Wednesday, 12 March 2008

My Wheelchair Prevention Program

I call my ms-diet my 'wheelchair prevention program'. Only others diagnosed with a disease that could end up with a wheelchair outcome could understand that.

This is the reality that was thrust upon me with the words 'multiple sclerosis' by my doctor in February 2007. I have never been in a wheelchair and I do not care to experience it although I have more empathy than most when it comes to understanding the reality of life in a wheelchair.

Many with MS inject meds regularly in order to MAYBE avoid a wheelchair. And these injections cost $1000-$3000 PER MONTH (or more). And it's not guaranteed that you will not progress. And many insurance programs do not cover these costs.

My diet changes have cost very little (whole foods are cheaper in the long run)...not to mention the overall improvement in health that results from cutting out crap food.

But the time and physical effort involved to prepare these whole foods has been the hardest thing to cope with.

We live in a fast food society and grabbing meals on the run is the norm. This change has been the hardest to accept. I was raised in a fast food society (the emotional excitement I felt about the first McDeath's in my suburb in the 70s is something I will perplex on 'til my grave).

Creating my own system of nourishment according to my diet requirements has been the ultimate challenge in my near 41 years of life thus far. In a metropolis of 2.5 million humans I have yet to find one local MS person that is choosing to live as I do to prevent their own wheelchair. And eating out? I have one eatery that I have found so far although I haven't expended much effort after bleak early attempts to get 'fast food'.

But it is my wheelchair I am defying. No mistake about that. It's mine and perhaps you can't see it but I've dreamed it enough to make it permanently etched in my psyche.

Do you dream (nightmare) about wheelchairs? Losing sight?

Would you change your diet to *possibly* prevent a wheelchair? And remember that other MS 'treatments' might not work.....because there is no failsafe 'treatment' for MS. And also consider this interesting bit of trivia....all MS nutrition research pretty well stopped when big pharm stepped in in the late 80s early 90s.

In my life, I personally(i.e. not web related) know of three women diagnosed with MS who have not succumbed to the wheelchair through diet modifications only. This definitely helped solidify my own wheelchair prevention program. Do you have one?

I give special thanks to Lisa for inspiring this post and generating a community of hope.


Wisewebwoman said...

Hats off to you for committing so strongly to your wheelchair prevention programme and doing so well on it, a living example of Anti-Pharm success.
I find it appalling that all nutritional research was pulled.
No money in it...

Carole Lanno said...

Hi! Orla
We are practically neighbours. I live in Hamilton, Ontario. I do not and will not ever take any "disease modifying drugs" or all the other junk the doctor has prescribed for me. If I gave in I would be taking
6- 7 different drugs right now !
Crazy! I can be very tiresome writing about it on my blog :)
I do believe there are many alternatives, and by that I don't mean kooky therapies. I see merit in your approach; a healthy diet.

If anyone could prove to me that all these drugs work I would gladly try some .I don't think they do and the side effects aren't worth it.

You have some excellent recipes I might try.


Orla Hegarty said...

Thanks Carole and it's great to know a neighbour that thinks similarly ;)

I wish I'd kept all the prescriptions I've been given/offered over the last 10+ years - I'd be able to wallpaper a small wall at this point!

amy said...

Hi Orla,
I just stumbled across your blog and enjoy reading it. I have recently started my own version of the MS Recovery Diet. I have just celebrated my 20 year anniversary with this diagnosis. (Which came on my 20th birthday!) I have been on Copaxone since 1993 and have experienced no side effects, and improved health since that time. There are symptoms however, that are impervious to drug intervention and I have had more than my share of them. Thus, my change in eating. I've always eaten a vegetarian whole food diet...but the MS Recovery Diet lead me to a detox that is working well for me. I will check back on your recipes and cooking suggestions frequently and I'd like to invite you to check out my blog at
All the best to you.