Dr. David Perlmutter and Rena Greenberg

Dr. David Perlmutter and Rena Greenberg

Are your best intentions always falling by the wayside as it relates to following dietary advice? Today on The Empowering Neurologist, I interview Rena Greenberg, author of, The Craving Cure.

Rena Greenberg’s success with weight loss hypnosis and gastric bypass hypnosis has been featured in 150+ news stories including USA Today, Woman’s World Magazine, The Doctor’s Show, CNN, Good Morning America and ABC-TV Nightline.

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Dr. David Perlmutter and Dr. David Ludwig

Dr. David Perlmutter and Dr. David Ludwig

Today on The Empowering Neurologist,  I interview Dr. David Ludwig. Dr. Ludwig is a practicing endocrinologist and researcher at Boston Children’s Hospital, Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, and Professor of Nutrition at Harvard School of Public Health.

Dr. Ludwig has published over 150 scientific articles, and presently serves as Contributing Writer for JAMA.

He is founding director of the Optimal Weight for Life (OWL) program at Children’s Hospital, one of the country’s oldest and largest multidisciplinary clinics for the care of overweight children. OWL serves as a home for research into innovative approaches to treat childhood obesity.

Dr. Ludwig also directs the New Balance Foundation Obesity Prevention Center. His research focuses on the effects of diet on hormones, metabolism and body weight. He developed a novel “low glycemic load” diet (i.e., one that decreases the surge in blood sugar after meals) for the treatment of obesity-related diseases.

Described as an “obesity warrior” by Time magazine, Dr. Ludwig has been featured in the New York Times and on NPR, ABC, NBC, CBS, and CNN, among others.

Today’s interview focuses on his new book, Always Hungry?.

From Amazon:

ALWAYS HUNGRY? turns dieting on its head with a three-phase program that ignores calories and targets fat cells directly. The recipes and meal plan include luscious high fat foods (like nuts and nut butters, full fat dairy, avocados, and dark chocolate), savory proteins, and natural carbohydrates. The result? Fat cells release their excess calories and you lose weight-and inches-without battling cravings and constant hunger. This is dieting without deprivation.

Forget calories. Forget cravings. Forget dieting. ALWAYS HUNGRY? reveals a liberating new way to tame hunger and lose weight . . . for good.

The book really does deliver in terms of both providing the science in an understandable way, as well as giving the reader a user-friendly, actionable plan. I’m really glad I was given the opportunity to read the manuscript for this important work.

Lizzie C.


The story of Lizzie and her family, though long, is a must-read. – Dr. Perlmutter

I have lived the past decade of my life in terrible fear of developing early on-set Alzheimer’s disease. I am 26 this year, and I am the 4th child in a family of five girls. When I was 12, my mom started to get what I now know as the classic signs of Alzheimer’s. She was only in her 40s. Unfortunately, she ate the low-fat, whole-grain diet that was and, still is, so popular. Within a year of noticing symptoms, my mom had to go live in an assisted living home. No doctors knew what was wrong with her and many said she had Huntington’s Disease, although she tested negative for it. Three years after her first symptoms, she passed away. About five years later her sister also passed away from the same thing. My grandmother also had the same symptoms and died very young. They all had very stressful marriages.

My sisters and I have always been terrified of getting sick like our mother. In recent years we learned that her illness was early on-set Alzheimers. It was helpful to know the cause, but inside we all felt full of despair, as if a death sentence had been placed on us. It has affected all of our life choices, even the choice to have children and pass on this gene. Continue reading

Gabrielle H.

I started 2015 by adopting a gluten-free, low-carb lifestyle.

I had suffered from anxiety since the age of six, and added chronic stress to that when I was in my thirties. Many other symptoms would come up later, including irritable bowel syndrome in 2005, severe joint pain/muscle ache, lack of sleep, lack of concentration, depression and finally, a breakdown in 2009. Conventional medicine scratched only the surface. I was grasping at straws last year with my trying to exclude different foods from my diet, suffering acid reflux all the while. I would fall asleep to be awakened by a dead arm and, in panic, try to get the circulation back.

This regimen has saved my life. Within five days I started to sleep. Within twelve, I broke free of depressive moods. I have no joint pain or muscle ache now, no acid reflux at all. My gut feels like it’s been repaired. I do not eat any carbs and do eat a high-fat diet with extra virgin olive oil, coconut, butter, and the like. I feel energetic and feel my brain is functioning again. I am 63 now and am looking forward to getting even better. Last week, I started eating fermented foods like kimchi, red cabbage, and cauliflower. In a week or so, I will be excited to find even more improvement in my overall health.


-Gabrielle H.

Patrick L.

It’s been fifteen months since I made a forever change to my diet and lifestyle by converting to a low-carb, gluten-free, high-fat diet. From a starting point of a soft 225 lbs., I am now down to 198 lbs. and loving it!

I started small, but eliminating all sugars, carbohydrates, and gluten for 30 days. I lost 3 lbs. per week, even with no change to my gym schedule, which was sporadic at best. My jeans that were once tight were falling off my butt and I had to wash them in hot water, and shrink them. For the first time in a long time, I was happy to look at myself in the mirror after a shower – heck at 48 years young I look better than I did when went to the gym 2 hours a day when I was 20!


-Pat L.

You Can Lose the Weight – Four Simple Steps

You Can Lose the Weight – Four Simple Steps

Go to the mall. See a movie. Look around next time you’re in an airport. What you’ll see is the confirmation of all the statistics that we’re hearing so much about these days related to the ever-increasing prevalence of obesity. It’s everywhere and it’s affecting most of us.

Books, online information, infomercials, daytime T.V., and even nightly news programs are constantly hammering us with the scary news that relates increasing abdominal girth to just about every bad medical condition you don’t want to get. At the same time, these same resources offer up some new trendy solution to the obesity epidemic daily, often in the form of some new and exotic dietary supplement.

Truth is, losing weight doesn’t happen when you give in and buy the latest pill. Weight loss happens when the body shifts from storing fat to burning fat. It is that simple, and far and away how we signal our metabolism to make this fundamental shift depends on what we choose to eat. Continue reading

Monica D.

I only adapted a low-carb, high-fat, gluten-free lifestyle a couple of weeks ago, and I already feel incredible! I cut out all gluten, wheat and sugar from my life, and have started taking a robust supplement regimen. Not only do I feel great, I even lost a couple of pounds!

I was diagnosed with epilepsy when I was 13 years old, diagnosed with ADD when I was 14 and at 21, I was diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome. Recently I went to the doctor because I’ve been having migraines and feeling dizzy after my workouts. My blood test showed my cholesterol levels were low and my sugar levels high. However, all my doctor recommended was to stop exercising.

Despite being diagnosed with epilepsy, ADD, and polycystic ovary syndrome, I feel great! I have energy, no migraines, no dizziness and I even got my period back! I am even able to concentrate better on work!

-Monica D.

Gwen F.

I was diagnosed with high cholesterol a couple of years ago, and was put on a statin drug. While I was on it, I was fatigued and “draggy” all the time…I even woke up fatigued!  Anyway, after hearing about the side effects of statins last year, I quit taking it. I changed my diet to vegan, hoping to become healthier and lose some weight. I lost 3 or 4 pounds and that was it. After several months of eating vegan, I had to have my cholesterol and triglyceride levels checked for my health insurance.  Imagine my shock when I was told that my triglyceride level was over 300, and my total cholesterol was 200!

On Memorial Day 2014, I made changes to my diet. I was particularly interested in the connection between high blood sugar and dementia, and that fasting blood sugar should be no higher than the low 90s for optimum brain function, so I decided to also keep track of my blood sugar levels. On day one of my grain-free eating, my fasting blood sugar was 116! For the next few days, my fasting blood sugar ranged between 103-108. The following week, it dropped down to the 90s, and I started to think, “That’s more like it!”  Now, my fasting blood sugar levels are consistently in the 70’s!  Continue reading

Leslie T.

I was at a crossroads in my health situation. At 55 years old, I was still able to perform my daily tasks, including caregiving for a head injured foster son who is large. At night though, I could not sleep due to acid reflux, night sweats, anxiety, joint pain, and just general discomfort. I was cranky and angry because of my insulin resistance. My mood swings had my family in discord.

In 1989, I had a surgery on an artery in my leg. Doctors told me then that I had an autoimmune disease that affected my tissues. This disease would sometimes flare up and cause extreme bruising. I was foggy minded and my nose ran all the time. I knew that I had to do something about my weight and my health (I weighed between 210 and 220). Even though I was physically strong, I felt sick and weak a lot of the time.

In February of 2014, I was awake again late at night. I saw the show called “Brain Change” featuring Dr. David Perlmutter on PBS. Since I have a brain injured foster son, I was interested in any show about brains. As I watched the show, I realized that the subject matter was more relevant to me and to my situation. The longer I watched Dr. Perlmutter, the more excited I got. Finally, I understood the connection between the glycemic index and my inability to keep weight off. I could see that what my diet was missing was essential fats and healthy balance. According to Dr. Perlmutter, I could eat an abundant amount of the right foods, and still lose weight and regain my health.

I was so excited that I could not sleep. The next morning, I ran out and bought coconut oil, some organic canned sardines in olive oil, and some cacao dark chocolate. I printed up a glycemic index of foods, and went shopping for those that were under 30. I began to feast on the foods that would nourish me. I got all of the sugar—and most of the carbohydrates—out of my diet. My energy level shot up. Within a week, I lost 7 pounds. 

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Shabd S.

Here in Alaska we watch grizzly bears chow down on blueberries like nobody’s business each fall. I used to wonder how berries could help bears put on fat, as I had thought you needed fat to put on fat! Then the pieces came together!

I often forget why I walked into a room, and I experience a triggered memory begin to follow a synaptic path at times to have it disappear into a nebulous nothing.

I am not considered overweight, but could feel visceral fat inside after menopause. Now, I am very happy to include plenty of fat in my diet and in even just 5 days, the extra body fat is melting off and I am understanding my symptoms must have been due to a long-term, undiagnosed gluten and dairy sensitivity.

-Shabd S.