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Karen V. Unger

Karen V. Unger is the author of the new book “Brain Health for Life, Beyond Pills Politics and Popular Diets.” Dr. Unger has a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Arizona State University, a Master’s Degree in Psychology from Chapman College and a Doctorate in Education from Boston University. She has written a previous book, book chapters, peer-reviewed articles, federal policy papers and an evidence-based practice kit for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. At Boston University she was a senior staff person at the Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation and an adjunct professor at Sargent College of Allied Health Professions. She has also been a research associate professor at the Community Rehabilitation Division, Arizona State University in Tucson and is currently a research associate professor at the Graduate School of Education at Portland State University. Dr. Unger is president of Rehabilitation Through Education.


There is a growing body of scientific evidence that indicates our food choices can prevent disease and increase our lifespan. Leading causes of death like heart disease, cancer, and diabetes are greatly impacted by diet and lifestyle. Even Alzheimer’s disease is influenced by our food choices.

The World Health Organization states, “Nearly half of all cancers can be prevented.”1 The American Heart Association advises, “A healthy diet and lifestyle are your...

People with serious mental illness, on average, die 25 years earlier than the general population.1 This startling fact is largely ignored by both health and mental health providers. And yet, according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, one in four Americans has been diagnosed with a mental disorder. Major depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and obsessive-compulsive disorders are the most common diagnosis. With these disorders...

Exercise builds new brain cells. Until recently it was believed that the brain cells we’re born with were all we were ever going to have. If brain cells died or were damaged, that was it. However a process called neurogenesis was recently discovered that demonstrated that new brain cells are continuously being made and stored. Scientists at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden found that one-third of the neurons in the hippocampus, the area of the brain involved in...

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