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, November 25, 2009

Some common sense things you can do today
November 25, 2009 at 11:06pm

There are many small things you can do to help your vascular health while waiting to be tested or treated for CCSVI. While these actions won't get rid of any congenital venous obstruction, they can help your whole body and maybe improve cerebral blood flow and endothelial health.  I'm not a doctor- these are just some common sense steps you can take right away.  Always speak to your own physicians before beginning any new health program.

1. Eat a heart healthy diet! Lots of leafy greens, fruits and veggies. 
Limit saturated fats (like red meat) and stick to lean, white meat protein. Fish is a terrific choice. Stay clear of man made fats, transfats and anything the has too many ingredients (like overly processed foods.) Limit glucose and simple sugars.  Eat a good, whole food diet- like the Best Bet Diet or Dr. Swank's MS Diet.

2. Move as much as you are able.  Exercise- whether it is a stationary bike, seated exercise, water aerobics or yoga- is good for your circulatory system and will keep blood flowing.  It also creates "shear stress" in your blood vessels and increases a healthy, strong endothelium.

3. Try to limit stress. Cortisol, the hormone released when we stress out, creates vasoconstriction and closes down blood vessels. Prayer, meditation and deep breathing can really help. Laughter actually opens blood vessels up! Try to find joy everyday--with your children, friends,  pets, funny movies, good books.

4. Alcohol only small amounts. A glass of wine opens up blood vessels a bit, and provides some phytonutrients, but any more than one drink becomes vasoconstrictive.

5. Get some sun on your face and body.  Vitamin D and UV rays help the body utilize oxygen and are a vasodilator. If you have no sun in your area, maybe try a sun lamp and take a vitamin D supplement.

6. No more smoking. Sorry. Cigarettes are vasoconstrictors- they close up blood vessels. That's why we've seen so much about smoking and MS in the news lately. Cigarettes actually mute the immune system---so you'd think they'd be good for MS, if MS was autoimmune! But cigarettes are linked to MS progression. In the CCSVI paradigm, that's because they inhibit good blood flow.

For more information, and to read the science and research behind all this, check out my Endothelial Health program I made up for Jeff.  It's the first post on this blog.  Lots of these things are common sense and part of an overall healthy lifestyle....but it's always good to understand the science behind it.

hope this helps a bit!