A BIG SPILL OFF SANTA BARBARA’S COASTLINE HIGHLIGHTS KEN EADE’S NOVEL

KEN EADE’S BRENT MARKS THRILLER POIGNANTLY LETS US KNOW WHY WE SHOULD NEVER SAY, “JUST ANOTHER OIL SPILL. 

After a large oil spill threatens the coastline of Santa Barbara, Lawyer Brent Marks’ girlfriend Rebecca takes on the big oil companies. Initial victories in her class action case lead to her all-out declaration of war against fossil fuels. When she turns up missing, a suspected victim of foul play, Brent finds himself questioning whether to continue with the case.

HERE’S A LOOK AT THE REALITY BEHIND THE BOOK. LIKE ALL OF KEN EADE’S MAJOR THRILLERS, REALITY IS JUST A SHORT STEP AWAY.  NOVELS SUCK YOU IN TO THE HUMAN, EMOTIONAL SIDE OF REALITIES THAT OFTEN SEEM ABSTRACT IN DRY REPORTS AND STATISTICAL TABULATIONS OF TROUBLING REALITIES. BUT NOT IN THIS VIDEO.

 THE BIG SPILL’S PLOT CHALLENGES THE DANGERS OF BIG OIL AND THE DIFFICULTIES IN TAKING IT ON AS A CAUSE? HERE’S WHAT KEN EADE SAYS ABOUT HIS TAKE ON RESEARCHING THE REFUGIO OIL SPILL.

‘The Refugio Oil Spill in May 2015 was not the largest oil spill by volume compared to its counterpart in 1969 or the Gulf of Mexico spill in 2010, but it was big enough to deposit over 142,000 gallons of crude oil into one of the most biologically diverse coastlines on the west coast and caused hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of damage. The spill was blamed on a negligently maintained corroded pipeline which remains closed to this day, but it highlights the dangers of offshore drilling in general, especially in this day and age where we are supposed to be lessening our carbon footprint. In my lifetime I have watched the government manipulated by special interests get away with a lot of things, offshore drilling being only one of them, but the thing that really surprises me is the lack of public outcry at the poisoning of our air, water and oceans, when it is entirely unnecessary to do so.

Offshore oil drilling specifically and drilling in general is contradictory to the policy of reducing our dependence on fossil fuels and lowering our impact on climate change. The Gulf of Mexico spill alone proved that the oil companies’ modern technology, which they claim makes offshore drilling safe, cannot avert such as disaster, especially at such depths. And despite all the claims of safety, the transport of crude is unsafe and has resulted in many disastrous spills. Despite the fact that it is not safe and not environmentally sound, the Obama administration is considering permits for the southeast coast of the Atlantic, where reserves are estimated at 3 billion barrels of oil and 25 trillion feet of natural gas. Leasing has been scheduled for 2021. There are also plans to allow more leasing in the Arctic and the Gulf of Mexico.

The most surprising thing I came across in my research for this book was that, in 2013 California state legislators received reports that Santa Barbara channel offshore rig operators had been fracking off the coast since 2010. The lawmakers called for a federal investigation to look into it, declaring, “Hydraulic fracturing poses great potential dangers to our sea life and all California residents. This controversial well stimulation technique needs greater scrutiny, particularly when it potentially jeopardizes our coastal way of life. Whatever your position on climate change, it cannot be denied that, despite big oil’s claims of safety, there continue to be adverse consequences to the environment, local economies, and marine life from offshore drilling and these disasters are 100% preventable by not allowing offshore oil in the first place.

THE BIG SPILL, the 1969 Santa Barbara Oil Spill, sparked the green revolution in America, making way for the most comprehensive environmental legislation that the country has ever known. The first Earth Day was celebrated after the disaster. What happened to those environmentally conscious individuals? They couldn’t have all turned to money when the green revolution was forgotten in favor of the greenback revolution. We know this because more people in the country got poorer and the wealth has been concentrated in the hands of the one percent. We need to get back on the green bandwagon now, before it’s too late.

HERE’S AN EXCERPT OF THE BIG SPILL WHERE ATTORNEY, BRENT MARKS, FIRST HEARS OF AN EVENT WHICH WILL LEAD HIM INTO HIS NEXT CASE- A MISSING GIRL FRIEND POINTING TO HER INVOLVEMENT IN DEALING WITH A GRAVE ENVIRONMENTAL CATASTROPHE

Normally on a Friday afternoon like this day, Brent would head to the office to make his to-do list for Monday morning. Throughout the fluctuating degrees of his personal life, which varied from the company of his cat and an occasional outing with his friend, Jack Ruder, who performed the role of investigator in his business life, to passionate, yet seemingly fleeting relationships with strong and interesting women, the normally tenacious Brent had always made the rule for himself not to bring work home, unless he was in trial. But today was different. Brent and his his new girlfriend, Rebecca Bekker, an ex-client (Brent also had a rule never to date clients) had planned to take the rest of the week off for a romantic getaway up the scenic California coast. All of that changed when he received her frantic call.

 “It’s another oil spill. Don’t they realize they’re killing our ocean?”

“Rebecca?”

“Sorry, Brent, I’m a public volunteer. I’ve got cleanup duty.”

“How long is that going to take?”

“I don’t know. Depends on how many gallons of crude oil those assholes have dumped this time. Sorry but we have to cancel our plans for this week.”

“Well, can I join you? With the cleanup?”

“I’d like to say yes, but we take special training for this. Not anyone can do it. I’ve got to go, Brent, they need me.”

Brent said good-bye to Rebecca and disconnected. She was the daughter of a client of his who had been murdered, and who had amassed a sizeable fortune before he had passed on. This had left Rebecca a very rich young lady, who wanted for nothing, which allowed her to concentrate on her passion – charitable work. She was an anti-war activist on the one hand and a champion for veterans’ rights on the other, but her strongest passion was protection of the environment. Rebecca was the opposite of what you would expect from a poor little rich girl. Magnanimous as she was alluring, her dark, doe-like eyes could stir up a ravenous appetite in any man. Those who tried to pierce her outer veil of beauty with the aspiration of grabbing onto her heartstrings, and, thus, her purse strings, were often disappointed by the sharp wit of her twenty-four year old mind. Brent had not been, and neither had she.

Eade, Kenneth (2016-10-15). Legal Thriller: The Big Spill: A Crime Thriller (Brent Marks Legal Thriller Series Book 10) (Kindle Locations 82-107). Times Square Publishing. Kindle Edition.

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THE AUTHOR RUMINATES..

Ken Eade at Desk

KEN EADE- ALWAYS THINKING, DAYDREAMING, STRATEGIZING-
-HOW TO CREATE HIS NEXT SUPER SUSPENSE THRILLER-
TRUST HIM, HE WILL NEVER STOP!!!

                                         

CLICK HERE TO SEE WHAT KEN HAS DONE SO FAR

 




PATRICIA WELCH BOOKING

Booking is now available for the amazing Patricia Welch. 



IN KEN EADE’S NOVEL, THERE IS TRULY A “DECREE OF FINALITY.” MURDER!

COMPELLED TO TAKE ON BREAD-AND-BUTTER DIVORCE CASES, ATTORNEY BRENT MARKS CANNOT ESCAPE HIS FATE. SUSPENSE, DANGER AND INTRIGUE BECOME INTERTWINED WHEN HIS CLIENT’S WIFE IS MURDERED. SINCE SHE MAY NOT HAVE BEEN SUCH A NICE WOMAN, HAVING ACTUALLY ORDERED A HIT ON HER HUSBAND (ALTHOUGH SHE WITHDREW IT), BRENT’S CLIENT IS NOW A SUSPECT IN THE MURDER.  PERHAPS HE FELT A BIT INSECURE. 

book-release-of-decree-of-finality-highlights-spousal-murder

EXCERPT FROM DECREE OF FINALITY

“My husband and I never considered divorce… murder sometimes, but never divorce -Joyce Brothers

 “What troubles me is that you don’t have a prenuptial agreement.” “What can I say? I was in love.” “Falling in love can be like walking a tightrope – exhilarating but dangerous. A prenup is like a safety net.” Taylor fidgeted in his seat. “I know. It’s just not very romantic to shove a contract in front of your fiancé berfore you pop the question…

 “What about the house?” Taylor had a nice spread in Montecito with a hefty mortgage that was easy for him to handle with the income from his investments, but when half of them disappeared, it was going to be tough to hold onto. “That was purchased during the marriage as well, and you’re both on title. You can make her an offer to buy her out, or you’ll have to sell it and split the proceeds.”

“She says she’s never leaving it.” “Then, that’s another thing we have to contend with. But you’ll get through it. There is life after divorce. My mentor, Charles Stinson, used to say, ‘Now you can start paying for it with money instead of blood.’ Tell me a little about your wife. I like to know who I’m dealing with.” Taylor took a deep breath, thoughtfully. “She fooled me.” “What do you mean?” “What I mean is that she comes off to everyone as this nice, sweet, charming girl. But in reality that’s all a charade. She’s more like the witch with the poison apple.”

 Eade, Kenneth (2016-05-15). Legal Thriller: Decree of Finality: A Lawyer Brent Marks Legal Thriller (Brent Marks Legal Thriller Series Book 8) (Kindle Location 158-166). Times Square Publishing. Kindle Edition.

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decree-of-finality

THE AUTHOR RUMINATES….

Ken Eade at Desk

KEN EADE- ALWAYS THINKING, DAYDREAMING, STRATEGIZING-
-HOW TO CREATE HIS NEXT SUPER SUSPENSE THRILLER-
TRUST HIM, HE WILL NEVER STOP!!!

                                         

CLICK HERE TO SEE WHAT KEN HAS DONE SO FAR




KEN EADE EXPLORES A VERY GRIPPING CASE OF “ABSOLUTE INTOLERANCE”

‘SOME CASES CAN SKIRT THE EDGES OF CONFLICT OF INTEREST. IN THIS NOVEL, BRENT MARKS, AUTHOR KEN EADE’S PROTAGONIST I, TAKES ON THE CASE OF A SUSPECT ACCUSED OF MURDERING HIS FORMER CLIENTS, A GAY MARRIED COUPLE, MURDERED IN THEIR HOME.’

Sometimes a good lawyer must face potential conflicts in his work. After a gay couple had enlisted attorney, Brent Marks, who advocated successfully for their marriage, they were found murdered in their home. Apparently, the murderer was a homophobic serial killer who committed repugnant deeds in the name of spirituality. What should he do when a suspect in the murder case, a known religious extremist, comes to Brent for help? The only way Markscan justify his involvement is to actually solve the case himself.

EXCERPT FROM ABSOLUTE INTOLERANCE

FOLLOWING A POSTPONEMENT OF A COURT TO RENDER A DECISION ON A CASE INVOLVING THE LEGALITY OF GAY MARRIAGE, ATTORNEY BRENT MARKS ATTEMPTS TO LEAVE THE COURT BUILDING BUT, ON THE WAY OUT, ENCOUNTERS AN EAGER- AND LOUD- GROUP OF REPORTERS….

The judge went on to call her next case, and Brent packed up his briefcase and joined his clients as they left the courtroom, dejected. Brent waved off questions being shouted by a crowd of reporters who had congregated in the corridor outside the courtroom. Losers make lousy press conferences. Penner, however, eagerly jumped into the fray like he was falling off the stage into a mosh pit. As Brent and his clients trudged away, before he could even have the chance to console them, Joshua Banks, a bible-thumping, homophobic, religious fanatic, blocked their path. Brent had had run-ins with Banks several times, to the point where he had been forced to obtain a restraining order against him because of death threats. But he was mainly a zealot and a windbag who was always preaching

“Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure!” Banks proclaimed, lifting his finger in front of them as if he was giving a sermon.

“Step aside, Mr. Banks. Do I have to get another restraining order against you?”

“Men committed acts with other men, and received in themselves due penalty for their perversion!”

“Who is this guy?”

“He’s just a nut job, James. I’ve dealt with him before.”

Banks stepped out of the way and the three proceeded down the escalator to the lobby of the courthouse.

“He’s a religious fanatic. Part of the group opposing gay marriage.”

As they descended, they could hear the echoes of Banks yelling verses from the Bible.

“These dreamers pollute their own bodies, reject authority and slander celestial beings!” “He’s really harmless. Just ignore him.”

“Sounds like he’s got a screw loose,” said Jim.

Brent nodded. “More than one screw, I think.”

The bellowing began to fade from their ears as they descended.

“Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders, nor thieves, nor the greedy or drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God!”

“I guess it’s official, Jim. We’re both going to hell.”

“At least we’ll be there together.”

Eade, Kenneth (2015-12-13). Absolute Intolerance: A Gripping Serial Killer Thriller: A Lawyer Brent Marks Legal Thriller (Brent Marks Legal Thriller Series Book 6) (Kindle Locations 196-227). Times Square Publishing. Kindle Edition.

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absolute-intolerance-book-jacket 

THE AUTHOR RUMINATES….

                Ken Eade at Desk

KEN EADE- ALWAYS THINKING, DAYDREAMING, STRATEGIZING-
-HOW TO CREATE HIS NEXT SUPER SUSPENSE THRILLER-
TRUST HIM, HE WILL NEVER STOP!!!

                           CLICK HERE TO SEE WHAT KEN HAS DONE SO FAR




A VERY UNTIDY HOA MURDER NOVEL: EVERY RESIDENT A SUSPECT

BRENT MARKS NEVER THOUGHT THAT THE CLIENT HE WAS DEFENDING AGAINST FORECLOSURE WOULD BE
ACCUSED OF MURDER…. AGAINST THE PRESIDENT OF THE HOME OWNERS ASSOCIATION.”

But that’s what happens in this 3rd novel in the legal suspense thriller by novelist/attorney/human rights and environmental activist, Ken Eade.  As D. Donovan of the Midwest Book Review says:

“There is big a difference between crime and detective novels and courtroom dramas. In one, the action takes place on the streets; and in the other, the main story takes place in the courtroom.  HOA Wirerepresents the latter, and will appeal to fans of Grisham and any other writer who spins a solid yarn based on courtroom drama and realistic experiences.” (READ THE WHOLE REVIEW HERE)

 

EXCERPT FROM THE SUSPENSE THRILLER, HOA WIRE

“Homeowner’s Association: the means whereby people who own homes are able to transfer their rights to the neighborhood control freaks.” -Ron Brackin

The nightmare had begun with the color of their house. A year ago, Nancy and Burt received a notice requesting them to paint the exterior of their townhome, which included a detailed list of instructions. They just turned over the instructions to their painter, and asked him to paint the house the same color as the one down the street. It was a pleasant powder blue, and they had always loved it. The painter took a sample from the neighbor’s house and matched the color perfectly. The only problem was, unbeknownst to Burt and Nancy, they were not allowed to change the former color of their home. It messed with the “palette” and was a violation of the HOA rules. Nancy and Burt were happy until the HOA sent them a “Notice of Violation,” that began a series of legal battles with mounting costs and attorney’s fees. It didn’t take long for the HOA’s fees to pile up higher than a New York City high rise.

Nancy slumped onto the couch and Nelson jumped onto her lap as if he were spring-loaded, and started to play the “biting game.” It was his favorite. He charged at Nancy on the couch, and she pushed him away, over and over and over again, and each time, Nelson gently bit at her fingers and growled as he delighted in the attention.

After Nelson calmed down and curled into a tiny ball on the couch, Nancy’s mind kept going back to the HOA notice. She and Burt had exhausted all their savings fighting, litigating, and finally settling with them on the paint case after a lengthy mediation. The curiosity nagged at her until she couldn’t stand it anymore, although she knew what to expect. Because of the legal bills, mounting expenses, loss of Burt and the economy, the HOA assessments had piled up. Not only that, the Association had added “special assessments” for improvements to the common areas, as well as a ton of attorney’s fees. Nancy simply could not afford to pay for them all. She ripped open the envelope to reveal her greatest fear. It read, “Notice of Foreclosure Sale.”

Eade, Kenneth (2015-02-28). Legal Thriller: HOA Wire, A Crime Thriller: A Lawyer Brent Marks Legal Thriller (Brent Marks Legal Thriller Series Book 3) (Kindle Locations 28-30, 103-119). Times Square Publishing. Kindle Edition.

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HOA Wire Book CoverREAD GERTRUDE MATSHE’S REVIEW IN A HUFFINGTON POST BLOG
AND TONS MORE IF YOU WISHBUT IF YOU GET TIRED OF READING REVIEWS, THE BOOK ITSELF IS ONLY A CLICK AWAY

 

THE AUTHOR RUMINATES..

Ken Eade at Desk

KEN EADE- ALWAYS THINKING, DAYDREAMING, STRATEGIZING-
-HOW TO CREATE HIS NEXT SUPER SUSPENSE THRILLER-
TRUST HIM, HE WILL NEVER STOP!!!

CLICK HERE TO SEE WHAT KEN HAS DONE SO FAR

 




HUGO RODIER, MD: AN INTEGRATIVE VIEW OF WEIGHT GAIN

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Integrative View of Weight Gain
November 12, 2016 by
Hugo Rodier, MD

Integrative view of weight gain

People will do anything to lose weight. Unfortunately, they seldom hear about critical issues that—if left unattended—will lead to failure. For example, you and I may eat the same amount of calories, but, if your gut bacteria are out to lunch you may gain weight and I won’t. So, even antibiotics have been shown to alter your metabolism. But, there are other neglected mechanisms whereby our Microbiome may mess with your scales:

  1. Detoxification of chemicals in the environment we now refer to as OBESOGENS

The glut flora has the same—and equal—capacity to detoxify said chemicals.

  1. Unfortunately, many Americans have what we call FATTY LIVER, thus compromising the proper elimination of chemicals from our body.

So much for calories in = calories out.

The answer is clear: restore health and balance to your gut flora, avoid chemicals, exercise, and get full with a plant-based diet. Eliminate process food and stop counting calories and weighing yourself. Above all, avoid quacks who will give you hormones to lose weight.

Unfortunately, there is one more neglected issue: our inner-demons. Most people cannot do the above because they are struggling with childhood issues that have resulted in poor self-esteem and poor mind programming that may lead to addicting behaviors. If this is the case with you, seek professional help.

REFERENCES

 Exposure to air pollution may increase glucose intolerance, research suggests

The New York Times (9/21, Bakalar, Subscription Publication) reports, “Exposure to air pollution…may increase glucose intolerance,” researchers found. Investigators also “found the effect particularly strong in people who are already considered prediabetic because of abnormally high blood sugar levels.” The findings of the 2,944-participant study were published in the Journal Diabetes.

Population attributable risks and costs of diabetogenic chemical exposures in the elderly, J Epidemiol Community Health doi:10.1136/jech-2016-208006

Background A previous analysis examined the contribution of endocrine disruptor exposures (endocrine-disrupting chemicals, EDCs) to adult diabetes, but was limited to effects of phthalates in middle-aged women and did not simultaneously examine multiple EDCs which are known to coexist in the environment. We therefore endeavoured to quantify potential reductions in diabetes and disease costs that could result from reducing synthetic chemical diabetogenic exposures in the elderly in Europe.

Methods We leveraged the Prospective Investigation of the Vasculature in Uppsala Seniors (PIVUS) study (∼1000 participants), which has measured exposure to phthalates; dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethylene; polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and perfluoroalkyl substances to examine their independent contribution to diabetes. We estimated risk reductions assuming identical 25% reductions across levels of 4 selected compounds (PCB 153, monoethylphthalate, dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene and perfluorononanoic acid), and diabetes costs saved in European men and women if diabetogenic exposures are limited.

Results Reduction of chemical exposures was associated with a 13% (95% CI 2% to 22%) reduction in prevalent diabetes, compared with 40% resulting from an identical (25%) reduction in body mass index (BMI) in cross-sectional analyses. Extrapolating to Europe, 152 481 cases of diabetes in Europe and €4.51 billion/year in associated costs could be prevented, compared with 469 172 cases prevented by reducing BMI.

Conclusions These findings support regulatory and individual efforts to reduce chemical exposures to reduce the burden and costs of diabetes.

Heritability of high sugar consumption through drinks and the genetic correlation with substance use

Am J Clin Nutr 2016 104: 1144.The positive association between high sugar consumption and high substance use was partly due to unique environmental factors (e.g., social situations). Genetic factors were also of influence, suggesting that neuronal circuits underlying the development of addiction and obesity are related.

Use of Antibiotics and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes: A Population-Based Case-Control Study Epub August 27 2015 DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1210/jc.2015-2696

FOR MORE INFORMATION, GO TO: http://hugorodier.com/

 




KEN EADE’S NOVEL, “PREDATORY KILL,” PUTS A BITE INTO SO-CALLED PREDATORY LENDING

HOW DOES A PREDATORY LENDER MORPH INTO A PREDATORY KILLER?
-Read Kenneth Eade’s Novel and Find Out-

This Brent Marks thriller features a time when Marks has decided to utilize his talents to serve the public instead eating from the trough of merely bread and butter cases- as in DUIs and divorce. After embarking on an intriguing case involving predatory lending by a bank that led to a wrongful disclosure on a home owned by a client’s  parents, the straightforward social justice case morphed into a focus on a capital crime when the client’s  parents were murdered. Were the banks somehow involved in the murder? If so, that would be taking the term, “predatory’” to its original etymological meaning- as in “kill?”-the tactics of ruthless, murderous loan shark?

EXCERPT FROM “PREDATORY KILL”

Brent entered his office, sat down behind his plush mahogany desk, and picked up the phone. “Hello, this is Brent Marks.” The eerie voice on the other end was cold and inhuman. “Do you know how fast a bullet goes, Counselor?” it asked. “Who is this?” “Seventeen hundred feet per second. At that velocity, it will crack open your skull and splatter your brains all over your wall like a watermelon being hit by a sledge hammer.” The caller cackled like a wounded chicken. Brent quickly switched on the recording device to the receiver. He had bought that baby to record threats from ex-husbands whose wives had obtained restraining orders against them, but which Brent had always refused to dismiss, even in cases of so called “reconciliation.” “I don’t think I got your name, mister?” The voice responded with a maniacal chuckle, which turned into a full blown belly laugh, like Vincent Price in the final stanza of Michael Jackson’s Thriller. “No judge in the world can stop a bullet, Counselor. No piece of paper can do that.” “This conversation is really interesting, but if I don’t have your name, I…” “Think hard.” “I’m not going to play games with you.” “Oh, this is not a game. I assure you. I’m just giving you a little preview. Wherever you go, I’ll be there. When you’re at the corner at Starbucks, having your mocha grande in the morning before going to court, I’ll be there. You won’t see me, but I’ll be there. All it takes is one shot – one shot in the head.” The phone vibrated from the eerie laughter. “And why would you want to shoot me?” “I am a servant of the Lord, Counselor. I do His work.”

 Eade, Kenneth. Legal Thriller: Predatory Kill, a Courtroom drama (Brent Marks Legal Thrillers Book 2) (pp. 3-5). Times Square Publishing. Kindle Edition.

CLICK ON ON THE IMAGE BELOW TO PURCHASEPredatory Kill Book Cover                                                    

THE AUTHOR RUMINATES..

Ken Eade at Desk

KEN EADE- ALWAYS THINKING, DAYDREAMING, STRATEGIZING-
-HOW TO CREATE HIS NEXT SUPER SUSPENSE THRILLER-
TRUST HIM, HE WILL NEVER STOP!!!

CLICK HERE TO SEE WHAT KEN HAS DONE SO FAR




HUGO RODIER, MD: MILK AND NUTRITIONAL REALITY

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Integrative View of Routine Mammogram Screening

October 26th, 2016
by Hugo Rodier, MD

FOR MORE INFORMATION, GO TO: http://hugorodier.com/




HUGO RODIER, MD: THE DANGERS OF NEUROINFLAMMATION & OTHER TOPICS

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Volume 17  Number 11  November 2016

We all worry about losing our minds. Of course, if you do there is nothing to worry about.

In the last newsletter we reviewed how bad diets, toxic environments and inactivity are the main factors contributing to our brains aging poorly.  The mechanisms involved are Toxicity, Inflammation, Oxidation and Less Optimal Mitochondrial function (T.O.I.L.)This is issue reviews simple ways to reduce the risk of Cognitive Decline.

Hugo Rodier, MD

Better Brain Balance

The more inflamed your brain is the higher the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and cognitive problems.

How neuroinflammation contributes to neurodegeneration

  1. Science  19 Aug 2016:Vol. 353, Issue 6301, pp. 777-783

Neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and frontotemporal lobar dementia are among the most pressing problems of developed societies with aging populations. Neurons carry out essential functions such as signal transmission and network integration in the central nervous system and are the main targets of neurodegenerative disease. The neuron’s environment also contributes to neurodegeneration. Maintaining an optimal milieu for neuronal function rests with supportive cells termed glia and the blood-brain barrier. Accumulating evidence suggests that neurodegeneration occurs in part because the environment is affected during disease in a cascade of processes collectively termed neuroinflammation.”

Inactivity also increases inflammation, especially if we become couch potatoes. Inflammation leads to poor circulation that not only increases the risk of decreased blood flow to the brain, but, that of fatal clots like Pulmonary Embolisms.[1]

You can reduce inflammation by eating a plant-based diet[2] and lots of nuts.[3] This optimizes the function of your gut immune system where said inflammation is generated.

Study links nut consumption to low inflammation

Reuters (8/24, Kennedy) reports that, according to a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, “eating a handful of nuts five times per week may reduce inflammation.” Researchers “analyzed data from two different long-term studies of health professionals, the Nurses’ Health Study (NHS) and the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study (HPFS),” and found that “people who ate nuts at least five times per week had 20 percent lower levels of C-reactive protein (CRP) compared to people who never or rarely ate nuts.” In addition, they “had 16 percent lower levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6), another inflammatory marker.”

Exercise boosts long term memory

The New York Times (8/24, Reynolds) reports in its “Well” blog that a 2014 study on mice suggested that exercise might have detrimental effects on long-term memory. Meanwhile, in a new study published in The Journal of Neuroscience “researchers decided to replicate aspects of the 2014 mouse experiment but instead use rats” because research has shown rat brains “are more similar to our brains.” The new study found that rats that exercised displayed long-term memory as good as sedentary rats and had developed “about twice as many new cells as did the brains of the sedentary animals.”

Acupuncture may help improve memory in people with amnestic Mild Congnitive Impairment, study suggests

Fox News (8/5) reported that acupuncture may “help improve symptoms of dementia,” researchers say. After analyzing “two types of studAGERies including one that compared acupuncture directly to nimodipine, which is a calcium blocker that treats a gene mutation associated with dementia, and another that measured the effect of acupuncture when combined with nimodipine,” researchers “found that patients who chose acupuncture saw significant changes on mini-mental state examination scores compared to patients who only took nimodipine.”

HealthDay (8/4, Reinberg) reported that researchers analyzed five studies including “nearly 600 people with” amnestic mild cognitive impairment [MCI], “a type of memory loss that’s considered pre-dementia.” The findings were published online Aug. 4 in Acupuncture in Medicine.

Getting Started

It is hard to stop eating junk. Some people can do it overnight. Others need baby steps, such as giving up soda pop. Amazingly, many are still unaware of the toxic nature of soda. It has been compared to that of tobacco and alcohol.

“Sugar-sweetened beverage consumption and genetic predisposition to obesity in 2 Swedish cohorts,” Am J Clin Nutr 2016 104: 809

“Intake of Caffeinated Soft Drinks before and during Pregnancy, but Not Total Caffeine Intake, Is Associated with Increased Cerebral Palsy Risk in the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study,” J. Nutr. 2016 146: 1701

Another change that may be implemented first is to explore our childhoods with the eyes of an adult. Although the book Homecoming is written for people who have an alcohol abuse problem it is also helpful for those who have developed toxic habits that impair their health. Often they are rooted in unresolved issues from childhood. After all, eating is highly psychological. Most people explain this insidious problem by labeling it a “comfort food” issue.

Childhood abuse associated with higher risk of death for women, study finds

TIME (8/17, Sifferlin) reports a new study published online Aug. 17 in JAMA Psychiatry suggests that “being physically or emotionally abused as a child can increase a woman’s risk of death.” The study did not determine a causal realtion as to why childhood abuse is linked “with a higher risk for death, but the researchers speculate that abuse may heighten women’s risk for mental health issues, like depression, that can take a toll later on.”

NPR (8/17, Hobson) reports the research examined “a government-funded study that” asked roughly 6,200 men and women about their childhood experiences with physical and emotional abuse, tracking them for 20 years. Edith Chen, an author of the study, pointed out in an email that “the link to early death was with self-reported abuse, not abuse confirmed by courts or independently documented in other ways.” Researchers also said it was unclear why the association appeared in women, but not men.

Another simple start is to check some basic laboratory tests. I prefer the Comprehensive Metabolic Panel, GlycoHb A1c and Vitamin D25OH. The latter is associated with insulin resistance which can create a lot of problems, even an atrophied brain.[4] As noted previously, women are particularly at risk for hormonal problems that will end up impacting not only brain function, but fertility. Optimal levels of Vitamin D reduces the risk of all three problems:

“Vitamin D Status Relates to Reproductive Outcome in Women With Polycystic Ovary Syndrome: Secondary Analysis of a Multicenter Randomized Controlled Trial,”                                                                    JCEM 2016;101(8), pp. 3027–3035. Vitamin D best >45 to increase chance of conceiving.

 

Herbs and supplements that have been noted to help with cognitive issues:

Phosphatidylserine/Omega oils

DHEA

Sage, Huperzine-A (Herbs)

B complex vitamins

Glutamine (amino acid)

CoQ10

Probiotics

Resveratrol

Coffee, tea, chocolate

AND, OF COURSE, MY FAVORITE TOPIC: THE BRAIN-GUT CONNECTION.

This is an article reproduced in its entirety for those of you with time to spare. If you don’t have the time or the will to read it the main message is that your gut flora has a huge impact on how your brain functions. Feed it well.

The Microbiome and Brain Health: What’s the Connection?    Medscape March 28 2015

Researchers are now beginning to understand the ways in which bacteria living in the human gut—the gut microbiota—communicate with and influence brain health. The concept of a faulty “gut/brain axis” has been associated with various neurologic and psychiatric outcomes and is thought to be explained, at least in part, by immune dysfunction and inflammation triggered by poor gut health.

The gut microbiota has emerged as an important focus in the understanding of noncommunicable diseases, including type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, as well as disorders of the brain. Brain-related conditions place a great burden on society, and the limitations of current interventions reflects the need for ongoing investigations into understanding and treating brain disorders, in part by exploring the close relationship between our biome and our brain.

Biome and Brain Overview

The human intestinal microbiome is seeded at birth; it is influenced initially by delivery and feeding mode, and reaches an adult-like state within the first few years of life.[2] Alterations in the composition, diversity, and stability of gut microbiota have been linked to a broad range of diseases, including autoimmune, metabolic, gastrointestinal, and brain disorders.

Although the composition of the gut microbiota remains relatively stable during our middle years, it continues to be influenced by such factors as geography, antibiotics, exercise, and diet. This is particularly important when considering possible prevention and intervention in brain disorders.

It is well known that bidirectional gut/brain communication may occur directly and indirectly via the central and enteric nervous systems, the vagus nerve, and the endocrine and immunoinflammatory systems and through the modulation of neurotransmitters. Diet could also utilize these pathways, because the gut microbiota supports optimal nutritional bioavailability—for example, by maintaining normal plasma tryptophan levels, an important building block for making serotonin, a key central nervous system neurotransmitter. Advances in this field have come from the development of DNA sequencing technology, which allows researchers to conduct large-scale screening of the bacteria in the gut and their associated physiologic functions. This has helped researchers to link disruption of the gut microbiota with biological markers of the communication pathways mentioned above.

It is important to note that there is so far no “gold standard” healthy intestinal microbial profile. Genetic and environmental factors mean that there may be significant variability in gut composition from person to person. In general, a “healthy,” diverse gut microbiota promotes gut health and maintains essential structural, metabolic and signaling functions. The human gut can be “unhealthy” for a variety of reasons. Typically, a shift away from normal gut microbiota diversity and stability—termed “dysbiosis”—means it is unable to sustain one or more of the functions of a healthy gut, and this may contribute to metabolic, autoimmune, and brain disorders.

Increased intestinal permeability, often called “leaky gut,” occurs when the mucosal gut barrier fails to prevent potentially harmful molecules from entering the bloodstream; these molecules include lipopolysaccharides, which are found on the outer membrane of gram-negative bacteria and may elicit inflammatory responses in the body. Increased intestinal permeability is a common feature of an unhealthy gut.

Keeping in mind that each gut microbiome looks different, the terms “healthy” and “unhealthy” used here refer to instances in which gut microbiota functioning, composition, or ratio may deviate from a person’s individual-specific “normal” state.

The Biome and Brain Disorders

Microbial and neurologic development share similar windows of developmental vulnerability, during which they are particularly susceptible to damage The mother provides an infant’s first bacterial exposure; thus, maternal health is very important to a how a child’s microbiome develops. Maternal illness and use of medications may disrupt an optimal microbiota transfer to the infant.

Early life continues to be developmentally critical; disruptions, such as stress or severe illness, can be damaging to gut/brain signaling and have been linked to brain disorders later in life.[6] Several animal studies have shown that early life stress can alter the development of the key stress response system, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, establishing a lifelong alteration in how an animal responds to stress. The impact on the two-way relationship between stress and the gut microbiota may be at the root of this problem. Maternal stress and infection during pregnancy have been linked to neurologic and central nervous system disorders, such as schizophrenia, autism spectrum disorders, and distinct cognitive and behavioral symptoms later in life, and these outcomes may be mediated by the bacteria living in the gut.

Microbiota and Neurologic Disease

Gut disturbances—both gastrointestinal discomfort and altered microbiota —have been linked to neurologic disorders, including multiple sclerosis (MS), autism spectrum disorders, and Parkinson disease. Environmental risk factors for neurologic disease often promote the immunoinflammatory response.

There is suggestion that the misfolding of proteins in the brain may be an etiologic explanation for some neurologic disorders. Brain inflammation, which may originate from the gut, is one notable hypothesis behind protein misfolding.

The proinflammatory state prompted by gut dysbiosis has also been linked to various autoimmune disorders, again including MS MS is most common in Western countries where dietary patterns thought to promote a proinflammatory profile and disrupt optimal gut microbiota states are common. Of note, lipopolysaccharides and antibodies against various antigens have been observed in patients with MS and Parkinson disease, with both markers signaling an increase in intestinal permeability.

Relatedly, neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer disease and generalized cognitive decline, are marked by age-related brain changes, along with disturbed immune function and increased oxidative stress, these factors have been shown in animals to be influenced by diet and the gut microbiota. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor, a neurotrophin that protects and encourages survival of healthy brain cells and whose production may be influenced by gut bacteria, is shown to be decreased in people with Alzheimer disease. It appears that age-related changes in the gut microbiota might be bidirectionally linked to age-related neurodegeneration.

It is notable that the unhealthy dietary patterns that negatively influence the gut microbiome are also risk factors for depression in older adults, whereas healthier diets protect against cognitive decline.

The Microbiota and Psychiatric Disorders

The notion of the gut/mental health connection has recently started to gain traction. It is now thought that various psychological disorders, depression in particular, may be inflammatory disorders, and that the gut may be an important mediator of these conditions In numerous animal studies, microbial manipulation produced behaviors related to anxiety or depression, and one study demonstrated that the anxious phenotype could be transferred via the intestinal microbiota between animals.

The coping mechanisms for dealing with psychological stress appear to be programmed in early life, so this development may set us up to deal with stress throughout our lives—with some coping mechanisms working better than others. Given the amount of serotonin in the gut and the influence of the gut microbiota on serotonin’s precursor, tryptophan, examining its role in mental health is worthwhile. Early correlational evidence has linked functional and structural damage in the gut with depression, schizophrenia, and autism.

Promoting a Healthy Biome: Strategies

In both neurologic and psychiatric conditions, it is difficult to know what came first: the disorder, or the unhealthy gut. It is possible that gut dysbiosis is responsible for both disease risk and the severity of a disorder, but it is equally plausible that the stress associated with brain disorders is the principal driver of gut dysbiosis. Moreover, the same environmental risk factors (eg, unhealthy diet) may disrupt both gut and brain health.

It is clear that the causes and symptomology of some neurologic/neurodegenerative and psychiatric disorders have a similar underlying pathophysiology and that an unhealthy gut influences these through several overlapping pathways. Although it is difficult to tease out the individual contribution of each of these systems, given their complexity and the difficulty of isolating them clinically, the gut appears to be a key driver of a high-risk, inflammatory state in the body and brain and may prove to be the key in unlocking a new understanding of the etiology of brain diseases that supports new clinical and public health interventions.

Although gut microbial composition appears to be quite resilient, it is also readily modified. Lifestyle factors are particularly important to the composition, diversity, and stability of the gut microbiome. Below are several strategies that research suggests could contribute to overall gut health and that, in turn, may promote the health and protection of the brain.

Diet

There is good evidence for the role of individual nutrients, such as omega-3 fatty acids and zinc, in both physical and mental health; it is therefore useful to consume these nutrients as part of an overall healthful diet.

A healthful diet composed of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains has also been linked to higher levels of Bacteroidetes. These types of bacteria are particularly good at producing short-chain fatty acids, which help regulate gut inflammation.

Three main food components are proposed to benefit gut health: living microorganisms known as “probiotics” (found in such foods as yogurt, kefir, and kimchi); nondigestible carbohydrates (eg, dietary fiber found in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains); and secondary plant metabolites, such as flavonoids (found in brightly colored fruits, vegetables, and red wine). Persons who consume a Western-style diet experience less of the protective benefits of plant foods and simultaneously provoke other metabolic disruptions through high fat and sugar consumption, which contribute to gut dysbiosis and inflammation.

Exercise

Evidence suggests that exercise may increase the diversity of bacteria living in the gut. One study showed increased gut bacterial diversity and fewer markers of inflammation in athletes compared with controls. However, moderate exercise may be best; one study found that persons who exercised one to 30 times per month had higher levels of brain-protecting BDNF than nonexercisers or extreme exercisers. Exercise has been shown to have positive anti-inflammatory benefits, which may promote both gut and brain health.

Pre- and Probiotics and Fermented Foods

There is some support for the benefits of probiotic and prebiotic supplements and fermented foods within the gut, with some groups calling for the inclusion of probiotic or fermented foods in national food guide recommendations. The anti-inflammatory benefits of fiber fermentation in the colon occur naturally during digestion of healthy, fiber-rich foods, resulting in metabolic by-products that include various vitamins and antioxidants. Although some studies show promising results, larger, high-quality trials are needed to fully elucidate this relationship.

Future Directions

Understanding the role of the gut microbiota in neurologic and psychiatric disorders is an exciting prospect, with both conditions contributing significantly to individuals’ quality of life and to global disease burden. Identifying measurable and modifiable microbial “therapies” presents a valuable opportunity for new prevention and treatment strategies for brain disorders.

The possibility of being able to prevent or alleviate neurologic or psychiatric conditions through lifestyle interventions has significant public health implications. However, a full understanding of the gut/brain connection and its health implications is still evolving, and quality clinical trials are needed that include assessments of immune, inflammatory, and gut biomarkers to elucidate the function, behavior, and modifiability of bacteria living in the gut.

Of note, the etiology of neurologic and psychiatric disorders is highly complex and varied; it would be an oversimplification to imply that microbial modification is a cure-all solution. However, general health recommendations remain true. Exercising moderately and consuming a varied diet of whole foods, including lots of fruit and vegetables, can benefit not only your physical health, but also gut health and the health of your brain.”

[1] “Watching Television and Risk of Mortality From Pulmonary Embolism Among Japanese Men and Women-The JACC Study (Japan Collaborative Cohort),” http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.116.023671 Published: July 26, 2016

[2] “Plant protein lowers the risk of bad health habits,” JAMA Internal Medicine, online August 1.2016

[3] “Associations between nut consumption and inflammatory biomarkers,” Am J Clin Nutr 2016 104: 722

[4] J. Family Practice News, Oct 2016, p12

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