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A recent discovery that challenges decades of textbook teaching, researchers have determined that the brain is directly connected to the immune system by vessels previously thought not to exist. The discovery could have profound implications for diseases from autism to Alzheimer’s to multiple sclerosis.

Not sure what this means yet, but the article, posted by ScienceDaily.com is worth a read.

Juicing

Posted: August 10, 2012 by dee in diet, juicing

My wife has made many life changes since being diagnosed with M.S.; she eats a vegan diet + salmon (2x / wk), consumes very little alcohol, and exercises…a lot!

But one of the biggest things that has helped her is juicing. I started making Moe fresh vegetable juices when she was first diagnosed. She was drinking (3) 16oz juices per day. At the time she was on Avonex, which was, quite frankly, killing her. After a full year on Avonex, Moe as at whit’s end with feeling like she was going to die. The “flu-like” symptoms that the doctor’s said would come with the weekly injection were much more than that…

Moe did her weekly Avonex injection on Sunday nights. She’s have anxiety all day on Sunday. From Sunday night through Thursday morning she could barely get out of bed. Fresh juices were the only thing that could get her going.

On Friday Moe would start to feel just slightly less miserable, just to look forward to her next injection on Sunday. Now my wife is a VERY strong individual. But that is too much for anyone to deal with. The doctor’s were useless as far as options went, and only threatened Moe with the “fact” she would be in a wheel chair if she didn’t continue with treatment. When we’d tell the doctors the positive effects that juicing has on her health, they dismissed it. In fact, they dismissed diet and nutrition all together. Crazy.

So Moe made the decision to end the Avonex. We went full bore into juicing. It took about 6 months for Moe to start feeling better, but today she is doing VERY well, and completely drug free. These days she follows the same same strict vegan diet (with the addition of salmon), exercices 4-5 days/week, has 1 or 2 16oz juice/day, and has started daily shots of homemade Kombucha.

To the M.S. patients–if there is only one thing you do, try fresh juices. And exercise (sorry, that is two things!)

To the caregivers–I know first hand how hard it is to see your loved one in pain and suffering from M.S. It made me feel good to make juice for Moe and see that it was making a (*HUGE*) difference. It was something I could do that would make Moe feel better. There is nothing like empowering yourself to help a loved one. Making juice can be time intensive, but the rewards cannot be measured. I have a wife that is alive and well today because of it. Just do it!

Check out a couple of the juice recipes that I make for Moe on the recipes page.

Kombucha

Posted: August 10, 2012 by dee in diet

Just a quick post here. Here is a very interesting article about Kombucha and M.S.:

Kombucha: An Ancient Source of Modern Medicine for M.S.

The article states that Kombucha is a natural source of interferons, and vitamins C and B.

My wife has recently started to make her own Kombucha at home. It’s inexpensive and helps with the stomach and digestive system. Could this be why it is helpful for M.S. (i.e. Leaky Gut)??

There are many articles on the web that will show how to make your own Kombucha, but here’s one for you.

Chorella for Demyelination in MS Patients

Posted: January 19, 2012 by dee in diet, supplements

Demyelination

Demyelination is known to be a major factor in symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis. Myelin is a fatty protein that insulates and protects neurons, or more specifically axoms. During a MS replapse, white matter in the central nervous system becomes inflamed and loses their myelin. So what does white matter do? And how does the destruction of the myelin effect the central nervous system? And you as a person with MS?

White Matter and Grey Matter

There are both white matter and grey matter regions in the central nervous system (CNS). You can think of white matter as the lines of communication in the CNS. White matter is responsible for relaying messages to the grey matter regions in the body. Grey matter regions actual process these messages, or requests. So if the myelin of an axom is damaged, then the message cannot be sent to the targeted grey matter region. So when you are having issues with moving some part of your body, for instance your hand, your brain is telling your hand to move, but the message is unable to reach the necessary grey matter region that controls the muscles in your arm and hand. Enter chlorella.

Chlorella

Chlorella is a single cell green algae. It’s considered a “Super Food” among raw foodists. Chlorella has been shown to eliminate and neutralize heavy metals and to strengthen the immune system. Chlorella also contains a phytochemical that can actually rebuild nerve damage, which is ideal for MS patients. It also contains all B vitamins, vitamins C and E, and all nine essential amino acids. It’s also super high in protein, and contains more chlorophyl than any other plant.

Chlorella can be consumed in either pill or powder form. Please see our Resources page for information on ordering chlorella. My wife started taking chlorella tablets soon after being diagnosed with MS. We’re not sure how much it is helping (as Moe is taking quite a few supplements), but it certainly isn’t hurting.

Multiple Sclerosis and Diet

Posted: January 18, 2012 by dee in diet, MS, multiple sclerosis

What could be more important to the human body than what you put into it? What do you eat? What do you drink? As a person with MS, what should you eat? What should you drink? The subject of MS and diet is all too infrequently discussed between a doctor and a MS patient. Sometimes diet might be get a very small amount of attention, sometimes none at all. Speaking from experience, sometimes doctors don’t seem to see the importance of diet at all.

Let’s say you owned a brand new Ferrari. Would you put low-grade gasoline into your Ferrari? If you did so, how would you expect such a high performance vehicle to perform? Probably not as well as it could perform, if given the appropriate fuel.

When you eat low quality food (or the wrong kind of food), you can expect that your own body (your own personal Ferrari) will not perform as well as it should. This is true regardless of your current health; whether you have MS or not. If you have Multiple Sclerosis, it’s particularly important that you are always aware of what you are about to consume. Could this food (or beverage) cause more inflammation in your body? Could what you are consuming tax your liver  (some MS medicications are thought to cause liver problems)?

So what to eat? From the research we have done, there are a few options, and it will be up to you to decide what works best for you. Some of the options might be a bit overwhelming, depending on your current diet. Bear in mind, that when we are talking about “diet”, we are not talking about going on a diet. But rather we are talking about changing/modifying your day to day eating/drinking habits. And most likely this won’t be an “all at once” kind of change, but rather something you adjust as you go.

If your current diet is drastically different from what we are about to discuss, then take it slow; slowly introduce new things into your diet over time. If there are aspects to these diets that give you anxiety, then work on the parts that you are more comfortable with.

So enough with the intro, here’s some diets we have found that are believed to help people with MS:

  • The Swank Diet – A diet created by Dr. Roy L. Swank in the 1940’s. This low fat diet promotes consumption of grains, fruits and vegetables, and limits the intake of red and other fatty meats.
  • The McDougall Diet – Dr. John McDougall is a physician and nutrition expert, and his diet and Foundation focus on a vegetarian style of eating.
  • MS Best Bet Diet – this treatment assumes that dietary factors are the cause of MS and onset and progression. The diet focuses on healing leaky gut, and removing foods from the diet that contain proteins which mimic “self-proteins” in the central nervous system (CNS).
  • Vegan Diet – this was the diet of choice for my wife Moe. We were lucky in that both of us were already vegan before Moe was diagnosed with MS. We also looked at the previous three diets listed, and integrated various aspects of those diets (especially minimizing oils).

We hope that one or all of these diets might influence your own diet. While some aspects of living with MS are out of your control, its important to try to stay positive. One way to stay positive is to take your diet into your own hands, and see how changes in diet effect your day to day health.