Jason Hartman feels our society is terribly overdosed on medications these days, so this topic is very important. He interviews Nicky VanValkenburgh about her book, Train Your Brain, Transform Your Life: Conquer Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder in 60 Days, Without Ritalin. Nicky describes how brain training works, which is an effective, non-medicinal cure for ADHD. The cure was discovered as far back as 1967, but has been largely suppressed by the media. She talks about the symptoms of ADHD and the need for stimulation. Nicky also explains Sensory Motor Rhythm, the “light and sound” machine, and shares some success stories of people who have trained their brains with her program. The training creates new neural pathways for peak brain performance and can be done from the comfort of home. Listen at: www.HolisticSurvival.com for more information on ADHD, brain training and brain plasticity.
Nicky VanValkenburgh’s book was voted “Best Self Improvement Book of 2011” by the Mom’s Choice Awards and “Best Motivational Book” by Reader’s Favorites Awards. She was also a Grand Finalist in the USA Today Book Awards, in the Health: Alternative Medicine category. Nicky is a motivational writer with 20 years’ experience writing for newspapers and magazines. She has a Master’s in Journalism, and a Bachelor’s in Psychology. She is also a contributing writer for Upstate Parent, Low Country Parent and Palmetto Parent magazines, which are published in South Carolina, with a circulation of a quarter million people. Nicky is also the Director of www.Train Your Brain Transform Your Life.com which spotlights her book and 60-day brain training program for ADHD.
Narrator: Welcome to the Holistic Survival Show with Jason Hartman. The economic storm brewing around the world is set to spill into all aspects of our lives. Are you prepared? Where are you going to turn for the critical life skills necessary for you to survive and prosper? The Holistic Survival Show is your family’s insurance for a better life. Jason will teach you to think independently, to understand threats and how to create the ultimate action plan. Sudden change or worst case scenario, you’ll be ready. Welcome to Holistic Survival, your key resource for protecting the people, places and profits you care about in uncertain times. Ladies and gentlemen, your host, Jason Hartman.
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Start of Interview with Nicky Van Valkenburgh
Jason Hartman: My pleasure to welcome Nicky Van Valkenburgh to the show. She is the author of Train Your Brain, Transform Your Life: Conquer ADHD in 60 days without Ritalin. And if you’ve listened to some of my prior episodes, I know you are aware that I think our society is massively overdosed and over diagnosed on these various drugs. So we’ve got another expert to talk about this again today, a specific segment of it. Nicky welcome; how are you?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Thanks Jason. Glad to talk to you today. It’s a very important topic.
Jason Hartman: It is a very important topic. There’s no question. Well tell us about the problem, first of all and let’s go into the causes and then the solutions.
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Okay well, USA Today newspaper says that 6 out of every 10 people have attention deficit disorder with or without hyperactivity. And it’s called ADHD and most people take prescription meds like Ritalin or Adderall, but there’s another way to tackle ADHD without taking drugs, and this is brain training. My book describes a method of brain training that’s currently used in clinics across the country. It’s very popular. It’s clinically tested and very effective, and now you can do it in the comfort of your own home. You can train your brain to conquer ADHD at home and that saves you of course, time, energy and money.
Jason Hartman: So my first question is, I’ve got to just differ. This USA Today thing, 6 out of 10 people, is that what it was?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Yeah.
Jason Hartman: Nicky, doesn’t it just blow your mind? Is our society really this sick? What happened the last 5 to 40 thousand years before this? Was everybody just walking around with a zillion problems that were undiagnosed? Or are we just making a symptom for everything so these pharmaceutical companies can unload a bunch of overpriced drugs on people?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: You know the American’s Psychological Association, APA, they published this definition for attention deficit disorder in their handbook. It’s called the DSM4, they have the DSM5, the DSM6. They publish it every year and when they publish a definition in that book, that makes it legitimate for insurance agencies to bill and doctors and psychiatrists can actually prescribe drugs for anything listed in there. So once they came up with that definition for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, that just opened the door for everybody getting all kinds of drugs for this condition.
Jason Hartman: And when did it come about? When did they invent ADHD? And notice I said invent not discover, right? There’s a distinction there. When did they invent ADHD?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Well, [0:05:00.2] had something they called the minimal brain disorder. And that was in the late 60s, and then in the 70s the definition changed and they were kind of experimenting with it. But one thing, now it’s called attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and that’s kind of an umbrella term. It could be attention deficit by itself or it could be attention deficit hyperactivity or a combined type. So now it’s kind of an umbrella term.
But there’s an allopathic physician, Dr. Mary Ann Block, and she made a very good point and she said this term, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, this was come up with by a bunch of doctors and psychiatrists sitting around a round table and just coming up with a working definition. There’s no blood test for this, there’s nothing to substantiate that a person really does have this. So it’s not like diabetes or something like that, that you can quantitatively measure. This is a list of symptoms, and that’s what we’re working with today.
Jason Hartman: Unbelievable. So these symptoms have probably always existed, I’m sure throughout history, and all suddenly there’s something that needs to be diagnosed. Okay, so Ritalin. Is that the only drug that is for ADHD? Isn’t Adderall for that too?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Right. Adderall is the most popular drug on the market today. That’s one that is most highly prescribed. Of course there’s Ritalin, there’s Concerta, there’s Intuitive, Strattera, a lot of drugs and they’re basically all amphetamines. These are very dangerous drugs. On the chemical level, they’re on the same level as cocaine. And the center for disease control, the FDA, they’ve published many reports of overdoses, accidental deaths, of recalls on the medicine because it caused psychotic problems. Even the Columbine killings in the schools, the shootings a couple of years ago, those kids were on Ritalin. And for some reason it caused a psychosis. And actually psychosis is one of the side effects listed in the [0:07:34.0] reference.
So they were being documented, but this is a multibillion dollar industry. That’s why [0:07:45.7]. There’s a lot of money to be made on the advertisements, on the pharmaceutical end, on the doctor’s end, but of course there’s also a lot of problems with it. And that’s why I’m telling people about brain training.
Now, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, if a person has these symptoms and they’re doing fine at work, they’re doing okay at school, then fine. You probably don’t need to do anything. But a child who is struggling to make it through school, they read a book and they can’t remember what they read, they’re having test anxiety, an adult that’s having trouble concentrating, focusing, being productive during the day, if you’re having those problems you probably want to do something about it. But what I’m saying is don’t take drugs. Don’t go that route.
Go the natural route, which is brain training. This is a natural way to boost the serotonin and dopamine levels in your brain. It provides oxygen and blood flow to the brain. And it actually is a way to train your brain with a rhythm that was discovered by a neuroscientist at UCLA back in the late 60s. This has been tested, it’s been documented and it’s very effective. Now you can do this in just 22 minutes a day. So I like to tell people this is a very easy way, this is a lazy man’s way to conquer attention deficit.
Jason Hartman: Okay, so maybe we’ll have a couple moments after we talk about how to train one’s brain to talk about the problems of these drugs because people need to understand how serious and powerful these drugs are. But I think all of our listeners probably already believe that, because they’re smart and because we’ve done other shows on that topic. But these drugs are bad news, folks. I think they’re really bad news. I’m not a doctor but that is becoming my very strong opinion, that these drugs are very bad news. Let’s talk first about how do you do it in 22 minutes a day? How do you train your brain?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: What I have is a home based neuro feedback system and the protocol was discovered by Dr. Berry Estermin at UCLA. It was originally found in feral cats, it was later found to be affective with his lab assistant who had epilepsy. And then later the protocol was taken over by Joel and Judith Lubar, two psychology professors at University of TN. And they took this protocol and were testing it with learning disabled children and had remarkable results. Children getting out of special ed, out of resource, back into the normal classroom, finishing high school, going on to college and never needing drugs again. This is a very natural way to boost the neurotransmitters in your brain and increase blood flow and oxygen to the brain and actually retrain your brain so you that you can conquer attention deficit disorder.
Jason Hartman: So how does one do it? Do they just breathe deeply and meditate?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: No, we have an actual equipment. The equipment is a pair of headphones and some special eyeglasses and a little control box with programmed sessions. And the little box is about the size of a cellphone, so you put on the headphones, you put on the eye glasses, you lay back on your bed, you flip the switch on the control box and you just close your eyes and relax. You’ll see some mild flashing lights and you’ll hear some heart beat sounds. And what you’re seeing and hearing is actually the rhythm of peak performance. It’s the rhythm of a person who’s optimally listening, focusing, tuning out distractions, getting organized and being productive. It’s that person that we all want to be.
And by doing these sessions just 22 minutes a day, we’re actually practicing them. And we’ll practice them until we’ve mastered them and then once we’ve mastered them it becomes an automatic response. The scientific name, I call it the rhythm of peak performance because that’s the intended outcome, but the scientific name is the sensory motor rhythm because it’s a rhythm that deals with the sensory motor part of the brain.
Our brain waves, if you have ADHD, your brain waves may be too fast. They may be hyperactive or they may be sluggish, they may be slow. But if it’s too fast or too slow, this protocol teaches you a brain wave rhythm that’s even keeled and stable. It’s not too fast, it’s not too slow but it’s just right. And it gives you this beta brainwave rhythm, the sensory motor rhythm so that you can actually maintain that and create new neural pathways in your brain so that your brain won’t go the ADHD route, that distracted, struggling to concentrate and focus, but instead go this new route, which is the rhythm of peak performance or the sensory motor rhythm.
Jason Hartman: And how long does it take to learn this?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: We have a 60 day protocol. You do one session for 5 days, then you go onto the next one. You do that for 5 days, then you go onto the next one. So there are 12 sessions, you do them 5 times each for a total of 60 days. Every session works on a different part of the brain, like some sessions work to calm, other sessions work to wake up, to make you more alert and we blend the left brain and the right brain [0:13:17.5] one before it. But the end result is that you’re practicing the sensory motor rhythm so you can master it, so it becomes an automatic response.
Jason Hartman: So I assume the hardest part about training your brain with this method is sticking with it, and being consistent. It’s really something somebody has to do versus taking a pill, which is a common thing that our culture recommends.
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: It’s actually a very enjoyable therapy. It’s kind of like getting a massage. It’s just incredibly relaxing. You’ll see some flashing lights and you’ll hear this heart beat sound, but it’s an incredibly relaxing rhythm and most people have the sensation of going under anesthetic or falling asleep, so you’re taking kind of a 22 minute cat nap, and then when the sounds gradually taper off and stop, that’s when you wake up and you can go about your day.
Jason Hartman: So, when someone buys this course, what do they get? You said there was equipment. What type of equipment?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Yeah, well you get the headphones and you get some special eyeglasses with LED lights in it, and you get a little control box with preprogrammed sessions. And the control box is about the size of a cellphone, and the protocol is 12 sessions that you do 5 times each for a total of 60 days. And then there’s some extra sessions. There’s an insomnia session, there’s a brain brightener session and there’s an extra session for depression; just some extra ones. There’s a human residence session built in there, so it’s a great little machine.
Jason Hartman: It does some other stuff and it has some other uses too; I was going to ask you about that. So yeah, I’ve seen those types of glasses before. And a lot of them claim to help you with concentration and things like that. Do they have even more uses than the ones you mentioned?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Actually the system is part of the Health Canada Initiative, so if anyone lives in Canada, you can walk into any doctor’s office in Canada, tell them you have ADHD, depression, anxiety, panic attacks, or even post-traumatic stress disorder, you can have this device covered by your insurance by law. It’s a class two medical device and its part of the Health Canada Initiative. We don’t have that in the United States but I’ve written a little report, information for your doctor, you can download it free from my website, and take it to your doctor. Maybe you can get this covered too; check it out.
Jason Hartman: Good stuff. How much does it cost?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Well, I have my book which is $24.99. My book is Train Your Brain, Transform Your Life: Conquer ADHD in 60 days without Ritalin. And then the brain training system is called The Alert Brain Training System and like I said, it comes with the glasses, the headphones, the little control box, a carrying case, and an AC adapter for your wall and then an extra little battery if you want to go mobile with it. The Brain Training System is $395 and we have a 30 day money back guarantee. And we also have a program called bill me later, so if you pay on the internet with PayPal, you have up to one year to pay for it without interest. So really, that comes out to about $40 a month if you want to divide out the payments.
Jason Hartman: Right, and this you can use for years and years and years, which the bottle of those rotten pills that are messing up your body and head, those you have to keep getting them replenished, right?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Right, yeah. It’s really a great system and anybody who’s holistic, interested in natural health, this is a much better and safer alternative. You know, there’s a book out and it’s Dr. Peter Bragan and its called Talking Back to Ritalin.
Jason Hartman: Yeah we had Peter on the show by the way.
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Have you read that? Oh, he’s so great.
Jason Hartman: No, haven’t read the book, but I had Peter on the show and then he interviewed me on his show as well. He’s well known in this world.
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: He showed in his book that if you take Ritalin, you won’t experience a long term improvement in your ability to pay attention, concentrate and focus. That pill only lasts as long as you take it. The next morning, you’re right back to where you started. There’s no long term benefit in taking this drug. It’s just a fix.
Jason Hartman: Just quickly, hit the disadvantages. Talk to us about the evils of Ritalin, Adderall, those types of drugs.
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Right. Well, Ritalin turns you into a zombie. Your eyes are going to glaze over, and that sounds really strange but it really does happen. You’re going to be under the influence of a drug. Studies have found that it causes OCD, obsessive compulsive disorder. It makes you crazy, it stunts the growth of children, it has irreversible side effects like heart damage. And the whole ADHD Ritalin movement, It’s fueled by a partnership between the American Psychological Association and the drug companies.
And that’s something that Dr. Peter Bragan documented in his book, Talking Back to Ritalin. They came up with a way to make money and this drug was the answer. But Ritalin is a very dangerous drug, it’s chemically the same as cocaine, it’s an amphetamine. There are different types of ADHD drugs, Adderall, Concerta, Strattera, intuitive, but they’re all amphetamines. They’re all in that amphetamine family. And these drugs have been responsible for deaths and injuries all over the country.
Jason Hartman: And this, there are so few people talking about this and I assume it’s because of the vast pharmaceutical conspiracy. Or if you want to put it another way, the pharmaceutical industrial complex. It’s just amazing. When the columbine shootings, and you look at the influence of these drugs there. You look at the recent horrific shooting in the theater in Colorado, and all of this stuff, the media just doesn’t cover this because the drug companies advertise with them, right?
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Exactly. Even if you watch entertainment tonight, they’re playing drug commercials. The evening news, you see all those drug commercials. These are the people that back that program, so they’re not going to report on drugs and all that and the side effects. They [0:20:07.8] because there’s more money to be made with drugs.
Jason Hartman: Unbelievable. Well Nicky, give out your website if you would and also tell people where they can get your book.
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: My book is available on Amazon, Barnes&Noble.com, different places online, or you can come to my website www.TrainYourBrainTransformYourLife.com. And if anyone has a question they want to email me, it’s [email protected]
Jason Hartman: And again, the title of the book is Train You Brain, Transform Your Life: Conquer ADHD in 60 Days Without Ritalin. Thank you for doing this work Nicky. It’s obviously very important and keep getting the word out about this.
Nicky Van Valkenburgh: Thank you.
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Narrator: Thank you for joining us today for the Holistic Survival Show. Protecting the people, places and profits you care about in uncertain times. Be sure to listen to our Creating Wealth Show, which focuses on exploiting the financial and wealth creation opportunities in today’s economy. Learn more at www.JasonHartman.com or search “Jason Hartman” on iTunes.
This show is produced by the Hartman Media Company, offering very general guidelines and information. Opinions of guests are their own, and none of the content should be considered individual advice. If you require personalized advice, please consult an appropriate professional. Information deemed reliable, but not guaranteed. (Image: Flickr | GreenFlames09)
Transcribed by Ralph