I was fascinated to read a Linked In post recently by by scientist, Frank Bernier (PhD, MSc, CIP), expert in Alzheimer's disease and the brain microbiome. Here are words from his post:
"There has been a recent surge in the attention given to the potential of exercise, Vitamin B3, and probiotics in preventing dementia. Multiple published studies that were also presented at renowned dementia conferences organized by organizations such as the Alzheimer's Association have shown promising results.
The neglect of prevention by pharma is a concerning issue that warrants more attention. One possible explanation for this trend is the pharmaceutical industry's bias towards the disease model, which prioritizes the development and sale of pharmaceuticals over prevention. Some argue that this bias is evident in the lack of emphasis on micronutrient solutions in medical education and professional development.
Critics contend that the difficulty in patenting naturally occurring nutrients makes it challenging for pharmaceutical companies to develop blockbuster drugs and generate profits. However, others argue that this bias is not intentional but rather a result of scientists working in pharma who follow disease understanding trends in their research and development.
As a scientist, I think it is crucial to raise awareness of this issue and promote the exploration of preventative measures and healthy lifestyles. It is also essential to acknowledge and consider already available solutions. By shifting the focus towards prevention, we can potentially reduce the prevalence of chronic and degenerative diseases and promote overall health and wellness."
You can read more here.
In a similar vein, I highly recommend a book by Dr Aseem Malholtra “A Statin Free Life” where he goes into the over-prescription of statins for heart disease and explains that in the majority of cases, focusing on lifestyle changes will have a bigger impact on reducing heart disease risk than statins will – this book is well worth a read, but please consult with your Doctor before altering any medications!
There is so much written about healthy lifestyles, and we have blogged on this ourselves, in relation to reducing stress, improving diet and sleep and exercising more (read more here, here and here). We know what to do – so why don’t we do it?
Very simply, our lifestyle and our habits get in the way and I am as guilty of this as anyone – but I desperately want to be fitter, healthier and sleep better!
So, I have set myself a new challenge – to change one habit or introduce one new habit every month.
Two months ago, I committed to doing at least 10 minutes of yoga every day – I started by using You Tube tutorials and I have progressed to using an ap (Sarah Beth Yoga). I have only missed two days in two months, when I have been travelling – but even while travelling, because I have my phone with me, there is no excuse! It has helped my flexibility already – especially my lower back and I am loving doing yoga at my own pace, in my own time, with no one to compare myself to - or be intimidated by!
My next challenge was inspired by a podcast I listened to “Live Better, Feel More” by Dr Rangan Chatterjee – the episode was “Why we are all addicts” where he spoke with Dr Anna Lembke, a Stanford Professor of psychiatry and author of the book Dopamine Nation: Finding Balance In the Age Of Indulgence. (listen here). They spoke of phone addiction – which I am certainly guilty of – so I have removed Email, Facebook, Linked In and Instagram from my phone and will only access these via my computer in a more intentional way. By doing this, I am aiming to reduce aimless scrolling and the constant pumps of cortisol to my brain which increase my stress and reduce my ability to sleep. I have committed to a month’s trial – and I will continue if I find it helps.
Next month, I will find a new habit to trial, not sure what that will be yet, but I am open to suggestions and I would love you to join with me in changing habits – one month at a time!
If you enjoyed this blog, there are many more, as well as podcasts to listen to, that you can access via our website www.zesttwellness.com