“It's better to have one friend that's swimming up stream than ten who are going with the flow.”
by Alexander Berardi

CounterThink in Science0

Posted by Alexander Berardi in CTTV Video Episodes (Tuesday June 1, 2010 at 1:49 am)

Starving Cancer Patients May Help Chemotherapy Work Better

It’s a standard practice for cancer doctors to recommend that their patients eat before chemotherapy because they can lose their appetite afterwards, and because it’s always been believed that patients need to eat in order to get stronger. But researchers at the University of Southern California say the exact opposite may be true.

Scientists have known that limiting calorie consumption can help mice and other organisms live longer and avoid developing tumors. But new research suggests calorie restriction may also enhance chemotherapy for cancer patients.

Short-term starvation techniques may apparently help shield healthy cells from the damaging effects of chemotherapy, while still leaving tumor cells vulnerable to treatment.

A series of laboratory experiments found that reducing the food supply for as long as 60 hours helped toughen normal cells and make chemotherapy work better on tumors.

Scientists think the starvation technique may work because it forces cells into a slow-down mode to brace themselves against stresses from free radical oxygen, or toxins like chemotherapy. Tumor cells, on the other hand, are unable to slow down because their genes are programmed to make them grow and divide uncontrollably.

The study’s senior author, Dr. Valter Longo said: “The potential here is that you could give chemotherapy three times more frequently with very little side effects.”

The study caught the attention of cancer doctors at USC’s Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center in Los Angeles. Doctors there are designing a clinical trial of as many as 20 cancer patients, to see how they perform on chemotherapy after fasting for a short period, compared with those on a normal diet.

Meetings go ‘Topless’ in Siloncon Valley

Like so many innovations from the home of hi-tech, the latest movement in Silicon Valley is counterintuitive: ditch those computers.

A growing number of companies in the Silicon Valley, home to Google, Yahoo, Apple and Cisco are urging employees to leave their laptops on their desks when attending office meetings and engage in the decidedly low-tech form of social networking known as human interaction.

Naturally, there’s even a snappy term for the move: topless meetings.

Sue Fox, author of Business Etiquette for Dummies says: “Face-to-face meetings have become a low priority because they’re constantly interrupted by technology.”

John Vars, co-founder of Dogster.com, said. “Get rid of the gadgets, and, “meetings go quicker. People are communicating better, the flow is faster.”

For some, though, the problem lies not with the technology brought into office meetings, but with the meetings themselves.
Technology blogger Jeremy Zawodny wrote “People hate most meetings,”. “They become a source of frustration.”

That frustration has led to yet another innovation: meeting-free companies. That too has a snappy moniker: “meataxto”, as in take a meat axe the meetings.

No-laptop meetings make sense. No meetings makes more sense.

Good News for Tired Parents

If you’re the parent of a newborn and would like to get a bit more shuteye, you might want to listen to the advice of Sleep Doctor Polly Moore. Although, the counterintuitive advice may shock today’s overachieving, overscheduled parents, like all things CounterThink, it’s working amazingly well.

San Diego sleep specialist and neurologist Polly Moore, PhD studied a 90-minute rest and activity cycle that determines when babies are most likely to nap. Her new book titled “The 90-Minute Baby Sleep Program” is written to help parents and their babies sleep better at night.

According to Dr. Moore, there’s this 90-minute clock running in our brain all the time, that signals the human rest/activity cycle.

Dr. Moore says, “If you want them to sleep through the night, you really have to focus on the daytime sleep first.” I told you it was counterintuitive.

Dr. Polly Moore created what she calls the NAPS plan to help parents clue into her 90-minute cycle theory. Here’s how it works.

N: Note the time when your baby wakes up.
A: Add 90 minutes.
S: Soothe your baby to sleep as the 90 minutes wind down.
The end result? Baby sleeps better and sounder at night, and for longer periods of time.

How universal is this 90-minute cycle?

Start watching for your own 90-minute patterns. Most people also tend to have 90-minute variations in their creative thinking, and about every 90 minutes, people tend to want to have something to eat, something to drink, or otherwise to put something in their mouth, which may explain my frequent trips to the refrigerator when I’m writing. And we’ve also learned there are 90-minute variations of blood flow alternating between the left and right hemispheres of our brains.

Dr Moore offers a sample sleep chart for download.

You help me and I’ll help you0

Posted by Alexander Berardi in CTTV Video Episodes (Sunday November 1, 2009 at 8:25 am)

Most people would have you believe that the nail that sticks out is the one that gets hammered down. I’m going to tell you that the exact opposite is true… the one that sticks out, becomes the hammer. Over the next few weeks, if you keep up, I’ll show you how to go from what you’ve got to what you want, in a very short period of time.

Just as a lump of coal becomes a diamond and a caterpillar becomes a butterfly, human thinking is undergoing its own strange metamorphosis. Are you curious to see what it will become?

One of my early childhood mentors, a man by the name of Earl Nightingale said, “We become what we think about.” I believed it when Earl said it, and over the years I’ve proven it true in my own life. I now also believe that what quantum physicists are saying… that thoughts are things.

Because when you stop to think about it, every non-naturally occurring thing in our lives… from the cars we drive, to the tools we use, to the music we listen to, to our favorite recipe, or the words we use to describe it all, first began as an idea– a thought in someone’s mind. And before that idea was born, nothing like it ever existed– the idea was totally different.

To have something different you must do something different. But in order to do something different you must be able to think something different. And before you can think something different you must be willing to believe something different.

It’s been said, Whatever the human mind can conceive and believe it can achieve. But, we can only achieve what our mind can first believe is possible.

So, when we meet, I plan to challenge your beliefs about what is possible.

Over the next few weeks I’m going to stretch your thinking. You see, the mind is not a rubber band. Unlike a rubber band, once the mind is stretched with a new idea, it is incapable of returning to its normal size.

So, I want to stretch your mind with new ideas, new possibilities– to break you out of your normal thinking patterns. So eventually, you become incapable of seeing your current problems and challenges and limitations in the same old way.

My goal is not to teach you how to think, but to CounterThink. What is CounterThink? Well, let’s say it’s different language for the mind.

Compelling advertising, breathtaking architecture, legendary military strategies, intoxicating musical composition, masterful works of art, life-saving cures, industry-changing businesses and the recipes of award-winning chefs are merely dialects of the language of CounterThink.

There are things that are known and things that are unknown. In between there are doors. CounterThink is the key to unlock those doors.

We’ve come to rely on the tried and true. CounterThink is the realization that there is no real advantage to doing things they way they have always been done… only disadvantage. Because what worked well yesterday, may not work as well today and almost certainly, will stop working tomorrow.

Problems are like cancer cells–they learn quickly how to evolve and mutate to survive and grow. Your thinking and solutions need to evolve faster

Time is your chief competitor. Like it or not, you are in the race of your life, and the ability to learn faster may be the only advantage you have left.

The answers to difficult problems are rarely out in the open for everyone to see. Instead, they are like buried treasure. But, to find what no one else has found, you have to look where no one else has looked. CounterThink helps us to discover hidden treasures in secret places.

We’re all looking for an advantage. Grasp the principles of CounterThink and you’ll hold a lever that will move the world.

My goal is to teach you how to think the inconceivable, so you might do the unthinkable–to achieve the impossible.

Albert Einstein has it right when he said, “If I only had the right question… If I only had the right question.”

To make this program of any value to you, I, too, need the right question. What is the right question? It’s the one that’s on your mind right now. The one that keeps you awake at night, the one that won’t let you rest. The one that if you only had the solution, it would make all the difference.

Those are the kinds of questions that breathe life into CounterThink. And that’s the kind question I want you to email to me. Trust me on this on, there is a solution to your problem.

So send me that question that’s burning I your heart, and together let us discover the treasure that has been waiting for you, all the while, in secret places.

This is Alexander Berardi saying, Don’t just think, like the rest of the pack. CounterThink and take the lead.

Episode 640

Posted by Alexander Berardi in CTTV Video Episodes (Saturday October 10, 2009 at 12:17 pm)

Crime is Down in the US—But You’ll Never Guess Why.
Archbishop Okay’s Pic of Disciples Involved in Wild Orgy
Giant Erections on Display in Japan, and More Stupid Human Tricks.

The new statistics are in and looks like crime is down across the US for another year in a row… somewhat of a trend. According to FBI statistics, the national violent crime rate dropped 34 percent over the past decade. New York City had 496 murders last year, and in contrast to over 2,000 a year in the early 1990s, that’s not bad at all.

We are safer. Our property is safer. Sure, crime is far from being a thing of the past, but compared with the dangerous days of two decades ago the difference is stark.
Some of the reasons for crime’s downward decline seem kinda logical– more and better trained police, fewer men in the crime-prone late teens and early 20s, less crack cocaine, more alert citizens, all of which are pointed out by those who keep track of such things.

But there is one factor, as you might have guessed, that is overtly counterintuitive. This downward trend in crime appears to be very closely linked with a corresponding rise in immigration– especially illegal immigration.

In the past decade, the number of illegal immigrants in the United States has doubled to roughly 12 million, while at the same time the crime rate has continued to fall ever downward.

But how can that be? What happened to the crime wave perpetrated by a high influx of illegal aliens that so many experts predicted would sweep over the countryside? What about the gangs, the cutthroat crime lords from Central America, the shootings, the killings, the drugs?

While it may be we have all those things to fear, new studies show that they’re not coming from the sources we once though they would in fact, and this should come as no surprise to those of you who are familiar with CounterThink.TV, reality is turning out to be exactly opposite. New data shows, immigrants are less likely to commit crimes and less likely to go to prison than our own native born.

The Public Policy Institute of California studied the issue and in February reported that nationally, native-born men are more than three times more likely to go to prison than immigrant men. And, in the crime-prone category (men aged 18 to 40), the native born men are 10 times more likely to be in jail.

Yeah, but what about all those Mexicans? Well, in California, immigrant men from Mexico in that same age group, are eight times less likely that U.S.-born men to be imprisoned.

Sure the statistics go completely against common sense, but like I’m prone to say, common sense is about 99% common and 1% sense.

But when you look at it from a CounterThink perspective, it all makes perfect sense. After all, legal immigrants are all screened for criminality, and illegal immigrants, here to find work, aren’t real anxious to risk getting arrested and deported.

We are a safer nation, not in spite of the immigrants, but perhaps because of them.

Oh, yeah… as always, you can send your hate mail to: HateMail@CounterThink.TV.

Episode 620

Posted by Alexander Berardi in CTTV Video Episodes (Monday August 10, 2009 at 9:14 am)

Asthma? You’ll Soon Breathe Easier Because of This Man…
Is the US Dollar Set To Skyrocket? What No One’s Telling You…
Joint Pain Sufferers – A Simple Remedy Almost Nobody Thinks Of

Economists in the US are all tap-dancing around the use of the R-word. But a recession just may be what the doctor ordered for what ails the American dollar. Sure it’s counterintuitive. But while conventional thinking might say otherwise, in the past, when the economy was at it’s worst, and interest rates were low, the dollar has typically rallied. In fact, in four of the past five US economic recessions going back to the early 1970s, the dollar has gone significantly higher after the downturn ended than it had been before it began.

Which means, that hopefully by next spring, when I’m back in Tuscany, I might be able to order a glass of my favorite wine Brunello di Montalcino without having to take out a bank loan, first.

To people suffering from joint pain, the last thing on their mind may be exercise. It goes completely against conventional wisdom. But often, what we call conventional wisdom may not be wisdom at all. Or so concluded a recent study from the University of North Carolina’s Thurston Arthritis Research Center, which showed some pretty counterintuitive results: that regular exercise significantly reduces pain and increases mobility… helping people with arthritis to manage their pain more effectively. Which is good news for the world’s aging population who want a natural remedy for pain.

So why aren’t more people discovering this simple benefit for themselves? According to the study’s author, Dr. Leigh Callahan, it’s for the same reason that keeps most people from discovering a whole host of CounterThink solutions: people often form their conclusions based on a myth that they have mistaken for fact. Dr. Callahan said, “Many people believe the myth that exercise exacerbates their symptoms. The truth revealed in the study is that symptoms improved with exercise.”

CounterThink says question everything… including conventional wisdom, which is exactly what Dr. Callahan and her team did when they undertook the study.

Challenging conventional wisdom is also what led our CounterThinker of the week, Dr. Richard Bond, to a major medical breakthrough.

In a move that fractures one of the most basic tenets of the Hippocratic Oath…“first do no harm“ Dr. Bond, professor of pharmacology at the University of Houston, here in the U.S. is saying that one month of tough breathing may help asthma sufferers breathe easier in the long run.

In the process of making Hippocrates blush, Dr. Bond flipped conventional medical wisdom on its ear by coining the term “paradoxical pharmacology“ treating patients with medicine that initially worsens their symptoms before eventually improving their overall health.

Acute asthma attacks have traditionally been treated with inhaler-type stimulant drugs that open constricted airways. Giving beta-blockers to asthmatics has long been thought to be contraindicated, because it was believed that their pharmacological action would worsen the problem.

Instead, patients were treated with the reverse kind of drug–a beta-stimulant which is known to provide temporary relief, but the drug’s effectiveness declines over time.

Dr. Bond’s tests initially done on asthmatic mice and later with humans showed that, yes, beta blockers initially made breathing problems worse, but their continued use resulted in improved respiratory function.

Using beta blockers when it seems a stimulant is called for defies medical dogma, but this is not a new concept. Dr. Bond’s work builds on an earlier CounterThink breakthrough in treating congestive heart failure.

For decades, CHF patients had been treated with stimulant drugs to increase the heart’s pumping power. Beta blockers were prohibited because they initially further reduced the heart’s pumping strength. But using stimulants ultimately caused the person’s heart to wear out.

About a decade ago, the thinking on beta-blocker therapy was reversed when CounterThink-minded researchers discovered that although treatment with beta blockers reduced cardiac activity at first, the effect reversed itself after two to three months. The result? The death rate among CHF patients dropped 65 percent.

I’ve often said that CounterThinkers can look at the same thing everyone else does, yet see something entirely different. Although the data from the CHF study was widely available, it took the mind of a CounterThinker to learn from it and recognize its implications. For CounterThinker Richard Bond, the tragedy of ignorance became his primary motivator. “For 30 years,” he said. “Intellect told us that beta blockers wouldn’t work to treat [CHF]patients, and unfortunately millions of heart patients died prematurely. It would be a tragedy to not have learned from that lesson.”

Dr. Bond points out, using beta blockers to treat Congestive heart failure and asthma are not the only examples of paradoxical pharmacology.

Hyperactive children are treated with the amphetamine-like drug Ritalin®, and the skin irritant retinoic acid is used to treat acne. Additionally, there has been research into using antipsychotic drugs traditionally used for schizophrenic patients to decrease the incidence of Alzheimer’s disease.

Here are some important points I want you to take away from this:
1st- CounterThinkers need to question everything– especially accepted knowns and conventional wisdom and established norms.
2nd- Paradoxes are hotbeds for innovation– when you discover one, dig deeper until you uncover the potential benefits they might hold.
3rd- Sometimes the best solutions are totally illogical.
4th- Time plays an important factor in success. Don’t get caught up in the need to see immediate cause and effect relationships. Often, like when planting a seed in the ground, a bit of time must pass before you see any result at all. And stick with it, even if things are not working out as you initially hoped, a total reversal might be in your future.

I’ll be recording an upcoming interview with Dr. Richard Bond as part of the CounterThink Mastermind Series, made available exclusively to members of the CounterThink Tank. And based on some initial conversations with this amazing CounterThinker, I know it’s going to knock your socks off.

Episode 630

Posted by Alexander Berardi in CTTV Video Episodes (Wednesday May 20, 2009 at 5:05 am)

Want Great Spring Colors? Try Burning Down Your Garden…What You’re Really Learning By All Your Mistakes…Two Crazy Ideas Might Lead To Cancer Cures, And more…

Although it seems counterintuitive, all those fires that ravaged Southern California last fall will also contribute to this season’s glory.

Naomi Fraga, botanical field studies coordinator at Claremont’s Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden says, “After fires, you’ll see flowers that you don’t normally see when the chaparral has had full growth. Certain species are fire followers — they only germinate after fires — so there’s more diversity and a very spectacular bloom.”

Two studies presented this week at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research, in San Diego, showed some very CounterThink findings. In the first study, researchers at the Edwin L. Steele Laboratory for Tumor Biology at Massachusetts General Hospital, here in the US, found that by adding the drug Avastin to existing treatments for rectal cancer patients, they were able to totally control the tumor’s growth, and improve the three-year, disease-free survival rate of by 91 percent. Which is good news for the nearly 40,000 people here in the US who will be diagnosed with rectal cancer this year alone.

The goal of the Mass General team led by CounterThinker Dr. Rakesh K. Jain, was to find ways to make standard chemotherapy more effective. To accomplish their goal, Dr. Jain pursued an earlier CounterThink hunch… that improving the blood supply to the tumor cells would result in a better mechanism for killing it.

Dr. Jain found that solid tumors all have a particular characteristic… the internal pressure of the tumor is greater then that of the surrounding tissue. This difference in pressure works like a tourniquet to choke out blood flow, impeding the effectiveness of any treatment. To make matters worse, chemotherapy and radiation further damage the already compromised blood vessels. The result is that less and less of the drug makes its way to the tumor, and the tumor continues to grow and spread.The drug has to penetrate the tumor cell in order to kill it.

The addition of the drug Avastin helped to increase the density of blood vessels in the tumor, and repaired tumor vessels damaged by chemotherapy or radiation.Dr. Jain said, “Avastin leads to vessel normalization, it repairs vessels. By repairing the vessels, it makes the tumor better-nourished so the drugs can get there and work better.

Killing tumors by feeding them to death… Now that’s CounterThink.

In the second study, conducted by Dr. Carlos M. Telleria, assistant professor of medicine at the University of South Dakota, Sanford School of Medicine, researchers found that the drug Mifepristone, also known as the abortion pill RU-486 might be the elusive “magic bullet in the fight against ovarian cancer.

There are more than 20,000 women diagnosed with ovarian cancer every year in the United States, and more than 15,000 women die from the disease annually.One of the main problems in treating ovarian cancer is that the usual treatment with the chemotherapy drug Cisplatin doesn’t kill all the cancer cells. This allows the cells to reform into colonies and the cancer to continue to grow.

In the study, the researchers exposed ovarian cancer cells to cisplatin. Although cisplatin killed the majority of the cells, there were still cells that escaped and regrouped as cancer.But, when cells were treated with cisplatin and then exposed to the abortion pill, none of the cancer cells survived.

Now here’s the CounterThink point to take away from this story…  the best answers to stubborn problems routinely come from someplace outside the norm. Often a tool used for a far different purpose will work to solve your problem as well.That’s why you need to consistently be exposed to information and experiences outside your normal field of interest, even outside of your comfort zone.

That’s also why membership in the CounterThink Tank is so critical for serious CounterThinkers. Our members come from all walks of life, and from every conceivable discipline. Networking with like minded people from such diverse backgrounds is priceless and the friendships that develop are more valuable than diamonds.If you’re not already a member, you should really consider joining. Like the saying goes: membership has its privileges, and that one great idea you’ve been searching for, just might be one of them.

To learn more about the work behind these two groundbreaking studies or for more information on membership in the counterthink tank–follow the links below.

For more information on Membership in the CounterThink Tank or to get on the waiting list, send me an email with “membership wait-list: in the subject line.


Wildflower story:  Dr. Naomi Fraga


Dr. RH Jain- Harvard Med., Mass. General, Solid Tumor Research




Selected Publications: Jain RK, et al . Dissecting tumor pathophysiology using intravital microscopy. Nat Rev Cancer 2002; 2:266-276.Padera TP, et al . Lymphatic metastasis in the absence of functional intratumor lymphatics. Science 2002; 296:1883 1886.Izumi Y, et al . Herceptin acts as an anti-angiogenic cocktail. Nature 2002; 416: 279-280.Jain RK. Normalizing tumor vasculature with anti-angiogenic therapy: A new paradigm for combination therapy. Nat Med 2001; 7:987-989.Fukumura D, et al. Tumor induction of VEGF promoter activity in stromal cells. Cell 1998; 94:715-725.

Dr. Carlos Telleria: Mifepristone, Cisplatin, Ovarian Cancer


Hope Never Fades0

Posted by in CTTV Video Episodes,Inspirational Classics (Monday March 31, 2008 at 9:09 am)

Bestselling Author and CounterThink Guru Alexander Berardi talks about the greatest of all human powers.

  • L’autore di Bestselling e CounterThink.TV ospitano i colloqui del Alexander Berardi circa il più grande di tutte le potenzi umane.
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