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Nutritionist In Fort Collins Reveals Her Secrets! sticky icon

The Key To Successful Weight Loss

May Be Consulting An Expert...

by Sonja Silva

Nutritionist

Here are some common questions people have about nutritionists...as they try to solve nutrition problems on their own and keep running into road blocks.  The answer may help you see if a nutrition consult would help you succeed at weight loss or other concerns involving nutrition.

Radiolab Rocks! sticky icon

Creative Podcasts Are Great For Stress Relief!

by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

I've heard more from folks about what they do to use audio files for learning and stress relief.  Radiolab features unique, creative podcasts on cutting edge topics in science, sure to fire up your managment...and get your mind off what's bugging you!  Check it out!

http://www.radiolab.org/

HJ

Log Furniture In Colorado Has A Name... sticky icon

Log Fancy

Rustic Log Furniture Made By A Real Mountain Man!

Jim Smith!

The Book "Mountain Boy" Chronicles His Life As A Boy At Home In The Wilderness

by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

( To see log furniture made by the mountain man Jim Smith, see the link Log Furniture.)Jim Smith was raised in the mountains.  The Rocky Mountains.  His Dad brought him up high in the Poudre Canyon to live in a log cabin when he was just eight years old.  There he continued to learn to fish and hunt, live off the land, fend for himself.

He walked every day to school.

(Above is a phto of  a rustic log table made by Mr. Smith)

Alone.

For two miles.

From age 8 to 10.

Coming home, he'd read the Bible, make dinner for himself.

"I'd fix macaroni and cheese but I'd clean everything up, take good care of things.  My Dad taught me to respect everything.  That meant other people, the animals, what you cooked and cleaned with, what you fished and hunted with.

"How did you respect the trout in the mountain streams there?" I asked him

"I ate them," he said.

"How about the deer and elk?"  I asked.

"I ate them too," he replied, laughing. 

He had to eat something for protein, so he hunted for it.  He wouldn't call himself poor.  He was rich with the freedom to roam the mountains, to hunt and trap, at such a young age.

He found arrowheads and even a military sword near Belleview, Colorado, as a young boy.

He looks back at his younger years as charmed ones.  He had a father who understood his love for nature and nature's God.

Each day after dinner, he'd read the Bible like his father taught him to. 

"What did you learn from the Bible?" I asked him.

"How to live," he said.

"Treat everyone with respect. Live an honest life.  Work hard.  Be thankful for what you got."

Down home wisdom learned from mountain people.

Jim had many adventures in his young life and they are one's I've been writing up and recording in the book "Mountain Boy."

 

HCG For Weight Loss--Here Is How To Make It Work! sticky icon

Scientific Studies Show How To Keep The Weight Off That Is Lost With The HCG Diet

Gastric Bypass Surgery In Fort Collins May Be Avoided With New Diet And Psychotherapy Strategies!

by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

Weight Loss Programs Work! sticky icon

Comparing Atkins, Weight Watchers

And Other Programs Shows They All Work!

Result vary depending on how long people stay with the programs

by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

High fructose corn syrup causes pulses of dopamine, the brain's pleasure chemical, to be released in the brain's pleasure center, the nucleus accumbens.

This is what cocaine does too.

Alcohol Dependence: New Insights To Get Control Of The Monster! sticky icon

Brain Imaging Studies Reveal Nerves Craving Alcohol

Network Of Nerves Crave Alcohol And Fight A Person's Rational Self Control

Medical Model Works To Understand Addiction

by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

 

Doctors see the brain as a whole, a wonderfully complex network of neurons that is excquisitely sensitive to the environment and dedicated to helping people solve problems and well, having a good day.

But in addiction, people find their brain is fighting them.

Dispatch From The Road In The West... sticky icon

"Trillions"

New Book By Harris Jensen

Millions Are Using New Brain Science

By Tapping Into It On The Internet...

For Free!

by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

I am writing this note to my readers from the road.  We are in Gunnison today, Sunday, May 30, 2010, having travelled to Santa Fe, New Mexico and Durango, Colorado.  Summer is in fuil bloom here, the mountain valleys are lush green, aspen trees are throwing out their green flags and flowers are popping out in mountain meadows.  Yesterday we saw several thousand bicyclers rolled over a mountain pass from Durango to Silverton.  They were part of what I was writing about in my new book, Trillions.

They looked vibrant, excited to see the beautiful mountain scenery, charged up by the cool mountain breezes (which sent several people to the hospital with hypothermia) and bright sun, and just loving life--by being fit and healthy.  They are part of the new healthy class, people who love life and are excited to do whatever it takes to get the most out of life.

Part of doing whatever it takes is using the new science of the brain to learn how it works.

That science has revealed we have 340 trillion connections in our brain. 

That is 340,000,000,000,000 connections if you are counting the zeros.

That is a lot of zeros.

As readers of the Journal know, exercise, eating right, taking medication if you need to for your mood, and things of this nature, all work to support these connections.  Exercise for example expands the memory center 16 percent.  Omega three fatty acid supplements can protect against a depression episode that is known to shrink the memory center by depleting it of nerve growth factor.

It used to be people thought of two classes of people, the wealthy and the poor.  There is now a third class: the healthy.  They see what is really important: living life fully and keeping fit in mind and the rest of the body.

As I wrote about the new brain science I was inspired by the many people who have shared with me through the years what things really helped them turn their lives around.  Thank you for sharing me your stories.  I've shared that information and much more in this book.

The new "Healthy Class" of people are using new and free resources on the internet to make personal changes in their life.  

My book detailing their work is now at 15,000 words and counting!

Many thanks too, to Kevin Houchin and his encouragment.  I've asked for help from many other people too, and appreciate their input: Gary Ogden, Glen Maxey, Ken LeJeune and many others.

There really is a new world out there, with the new resources on the internet, the new science available there, and the new class of people who are tapping into both.  It's really fun writing about it.  In the near future I'll offer free pdf files of this book to those who ask for it, by calling my office at 970-416-8354, and we'll give you the secret url address to put in your internet browser window to get the book.  That's right: the book will be kept at a secret web page!

Happy Trails...

HJ

 

 

Medical Marijuana In Colorado: What's Going On And Who Cares? sticky icon

Addiction To Marijuana Can Come From Exposure To The Addictive Substance, With Behavior Changes That Follow

Parents In Colorado Watch Out!  New Laws Have Unleashed A Monster!

by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

It happened again this week.  Another young patient came to my office with the family alarmed at changes in his behavior: moodiness, anger, impulsiveness, trouble following through on adult responsibilities.

And it all started with the use of medical marijuana.

Power Your Motivation For Exercise With An Animal Companion! sticky icon

Dogs come to the rescue to help us work out!

Unconditional affection and unbridled enthusiasm from dogs are infectious!

by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

You can out think urges to eat too much.  Focus on your goals, move from the feeling step to the thinking step and then to the action step.  These are the three simple steps in the three step model for stress managment, as I've written about elsewhere.

Make all you actions revolve around you, what's good for you, what you love, what you are passionate about.

The addictive cycle of thinking has all these steps, thinking and feeling and actions, revolve around what is good for your addiction, whether it be for too much food or alcohol, or using marijuana, cocaine and the like.  Here there is a "disconnect" with your brain focusing on what is good for the addiction, not what is good for you, and it isn't caring about what is good for you.

While this was helpful for one reader, Kira, it is also alot of work.

Enter her animal companion!  This morning it was her morning to exercise.  Hey, she's lost 12 pounds in the past month or so, so she is on a roll. (See her blog at http://kiraslossforgood.blogspot.com/2009/12/dinner.html). 

But where was the motivation?

It was frosty out there.  And foggy.  And the fog was freezing.  And her dog was wagging its tail, saying lets go, it's fun to run!  So they did!  And they had a great time.  Above you'll see Bailey's frosty mug shot, proof positive of the power of optimistic thinking and the power of love from our animal companions!

Way to go Kira!

HJ

 

Fight Your Addictions To Food And Alcohol and Nicotine With New Thinking Strategies! sticky icon

New Three Step Model Can Help You Kick Your Addiction!

Out Think Those Urges To Over Eat Or Drink And Start Losing Weight!

by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

New imaging studies of the brain show the brain gets "excited" by even the sight of the substance of abuse!  And without the drug, whether it is nicotine or cocaine or crystal meth, the brain's own ability to think clearly, solve problems, regulate emotions--is physically not normal.

Addicted brains have a decreased number of dopamine receptors in the brain's "pleasure center."  That means that there just isn't the "wiring" needed to normally feel pleasure from the things one enjoys...unless those dopamine receptors are excited by the substance of abuse: alcohol or crystal methamphetamine or cocaine or excessive amounts of food.

A great article detailing, for example, the addictive properties of high amounts of sugar, are at this article link, click Sugar Addiction Is Real

The use of the drug of addiction causes changes in how the brain physcially works, so a person can feel pleasure normally again..but they are hooked on the drug to make that happen!

The articles reviewed below have actual pictures of these dopamine receptors "in action" creating this sinister situation in the brain.

The bottom line is this: a person may be predisposed to getting addicted.  Then they get addicted by the thoughts and actions they take, triggering changes in their brain chemistry by using these drugs and thinking about the drugs in a distorted way.

A person's thoughts and actions then trigger changes in the working parts of nerves.  Receptors, which are dedicated to catching certain chemicals and then sending messages down the nerve, change in response to what a person is thinking a doing.

The dopamine type two receptors actually decrease in number in the brain's pleasure centers.

But just the same, the brain can be changed back to normal, not craving the substance of abuse and lacking rational thinking about it.  This change can happen by a coordinated treatment plan involving treatment of underlying issues, such as depression and anxiety, and new thinking and new actions based on a healthy lifestyle and healthy thinking.

The new thinking model I outline below is based on these imaging studies, and I am seeing it really work to help people stay on track with their plan to kick their addiction.  It accounts for the fact that parts of the brain can still be craving the drug while a person is trying to redirect it to like the new healthy lifestyle the person is trying to achieve.

The area of the brain that we use to think things through, which is the front part of the brain, the prefrontal cortex, actually isn't working normally, after people quit using a drug of addiction.  That front part of the brain, so critical to our ability to "steer" out lives, think things through clearly, slows down.

Our ability to control our behavior is impaired from the inside of our brain, by drugs of addiction.  How sinister!

Likewise, our ability to experience pleasure is twisted by addictive drugs, such as nicotine.  The pleasure centers of the brain are not functioning normally without the drug of addiction, unless the drug of addiction is used!  Of course these drugs can lead to death, such as from lung cancer from smoking cigarettes, so this is a sinister example of how the brain can learn to be "sick" or want things that are bad for it.  What Dr. Stephen Stahl calls "diabolical learning,"

Adding to this, the very area of the brain where we experience depression is altered.  This is the anterior cingulate cortex.  It's activity is altered by drugs of addiction, so addicts can only feel "good" when they are using a drug, whether it is nicotine, cocaine, methamphetamine.  This is also the area where we understand what we need, or what is good for us, where we feel our self awareness of our needs.

A review of these amazing brain imaging studies with color photos of the brain imaging itself, is available at this article by Volkow and associates in the Journal of Clinical Investigation: click it and be amazed!

http://www.jci.org/articles/view/18533/version/1

 

Volkow and others reviewed how similar neurons are similarly "out of control" in obesity and drug addiction in this fascinating article, complete with brain imaging with people with obesity:

Click it and be informed!  Information is power!  An informed person is an empowered person...

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2607335/

 

A simple three step model provides a start at counteracting this wicked tendency of the brain to learn to like what is not good for it.  It is wickedly powerful!  Here is a blog site from someone who learned about this model from reading articles on this web site, and is using this new approach!  See new thinking in action!  Click this link and see for yourself! http://kiraslossforgood.blogspot.com/2009/12/dinner.html

 A similar article reviewing altered dopamine receptors in alcoholism is at this link:

http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/fulltext/118975153/HTMLSTART

Volkow's article said new approaches are needed to counteract this addictive behavior of the brain, new medicines and new counseling or cognitive approaches.

Patient's have found this simple three step model above  to provide great help to them, as they fight their addictions to food, nicotine, alcohol, pornography, and cocaine.  It doesn't of course provide a "Miracle cure" nothing does, but it does provide a model to explain their experience of the addiction, and the loss of control of how they feel and think, and it provides a way to "win at the mindgame" which is at the heart of winning over your addiction.

Whether it be to food or nicotine or alcohol or crystal meth. 

I'll write more on this in the near future...

In the healthy brain, the thinking and actions and feelings revolve around what is good for the self or the person, and a person naturally likes what is good for them, the feelings are sympathetic to what a person likes.  The thinking likes to track consequences and focus on keeping a person safe.

In the addicted brain, the thinking and feeling and actions revolve around what is good for the addiction.  The feelings don't automatically "care" about what is good for the person and their hopes and dreams and goals and emotions.  The feelings automatically are focused on what will work to use more of the substances.  Likewise the thinking is more automatically reacting (with denial, minimizing consequences, pretending it is too hard to look at consequences, etc) in ways that reinforce the substance abuse.  The actions likewise focus on what works for the addiction.  All these mental processes are a product of a network of neurons that have changed to depend on a substance of abuse.

A network of neurons has in effect "hijacked" the brain and twisted the feelings and thinking around to work for the addiction.

The metaphor for this addicted brain's mental processes would be the same as the above, but with "what is good for the addiction" put in place of the "Self", in the middle of the triangle.

This has proven a powerful tool as people try to wrestle with their cravings for the things that are not good for them: whether it is too much food, sweets, carbohydrates, alchohol, crystal methamphetamine or cocaine.