I don’t do a lot of book reviews now that I’m not hosting a radio show. It was always such a blast to talk to the people who are smart and passionate enough to create something of value to read. These days I’m relegated to the armchair, only able to judge the book, well, by the book…not how entertaining the author is to chat with.
I do want to share some of my thoughts on The Brain Warrior’s Way by Daniel and Tana Amen. (What a great last name!)
This book isn’t a boring reference tool. It’s easy to read and engaging. The authors set out to inspire and motivate us to do better. Look at the first two sentences on page one:
“The war for your health is won or lost between your ears, in the moment-by-moment decisions your brain makes every day. When your brain works right your decisions are much more likely to be effective and add laser-like focus, energy and health to your life.”
That sure got my attention, even with my limited-focused brain. They say if your brain is functioning at its best, just about everything in your life will get better: mood, memory, weight, relationships, work… I’m listening.
The authors want us to understand that everyone has a “brain type” and that it’s really helpful to know what yours is. You might want to start by visiting the AmenClinic.com site to help you figure yours out. Once you know, it will probably make you want this book even more.
What I especially appreciate about the way it’s written is that after (or even before) you read the book, you can flip to practical tips and actions to take to improve your brain battle.
If you haven’t heard how important it is to drink water, you haven’t been paying attention. The Amens spell it out and help us realize this is a critical part of brain health. (Diet Dr. Pepper doesn’t enhance brain function.)
There is a section on how the glycemic load impacts your brain and which foods will hurt or help the effort. They talk about the value of eating good stuff during the day to avoid low blood sugar, then fasting for 12 hours at night.
The list of foods to help mental, emotional and cognitive abilities is long and full of stuff you like to eat. It’s not all hemp seeds and kombucha.
Training your brain includes taking some intentional actions like starting the day with gratitude, getting plenty of sleep, physical exercise, and stretching your mind. There is also a spiritual component to improving your brain function; the authors recognize who created it.
Some of these changes might be challenging at first if you’re not in the habit now, but the stories of people who’ve started these practices and dramatically repaired their brains will let you see how it’s done.
With the pervasive number of people dealing with depression, anxiety, ADHD and complete exhaustion, this book can be a life-line. When you feel bad enough, you begin looking for help and are willing to make necessary changes. The Brain Warrior’s Way is a great place to start (even better for those who aren’t suffering but want to be their best).
The truly great news I got out of this book is that we aren’t stuck with the brains we’ve got. We can heal and re-train them to be amazing by making brainy choices.