Dr. Terry Wahls - MS recovery plan

xchocoholic

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Hi ALL,

This doctor has treated her ms with diet, supplements, etc and has gone from being wheelchair bound to riding a bike in a marathon.

I know a lot of us have taken a holistic approach to healing ourselves but I like the fact that she incorporated a variety of treatments using her medical knowledge ...

hth ... x

http://www.terrywahls.com/about-Terry-Wahls

I am a clinical professor of medicine at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine in Iowa City, Iowa, U.S.A., where I teach internal medicine residents in their primary care clinics. I also do clinical research and have published over 60 peer-reviewed scientific abstracts, posters and papers.

In addition to being a doctor, I am also a patient with a chronic, progressive disease. I was diagnosed with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis in 2000, just as I began working for the University. By 2003 I had transitioned to secondary progressive multiple sclerosis. I underwent chemotherapy in an attempt to slow the disease and began using a tilt-recline wheelchair because of weakness in my back muscles. It was clear: eventually I would become bedridden by my disease. I wanted to forestall that fate asmy long as possible.

Because of my academic medical training, I know that research in animal models of disease is often 20 or 30 years ahead of clinical practice. Hoping to find something to arrest my descent into becoming bedridden, I used PubMed.gov to begin searching the scientific articles about the latest multiple sclerosis research. Night after night, I relearned biochemistry, cellular physiology, and neuroimmunology to understand the articles. Unfortunately, most of the studies were testing drugs that were years away from FDA approval. Then it occurred to me to search for vitamins and supplements that helped any kind of progressive brain disorder. Slowly I created a list of nutrients important to brain health and began taking them as supplements. The steepness of my decline slowed, for which I was grateful, but I still was declining.

In the fall of 2007, I had an important epiphany. What if I redesigned my diet so that I was getting those important brain nutrients not from supplements but from the foods I ate? It took more time to create this new diet, intensive directed nutrition, which I designed to provide optimal nutrition for my brain. At that time, I also learned about neuromuscular electrical stimulation and convinced my physical therapist to give me a test session. It hurt, a lot, but I also felt euphoric when it was finished, likely because of the endorphins my body released in response to the electrical stimulation. In December 2007, I began my intensive directed nutrition along with a program of progressive exercise, electrical stimulation, and daily meditation. The results stunned my physician, my family and me: within a year, I was able to walk through the hospital without a cane and even complete an 18-mile bicycle tour.

In 2007 I was losing my phone and keys and was afraid my chief of staff would soon be calling me to his office to tell me that it was time to revoke my clinical privileges. I expected to become ever more dependent because of my illness. Instead, within a year of starting my regimen I regained the ability to commute to work on my bicycle, do my rounds on foot without canes or wheelchairs, conduct clinical trials and write grants, all by making changes to the foods I ate and keeping up with exercise and stress management. Getting my life back was a gift I did not believe was possible. Grateful to have that life back, I have spent the last three years researching, teaching, lecturing and speaking about my journey and how others may help themselves with intensive directed nutrition. I have recorded many of my public lectures. Fifty percent of the profits from the sales of the lecture DVDs and audio CDs is used to support clinical research in the area of nutrition, meditation, massage, exercise and neuromuscular electrical stimulation in the setting of progressive multiple sclerosis
 

xchocoholic

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http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT01381354?term=wahls+sclerosis&rank=1

She's recruiting people for a clinical trial ...

In this document she goes over her protocal, including which supplements she'll be using ...

Not that we have MS but from what I've seen, most chronic illness have multiple symptoms in common. Her dietary approach which is Paleo plus probiotics plus seaweeds, aka dairy and grain free too, is being used by many now. Me too ...

I thought it was interesting that she tried supplements and made some improvement and THEN decided to change her diet.

IT appears that it was the DIET that helped her recover ... What a great story ... tc ... x
 

Sallysblooms

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Yes, with MS and many illnesses, great progress can be made with integrative doctors, supplements, the right blood testing, and treatments. One man in politics in TX has done great with his own stem cells for his MS. There are many things that can help symtoms and improve lives of people with illnesses. We just have to insist our doctors understand supplements and all of the treatments. We all have to be informed and expect doctors to be also.
 

xchocoholic

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Hi sally and tony,

What I like about her plan, and maybe I've just been mising this, is that she incorporates diet, supplements and other holistic treatments into a strategy that
patients can follow. Or is it just me and I finally see this clearly ?

I've always enjoyed reading dr myhill's info but I still felt lost. Imho, our cfs doctors
are in hit or miss mode with all of their recommendations .. Talk about feeling lost ..

I like the way she speaks too. Very clear and with graphics I can understand .. Thanks for the link.

I wish there was something like this specifically for ME. I'm sure our supplement list would look different. Of course testing for dybiosis,
adrenal fatigue, food intolerances, hormones, etc would need to be
included. I sure could've used an easy to understand overview of this protocal I'm on before I started down this path.


Tc .. X
 
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I appreciate her comments on the importance of diet, supplements & research. Her comment "research in animal models of disease is often 20 or 30 years ahead of clinical practice" means that things proved 30 years ago may still not be put into practice by doctors. I appreciate good research, but hate to see the results directed so much to patenting Rx for making big profit for drug companies. An Rx can be a life saver in acute disease but I don't see any chronic problem of mine as being an Rx deficiency. OK, so I'm an "individual". So be it. I've seen the drug salesman in the clinic, leaving free samples, talking about taking the employees for lunch etc. I suspect there's much more I haven't seen. I tend to see the medical system as needing an big overhaul. Blessings to you!
 

Sallysblooms

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Yes, I think more needs to be done with supplements and not chemical drugs. I have had very good results using supplements with integrative doctors guiding all of it. Thank goodness there are more and more good integrative doctors, patients have to keep expecting good care and safe supplements. Drugs are not safe like what I use with supplements, but of course we need meds for infections and other times. Just not for everything. I agree.
 

Sallysblooms

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I hope that her story and knowlege will spread to all doctors. I know in my case, helping the mitochondria has been very important. Her story is amazing. I ordered her book. My docs already know that supps and food are the key, but most doctors know nothing about it.
 

liquid sky

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I hope that her story and knowlege will spread to all doctors. I know in my case, helping the mitochondria has been very important. Her story is amazing. I ordered her book. My docs already know that supps and food are the key, but most doctors know nothing about it.
When you've had time to look through her book, would you please make a comment about what you think of it? I was thinking about ordering it, but it is rather pricey. May well be worth it.
 

Sallysblooms

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I will do that. If you can, maybe you can PM me and remind me. Hope it arrives soon. Got it on Amazon. I am watching ALLL of her videos now. One is on now. Trying her Kale chips soon. I think we need a thread about her info and recipes. Guess here is fine!

 
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To start with, it is unfortuante that for most we need to get sick before we start to question our diet.

Secondly think we need a more systematic way of trialling diets for people with various disease. I mean what were the key factor(s)? The effect of diet on many disease is poorly understood because we've never done the large scale, sophisticated crossover type trials to see.
 

Chris

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Diets for diseases..

Hi; I have been following this story for a while now, and am caught between two stools: since I have documented CAD (one calcified aortic valve, replaced, and one 75% coronary artery, bypassed) as well as, now, ME, I find myself a bit caught. The best documented diet for CAD seems that used, with slight variations, by Ornish and Esselstyn ("Forks over Knives")--very low fat vegan--Ornish allows egg whites and non fat yogurt (I avoid the latter). J. McDougall is currently running a trial of his vegan diet for MS in conjunction with a university in, I think, Oregon; he has also posted a report on a 19 year old woman who was cured of RA by following his diet.

Simultaneously, we now have Dr. Wahl posting her stunning news. So--modified, intelligent paleo, or strict vegan? Interestingly, there are blogs (some with 100s of comments) posted by a very smart very young woman, Denise Minger, on www.rawfoodsos.com --including a critique by her of the statistical science behind Colin Campbell's "The China Study," a major document on nutrition that had a considerable impact on Esselstyn's work. She seems to be finessing a route between the two--largely raw vegan, but with the addition of shellfish (scallops are high in protein, low in fat) and perhaps a few other items. Since we seem to die mostly of either cancer or heart failure or despair, and may now begin to think of ourselves as having in part or whole an autoimmune disease, we are in the midst of this, I think.

There is another movie /DVD, "Fat, Sick and nearly Dead" that documents the progress of two seriously overweight men who also suffered from a nasty autoimmune disease, urticaria. They both went on a supervised juice diet--veg and fruit processed by a juicer--and not only lost lots of weight very fast (inevitable with a juice fast--60 days!) but get rid of their autoimmune disease. Joel Fuhrman was the doc who supervised the experiment and made sure they did not get into any medical trouble. Two lives transformed, and I have heard informal accounts of two persons who beat CFS/ME with a juicer. So I now have added one to my kitchen, to aid in taking in larger quantities of phytonutrients from raw veg than my digestion might be comfortable handling in bulk. I have no wish to lose more weight, so still eat lots of solid food.

I love the idea of a controlled study comparing the effects of versions of these two diets, paleo and vegan, but if we follow one or other or a mix of these diets maybe we can post our results informally here, with brief indications of what we are actually eating? I think I am improving slowly and irregularly, taking AHCC too, but will post here--if the thread is still alive--any further changes. I am also occasionally using a UV A and B solar panel from Mercola on rent at a local shop, for the record, and thinking of buying a smaller and cheaper lamp made by Sperti to keep up the skin made Vit D, which seems to have major advantages over the supplemental form, according to research by Stephanie Seneff. Living in coastal BC means very low sun exposure during the winter months.
Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could cure ourselves before the medics get around to finding one for us?
Best wishes, Chris
 

Enid

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Very interesting indeed xchocoholic - going to look for tips and aids. My Neurologist definately looking for MS but one does wonder why (the cause) of having to make such diet changes in the first place.
 

xchocoholic

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Imho, our diets still need to be individualized but organic paleo(meat, veggies and fruit). Paleo because it eliminates most common food intolerances so our cytokine levels will go down. As will our antibody levels and other
allergen responses. And we'll be feeding our bodies wholesome complete nutrients.

Individualized because we're all different in some ways here. For instance, I'm too weak to last one day without some real food so juicing is out for me. Others would be fine with this.

Those of us with glucose regulation problems will need to watch for carbs and glycemic indexes.
Anyone here with an oxalate problem needs to watch those. Btw, oxalate problems are common
in anyone with leaky gut. And some of us can't handle a lot of meats, esp beef or pork. I just realized I was eating too much meat too but beans have too many carbs for me.

I liked dr wahls attention to seaweed, fermented foods and more leafy greens. My research shows that these are importnt too.

Great thread .. You all have added some interestin info... Thanks .. X

Ps. Love the pots planter ..
 

Purple

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Chris, thank you for the interesting points in your post.

Simultaneously, we now have Dr. Wahl posting her stunning news. So--modified, intelligent paleo, or strict vegan? Interestingly, there are blogs (some with 100s of comments) posted by a very smart very young woman, Denise Minger, on www.rawfoodsos.com --including a critique by her of the statistical science behind Colin Campbell's "The China Study," a major document on nutrition that had a considerable impact on Esselstyn's work. She seems to be finessing a route between the two--largely raw vegan, but with the addition of shellfish (scallops are high in protein, low in fat) and perhaps a few other items. Since we seem to die mostly of either cancer or heart failure or despair, and may now begin to think of ourselves as having in part or whole an autoimmune disease, we are in the midst of this, I think.
I like the expression 'intelligent paleo'! For me, personally, paleo/Atkins-type diets where every meal includes lots of meat and eggs don't make much sense, especially when paired with vegetables that are roasted, boiled or otherwise processed. My intuition - for me personally - tells me that a largely raw/vegan diet with good protein (e.g. fish) as well as juicing would be good.

Dr Wahls has a Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/The-Wahls-Foundation/150956531629073 - she updates it fairly regularly. I think she mentioned she eats 50g-70g of protein a day on average though not all of it would come from meat.

With regards to juicing. Not relevant to ME/CFS and anecdotal but I had a friend who after being treated and surviving cancer 4 times in 15 years, was finally diagnosed with terminal cancer when it spread to the lymph nodes/liver/pretty much everywhere, was given 3-6 months - but through strict juicing, lived with the cancer for another 12 years.

Individualized because we're all different in some ways here. For instance, I'm too weak to last one day without some real food so juicing is out for me. Others would be fine with this.
Absolutely - but not sure if there is a way of finding out what would work well for different people, without self-experimenting... and then the question is - how long to experiment to see if something works or doesn't work? And of course for those who are severely/very severely affected, any experimentation with diet could bring about worsening.
 

Sallysblooms

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xchocoholic, thanks, glad you like the planter.


I liked dr wahls attention to seaweed, fermented foods and more leafy greens. My research shows that these are importnt too.
We love nori and sea veggies, etc. Now we will just eat it more often.

You are right, we are individual with foods. I have kidney stones all the time no matter what I do, so I have to be careful with oxylates. But there are many good ideas from Dr. Wahls we can remember. I always ate good foods, but I am going to just expand a bit. My smoothie alone is FULL of much of the day's need for veggies, fruit, fiber.

I have a great juicer, but I rarely use it, I like having the fiber. With juicing and smoothies, that isn't all you eat in a day. Just a great way to pac a punch and add a ton of great antioxidents, vits, fiber. My smoothie is FILLING for sure. I also eat food the rest of the day.

I found out important red meat is years ago. Hard to get enough supplements if you leave it out. I was very ill and I wish I had not tried not eating red meat.

I believe in a balance, not just a few foods. A very wide variety. I think there are so many wonderful foods and each has multiple vitamins we need. Everyone knows what they can do, we are different for sure, allergies etc.

It is just so exciting that the doctor is doing trials and proving the food and supplements work.

I just wish she mentioned Benfotiamine for the nerves. That has been like a miracle for me and my neuropathy and POTS. Of course it works along with Alpha Lipoic Acid, the slow release has been best for me. You have to have the other bvits but Benfotiamine has been amazing.

People sometimes say "if food or supplements healed problems we would all know about it." Well, they DO. They can heal, but at the very least, they improve us and keep our bodies strong without bringing more toxin to us with pharm pills.
 

Jenny

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Thoughts on juicing:

I did a lot of juicing in the 1980s, coupled with colonic irrigation, when I was first ill. I juiced about 250gms of a mixture of things, eg carrot, celery and beetroot; apple; spinach and beetroot; three times a day. I also ate regular meals. It was really hard work to buy all the organic vegetables regularly (I had to drive to an organic farm 10 miles away twice a week, this was before org veg were common in supermarkets in the UK), and to do the juicing three times a day. I was told it was important to drink the juice very fresh so didn't keep batches in the fridge. I wasn't so ill then as I am now, so I just about managed it all.

I got quite a bit better after 9 months of this, but then reached a plateau. Then I started acupuncture and Chinese herbs and gradually recovered to about 95% for about 12 years.

I did try some juicing again a couple of years ago. But I was too ill to do it myself so my husband did it, and he only had time to do batches every couple of days. I only had one or two glasses a day. It didn't help, and I was still mostly bedridden after 1 year of this.

So for me at least I think juicing is only worth doing if I have a lot of very fresh juice, several times a day.

Jenny
 

maddietod

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I'm interested in the possibility of mixing juicing with Wahls' regimen. I bought the book a few weeks ago, and have been unable to eat even a fraction of the amount of vegetables she consumes (600g dark leafy greens, 100g each red, yellow, blue/black). OK, some of this is fruit, which is out for me at the moment (fighting candida). But that plus enough meat/fish to add up to 50-75g protein daily? I'm not even close.

I was already eating no-starch paleo, so I thought this shift would be relatively easy. What happened is I lost my appetite on the very low carbs, and I just don't eat very much.

Any thoughts on working up to the full dose of veggies through a lot of juicing? How much is lost with what's thrown away?