My "one-rat experiment."

A board to discuss various diet-centered approaches to treating or controlling Multiple Sclerosis, e.g., the Swank Diet

My "one-rat experiment."

Postby SoSoonOld » Wed Jul 06, 2011 2:54 pm

I read with interest Jimmylegs' post in which he looks back to his vegan days and considers the possibility that deficits in his diet had caused his MS to develop. I've had some of the same thoughts concerning the extreme low-fat diet period in my life, during which my MS developed.

A low fat diet is usually also low in dietary cholesterol, and mine most surely was. From my reading, I've since learned that cholesterol forms a significant component of the myelin sheath. My cholesterol level -- and my nutrition status in general -- were low at the time my MS got rolling. Were there simply inadequate supplies for repairs?

Whatever. I've been through my share of experiments with diet and supplements. Nothing really changed one way or another. For the past several years, I've been tweaking a low-carb approach.

Based on my reading, I now make sure my diet is rich in cholesterol -- plenty of eggs, red meat, full-fat dairy, etc. -- low in grains and legumes, and gluten free. It is also basically free of processed and "man-made" foods.

So far nothing has changed with my MS, but my stomach is much happier. :-)
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Postby dlb » Wed Jul 06, 2011 4:27 pm

I have been told recently that because I have had gallstones (had that removed in 1982...) that it is likely that my body does not metabolize fats properly or normally...?? I also have cholesterol numbers that are lower than the range of normal - so maybe that is true? It is not like I avoid cholesterol rich foods! I do know that when I have avoided fats in the past in efforts to lose weight that my body responds negatively, so maybe it is true that reducing fats has been a factor for my dx as well?? Interesting thoughts...
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Postby SoSoonOld » Wed Jul 06, 2011 6:39 pm

Hi, dlb. I had my gall bladder removed in 1981, about the same time as you. I've read that, too -- that after gall bladder surgery, one cannot metabolize fats properly. Some have suggested using coconut oil, which is said to be metabolized differently. (Though I've always wondered if a person's insides were really able to say, "Here comes a tablespoon of coconut oil. That needs to go over here. . .") I read somewhere recently that after a while a person develops a new rudimentary gall bladder.

But you raise a good question about availability of fats to the nervous system after a gall bladder is removed. In fact, I have searched the internet from time to time to see if I could find anything, but nothing surfaced. I once read an online comment by a medical person to the effect that the gall bladder is really expendable, ". . . otherwise we wouldn't remove them with such impunity. . ." But I wonder.
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Postby dlb » Wed Jul 06, 2011 7:22 pm

SoSoonOld wrote: I once read an online comment by a medical person to the effect that the gall bladder is really expendable, ". . . otherwise we wouldn't remove them with such impunity. . ." But I wonder.


Hi SSO,

Interesting.... yes they tie off one jugular sometimes in the medical world b/c we don't really need 2??? But I think we now know differently!

I may have misunderstood this as it was explained to me, but I was given to believe that the reason I was having gallstones/gallbladder attacks in the first place was that I wasn't metabolizing fats properly, thus the stones developed?? Then after the gallbladder is removed, the function of the gallbladder is done by the liver?? I didn't pay a whole lot of attention - and should have!! I guess when you think about that, ingesting a fatty meal would likely bring on another attack, right?!? I would not say that at the time I had my gallbladder removed, I ate a very fatty diet, compared to now, anyways.... but I have always heard that gallstones are a result of a fatty diet - I always thought it was an old wives tale, now I wonder.

I was recently in a health food store purchasing a bunch of supplements that are recommended by Dr. Bill Code for pre & post procedure. Interestingly, more oils (Omega, emu oil, krill oil...) than I had been supplementing with in the past, must be something to the need to get those essential fatty acids into our bodies - hope it helps, I'm sure it can't hurt!
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Postby SoSoonOld » Wed Jul 06, 2011 9:18 pm

Hi, Deb.

Someone on a low carb blog explained the problem this way: The gall bladder is designed to store bile from the liver and then dump it into the system when some fat is eaten. With our low fat diets, we might not call upon this action for quite some time and the bile can eventually dry up and form stones. Then when we eat a fatty meal somewhere along the way, the gall bladder tries to function and trouble begins. So, it isn't eating fats that causes gall bladder trouble. It's NOT eating fats on a regular basis.

It's my understanding that after gall bladder surgery, the liver continues to make bile as it always has, but now the bile just goes straight into the digestive system. So, at times there's bile when it isn't needed, and other times there isn't as much as there would have been if it had been stored in the gall bladder and released at one time.

You might want to check all this out in a physiology book. I'm just spouting from memory here. :-)

Marilyn
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