Thu, 10 October 2019
This week I'm excited to welcome Dr Krista Burns. Krista is a certified postural neurologist, certified posture expert, a doctor of chiropractic, and she has a PhD in global health policy. So, she has a few qualifications. She is also a highly sought-after speaker and author of the textbook, The Posture Principles. Her goal is to inspire audiences worldwide to understand the importance of posture—which, as you may know, is declining rapidly with the speed of technology.
Questions we ask in this episode:
This week, I'm excited to welcome Dr. Krista Burns, who is the co-founder of The American Posture Institute. Dr. Krista has made a life's work to help others learn every detail about posture and how to become posture experts in their communities. She routinely travels the world teaching the importance of posture and how to address the issues arising from our ever expanding digital lifestyles. In this episode, we talk about how to safeguard ourselves against digital dementia and the strategies that we can utilize to combat postural and cognitive decline. Now, there is definitely something for every one of us in this conversation. So without further ado over to Dr. Krista. Hey guys, this is Stu from 180 Nutrition and I am delighted to welcome Dr. Krista to the podcast. Dr Krista, how are you?
01:39 Oh, I'm doing so good. Thank you so much for this opportunity to chat today.
01:42 No, we're really, really intrigued to pick your brains on your specialist topic. So before we get into that and first step for all of our listeners that may not be familiar with you, I would love it if you could just tell them a little bit about yourself.
So I originally wanted to be an Olympic skier. That was my first love, my first goal, my first dream and passion and was well on my way. I was Olympic bound, I was competing on US development ski team, suffered an injury in my spine. And from there I just became obsessed with helping people with back pain because that was something that prevented me from achieving my goals and dreams. And I didn't want back pain to hold other people back. So fast forward, graduated from school, created The American Posture Institute with signature postural correction systems to help, not just with back pain, but overall function, structure, and neurology of the body to help us live healthier lives. And then we'll talk more about digital dementia. But what we started noticing is that postural decline is also associated with neurologic defects. So we'll dive deeper into that throughout today's discussion.
03:11 Fantastic. Yeah, interesting story. And so you mentioned digital dementia and I am really, really interested in that at the moment and partly because tech has changed wildly since I was a boy. And now it seems that we're beholden to these mobile devices that are physically changing the way that we're thinking and they're rewiring our brains. But they're also changing our posture too because we get this crazy downward stoop all hours where we're hunched over our desks and perhaps we're not as active as we used to be. So first up, I'd love for you to give me a little bit of rundown of what digital dementia actually is and why you think that we should be aware of it.
04:01 Absolutely. Well, at The American Posture Institute, we say that posture is declining at the speed of technology. And so just as fast as technology is evolving, we're seeing a de-evolution of human function and structure. So what digital dementia is, is digital dementia is non-Alzheimer's specific, dementia like symptoms in adolescents caused from the overstimulation of technology combined with poor lifestyle habits. Let me break that apart because I just said a big phrase. So it's non- Alzheimer's meaning that it's not due to physical changes in your brain associated with certain proteins or genes, however it's acquired. If we were to look up the word dementia with the Alzheimer's association, what it would tell us is that dementia is not a specific disease, it's a set of symptoms associated with poor focus, short term memory loss with poor visual focus as well, and confusion with daily activities.
And so if you've ever felt confusion, short term memory loss, inability to focus, these are tightening early dementia like symptoms and now it's caused from the overstimulation of technology combined with poor lifestyle habits. So I'd be a hypocrite if I said we just needed to get rid of technology together. We're actually connecting from across the world because of our ability to connect via tech. And we love that. We love the opportunities that technology has provided to us as a human species. However, we need to recognize the limitations associated with it as well. When we're overstimulated from our technology, it's stimulating certain parts of our brain. But when we're sedentary, when we have poor posture and we're overstimulated from technology, we're under stimulating other parts of our brains. We'll pick that part a little bit more. But what this is resulting in is dementia like symptoms of confusion, learning disorders, short term memory loss in children as young as eight, nine, 10 years old. And now they're growing up in a world where it's normal to have technology from the time you're born up through adulthood.
The difference between us, Stu, and children now is that we didn't have technology as a big part of our lives until later on. Until we were adults, right? Whereas infants now are born into a world where they get that digital babysitter. So I think it's really important that we have this discussion now, not to get rid of technology, not to blame technology, but to recognize our ability to pay it forward to the next generation, the importance of having healthy lifestyle habits associated with technology.
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