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Guest Blogging on OvercomingMultipleSclerosis.org: Who decided that eating right is “alternative” medicine? July 9, 2010

Posted by manonamsion in Uncategorized.

I’m honored to be  guest blogging this week on www.overcomingmultiplesclerosis.org, Dr. Jelinek’s fantastic resource for people ready to take control of their multiple sclerosis.  Here’s what I had to say:

For some reason, it is the accepted wisdom that “conventional” medicine consists of pills, injections, infusions and even surgery, while adhering to a restricted diet, exercising and meditation are “alternative” medicine.  It’s funny that we are all attuned to the risks of “chemicals” on our bodies (bpa in plastic bottles, alar on apples, radon in our basements, radiation from our cell phones), but give virtually no thought to the vast majority of substances we put into our bodies every day – our food.  Shouldn’t the most conventional medicine of all be paying attention to what we put into our bodies as food?

I will admit that I never paid attention to what I was putting into my body until I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and learned about the Swank Diet.  And the more I learned  from Dr. Jelinek’s website about the importance of Vitamin D, omega 3s and saturated fat, the more convinced I became that MS is tied to our lifestyle choices, and for those of us who have not lost function due to MS, we have the choice to arrest the progression of the disease.  (This also got me thinking – and reading about other impacts of our diet on disease, and why I recommend The China Study so highly.)

Now, I believe in so-called conventional medicine too, and I take my Copaxone shot every day.  But I’m less excited about undergoing the knife for liberation therapy (based on the unproven CCSVI theory) when there is a healthy, natural way to stay well.

I have been on the Swank/Jelinek program for about 10 months now, and I am more fit than I have been in years.  In addition to having lost 35 pounds and taken 4 inches off my waist, I exercise regularly and my cholesterol is under 160 – without the statins I used to take.  As I’ve said to my wife, being diagnosed with MS may be the best thing to ever happen for my health.  If I can stave off my MS symptoms while avoiding diabetes, heart disease and stroke, what could be better?  Certainly not something high in saturated fat!



1. Mess Positif - July 10, 2010

It is obvious that money and maybe power can be motives for the medical establishment to shun what you say above, but even that does not seem enough to justify why through their obdurate attitude medical practitioners on the whole seem to be dishing out torture and early death on such a wide scale and to such innocents.

Looking for the positive, can there be some other force that explains why this apparent blindness exists? It seems totally counter to the Hypocratic Oath.

My GP is delightful and I am sure well meaning. Her advice to me on my diagnosis with MS was quite literally to “come back when you need help getting a wheelchair”. I’m very grateful to be mobile still, indeed can still ride my bike which I do with zeal, and with guidance from Swank and George (they deserve effigies atop marble pillars) I have every intention of staying mobile. My neurologist cautions me against taking more than the gentlest exercise, beyond that do nothing save coming back for continued assessment.

I’d like to trust the medical profession, and take advantage of their input where constructive. But at the moment it feels as if it is dangerous even to go near them. Still at least I don’t find the medical culture the least bit attractive re. MS, so it is a pleasure to plow a solo furrow.

Meanwhile back to glorious sun, flax, greens, fish, fruit and thinking full on positive (for those of us in the northern hemisphere, summer has to be the perfect time of year).

… the lean bronzed smiling machine

2. Alan - July 14, 2010

After reading “The China Study”, I really really get it. The thing is that before I got MS, the risk/benefit was not high enough to switch diets. Before, denying myself delicious food at a barbeque or not eating icecream with my kids would have benn too drastic a step. At some point likely (and still very possibly) I would have contracted “normal” diabetes or cancer.

MS has changed all of that. Now it’s a no-brainer to give up those foods and limit what I can eat. I can turn down a lick of icecream without any difficulties and seeing meat in the store makes me feel ill. So in that sense, I hope MS has spared me the cancer I was to get in another timeline. I’m not ready to thank my MS yet, but I’m living with it and at least I’m doing all I can for my total health.

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