Series Code: UP
Program Code: UP180114A
00:01 The following program presents principles designed
00:02 to promote good health
00:04 and is not intended to take the place
00:05 of personalized professional care.
00:07 The opinions and ideas expressed
00:09 are those of the speaker.
00:10 Viewers are encouraged to draw their own conclusions
00:13 about the information presented.
00:15 The human brain is by far the most complex design
00:18 known to man.
00:20 And our best and brighter scientists
00:21 from around the world
00:22 are just now scratching the surface
00:24 when it comes to understanding how the brain really works.
00:27 But we have learned a few things.
00:28 And on today's program, we'll be sharing tips
00:30 that you can use to improve your brain health today
00:33 no matter where you're starting from.
00:35 The Ultimate Prescription starts now.
00:56 Thanks for joining us here today
00:58 on The Ultimate Prescription,
00:59 a program dedicated to helping us better understand
01:02 God's design for our lives
01:03 and experiencing better health by following His plan.
01:06 I'm your host Nick Evenson,
01:07 and I'm joined by Dr. James Marcum
01:09 for an excellent program today
01:10 in which we'll be discussing brain health.
01:12 And, Dr. Marcum, welcome to the program
01:14 and tell us, as a cardiologist,
01:16 how have you learned about brain health?
01:18 Well, I've had to understand,
01:20 I specialize in disease reversal.
01:24 And what that means, you know,
01:25 do we ever actually reverse disease?
01:27 Probably some things we can slow it down,
01:30 some people we can improve, but we don't really reverse
01:33 some of the genetic tendencies that we have.
01:37 But one of the things I've learned
01:38 that the brain is a very valuable way to improve things.
01:43 And when we talk...
01:44 Earlier, we talked about all the stresses that
01:46 cause the disease, and we talked about
01:49 how our genes are all bad including our brain genes.
01:53 And the stresses accelerate ageing
01:55 and accelerate damaging,
01:56 and often our body compensates in some ways.
02:00 Some ways good, some ways not so good.
02:04 In brain health, you know, we talk about the inputs.
02:06 You know, we talked about in lifestyle,
02:08 food, we talk a lot about food.
02:10 But just as dangerous to our health
02:11 is having bad brain inputs.
02:13 And we have brain inputs over prolong periods of time,
02:17 we can have damage to us.
02:19 So that's why we want to understand
02:21 this complex organ.
02:23 And the more we learn, the less we know about it.
02:26 It's more complex than the internet could ever be.
02:29 And it looks at all of the advance programs it does,
02:31 all the storage devices, how do we recall things,
02:34 how do we coordinate things to get a response,
02:37 you know, understanding how dreams in the past
02:40 and the future, all plays a role.
02:42 It's just amazing what God has designed.
02:45 And when I look at the structure
02:47 and function of the brain,
02:48 you know, you know that there's a Creator,
02:51 you know, you appreciate the handy work
02:53 and how it's done.
02:54 But you also...
02:56 All the good things out there,
02:57 there's also bad things, you know.
02:58 As advance as God has made the brain,
03:00 there's people out there that want to hurt the brain.
03:03 When we hurt our brains,
03:04 we can't communicate with God as efficiently.
03:07 And we want to try to avoid the stresses on the brain.
03:10 And I think we need to talk a little bit about
03:13 how the brain works at a basic level today.
03:15 Yeah, right.
03:17 Well, throughout the series of programs,
03:18 we've been discussing biblical prescriptions
03:20 and how those can benefit us.
03:22 And so we have a video
03:24 from the Biblical Prescriptions,
03:25 a small group Bible study program
03:27 that we'd like to share with you on brain health
03:29 and how the brain works and what we know about it.
03:31 Let's take a look now.
03:34 Now the brain is very vast and very interesting.
03:38 And lot of people like
03:40 to think of the brain like the vast internet.
03:43 But believe it or not,
03:44 the brain is even more complex than the internet.
03:48 There is 100 billion neurons in the brain.
03:52 Now the neuron
03:53 is the functional cell of the brain.
03:55 It's a very neat structure
03:57 that contains a structure called an axon and a dendrite,
04:02 and they connect to each other,
04:03 and they communicate both via chemicals and electrically,
04:07 so the brain is an electromagnetic
04:09 as well as chemical phenomena.
04:12 For instance, if you remember something
04:13 in one part of the brain
04:15 and it tells your part of the body
04:16 that this isn't something you want to do,
04:18 there's connections with that.
04:20 There's been estimated that
04:21 there is one quadrillion connections within the brain,
04:26 that's one with 15 zeros out of it.
04:28 But the way we learn about the brain
04:30 is through different types of technology like
04:33 PET scans, MRIs, EEGs.
04:38 Sometimes we can learn by talking to people
04:40 and we can actually map the brain now.
04:43 They're doing studies right now,
04:45 we can actually put thoughts into certain parts of brains,
04:49 where we can get the brain
04:51 to move different parts of the body.
04:53 But we've learned the basics of the brain.
04:55 It consisted of three functional layers.
04:57 And that's important for us,
04:59 because we want to understand how our behavior works.
05:02 This is going to help us this week
05:04 as we learn about the brain
05:05 and learn the importance of our spiritual lives.
05:08 Well, the first part of the brain is the brain stem.
05:11 This is the stress part of the brain.
05:13 This part of the brain is great at staying alive,
05:16 gathering foods, seeking pleasure.
05:18 Doesn't do anything in the future,
05:20 doesn't really understand the past,
05:23 just lives in the here and now, wants to stay alive.
05:26 This part is not capable of love.
05:29 The middle part of the brain, which we share with mammals,
05:32 is it called the mammalian layer.
05:34 And it sort of sits on top of this part
05:36 of the brain stem here.
05:38 It does things like emotion,
05:40 it does things like our immune system,
05:43 it's where we store our thoughts
05:45 in the part called the hippocampus.
05:48 Also this stress part of the brain,
05:50 the amygdala is located in this middle layer,
05:53 and we share this with mammals.
05:56 The third part of the brain
05:58 is called the prefrontal cortex,
06:00 this is the part that's unique to humans.
06:02 A few mammals have a little bit of neocortex.
06:06 Crows and dolphins and some primates
06:10 have a little bit of it, but it's predominantly a part
06:12 that's unique to the human race.
06:14 And this is the part where God communicates with us.
06:18 This is the part called the anterior cingulate cortex.
06:21 That's the God brain.
06:23 The studies have shown that when we worship God
06:26 and we're going to study this next week,
06:27 we grow these neural connections,
06:29 these neural pathways in this part of the brain.
06:32 Our goal is to live in the upper part of the brain.
06:36 We don't want to live in the stress part of the brain
06:38 just staying alive.
06:40 And we call this upshifting the brain.
06:42 We want to live in the God part of the brain,
06:45 and not downshifting and live constantly
06:47 in the stress part of the brain.
06:49 When a stress occurs to this level,
06:51 our brain downshift, turns on all this chemistry,
06:55 and all this chemistry turns on chemicals
06:57 that make it very difficult
06:58 for us to have good thoughts,
07:00 cognitive thinking,
07:02 and also makes it even harder to worship God.
07:05 So our goal basically is to be upshifted
07:08 and not downshifted.
07:09 And we can do that through some skills
07:12 we're going to learn about this week.
07:14 We're going to learn about what do we do
07:15 when we see that our brain is downshifted, stressed out?
07:19 How do we upshift our brain? How do we move to worship?
07:22 How do we change
07:24 those neural connections and the chemistry
07:25 that will give us the strength
07:27 to continue to improve our physical wellbeing?
07:30 And remember, that God wants to create in us a new brain,
07:34 and we're going to learn this week
07:35 that it's through worship, spending time with Him
07:38 that He's actually able to create these new connections
07:41 that takes us away from anxiety, from fear,
07:43 from all this chronic stress,
07:45 and this is going to help
07:47 be one of the treatments for chronic disease.
07:50 You know, that's a great introductory lesson
07:53 on how the brain works
07:54 in the different functional layers.
07:56 Biblical Prescriptions for Life,
07:57 it's a small group Bible study.
07:59 If you want to learn more about Biblical Prescriptions
08:01 to treat your brain health
08:03 and improve your brain function,
08:04 call 3ABN and ask for your copy
08:06 of Biblical Prescriptions for Life.
08:07 Dr. Marcum, we want to talk a little bit more
08:09 about the brain
08:11 and what are some of the most common treatments
08:13 that modern medicine offers?
08:16 What are the benefits of those and what are the drawbacks
08:18 or the risks of those compared to biblical prescriptions?
08:20 Yeah, well, if you look about the history of the brain,
08:25 we haven't known much about the brain.
08:27 In fact, in the Bible says, "Create me a new heart."
08:30 You know, that's before...
08:31 You know, they didn't know where thinking was occurring.
08:34 So not through all our time, we have not known that
08:36 what the brain does or thoughts,
08:38 and only in the last few, you know,
08:39 years have we had these functional imaging,
08:41 the MRIs, the way to look at the brain
08:43 and see what it does under certain situations.
08:47 A lot of the patients we've learned from
08:49 is from stroke patients.
08:50 You know, people had a stroke,
08:52 what part of the brain has died?
08:53 What part of the...
08:54 What did that brain do? Yeah.
08:56 So we're actually able to figure out
08:57 different neurons and what it does.
09:00 Now the future of brains, it just blows me away.
09:03 You know, when we can stimulate parts of brains,
09:06 you know, put chips and things that can move arms
09:08 and things like that, who knows where the future's going.
09:12 But what I want to focus on today
09:14 is to let people realize
09:16 that the brain is important that to our health.
09:19 All of the inputs that we put in our brain go somewhere.
09:23 For instance, everything you put in from the Internet,
09:25 or from a cell phone, or from a television,
09:28 or for conversation is in there.
09:31 All your past is in there. Right.
09:34 You know, the storage part, the hippocampus,
09:36 now whether it gets activated or not is different.
09:39 Some people keep activating things
09:42 that don't help them.
09:44 You know, spiritually speaking,
09:46 you know, when you've done something bad,
09:48 you ask God for forgiveness.
09:50 He forgives it, He throws it in the sea.
09:52 He gets rid of it. Yeah.
09:54 But some of us keep activating dangerous memories
09:57 and dangerous experiences over and over and over.
09:59 Living in guilt.
10:00 Yeah, and that's sometimes
10:02 when modern medicine talk to you,
10:03 you know, you always thought, "Well, you know,
10:06 whom is treated you as a child?"
10:08 And you know, there's a place for that
10:10 but some people keep going
10:11 over and over and over their failures
10:13 and don't ever throw it into the sea
10:15 or deactivate those programs.
10:17 Yeah. So those programs keep...
10:19 The software keeps coming up all the time.
10:22 And you, "Oh, I failed, I failed,
10:24 I'm discouraged, I'm down."
10:25 And that software gets activated
10:28 and the wires get stronger, before you know,
10:30 that's dominating you.
10:32 So sometimes there's therapists that deal in the past
10:34 and all the harm that's done
10:36 and keep those circuits activated.
10:38 But biblical, if you think about it,
10:39 you know, God forgives you, He says, "Let's start over.
10:42 Let's turn that down a little bit.
10:44 Let's look at what you can do today
10:46 and what I have planned for you tomorrow."
10:49 So that's one thing that I tried to emphasize to people.
10:51 Yes, it's important to know your past.
10:54 But the bad parts, you know, when you failed or you sinned,
10:58 ask for forgiveness
10:59 and throw into the sea like God.
11:00 Don't continue to live that.
11:02 So it hurts you, you're downshift,
11:04 so you can't hear God
11:05 expressing His will for you today.
11:07 Kind of a deal with it and delete.
11:09 Yeah. Right. There you go.
11:11 I like that, deal with it and delete it.
11:14 Another thing that we see, there's a lot of people
11:16 when the brain malfunctions
11:18 rather than to get at the cause,
11:19 we just treat a symptom, you know.
11:22 What are some examples?
11:23 Yeah, well, a person that's anxious all the time.
11:26 You know, they're nervous and anxious.
11:28 And they go to the doctor and the doctor says,
11:30 "Well, you have anxiety disorder."
11:32 And that might be true. Sure.
11:33 But how can we turn down the stress
11:36 that's causing the anxiety.
11:37 So rather than giving skills that we can upshift our brain,
11:41 whether it be good nutrition, exercise, worship,
11:43 some of the things we've talked about,
11:45 we just never deal with it.
11:47 So we take a chemical
11:48 that turns on a bunch of neurotransmitters
11:50 that might not fix the problem.
11:53 And then we might have a new problem.
11:54 And lots of side effects potentially.
11:57 Now some people have a genetic problem
11:58 and they need it, okay.
12:00 But that's a very few people, okay.
12:03 We see that sometimes in depression.
12:04 You know, some people do not have
12:06 genetically induced depression,
12:08 but they have depression just from a lifestyle event.
12:11 You know, or a vitamin D deficiency,
12:13 or a chemical deficiency like a B6, B12,
12:16 or something other simple that we could treat
12:18 and get the brain better right away.
12:20 So you know, in severe depression,
12:23 you know, sometimes they do all sorts of different things,
12:25 and sometimes that's needed if there's agenetic problem.
12:29 You know, some people have bad genes.
12:31 They do all these things right.
12:32 And there's a place for modern medicine,
12:34 but it's not as the first step all the time.
12:37 The first is understanding the reason why
12:40 turning to God, you know, make...
12:41 Because in that place, we're safe.
12:44 Now the problem with the brain is it affects everything else.
12:47 You know, if you had a bad arm that hurt all the time
12:49 and you're rested, didn't get better,
12:50 that would be one thing.
12:52 But when the brain is malfunctioning
12:53 on different levels, it affects the entire body.
12:56 So the brain affects the heart, it affects the kidneys,
12:59 it affects the bowels, it affects your joints,
13:01 all sorts of things happen
13:03 when the brain is malfunctioning at any level.
13:06 Now remember, when we have pain in our lives,
13:09 the brain is designed to deal with pain, okay.
13:13 In animals, they want to avoid the pain.
13:15 So we'll do anything in life to avoid pain.
13:18 And that's how we deal with the pain.
13:20 That's very important.
13:21 Do we reach for bad things, you know,
13:23 just to deal with the pain, deal with the symptom,
13:25 or we try to get at that cause of pain,
13:28 the cause of the malfunction?
13:30 And that's what I try to focus on in the Bible study
13:33 that we've been through focusing on those things.
13:35 Yeah, it's a great discussion,
13:37 and we're going to get back to that in just a moment.
13:38 But first, we got to take a short break.
13:40 We want you to stay with us as The Ultimate Prescription
13:42 returns in just a moment.