitable, nor are they genetic. They are directly and powerfully linked to a diet high in sugar and grains. Grain Brain not only proves this, it also gives you everything you need to know to protect your brain—or a loved one's—now."—Christiane Northrup, MD, author of Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom

"This book is a treasure. It is filled with self-empowering wisdom and easily understood leading-edge science. It can help you to avoid the devastating effects of an unhealthy diet and the dietary factors which are involved. By learning from the information presented in Dr. Perlmutter's book, you can avoid multiple health and neurological problems."—Bernie Siegel, MD, author of Faith, Hope, and Healing and The Art of Healing

"A provocative, eye-opening scientific account of how diet profoundly influences nerve health and brain function. Grain Brain explains how the American diet rich in gluten and inflammatory foods is linked to neurological conditions. Dr. Perlmutter outlines a blueprint for optimal health and a more resilient brain through proper nutrition and lifestyle. Grain Brain is a must-read!"—Gerard E. Mullin, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine, The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and author of The Inside Tract: Your Good Gut Guide to Great Digestive Health

"Dr. Perlmutter is the leading integrative medicine neurologist in North America today. His ability to fully integrate conventional medicine diagnosis and treatment with the latest innovations in nutritional and environmental medicine is phenomenal. As a teacher and clinician, he has fundamentally changed how physicians and patients think about neurological degeneration and, happily, regeneration." —Joseph Pizzorno, MD, coauthor of Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine

"Dr. Perlmutter provides sound advice, supported by the latest and most well respected medical research." —Russell. B. Roth, MD, Past President, American Medical Association

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316234825
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
  • Publication date: 9/17/2013
  • Sold by: Hachette Digital, Inc.
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 5,801
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

David Perlmutter, MD, is president of the Perlmutter Health Center in Naples, Florida, and the co-founder and president of The Perlmutter Brain Foundation. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Humanitarian of the Year Award from the American College of Nutrition and the Linus Pauling Award, and he serves on the Medical Advisory Board of The Dr. Oz Show. A frequent lecturer, he writes a blog at and is a contributor to The Huffington Post. He is the author of The Better Brain Book, Raise a Smarter Child by Kindergarten, and Power Up Your Brain.
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Read an Excerpt

Grain Brain

The Surprising Truth about Wheat, Carbs, and Sugar--Your Brain's Silent Killers

By David Perlmutter, Kristin Loberg, Peter Ganim

Hachette Audio

Copyright © 2013 David Perlmutter Kristin Loberg Peter Ganim
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-316-23480-1


The Cornerstone of Brain Disease

What You Don't Know About Inflammation

The chief function of the body is to carry the brain around.


Imagine being transported back to the Paleolithic era of early humans who lived in caves and roamed the savannas tens of thousands of years ago. Pretend, for a moment, that language is not a barrier and you can communicate easily. You have the opportunity to tell them what the future is like. From a cross-legged perch on a dirt floor in front of a warm fire, you start by describing the wonders of our high-tech world, with its planes, trains, and automobiles, city skyscrapers, computers, televisions, smartphones, and the information highway that is the Internet. Humans have already traveled to the moon and back. At some point, the conversation moves to other lifestyle topics and what it's like to really live in the twenty-first century. You dive into describing modern medicine with its stupendous array of drugs to treat problems and combat diseases and germs. Serious threats to survival are few and far between. Not many people need to worry about crouching tigers, famine, and pestilence. You explain what it's like to shop at grocery stores and supermarkets, a totally foreign concept to these individuals. Food is plentiful, and you mention things like cheeseburgers, French fries, soda, pizza, bagels, bread, cinnamon rolls, pancakes, waffles, scones, pasta, cake, chips, crackers, cereal, ice cream, and candy. You can eat fruit all year long and access virtually any kind of food at the touch of a button or just a short drive away. Water and juice come in bottles for transportability. Although you try to avoid brand names, it's hard to resist because they have become such a part of life—Starbucks, Wonder Bread, Pepperidge Farm, Pillsbury, Lucky Charms, Skittles, Domino's, Subway, McDonald's, Gatorade, Häagen-Dazs, Cheerios, Yoplait, Cheez-It, Coke, Hershey's, and Budweiser.

They are in awe, barely able to picture this future. Most of the features you chronicle are unfathomable; they can't even visualize a fast-food restaurant or bread bar. The term "junk food" is impossible to put into words these people understand. Before you can even begin to mention some of the milestones that humans had to achieve over millennia, such as farming and herding, and later food manufacturing, they ask about the challenges modern people deal with. The obesity epidemic, which has gotten so much attention in your media lately, comes first to mind. This isn't an easy matter for their lean and toned bodies to grasp, and neither is your account of the chronic illnesses that plague society—heart disease, diabetes, depression, autoimmune disorders, cancer, and dementia. These are totally unfamiliar to them, and they ask a lot of questions. What is an "autoimmune disorder"? What causes "diabetes"? What is "dementia"? At this point you're speaking a different language. In fact, as you give them a rundown of what kills most people in the future, doing your best to define each condition, you are met with looks of confusion and disbelief. You've painted a beautiful, exotic picture of the future in these people's minds, but then you tear it down with causes of death that seem to be more frightening than dying from an infection or being eaten by a predator higher up on the food chain. The thought of living with a chronic condition that slowly and painfully leads to death sounds awful. And when you try to convince them that ongoing, degenerative disease is possibly the trade-off for potentially living much longer than they do, your prehistoric ancestors don't buy it. And, soon enough, neither do you. Something seems wrong with this picture.

As a species, we are genetically and physiologically identical to these humans that lived before the dawn of agriculture. And we are the product of an optimal design—shaped by nature over thousands of generations. We may not call ourselves hunters and gatherers anymore, but our bodies certainly behave as such from a biological perspective. Now, let's say that during your time travel back to the present day, you begin to ponder your experience with these ancestors. It's easy to marvel at how far we've come from a purely technological standpoint, but it's also a no-brainer to consider the struggles that millions of your contemporary comrades suffer needlessly. You may even feel overwhelmed by the fact that preventable, non-communicable diseases account for more deaths worldwide today than all other diseases combined. This is tough to swallow. Indeed, we may be living longer than our ancient relatives, but we could be living much better—enjoying our lives sickness-free—especially during the second half of life when the risk of illness rises. While it's true that we are living longer than previous generations, most of our gains are due to improvements in infant mortality and child health. In other words, we've gotten better at surviving the accidents and illnesses of childhood. We haven't, unfortunately, gotten better at preventing and combatting illnesses that strike us when we're older. And while we can certainly make a case for having much more effective treatments now for many illnesses, that still doesn't erase the fact that millions of people suffer needlessly from conditions that could have been avoided. When we applaud the average life expectancy in America today, we shouldn't forget about quality of life.

When I was in medical school decades ago, my education revolved around diagnosing disease and knowing how to treat or, in some cases, cure each disease with a drug or other therapy. I learned how to understand symptoms and arrive at a solution that matched those symptoms. A lot has changed since then, because we are not only less likely to encounter easily treatable and curable illnesses, but also better able to understand many of our modern, chronic diseases through the lens of a common denominator: inflammation. So, rather than spotting infectious diseases and addressing sicknesses with known culprits, such as germs, viruses, or bacteria, doctors are faced with myriad conditions that don't have clear-cut answers. I can't write a prescription to cure someone's cancer, vanquish inexplicable pain, instantly reverse diabetes, or restore a brain that's been washed away by Alzheimer's disease. I can certainly try to mask or lessen symptoms and manage the body's reactions, but there's a big difference between treating an illness at its root and just keeping symptoms at bay. Now that one of my own kids is in medical school, I see how times have changed in teaching circles. Doctors in training are no longer taught just how to diagnose and treat; they are equipped with ways of thinking that help them to address today's epidemics, many of which are rooted in inflammatory pathways run amok.

Before I get to the connection between inflammation and the brain, let's consider what I think is arguably one of the most monumental discoveries of our era: The origin of brain disease is in many cases predominantly dietary. Although several factors play into the genesis and progression of brain disorders, to a large extent numerous neurological afflictions often reflect the mistake of consuming too many carbs and too few healthy fats. The best way to comprehend this truth is to consider the most dreaded neurological ailment of all—Alzheimer's—and view it within the context of a type of diabetes triggered by diet alone. We all know that poor diet can lead to obesity and diabetes, but a busted brain?


Flash back to your moment with those hunters and gatherers. Their brains are not too different from yours. Both have evolved to seek out foods high in fat and sugar. After all, it's a survival mechanism. The problem is that your hunting efforts end quickly because you live in the age of plenty, and you're more likely to find processed fats and sugars. Your caveman counterparts are likely to spend a long time searching, only to come across fat from animals and natural sugar from plants and berries if the season is right. So while your brain might operate similarly, your sources of nutrition are anything but. In fact, take a look at the following graphic that depicts the main differences between our diet and that of our forebears.

And what, exactly, does this difference in dietary habits have to do with how well we age and whether or not we suffer from a neurological disorder or disease?


The studies describing Alzheimer's as a third type of diabetes began to emerge in 2005, but the link between poor diet and Alzheimer's has only recently been brought to light with newer studies showing how this can happen., These studies are both convincingly horrifying and empowering at the same time. To think we can prevent Alzheimer's just by changing the food we eat is, well, astonishing. This has many implications for preventing not just Alzheimer's disease but all other brain disorders, as you'll soon discover in the upcoming chapters. But first, a brief lesson on what diabetes and the brain have in common.

Evolutionarily, our bodies have designed a brilliant way to turn the fuel from food into energy for our cells to use. For almost the entire existence of our species, glucose—the body's major source of energy for most cells—has been scarce. This pushed us to develop ways to store glucose and convert other things into it. The body can manufacture glucose from fat or protein if necessary through a process called gluconeogenesis. But this requires more energy than the conversion of starches and sugar into glucose, which is a more straightforward reaction.

The process by which our cells accept and utilize glucose is an elaborate one. The cells don't just suck up glucose passing by them in the bloodstream. This vital sugar molecule has to be allowed into the cell by the hormone insulin, which is produced by the pancreas. Insulin, as you may already know, is one of the most important biological substances for cellular metabolism. Its job is to ferry glucose from the bloodstream into muscle, fat, and liver cells. Once there, it can be used as fuel. Normal, healthy cells have a high sensitivity to insulin. But when cells are constantly exposed to high levels of insulin as a result of a persistent intake of glucose (much of which is caused by an overconsumption of hyper-processed foods filled with refined sugars that spike insulin levels beyond a healthy limit), our cells adapt by reducing the number of receptors on their surfaces to respond to insulin. In other words, our cells desensitize themselves to insulin, causing insulin resistance, which allows the cells to ignore the insulin and fail to retrieve glucose from the blood. The pancreas then responds by pumping out more insulin. So higher levels of insulin become needed for sugar to go into the cells. This creates a cyclical problem that eventually culminates in type 2 diabetes. People with diabetes have high blood sugar because their body cannot transport sugar into cells, where it can be safely stored for energy. And this sugar in the blood presents many problems—too many to mention. Like a shard of glass, the toxic sugar inflicts a lot of damage, leading to blindness, infections, nerve damage, heart disease, and, yes, Alzheimer's. Throughout this chain of events, inflammation runs rampant in the body.

I should also point out that insulin can be viewed as an accomplice to the events that unfold when blood sugar cannot be managed well. Unfortunately, insulin doesn't just escort glucose into our cells. It's also an anabolic hormone, meaning it stimulates growth, promotes fat formation and retention, and encourages inflammation. When insulin levels are high, other hormones can be affected adversely, either increased or decreased due to insulin's domineering presence. This, in turn, plunges the body further into unhealthy patterns of chaos that cripple its ability to recover its normal metabolism.

Genetics are certainly involved in whether or not a person becomes diabetic, and genetics can also determine at what point the body's diabetes switch gets turned on, once its cells can no longer tolerate the high blood sugar. For the record, type 1 diabetes is a separate disease thought to be an autoimmune disorder—accounting for only 5 percent of all cases. People with type 1 diabetes make little or no insulin because their immune system attacks and destroys the cells in the pancreas that produce insulin, so daily injections of this important hormone are needed to keep blood sugars balanced. Unlike type 2, which is usually diagnosed in adults after their bodies have been abused by too much glucose over time, type 1 diabetes is typically diagnosed in children and adolescents. And unlike type 2, which is reversible through diet and lifestyle changes, there is no cure for type 1. That said, it's important to keep in mind that even though genes strongly influence the risk of developing type 1 diabetes, the environment can play a role, too. It has long been known that type 1 results from both genetic and environmental influences, but the rising incidence over the last several decades has led some researchers to conclude that environmental factors could be more instrumental in the development of type 1 than previously thought.


More than one hundred eighty-six thousand people younger than age twenty have diabetes (either type 1 or type 2). Just a decade ago type 2 diabetes was known as "adult-onset diabetes," but with so many young people being diagnosed, the term had to be dropped. And new science shows that the progression of the disease happens more rapidly in children than in adults. It's also more challenging to treat in the younger generation.

What we're beginning to understand is that insulin resistance, as it relates to Alzheimer's disease, sparks the formation of those infamous plaques that are present in diseased brains. These plaques are the buildup of an odd protein that essentially hijacks the brain and takes the place of normal brain cells. And the fact that we can associate low levels of insulin with brain disease is why talk of "type 3 diabetes" is starting to circulate among researchers. It's all the more telling to note that obese people are at a much greater risk of impaired brain function, and that those with diabetes are at least twice as likely to develop Alzheimer's disease.

This statement is not meant to imply that diabetes causes Alzheimer's disease, only that they both share the same origin. They both spring from foods that force the body to develop biological pathways leading to dysfunction and, farther down the road, illness. While it's true that someone with diabetes and another person with dementia may look and act differently, they have a lot more in common than we previously thought.

In the last decade, we've witnessed a parallel rise in the number of type 2 diabetes cases and the number of people who are considered obese. Now, however, we're starting to see a pattern among those with dementia, too, as the rate of Alzheimer's disease increases in sync with type 2 diabetes. I don't think this is an arbitrary observation. It's a reality we all have to face as we shoulder the weight of soaring health care costs and an aging population. New estimates indicate that Alzheimer's will likely affect 100 million people by 2050, a crippling number for our health care system and one that will dwarf our obesity epidemic. The prevalence of type 2 diabetes, which accounts for 90 to 95 percent of all diabetes cases in the United States, has tripled in the past forty years. No wonder the U.S. government is anxiously looking to researchers to improve the prognosis and avert this catastrophe. And in the next forty years, more than 115 million new cases of Alzheimer's are expected globally, costing us more than one trillion dollars (in today's dollars)., According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 18.8 million Americans were diagnosed with diabetes in 2010 and another 7 million went undetected. Between 1995 and 2010, the number of diagnosed cases of diabetes jumped by 50 percent or more in forty-two states, and by 100 percent or more in eighteen states.

Excerpted from Grain Brain by David Perlmutter, Kristin Loberg, Peter Ganim. Copyright © 2013 David Perlmutter Kristin Loberg Peter Ganim. Excerpted by permission of Hachette Audio.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 87 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 87 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 18, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Are you experiencing any of the following signs: Being overwei

    Are you experiencing any of the following signs:

    Being overweight?

    Being unable to change how your body looks, no matter how much you exercise?

    Being unable to lose weight or keep weight off?

    Constantly craving "comfort foods"?

    Fatigue after meals?

    Feeling consistently anxious or stressed-out?

    Feeling hungry all the time or at odd hours of the night?

    Having a tendency to snack after meals?

    Having high fasting triglycerides, over 100 mg/dL - particularly when equal to or exceeding cholesterol levels?

    Having osteoporosis?

    Having problems falling or staying asleep?

    High Blood Pressure?

    Regularly craving sugar or stimulants like caffeine?

    The presence of "love handles"?

    If you're like me, you probably answered yes to almost all of these. But there is a common answer that can alleviate these symptoms simply without medication and by what we eat and what is in what we eat. Funny how the food pyramid is where most of us gain our information on what's good for us, but you'd be surprised at how wrong the information has been that has enabled our society not only to gain larger waistlines, but also smaller brains.

    Did you know that the larger your waistline is, the smaller your brain really is? Not to mention that the risks of diabetes, obesity, dementia, cardiovascular disease, cancer, auto immune disorders and even brain disease is all being elevated now but what is in our food and what we are consuming? Evidence now points to those with risks of diabetes and are also overweight, studies have shown that degenerative brain cognition is now being proven that link the two together? If that doesn't shock you into awareness, I don't know what will.

    In the latest book, Grain Brain, Dr. David Perlmutter takes readers into the heart of what our diets and eating habits are doing to our health. Now science is proving that gluten is linked to increasing the risks of common neurological ailments such as ADHD, anxiety disorder, Tourette's syndrome, mental illness, migraines and even autism. He discusses gluten's role in behavioral and movement disorders and shows you how simple dietary changes may make significant improvements in our overall neurological health.

    He teaches you what's been happening and what we are doing that is literally killing us slowly. But there is hope, he shows you how to begin turning back the clock on some of these old habits and bring us closer to a healthier lifestyle without the need for medication or crazy fad diets. Learn the real secret behind high fructose corn syrup and even why eating fruit may be bad for you. He'll show you what supplements are worth taking, when and why, along with a great beginning exercise and healthy eating plan. He shows you what to eliminate from your kitchen and how to avoid those seemingly innocent food labels that fool you into thinking what you're buying is really healthy when its not.

    There is simply so much great information that even Dr. Mehmet Oz has commented that this is"An innovative approach to our most fragile organ." This book is packed with easy-to-follow strategies, delicious recipes, and weekly goals to help you put the plan into action, along with real life stories of transformation to gain control of your life, regain wellness and enjoy lifelong health and vitality.

    I received Grain Brain by Dr. David Perlmutter compliments of Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group for my honest review and received no monetary compensation for a favorable review. I've been working on my own healthier eating plan for three weeks and found the information in this book instrumental to aid me in my way to a stronger more well balance lifestyle. I already knew that grains were something most farmers feed their stock to fatten them up so it made sense that it would work on us as well. It's great to know that some of the things I was doing was great, but also the reduction of how much fruit I was eating didn't make sense until I read through the chapter on sugar, Chapter 4, Not a Fruitful Union -This is Your Brain on Sugar (Natural or Not). What I read literally shocked me and made complete sense. I would rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars and plan on changing what I buy and what my family eats to ensure a healthier lifestyle for all of us.

    64 out of 76 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2014

    I was excited about this book and wanted to find something novel

    I was excited about this book and wanted to find something novel and appreciable in it, but now after having wasted my time with it, I feel too disinterested to even write a proper review. But as a physician, I feel compelled to write something here to caution others about this nonsense. This book can mislead people into harmful approaches to their diet and health. The author makes fantastic claims in his title and synopsis to grab your attention, but utterly fails to make his case with quality, peer reviewed, scientific bases for his dramatic assertions.

    Consider: ridiculous pages filled with promises and rants supported by things like a sciencey looking pie chart that purports to compare the fat, protein, and carb content of our modern diet (whatever that means) with out ancestors' diets. Of course, they ate almost half fat and half protein, with a smittering of carbs, etc. Nevermind that he doesn't tell us how he knows that, or more about the so called ancestors (who, btw, didn't the cavemen supposedly die in early age?) Laughable garbage like this through and through. Bad plagiarism of Atkins and others' theories mixed with pseudoscience and fad mania.

    It seems to be fashionable these days for everyone and anyone to write a book. Mediocre contributions to literature that lack virtue is bad enough, but disseminating unproven hypotheses with such conviction is just wrong. He pulls dubious 'facts' out of his hoohaw and expects us to accept it because of his credentials. What an abuse of trust.

    56 out of 81 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 18, 2013

    This book blew me away.  It was such an easy read, but yet was f

    This book blew me away.  It was such an easy read, but yet was full of great detail and science backing up all of the claims.  I highly recommend!  You cannot read this book and not be motivated to change your lifestyle for the better!

    29 out of 35 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 19, 2013


    Eveey decade Americans decide they must eliminate some evil food entirely. Silly, dramatic, unnecessary. Just eat more veggies and save your $ and brain from extreme crackpot regimes!

    25 out of 52 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 12, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    Highly Recommended fully researched!!!

    As a healthcare professional working with cardiopulmonary patients with diabetes, "early" alzheimers, obesity, "dyslipidemia" (diagnosed by allopathic providers) among many other comorbities the information in this book is groundbreaking, It's well researched which allows me to share with my colleagues and excellently presented so that I can share it with my patients as well. Consequently I bought several books to share.

    From Behind "Enemy Lines"

    24 out of 28 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 29, 2013

    Highly recommended

    This is an excellent book, with cutting-edge research on brain health. While it focuses on Alzheimer's, there are many other topics of brain health being affected by diet - depression, etc. And while the cover makes you think that gluten is the main problem, it is certainly not the only nutrient to blame.

    The book is also highly readable, being very well-written.

    19 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 10, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Mary DeKok Blowers for Readers' Favorite Grain Brai

    Reviewed by Mary DeKok Blowers for Readers' Favorite

    Grain Brain, by Dr. David Perlmutter, is a breath of fresh air. Great detail is given about how gluten, sugar, and other carbs cause inflammation, wreaking havoc on your hormones, blood sugar, brain, and waistline. Numerous examples are given of patients he treated with this program and they lost weight, or improved their abs dramatically, or overcame diagnoses like ADHD. Sleep habits and exercise are also covered as they have an effect on the brain and how it functions. I was not aware that leptin is directly tied to the amount and quality of sleep a person gets, but it is the hormone that sends the signal from the full stomach, to the brain, to stop eating. If you don’t sleep properly, this hormone malfunctions, causing a person to eat more than necessary. Perlmutter’s theories are backed up by a multitude of studies cited in different publications, including top medical journals. 

    I learned so much about metabolism and have already started his diet plan. I plan to buy the hard copy book as well, since it is easier to work through than the audio version and I will want to refer often to the instructions in chapter 10. Since there are 3 Parkinson’s diagnoses in my immediate family, and diabetes as well, I am vitally interested in preserving my brain and body and will give the Grain Brain diet a try. Having tried many different diets in the past, I do know that I tend to lose weight only on lower carb diets. I have always enjoyed butter and real fats, so I am looking forward to the emphasis on these healthy fats as well as the salmon and avocados!

    18 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 28, 2014

    Crack-pot nonsense from the world of Oz and other nutters. Not a

    Crack-pot nonsense from the world of Oz and other nutters. Not a single unadulterated fact in the book, I read it holding my sides with ROTF laughter. Because this stuff tells us what we want to hear (life is easy, one size fits all, etc.),  it sells. Please don't be taken in by this silly snake oil.

    14 out of 41 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2013

    Highly Recommended

    Within the last 20 years I have been increasingly gaining weight even though I ate what I was told is healthy and I always work out. This book explains why I am gaining so much weight. At 52 I still can't lose weight quickly but after following this plan I feel better, my brain fogs are gone and my arthritis is not as painful.

    13 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 1, 2013

    Life changing!!

    From the first page to the last, it all came together for me and after only a few weeks of following the plan, i feel better than i have in years! Highly recommended!

    13 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 13, 2014

    This book presents a major challenge to conventional thinking ab

    This book presents a major challenge to conventional thinking about sugar, gluten, and carbohydrates in general. The author musters an impressive amount of evidence that suggests we have not been told the truth about what our diets are really doing to us. It's not simply a matter of obesity, but herein lies a path to better brain health without drugs in our advancing years. In the 3 weeks or so since my wife and I bought and read Grain Brain I've seen 2 articles in major media claiming Dr. Perlmutter doesn't know what he's talking about. The nutritional Establishment is circling the wagons. All I can say is read it, and do an honest assessment of your health and how you feel. As a long time proponent of the Atkins diet I found vindication for my feeling that carbs were screwing with my metabolism in several ways. The proof is in how I feel, and what my doctor says when he sees my blood work improving. But be advised: Dr. Perlmutter's prescription will rock your world as well as change your habits and life. It is going to require a new way of thinking about what you eat, and a commitment to your improved health.

    12 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 1, 2013

    Finally, the truth will-out At last the world is starting to wak

    Finally, the truth will-out
    At last the world is starting to wake-up! [Even Dr. Oz gets it.] For so long the cause of body-wide inflammation has been misidentified/ignored, in spite of the research showing the damage done. Now, maybe, we [the human race, especially "western civilization"] can begin to make the changes- start the long clime out of the man-made hole we've put our food-chain into. I've no doubt that the creative and motivated individuals can help find a path out of this food "dark-age".      Kentu

    11 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 15, 2013

    highly recommend

    definitely got more than I expected. Gave a compelling argument against GMOs and emphasized just how far we have been removed from our food sources. I was impressed enough to follow the authors guidelines as much as I can. Avoid wheat products, pay more attention to the Glycemic Index of my food choices, & buy organic as much as I am able. I will recommend this book to my family & friends.

    10 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2014

    Honestly I am beyond disappointed in this book, which I admit I

    Honestly I am beyond disappointed in this book, which I admit I was more than eager to read. Let me tell you why:

    1. His offensive over-simplification of complex diseases. Personally, I have Type I Diabetes. During his entire introduction, he only makes a distinction between the two variations of diabetes ONCE. Otherwise, he lumps them together with the ambiguous umbrella term “diabetes”, never once going into depth of what the disease entails. Instead, he generalizes, writing that diabetes is a preventable disease and that it is attributed to obesity. While these conditions are true for those suffering from Type II Diabetes, it is not true for Type I, which is largely attributed to epigenetic factors. This lack of distinction seems to undermine the complexity of this disease and the importance of Type I diabetes as a disease in coexistence with the Type II variety.
    2. Additionally, in the very opening statement, he claims that cancer, diabetes, and a variety of other diseases were not a common cause of death among members of the previous generation. As I have already pointed out, diabetes is a fairly broad term to be throwing around. For this reason, it is important to point out that he is implying that Type II diabetes was not a common cause of death in previous generations. But I must also point out that it is not common now either. While T2 Diabetes is a contributing factor to premature death, it is often not the cause. Instead, complications related to T2 Diabetes often causes mortality, such as kidney failure, heart disease, among other serious complications. That alone is another over-simplification of this complicated issue. But beyond the diabetes portion, Perlmutter also fails to draw a distinction between correlation and causation. For instance, cancer was not as profoundly deemed caused of death in previous generations, not because of its lack of existence, but more because of its lack of diagnosis. This is because the diseases listed (cancer, diabetes, etc.) often do not have profoundly immediate symptoms such as is the case with tuberculosis, which is quite easily diagnosed by the manifestation of physical symptoms.
    3. In one sentence of the introduction, Perlmutter claims that the carbohydrates in fruit can be equally as damaging as those found in gluten-ridden products. While it is true that fruits are often saturated with carbohydrates, they are not nutritionally equal to gluten products such as a slice of bread. This is because, while high in carbs, fruit also happens to be calorically sparse while being nutritionally dense, unlike bread and grain products. Because this book can easily be portrayed as the pro-gluten-free-diet type, some may draw the conclusion that by including fruit-based carbohydrates into the argument, he is promoting a less fruitful diet as well. Any other doctor will tell you that this leap in logic is irresponsible and unhealthy.
    4. Perlmutter disenfranchises genes as part of human development by attributing most of brain development and health to food consumption and lifestyle choices.  First off, genes play an important role in brain and mental health. For instance, depression (and other brain/behavioral abnormalities) often carries a genetic predisposition factor. One who is not predisposed to develop clinical depression is unlikely to develop such a serious disorder through the high intake of gluten and carbohydrates alone. This argument simply disqualifies decades of research that have linked genetic factors to mental health and the production of specific hormones within the brain (by the way, hormone production is regulated by GENES, not your stomach).
    5. Not only does he undermine decades of gene-based research, Perlmutter also admits that there is sparse evidence to suggest a correlation between lifestyle choices (such as diet) and brain/mental health. So, really, he is combatting his own argument. While there is no direct link between correlation and causation, it seems unlikely for causation to exist without any sort of correlation between two factors. Anyone who knows anything about statistically significant research knows this to be true.
    6. Lastly, he falsely summarizes major diet changes among homo sapiens over the past hundreds (or even thousands) of years. He mentions that past diets were high-fat low-carb whereas today’s diet is apparently low-fat high-carb. This information is false and can be disproven with any simple analysis of the nation’s average daily intake. People today consume more calories than they did previously; most of these calories are from fat. How is that part of a low-fat diet? Also, the majority of American’s have a diet primarily consisting of processed and pre-prepared food which have also shown to be high in fat: polyunsaturated, monounsaturated, and saturated.  All forms are “bad” fats. The only part of his simple explanation is that we do indeed eat a very high-carb diet, full of breads and grains. Overall, then, it could be suggested that we went from more of a plant-based and somewhat meat-based diet (aka high-protein, low-fat, low-carb diet) to one that is full of processed grained, fatty meats (rather than lean), and limited fruit/vegetables (due to over-subsidizing on processed foods compared to natural foods) in our diet (aka a high-fat, high-carb, low-protein, high-sugar diet). 

    So, while I was hoping for a more technical, well-documented and cited analysis of the connection between grains and brain/mental health, I was very disappointed by his dumbed down take on the issue. It would seem to me that he was more interested in appealing to the ill-educated masses than to be scientifically accurate with refutable, well-cited sources. I would never suggest this book to anyone, nor would I recommend this book be used as a source in an academic discussion of such a topic. All-in-all don't waste your money.

    9 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2014

    His recommendations are a complete 180 from the traditional trai

    His recommendations are a complete 180 from the traditional training I received as a registered dietitian.  However, I stumbled on this book in researching ways to help my daughter with narcolepsy.  The science makes sense and for her, this has been a dramatic improvement in what we thought was a hopeless quest.
    I am extremely grateful that we found this book.  My only reservation is that it seems to focus more on gluten, and does not go into other factors in leaky gut  such as oxylates.   Even though it has only been a little over a month, we see dramatic improvements.  Narcolepsy is not specifically one of the brain disorders addressed, but it is a brain disorder.  The explanations of the science behind this very different approach has helped me to interpret and support her.  The changes in her behavior, mood, and symptoms speak for themselves.  
    Thank you Dr. Perlmutter.

    9 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 25, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    A Must Read, must try....

    Excellent book, although sometimes long in the tooth.. Great advice, I picked it up because my daughter has celiac disease, of which my wife and I tested negative. But I've cut out gluten since I bought this book and am sleeping better, and have more energy within a week. I've also noticed when I splurged/cheat with gluten, I have a darker outlook, feel more stressed over minor things... I'm going to try more Dr Perlmutter has suggested in this book, because the small stride I've taken are remarkable

    8 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2013

    Do you know that all of us are gluten sensitive to some degree?

    Do you know that all of us are gluten sensitive to some degree?  And the thing that our health system is trying to keep 
    from us is that many of our diseases/disorders are actually misdiagnosed.  All you need to do is change your diet, 
    and you may no longer have the symptoms of ADHD, MS, and Cervical Dystonia, to name only a few.  Of course,
    this is why our health system doesn't want you to know the power of your diet because then you wouldn't be relying on
    medications and your doctors anymore.

    The author of this book is both a licensed nutritionist and neurologist, and the research he presents is astounding.
    Everything he wrote made perfect sense.  Personally, I have Cervical Dystonia, and 3 months I went gluten free.  While the author points out it can take 3-6 months to get all of the gluten out of your system, I have already felt a change in energy and stomach problems.  Now I just hope it helps the neurological disorder I was diagnosed with 3 1/2 years ago.  As a vegan, I have been taking his suggestions to heart and have been adding different foods to my diet to improve the health of my brain.  I have recommended this book to everyone I've seen in the past couple weeks.  Please read it!  It will do you and/or your family a world of good!

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2014


    This book was recommended to me by my GYN due to my complaints about trying to eat healthy with no apparent results, my bloated belly, poor sleep, brain fog, and continued weight gain even though I was upping my walking and exercise. Reading this book was difficult because it is reading to learn and obviously written by a doctor. I had to read and put it down and then keep coming back to it until I had finished it. I was very impressed by most of his data and his credentials. It provided me with motivation to try at the very least decreasing my carbs which I found pretty easy. I also was able to add things I actually wanted and continue some things I was already doing. Over the past 3 weeks I've lost 6 lbs, am sleeping better, have clearer thinking, reduced bloating, and more energy! I feel that it is important information that needs to be shared.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 13, 2014

    While some of it makes since, the fact that your body runs off o

    While some of it makes since, the fact that your body runs off of Glucose, which are carbs, and what your brain uses for fuel, this is crazy. This book is leading for a heart attack and stroke. We would be starving ourselves, and our attitude if we followed this. A high carb, low fat diet is the way to go. NOT a high fat diet. 

    4 out of 17 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 15, 2013

    Finally! An easy-to-read and understand nutritional book, full o

    Finally! An easy-to-read and understand nutritional book, full of vital information and practical everyday recipes and menus.

    4 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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