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Ending Mental Illness with Dr. Daniel & Tana Amen

Dr. Amen is one of America’s leading psychiatrists and brain health experts. He has authored or coauthored 80 professional articles and more than 40 books, including New York Times mega-bestseller Change Your Brain, Change Your Life. He has appeared on numerous television shows including Dr. Phil, Larry King, Dr. Oz, The Doctors, and The View.

Tana Amen, BSN, RN. is Executive Vice President of Amen Clinics, New York Times best-selling author of The Omni Diet, highly respected health and fitness expert, cancer survivor, nationally renowned speaker, and media guest.

Together, Daniel G. Amen, MD, and Tana Amen, BSN, RN host a fun, exciting, and informative podcast all about brain and body health featuring powerful tools and strategies to improve memory, elevate mood, crystallize focus, enhance energy and get better sleep.

How do you end mental illness?

I’m excited to welcome back two dear brain warrior friends, mental superheroes, and best-selling authors, Dr. Daniel and Tana Amen. This conversation is so important as many people are struggling to deal with everything going on in the world today.

In this episode, we discuss Dr. Amen’s new book, The End of Mental Illness, and some simple tips on how to improve your mindset and daily approach to life.

If you have found yourself struggling during these uncertain times, this episode offers an alternative way of thinking as it relates to mental illness and the power you have to improve it.

* The information in this podcast is not intended to be construed as medical advice, nor is the information a substitute for professional medical expertise or treatment. If you or any other person has a medical concern, you should consult with your health care provider or seek other professional medical treatment. *


*** Do you want to stay up to date with every new episode and get my brand new Kwik Brain Accelerator Program? Go to www.KwikBrain.com/podcast to get instant access. ***

Dr. Daniel and Tana Amen

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  • We are in the middle of a global pandemic that is going to lead to another pandemic of people who have lost their jobs, lost their loved ones, and who are frightened and afraid, what Dr. Amen refers to as a “pandemic squared”.
  • Calls to suicide hotlines have gone up nearly 1000%.
  • Dr. Amen titled his book, The End of Mental Illness, because he ‘hates’ the term “mental illness” — it is wrong. Based on their brain imaging database with 160,000 scans on people from 155 countries, they realize that most mental health issues are not mental at all — they are brain health issues that steal your mind.
  • This one idea changes everything: get your brain right and your mind will follow.
  • What is “crazy” anyway? If your hormones are off, you are going to act in a way that is not your normal and rational way—if you’ve had Lyme disease, if you’ve had a head injury—the term crazy could encompass a ‘whole bunch of stuff’.
  • You could have many things going on that lend to the idea of mental illness. According to Tana, “We are putting bandaids over bullet holes with all of the medications without actually fixing the root cause of the problem.”
  • Depression is a symptom cluster that in Dr. Amen’s opinion, is not a diagnosis that will be fixed with Prozac, Zoloft, or Lexapro.


  • If you want to keep your brain healthy, you have to treat the 11 major risk factors that affect your mind. In the book, the mnemonic for the 11 factors is “BRIGHT MINDS”.
  • The same risk factors written about in the book, increase your mortality from COVID-19.
  • B is for blood flow. Low blood flow is the number one brain imaging predictor of Alzheimer’s disease. It’s caused by things like hypertension and hypertension is a risk factor for mortality.
  • R is for retirement and aging. The older you are, the more likely you are to die.
  • I is for inflammation, which we now know is associated with depression and Dementia. If you already have an inflammatory process brewing in your body because you have low Omega-3 fatty acids, you have Gum disease or your gut is unhealthy, you are more likely to be vulnerable to the inflammation storms that kill people with COVID-19.
  • N is neurohormone deficiencies. Low testosterone has been found to be a risk factor for mortality from COVID-19, it also causes depression, low libido, and low motivation.
  • D is diabesity, which is rampant in our society.  High blood sugar, being overweight or obese are big risk factors for COVID-19, but they are also big risk factors for mental health challenges.
  • For a complete list of the 11 risk factors, please check out Dr. Amen’s book, The End of Mental Illness.


  • The United States has 4% of the world’s population but a third of the cases of COVID-19, with more mortality than many other countries even though we are the richest country in the world with great technology.
  • Why? We are sick as a society. Seventy-five percent of our healthcare dollars are spent on chronic preventable illnesses.
  • If we do not get serious about getting healthy, this pandemic will last a long time.
  • For every percentage that unemployment goes up, opioid addiction goes up 3.5%.


Take small simple steps and create tiny habits.

  1. When you wake up in the morning, say to yourself, “Today is going to be a great day.” because your unconscious mind will find why it is going to be a great day. Where you bring your attention determines how you feel.
  2. When you go to bed at night, Dr. Amen says a prayer and then asks, “What went well today?” Always put yourself to sleep by reviewing your day from a positive standpoint. This sets your dreams up to be positive.
  3. Whenever you go to make a decision, ask yourself, “Is this good for my brain or bad for it?” If you can answer that question with information and love, you are likely to do the right thing.

You have to train and can’t wait until fight day to do so. Tana suggests that it is necessary to train every day so when you are faced with a problem, you are prepared to use the skills that you have already trained yourself to use.

  • How you do anything is how you do everything. Little by little, a little becomes a lot.
  • The end of mental illness will begin with a revolution in brain health. Dr. Daniel and Tana Amen are recruiting brain warriors because if they are going to create a revolution, they have to have warriors.
  • Please share the book, The End of Mental Illness, with anyone you care about.


  • Take a screenshot of this episode, tag us all on social media (@DocAmen, @TanaAmen, & @jimkwik) and share your greatest “aha!” moment from this episode with us.
  • Tag #endofmentalillness in the description.
  • Visit The End of Mental Illness for more on the book, and order it, here.

*Please note, this episode is educational only and is not intended to diagnose or treat medical conditions. Please consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns.*

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