Wahls diet discussion

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

Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby brent » Mon Sep 09, 2013 12:42 am

Wahls looks a little too good to be true. But as some of you said it's not just a diet. Hell it's even called a protocol. I for one believe that in order to sucesfuly manage ms we have to take care of it on every step of the way. We have to have the proper diet, the proper meds, the proper excercise and proper therapy if or when we need it. This diet or protocol, however you want to call it is defnitely something that we should not ignore but rather pay close attention to it and try to get what's best out of it.
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby Jimpsull » Wed Sep 11, 2013 11:06 pm

I am on the Swank diet. While Wahl's has plausible theories and anecdotal data (her own turnaround), Swank has 34 years of clinical research painstakingly documented on scores of patients.

It is important to realize that there is not a discreet line that is crossed when RRMS becomes SPMS. Because, to my knowledge, Wahl's hasn't documented results for a large number of patients we have to accept the possibility that her turnaround was in part a remission (even though her diagnosis was progressive MS). She also doesn't have 34 years free of progression to point at, as many of Swank's patients do.

I am 10 years since diagnosis, 1-2 years on Swank diet. I believe progression has stopped, hard to say for sure. Most people don't know I have MS, though I struggle when playing soccer or football.
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby vesta » Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:36 am

I recently watched an interview that Dr. Terry Wahls, author of Minding Your Mitochondria, gave to Katie Roche on January 27, 2011. From her TED-X You Tube Video one might get the impression that diet alone healed her. Not so. There are 5 major aspects to her healing success. 1) She de-toxified from the MS medication which was poisoning and doubtless worsening her condition by compressing the vascular system. 2) She eliminated foods and substances such as glutens which were also "poisoning" her. 3) She developed an optimal nutritional program which apparently includes nutritional supplements. 4) She developed a progressive exercise program to recover lost function and 5) She used an EMS (Electronic Muscle Stimulation) unit for neuro-muscular electrical stimulation to develop atrophied muscles on her back.

She does not mention the CCSVI theory, that the true cause of MS is a blood reflux which injures the brain and spinal cord, but in truth I believe she is treating herself for CCSVI in two critical ways.
1) Her nutritional therapy serves two purposes: A) It prevents stress on the vascular system caused by food intolerances and toxins and B) it heals damaged tissue while optimizing brain health.
2) The EMS electrical stimulation on her back is "balancing" the Chinese Bladder Meridian which runs down the back and stimulates blood/CSF fluid circulation.

Apparently she is one of those MS patients (myself included) who does not need angioplasty to open a blocked vein. I believe the various vein abnormalities can be more subtle than a mechanically treatable stenosis. Blood circulation can be restricted by a weakened vein (valve problem?)which narrows intermittently or collapses because of stress and can be kept open without angioplasty by removing the stress (e.g.glutens, aspartame, mercury fillings, cold, flus, toxins,) and enhancing blood circulation (EMS electrical stimulation, massage, acupuncture, kinesiology, osteopathy, swimming.) For these patients toxic MS drugs may aggravate the problem. Individual solutions for the venous blood circulation problem can be as varied as the multiple stress factors which
trigger it. That is why what works for one MS patient may not work for another.

Everyone can benefit from optimal nutrition. But some MS patients may actually have a "blocked" vein which cannot be relieved solely through Dr. Wahls program. And it should be recognized that she is in fact treating CCSVI.

Also, as I see it the main difference betwenn Wahls diet and the Swank diet is she favors eating meat (saturated fat?). Myself I think one should favor fish and poultry for animal protein.

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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby zjac020 » Sun Sep 15, 2013 9:20 am

Dave..im very interested in seeing how you have progressed two years further on.

Are you still about?
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby Muffkin » Sun Oct 13, 2013 4:14 pm

Hi all. I've read through every post made in this discussion and wanted to add my story as well as a few questions. I was diagnosed with RRMS in August, started Copaxone shortly after and a month later discontinued it due to it actually making me feel like I really had MS. Prior to that the only "real" symptom I had that started all of this was going almost blind in my left eye. As I look back, it's unknown to me how long I've actually had MS and didn't realize it. In 2000 I was in a car wreck that caused brain damage. So for the last decade I've attributed things such as balance, short-term memory problems, neuropathy in my feet and general aches and pains to the brain damage. The MRI I had this past July showed 20 lesions throughout. I guess due to that, I wanted to be "aggressive" with my treatment, which is why I chose Copaxone. But hindsight is always 20/20. After that made me so miserable that I couldn't leave the house for a month I had had enough. So my boyfriend (who has RA) started researching and came upon Wahls Protocol. We began September 23, remaining strict to her diet. Since then, both of us have seen improvement in brain fog (I still have the memory issues, so I do believe the brain damage is the biggest cause of this), mobility, energy and just the overall "feel good" feeling that has been lacking for quite some time. But after reading everything and watching many documentaries on food, it just makes sense that this would be the best decision we could make for ourselves. We're no longer poisoning our bodies and I feel like we're being thanked for that. We do also take supplements and I feel that has been a huge improvement to our health as well. With all that said, I do have a question. I saw where Dr. Wahl commented to someone that if 9 cups of food in a day is too much that you can do 2 cups of each category if you're petite. He has no problems getting his amount in, but I still struggle with the 6 cups of food. I guess my question is... am I harming myself if a couple of days I don't feel like eating all of that? Would I do best by doing 1 cup of each category and then if I feel like it repeat each category? I just haven't seen any information regarding this issue and would love any advice. Thanks so much for reading my novel lol. Wishing all the best!
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby lyndacarol » Sun Oct 13, 2013 5:39 pm

Muffkin wrote:He has no problems getting his amount in, but I still struggle with the 6 cups of food. I guess my question is... am I harming myself if a couple of days I don't feel like eating all of that? Would I do best by doing 1 cup of each category and then if I feel like it repeat each category? I just haven't seen any information regarding this issue and would love any advice.


Welcome to ThisIsMS, Muffkin.

The whole, natural food is best, of course; but I understand very well that the quantity is overwhelming. Could you eat what you can and "juice" or blitz the rest in a blender REALLY well? Drink the veggies as sort of a smoothie? The juice should be more easily digested and absorbed.

All the best to you.
My hypothesis: excess insulin (hyperinsulinemia) plays a major role in MS, as developed in my initial post: http://www.thisisms.com/forum/general-discussion-f1/topic1878.html "Insulin – Could This Be the Key?"
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby jerrygallow » Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:32 pm

I don't want to dash anybody's hope or speak ignorantly about the Wahl's research. But this what I see. She released the results of her research this month--yes, the research that she tirelessly promotes and seeks donations for.

8 patients completed one full year on her diet, along with mediation, massage, exercise and electro stimulation. (note exercise alone can improve the disease, apart from diet) Six of the eight reported about a 30 percent reduction in fatigue.

That's it??????????

That tells me that fully one fourth of the patients followed the diet with NO results. The other 6 (75 percent) only had a modest change in a very subjective area, notoriously susceptible to the placebo effect.

If she had people getting out of chairs after four months like happened to her, or regaining function, you can bet we'd hear about it.

This confirms my suspicion that her case was uniquely caused by nutritional deficiencies from her vegetarianism. Once she addressed those, she began to recover. You can't promise the same result for other people. It doesn't seem to work for many others.

In the process, she contradicts the Swank research, which seems much more credible to me at this point.
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby pawel96 » Fri Mar 07, 2014 5:35 am

Do you have a link to her paper?

I would rather say these people did not take the same cocktail of supplements or minocycline that she does. Hence you can not attribute her success to diet only, it is a "protocol" not diet.

P.
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby zjac020 » Fri Mar 07, 2014 5:40 am

Wasn't.aware she took minocycline. I understand as an Abx its pretty safe...right?
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby NHE » Fri Mar 07, 2014 6:44 am

pawel96 wrote:Do you have a link to her paper?

I would rather say these people did not take the same cocktail of supplements or minocycline that she does. Hence you can not attribute her success to diet only, it is a "protocol" not diet.

P.



A Multimodal Intervention for Patients with Secondary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis: Feasibility and Effect on Fatigue.
J Altern Complement Med. 2014 Jan 29. [Epub ahead of print]

    Abstract Background: Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease influenced by environmental factors. Objectives: The feasibility of a multimodal intervention and its effect on perceived fatigue in patients with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis were assessed. Design/setting: This was a single-arm, open-label intervention study in an outpatient setting. Interventions: A multimodal intervention including a modified paleolithic diet with supplements, stretching, strengthening exercises with electrical stimulation of trunk and lower limb muscles, meditation, and massage was used. Outcome measures: Adherence to each component of the intervention was calculated using daily logs. Side-effects were assessed from a monthly questionnaire and blood analyses. Fatigue was assessed using the Fatigue Severity Scale (FSS). Data were collected at baseline and months 1, 2, 3, 6, 9, and 12. Results: Ten (10) of 13 subjects who were enrolled in a 2-week run-in phase were eligible to continue in the 12-month main study. Of those 10 subjects, 8 completed the study and 6 subjects fully adhered to the study intervention for 12 months. Over a 12-month period, average adherence to diet exceeded 90% of days, and to exercise/muscle stimulation exceeded 75% of days. Nutritional supplements intake varied among and within subjects. Group daily average duration of meditation was 13.3 minutes and of massage was 7.2 minutes. No adverse side-effects were reported. Group average FSS scores decreased from 5.7 at baseline to 3.32 (p=0.0008) at 12 months. Conclusions: In this small, uncontrolled pilot study, there was a significant improvement in fatigue in those who completed the study. Given the small sample size and completer rate, further evaluation of this multimodal therapy is warranted.
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby Anonymoose » Fri Mar 07, 2014 6:59 am

That's really odd. They make it look as if they were only studying to see the impact of the protocol on fatigue. Is this because it was the original intent of the study or because the resulting data showed no other improvements??? It seems like they should have been going after edss based on wahls' parading of her personal experience from wheelchair to actively biking yadda yadda.

Wahls had some form of chemo as well.

Huh. No news news?
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby NHE » Fri Mar 07, 2014 7:07 am

jerrygallow wrote:8 patients completed one full year on her diet, along with mediation, massage, exercise and electro stimulation. (note exercise alone can improve the disease, apart from diet) Six of the eight reported about a 30 percent reduction in fatigue.

That's it??????????

That tells me that fully one fourth of the patients followed the diet with NO results. The other 6 (75 percent) only had a modest change in a very subjective area, notoriously susceptible to the placebo effect.


Actually, the abstract doesn't say that. It states that 2 people in the study did not follow the diet and regimen for the full 12 months. Do you have access to the full paper? Does it indicate why these two participants in the trial chose not to complete the 12 month protocol?

By the way, if you calculate the relative percentage drop in FSS score, then it's -42%.
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby jimmylegs » Fri Mar 07, 2014 8:53 am

This confirms my suspicion that her case was uniquely caused by nutritional deficiencies from her vegetarianism. Once she addressed those, she began to recover. You can't promise the same result for other people. It doesn't seem to work for many others
my feeling is that it makes more sense to look at each person's nutrition situation and history to look for any of the various lifestyle reasons for deficits ... which won't all be the same as those found in vegetarians, and won't even necessarily be the same from one type of vegetarian to the next.
with certain exceptions (eg sugar, processed foods etc) I don't think blanket dietary recommendations are ever going to be an appropriate way to help everyone. it's one of the main reasons I'm constantly on about level testing :S or at a minimum, evaluating a person's dietary habits to look for nutrient dynamics and addressing those.
my 2c, at the end of the day, nutrition status should be optimized, period. at a bare minimum so that docs have a clear idea what they're dealing with, without nutrition issues muddying the water. in the best possible scenario, there may be nothing left for the doc to deal with.
but when it come to blanket diet plans.. I don't know. optimizing nutrient status could mean 300 different diets for 300 different people - especially when you start working in genetic idiosyncrasies.
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby zenhead » Fri May 23, 2014 1:38 pm

i've been on the protocol for about 10 weeks, and tho i have not been completely strict (i don't drive, so keeping ALL THAT FOOD in the house is a problem, i don't notice much change at all. i'll stick with it, if only because it is a healthier way to eat. i agree with another poster here that if this diet produced results like hers, we'd hear more about it.
be kind whenever possible.
it is always possible.
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Re: Wahls diet discussion

Postby Thekla » Thu Jun 26, 2014 5:34 am

jimmylegs, How do you feel about the nightshades? I've heard rumblings about them on and off for years and lately cholinesterase inhibitors. I really hate the idea of eliminating chili peppers, etc from my diet. I prefer a modified wahl's/paleo with loads of veggies and grassfed meats including organ meats---they are cheaper! Incidentally, wild/game meats might be an option for those in Eastern Europe and homemade sauerkraut for probiotics! Incidentally, I had difficulty with the sheer quantity of food on the wahls diet. In 6 months, I gained weight and didn't fit in my clothes.
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