Welcome! This blog contains research & information on lifestyle, nutrition and health for those with MS, as well as continuing information on the understanding of the endothelium and heart-brain connection. This blog is informative only--all medical decisions should be discussed with your own physicians.The posts are searchable---simply type in your topic of interest in the search box at the top left.Almost all of MS research is initiated and funded by pharmaceutical companies. This maintains the EAE mouse model and the auto-immune paradigm of MS, and continues the 20 billion dollar a year MS treatment industry. But as we learn more about slowed blood flow, gray matter atrophy, and environmental links to MS progression and disability--all things the current drugs do not address--we're discovering more about how to help those with MS.To learn how this journey began, read my first post from August, 2009. Be well! Joan
Wednesday, April 11, 2012
There is no miracle pill
April 11, 2012 at 12:18pm
We all know nutrition is an important part of good health and recovery in chronic illness. If some forms of MS are indeed related to the venous system, as Dr. Zamboni's and others' research indicates, it's important to live a vascular healthy lifestyle.
Medical doctors like Dr. Terry Wahls and Dr. George Jelinek have shown, through their own lifestyles and published research, the importance of diets rich in antioxidants and phytonutrients from fruits and vegetables. It helps some people with MS find stability. I believe there is no coincidence in this fact.
I wanted to write a bit about the new supplement companies coming forward with special, proprietary blends of products for MS that "enhance your DNA!!" or "provide epigenetic support!!" These products can only be purchased by a special distributor.
They all seem to all have snazzy webpages and YouTube videos hosted by toothy and tanned men in white coats. Some of them get celebrities to hawk their wares. The products all end in "ex" or sound vaguely scientific and futuristic. They claim to switch on your body's own DNA. (Here's the deal, your DNA is already in the on position. Epigenetics just means outside influences that change our DNA...stuff that isn't written in our code, but affects of genes from the outside. Your genes are changed by what you ingest and come in contact with--both the good and the bad. In other words, you control your epigenetics.)
We then read testimonials from our friends online, whose lives have been forever changed by this one product, and they sincerely want to help us. But this supplement can only be purchased from so and so, and we'd better go and meet so and so and change our lives. Oh, yeah. There's a dollar sign attached.
ALL of these new supplements contain phytonutrients. Phyto simply means plant in Greek. So, these are nutrients from plants, that's all. Nothing super special or proprietary. These supplements are very colorful. Jeff's curcumin supplement leaves my hands orange. We just had a note from the Hubbard Foundation on beets, and as Jason noted, BE CAREFUL! Beet juice stains! So does wine, which is rich in phytonutrients. Any fruit or veggie rich in these nutrients will probably stain, because they have such intense color. God made them colorful, and He made them good for us.
Hippocrates said it best---"Let food be thy medicine, and let thy medicine be food."
THERE IS NO MIRACLE PILL. I repeat, THERE IS NO MIRACLE PILL.
Neither pharma, nor some super slick pyramid company is going to cure chronic disease with a pill. But that doesn't mean they aren't going to try. Where there's money and need, there will be salesmen.
Only you hold the key. You are the person that decides what food you ingest, how you handle life's inevitable stress. Whether you drink and smoke. Whether you eat fruits and veggies. You are holding the ruby red slippers, the color of beets. You had the power all along.
When I wrote The Endothelial Health program, I did it for my husband, and I didn't charge him a dime. I spent almost a year pouring over all of the peer-reviewed and published research on chronic illness as related to inflammation, c-reactive protein and how to help reduce that with food, exercise, lifestyle and supplements, to improve his vascular health. (Even before reading Dr. Zamboni's research, I believed in my heart that his MS was related to his blood. Please note---this doesn't mean everyone's MS will respond as well. Progressive forms of MS may be a different disease.)
And I found out that many doctors agreed on how to do this--moderate exercise, stress reduction, more plants, less meat. And it works. But it hasn't been easy. Jeff gave up his beloved BBQ tri tip, his long work hours. He used to eat meat everyday. No more. He started eating leafy greens and fish and working out everyday. He made his own miracle happen. He's been extremely fortunate in that his MS has not progressed quickly. You may never recover your health 100%--MS is a terrible, chronic and debilitating disease. But maybe, just maybe, you can find some stability and feel better.