In recent months, the media has become increasingly impatient with high-profile health advocates who dispense unsubstantiated medical advice. Among the highlights have been John Oliver’s continued humiliation of Dr. Oz, who repeatedly touted the power of energy healing and “miracle” weight-loss solutions, and a viral Gawker takedown of Vani Hari, aka “the Food Babe,” a blogger and food activist who once advised her followers that “there is just no acceptable level of any chemical to ingest, ever.”
Yet despite this heightened concern about the accuracy of health information, best-selling celebrity neurologist Dr. David Perlmutter seems to have escaped much scrutiny, even though he has a decades-long history of offering — and profiting from — suspect medical advice.
In fact, he remains one of the most influential physicians in the U.S. His 2013 book Grain Brain reached No. 1 on the New York Times best-seller list, and after nearly two years, sales remain so strong that it has still not come out in paperback.
Despite Perlmutter’s popularity, most mainstream medical authorities do not endorse the advice he dispenses. In Grain Brain, Perlmutter revealed “the surprising truth”: Gluten is a “silent germ,” and declining brain health can be blamed in large part on gluten-containing grains. Brain Maker, for its part, promises to help readers harness “the power of gut microbes to heal and protect your brain — for life” — it even purports to offer groundbreaking preventative measures and treatments for allergies, autism, Alzheimer’s, ALS, dementia, Parkinson’s, and cancer.