The Continuing Adventures Of Dave The Intrepid Gastronaut; MS Diet 11 month update
MS has been hammering me since 1998 and nothing seems to slow it down. On 4/20/2011 I finally decided to go 100% on the Wahls diet. This is my 11-month report.
Dr Wahls' story is compelling. (see www.terrywahls.org
) In 2007 she wasn't too far physically from where I am today. She changed her diet and by 2008 she could walk and ride her bike! That will get the complete attention of someone like me!
(she did other things in addition to diet changes, like eletronic muscle stimulation, meditation - but she thinks diet played the primary role in her recovery)
(and she was never as bad as I am now)
My version of the Wahls diet:
Lots of veggies, esp. sulfur-rich and leafy greens and bright colors.
Small amount of fruit, some grain (but no gluten!)(I do quinoa and rice), small amounts of meat (chicken, turkey, or seafood)(I avoid beef and pork).
ZERO gluten, dairy, sugar, yeast, legumes, red meat, processed food. I think the first 2 on this list are the important ones, and #3 (sugar) isn't far behind.
Low starch; I do eat some grapes or blueberries or corn on occasion. But never a potato or potato chips.
On month 3 I began including a commercial daily green drink; we use Green Magma.
Wahls is sort of the Swank diet (the first recommended MS diet) of today, except I'd say it trades an emphasis on low-fat for an emphasis on veggies.
Wahls = Paleo-diet + anti-inflamatory diet + extra veggies.
I started on this 100% on 4/20/11... Before, I was 90% on the diet - it isn't far from how I ate normally... but if you walked in with a pizza before 4/20/11 and offered me a slice, I'd have one. Today - no thanks.
For me, the hardest things to totally give up were pizza, bacon, and cheese. Pretty much everything else was EZ; I don't have a sweet tooth. In the old days, I'd eat sweets occasionally but I never crave them.
My wonderful wife Janelle is on board with the diet (she ought to be; she found it and directed me to it!) and the food prep - out of necessity; I can't do it.
VVV new stuff VVV
* I said last month I'd quit the diet since I accidentally had been eating gluten-free bread while in hospice (and it contains a bit of yeast and sugar) on one hand, it's not that big of a deal, but on the other, both my wife and I were going for 100% dietary compliance for 1 year and now that's not happening.
Well, not exactly... we acknowleged the mistake and lightened up on the "no sugar" rule - not hugely, but there is a "nut and seed" bar that I like that has bit of sugar... I've had 2 or 3 this month.
* In month 6 of this diet, I was excited because I regained a little bit of functionality. Now, at month 11, I think I have peaked... the lst 2 months I have gone dowhill a bit - perhaps I'm looking too close.
* I just reread http://www.direct-ms.org/rogermcdougall.html
- the story of Roger McDougall, a MSer 50 years ago who significantly improved the course of his disease via diet... his thinking and story sounds current today; indicative of a lack of real progress in treating MS over the last half-century 8/.
The buzz over a "current" hot topic in MS research, CCSVI, can be traced to a medical article that appeared in 1868 - no typo! Right after the Civil War!
Roger came to mind because I wanted to check how long after he altered his diet he noticed the beginnings of a change... over 4 years!
He was roughly where I am now physically and he died of old age, and he was basically MS-free at the time of death - and had been for decades.
It's a tough call, where do we go from here; I'll have to see what Janelle thinks. [I am not well enough to prepare my own food; Janelle does it for me, so make diet decisions together.]
Gastronaut Dave, over and out