Saturday, March 7, 2009


Well, I have my one-year-since-diagnosis MRI next Tuesday. Last Thursday, I had my 6-month check-up and my neuro found the clonus on my right foot was more sustained than last time (he measured it by the beats per minute it vibrated). He also noted my left arm was weaker. So, the MRI will let him know what's going on "up there" and will let him know if the copaxone is working.

My Fears
I guess one fear I have is the MRI revealing disease progression since last year. Also, another fear I have is getting on another medication, other than Copaxone. Copaxone seems to be the lesser of the evils since it's a non-interferon. The interferons may have stronger side effects, and honestly, I don't know if any of these medications do much anyways, to fight ms. But, I know I need to take it one day at a time, as my husband reminds me, and I also need to be open-minded because if I have to get on another medicine, it may help me. I can't help but think that this is a road I never wanted to travel on - that it, a road where you go from medicine-to-medicine and hope for the best.

I need to continue to read my Bible and pray for healing (I'm afraid I have not built a discipline yet). Also, I need to continue to strictly eat no yeast, no refined sugar, no wheat, no legumes, no dairy. I'm pretty good about eating no dairy at all (last time was Christmas). I do have a bite here and there of foods with yeast or wheat.

God Father, please help me, please heal me. Rid my body if ms. Lead me to the people who will help me on this journey, including your children who are neurologists, acupuncturists, etc. Lead me to your foods that will heal me and make me strong. In Jesus name, Amen. Thank you for listening and for never forsaking me.

Your daughter,

Friday, June 13, 2008

Eureka! We're Getting Closer!

Hello! Last weekend, I came across some MS information that is fascinating, and I feel this information is an answered prayer.

Those of you that have had MS for a longer time may already be familiar with - The Multiple Sclerosis Resource Centre in the UK. This is by far the best MS information I have found so far.

Ashton Embry, who is featured by the UK-based MSRC, has done much research on MS; his own son was diagnosed with it. Canada is a country with a high-standard of living, but they have 3 times a higher incident rate of MS than any other country in the world (except for Scotland whose MS rate is equal to that of Canada). The doctors have done research and investigated why this is.

MS is almost non-existent near the equator, and it becomes more prevalent as you move away from the equator. Doctors have definitely made the Vitamin D3 connection. But, this Canadian organization explains so much more. This is a must read for anyone who has MS.

If you don't have time to read a bunch of information and make sense of it, then just read the following links and not links from other posted entries. The information is simply too valuable to not share with you promptly...

The Multiple Sclerosis Resource Centre – UK

The Best Bet MS Diet Plan

Aston Embry’s MS Booklets – clic the icon graphics on the right

Supplements Explained

Best Bet Diet Online Presentations
If you don't want to read, just listen to this training video...

I'm now finally going to bed... I just didn't want one more day to go by without sharing the above links. God bless.


Saturday, June 7, 2008

Excellent, Must-Read MS Links

Hello! I have some new and excellent MS-related information. I wanted so much to post an entry yesterday, but I forced myself to rest, and stayed off the computer and sitting position all day. I got the day off work, and my back really needed to heal, so I seized the opportunity for rest.

On Dr. Mercola's website, I found some excellent information. I think you'll find it as fascinating as I did.

Top Ten Mycotoxins

Multiple Sclerosis: A Chronic Mycotoxicosis?
Fascinating! ...I'm so thankful to the work of our doctors - those who have been gifted with curiosity and the need to be challenged, to find out the cause of diseases.

The Journey to Abate MS Continues
As we continue on this journey, and as we learn more about foods that can make MS worse, then and only then can we experiment and try to omit those foods from our diets to see if the MS symptoms abate. This is not an easy feat - eliminating basic foods that have nourished and comforted our bodies during our lifetime is difficult. But, I rest my hope on diet and nutrition.

So far, the following food items are on my list of things to stay away from
I can't say I've been 100% sucessfull all the time, but I try:

  • Yeast - This includes staying away from breads and pastries, and some crackers, since they usually have yeast. For the most part, I have been successful at eliminating bread. I have dipped a couple of pieces here and there in olive oil, over the last couple of months. It's off limits again - I just think of the candida bacteria that yeast causes in your body, and I think what it must be doing to complicates MS.
  • White Rice - I have stopped eating white rice simply because it's an inflammatory. My foot reflexologist also told me white rice breaks down to acid in your stomach. She also said that everything bad in your body is caused by acid. Ironically, when you eat limes or lemons, that turns into alkaline in your body, which she says is good. Interesting links:
  • Fried Foods - I can say I have eliminated all fried food from my diet. Definitely no fast food. This is one type of food I have succeeded at eliminating. I have been able to see that it's all bad - full of trans fats and chemicals. If I have to, for some desperate reason, I would eat a fast food salad, and I would try to not eat the cheese on it. I would probably eat the grilled chicken on it for protein (even though the chicken surely has hormones).
  • Pork - I can say I have successfully been able to eliminate all pork from my diet. Pigs are animals that don't sweat; they store all their toxins in their fat! I concur to the OT Bible, where God lays out the food law, and He instructs us to not eat pork. There's a place for everything and a reason for everything, and He put piggies on earth to clean up! (Just think - I'm Cuban, and I can't imagine my culture trying to understand this. Can I blame them? Pork is delicous. While we are human, we need to learn how to OBEY the laws He laid out for us. Learning to obey will definitely be worth the effort. Here's a fun read:
  • Beef - Even though I don't follow Dr. Swank's Diet, one thing he lays out for his MS patients is "no red meat the first year."
    I definitely plan to buy this. There are a couple of good testimonials on his site. Regarding the Swank diet, here's also another person who followed it, and read her testimony (long read, but worth it! This is a must-read)":
    I appreciate that when she was fist diagnosed, first thing she wanted to know was "what is myelin made of and how can I feed it?" She also talks about her vision loss and her positive experience with acupuncture... good and must-read. She shares what she has learned. God bless her. God bless us - those who fight this condition. God bless all those fighting, not only MS, but any other chronic and life-threatening illness.
  • Chicken grown with hormones - I cannot say I have eliminated "regular" chicken entirely from my diet. On a few occasions while cooking for my husband, I have taken bites of the regular chicken here and there. But I understand I need to completely detox from the antibodies, and re-introducing them in my diet may slow down my healing.
  • Anything Containing Sugar - I have eliminated sugar from my diet (with a very occasional bite). Many of us already know that sugar feeds cancer cells, and surely it also has to complicate MS.
    Sugar also creates an environment for bacterial to grow. Sugar and candida are not a good combo (honestly, candida is not good for much).
    Interesting article about low bloow sugar and MS, go to page 30 of the newsletter PDF file:
  • Potatoes - I've stopped eating potatoes for the reason that it's an infammatory food.
    List of pro-inflammatory foods
    About Inflammation
    About Chronic Inflammation

This is so much information... I've had enough for now.

Here are some things on my list to learn about, implement and explore in the future:

  • Water Walking - I know there's nothing more therapeutic than being inside of a pool. Your joints don't experience the pressure of gravity. Others with MS have told me that when they get in a pool, the numbness symptoms almost disappear. I want to experience that for myself.
  • Meditation and Visualization
  • Reading my Bible
  • Acupuncture
  • Something definitely on my list is to look into my metal fillings that I've had in my mouth since they were put in while I was a small child in Cuba. My general doctor did provide a couple of names of dentists to look into (you don't just want any dentist to do this because if they're not properly trained, you can risk getting more of the toxic metals released into your system, if the dentist doesn't do it right).
    Read Janie's story (who also used the Gerson Therapy to detox)

Here are some foods that I am eating and have implemented into my daily diet:

  • Sardines - I like them, they have Omega 3's, and they're small - all big fish want to eat them. I figure the smaller the fish, the less time they live in the ocean, and the less mercury poisoning.
  • Salmon - I like Salmon. I haven't mastered cooking the fresh form; I seem to always over-cook it. I like and buy the canned salmon, which I hear is safer because they tend to use the smaller salmon for canning, thus they have less exposure to ocean pollutants. I put a clove of fresh garlic with a little bit of olive oil and it's Heaven as far as I'm concerned.
  • Salad greens (organic spring mix) - I drizzle olive oil, mix it with organic mustard and a clove of fresh garlic - Heaven! I break up soy/flash chips and throw them over the salad.
  • Organic Soy Flax Chips - I love these! This is my one man-made food I eat.
  • I'm also taking vitamins to strengthen my structural system.

I'll include links regarding CAM on my next post... I have so much to say.

God bless,

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

For the Record...

Some Kind of Health Expert
I just want to let everyone know that if my previous entries sound like I'm some kind of MS expert, well, I'm far from it... I just started this journey about 6 months ago, when I was diagnosed. As I trace back my health history, I think it's likely that I've had this condition for about 12 years (can you tell I have a hard time with this? I don't like to say I have _ _; I refer to it as "this condition").

The "Program"
I am sharing the things that I'm implementing in my own "program." I put the word program in quotes because that's the first time I've thought of it as a program - the vitamins, organic foods, and so forth - these things are simply becoming my way of life.

I Started My Program Slow
After receiving my diagnosis fom the neurologist, my general doctor (who originally sent me to the neurologist) said to me that if he were me, what he would do is start eating organic fruits and veggies and simple foods (not man-made; he specifically mentioned to stay away from crackers and breads - both foods that contain many ingredients). He also mentioned juicing would be good so the body gets lots of vitamins. He explained that my body could focus on healing and improving. He said it simply can't hurt to eat like this. The words of my general doctor launched what would become my new way of eating.

I'm so thankful to my general doctor for starting me on the right path. As I learn more about natural healing, I realize there is hope in abating symptoms caused by MS. I cannot ignore the testimonies of those people who suffered the effects of MS, and through years of nutrition, vitamins, acupuncture, and so forth, they are living normal lives (certainly more normal than if they had not implemented natural healing remedies).

I confess, I'm not completely 100% organic yet.
For economic reasons, my husband buys regular chicken. It goes on sale often, and we'll stock up on four packages or so. When I cook chicken and veggie fajitas for my husband, I will take a bite here and there. Four months ago, that was a different story...

When I was first learning about hormones and pesticides in foods, I stopped eating many foods which contained them. In conjunction with the shock and depression that I went through when I found out I had this, I stopped eating many foods because I didn't know if they would hurt me. I became a little bit afraid of some foods and I lost about 30 lbs. in 5 months (which is a good thing for me). Eventually, I would take a bite of chicken here and there because it's more important to get enough nutrition than it is to be afraid of a few hormones. I try to keep a sensible mind during this process - do what you can within reason, yet strive to be a "purist" since it can only help.

In my next entry, I will share what I've learned about Complimentary and Alternative Medecine (CAM).

God bless,

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Interesting MS-Related Links

Today, I've been researching about half the day on MS-related information. Some of the links I've received from Harvard researcher / privacy advocate / radio show host Dr. Katherine Albrecht.

It's easy to get overwhelmed with information on the internet, but I thought the articles were worth sharing.

Basic information about MS (in laymen's terms)

More Good, General Information about MS

Why women are more likely than men to get multiple sclerosis!gc=18!l=1!gid1=6812;jsessionid=42FCEC5F3F96CFC85D63352DA4D59B8C
Source - Genes & Immunity online 27th January 2005

Interesting Comparison between MS and Parkinson's

Vitamin D For MS patients
Taking vitamin D supplements may positively influence the immune systems of patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), according to researchers.
(you have to enter your e-mail address to read the full article)

Study finds Nicotinamide (Niacin), a form of vitamin B3 may help with multiple sclerosis
Source - Journal of Neuroscience 20th September 2006

Oral contraceptives reduce multiple sclerosis risk
Source - Archives of Neurology September 2005

Some interesting connections - things I've read and learned today:

  • The number of cases of MS is nearly zero near the equator and increases with latitude in both hemispheres. The increased sunlight near the equator allows the body to produce more vitamin D, and may theoretically reduce the incidence of MS.
  • The current recommended dietary allowance for vitamin D is 400 micrograms (units) per day
  • More people in Canada have significantly higher number of MS cases in the world.
  • I've heard people with MS have a higher incidence rate of Osteoperosis. Osteoporosis is caused by lack of calcium; and I've learned Vitamin D helps with Calcium absorbption. Read about almonds - supposedly they help with both Osteoperosis and MS:

Some {random} things to document about me:

  • I did not like milk as a child and avoided drinking it. Food did not come easily to my parents since we lived in Cuba, a communist country. My nutrition probably could have been better when I was a child.
  • When I was 7 years old, I had several metal fillings in my mouth (I still have them today).
  • When I was 21/22, I took photography classes in college... on a few instances, I put my hand in the developer chemicals instead of using tongs.
    In photography class, we used a strong chemical called Rodinol to develop film. We used a pippette to measure the Rodinol and I remember the chemical touched my mouth a few times. (A pippette is a glass straw-like/eye-dropper-type instrument and you suck the chemical up and measure the liquid. Chemists use this).
  • When I was 22, I had my first bladder incident. Looking back now, I see these were the first signs of the MS condition brewing.
  • When I was approximately 25, for 2.5 years (from 1995-1998, my first job out of college) the office building I worked at was right next to an electric power plant.
  • When I was 28, I got diagnosed with Psoriasis. Psoriasis is an auto-immune skin disorder where the skin reproduces itself every 14 days (normal skin cell reproduction is about every 28 days). So, there are white silvery patches of skin that get reproduced on top of each other. I have a mild case in comparison. It does affect my scalp.
  • Approximately when I was 32, I noticed my sense of smell wasn't working as strong as it used to. I did not go to the doctor, but I was concerned. The smell of freshly popped popcorn just did not hit me until others mentioned it first.
  • Also when I was 32, I also noticed I did not sweat as much as I once did. I did not excercise that much during this period in my life, but I would not sweat on the walks to and from my car, during the hot Houston summers. Once upon a time, I used to sweat heavily when I excercised at the gym (back in my Gold's Gyn days when I was around 21). I see know that not sweating can't be good, since my body was not releasing toxins. To this day, I do not sweat as I should.
  • I've never taken oral contraceptives.
  • I've been known to have a sweet tooth throughout my life.

My intuition tells me MS is not necessarily caused by one thing (genetic versus environmental facors). From what I've read, it seems to be a combination of factors.

That said, I don't know that we should rely on only one source to "fix" it all. We should take our injection medecines to maintain the good myelin, but in my opinion, we need to nourish our bodies with good things, in order to strengthem our body, so our immune system can fight and heal itself. And, we need to learn and learn more about nutrition.

Some things I've implemented in an effort to fight MS and its progress:

  • Eat simple foods that your body can break down easily...
  • Eat foods with no chemicals so your body can focus on healing itself, and that way your body isn't always busy spinning its wheels breaking down the chemicals in the food.
  • No red meat
    (interesting when you read the above article Why women are more likely than men to get multiple sclerosis)
  • Avoid foods that have been injected with hormones (such as chickens)
  • Avoid dairy foods that aren't organic - I've learned that the chemicals which the animals injest sticks to the fat of the animal. So, cheese is almost all fat and any chemicals will stick to the fat... Same with meat - the more fat, the more chemicals most likely present.
    (The chemicals in the animals can exist for various reasons - in some cases they've been injected with hormones or in other cases the animal has simply eaten corn or grass grown with pesticides.
  • My next step is to try to not eat dairy at all (even organic). I did a search on google for "benefits of no dairy" and a video link came up titled "Video Healh Tip #3" but it did not work. The link said "a tip to briefly explain the benefits of no dairy, no MS drugs, and acupuncture." I'm curious about this and if anyone has that tip or link, I'd love to see it:
  • Avoid Trans Fats
  • Avoid foods that have partially hydrogenated oil (these are Trans Fats) - oil in its natural state is liquid. They "hydrogenate" it to make it solid and give a good texture in crackers, pastries, etc. You can read about more specifics as to why partially hydrogenated oild are bad:
  • Avoid foods that have "Corn Syrup"
    I'm not familiar with this vitamin/herb combo, but it's interesting that I googled "Multiple Sclerosis and Sugar" and a link came up:
  • When buying organic foods such as granola bars, make sure they don't list "organic corn syrup" - corn syrup is bad whether organic or not.
  • When buying organic foods such as crackers, make sure the ingredients are simple so your body can break down the foods.
  • Avoid bread - bread has yeast, and too much yeast yields candida - a bacteria that your body has to work hard at fighting off. Read more about candida:
  • Eat raw vegetables and fruits - most veggies have more vitamins when raw. Usually, cooking the veggies cooks away most of the vitamins, in which case, you're just eating veggies for fiber and not for vitamins. Here's an interesting link about organic versus non-organic produce:
  • Drink lots of water - our brains needs water! The rule I've heard is to drink half your body weight in ounces. Example, if someone weighs 200 lbs. they should drink 100 oz. of water. I strive for the 8 glasses per day (64 oz. total). Here's a book that talks about the importance of water:
  • Massage Reflexology. I have access to a wonderful massage therapist named Patricia; she is like a healer. She knows so much about not only massage but about nutrition and more. I've seen her once sometimes twice a week, as money allows. I haven't seen her in about 3 weeks, but will like to soon.
  • Acupuncture. I have NOT tried this yet, but am VERY interested. I won't do this unless I know of a good acupuncturist. Read about acupunture and MS:

Many of us Americans live our daily lives busy, and we eat prepared foods, which contain chemicals and preservatives and practically no vitamins. Doing this day after day can take a toll on our bodies. In my case, I always tried to eat healthy (in the past, I almost exclusively defined "healthy" as "low-fat"), but I always knew my nutrition could be better...

While studying graphic design in college, I took several nutrition courses and at one point I wanted to get a minor in Nutrition. So, point being, I've always believed in nutrition. But it wasn't until I was diagnosed with MS that I'm now focused on nourishing my body with only the healthy food it needs (I skip all the splurge-type foods). I'm relying on God, nutrients and vitamins to fight MS. I'm also thankful to have the daily injection therapy too.

I will add more information soon.

God bless.


Monday, May 12, 2008

discouragement lessening (again)

Today, I created my online diary to help deal with MS. Maybe others can relate with my symptoms and share what helps them get through it. I will also compile information and MS-related links, and you can make the best sense out of all the information.

Some basic background about me:
  • In Nov 2007, I married my prince in shiny armor.
  • In Dec 2007, I was diagnosed with MS.
  • I work full-time. I commute 2 hours each day. If the workload allows, I work from home on Tuesdays and/or Fridays.
  • I had been trying to find out what the numbness was that had been progressing the last couple of years. The numbness sensation started out in the right foot. Then it moved to the left foot. Now, I experience lower leg tightness/tingling in both legs. I have weakness in my quadriceps and hamstrings. I have tightness around my knees.
  • I'm noticing a pattern - the knees seem to get especially tight every month/month-and-a-half, soon after the menstrual cycle. It seems to last 1 week/1.5 week.
  • I have back pain, which is abating.
  • I have had bladder symptoms for many years.

I'm taking Copaxone. Under some holistic guidance, I'm also taking vitamins to strengthen my structural and muscular system and so forth. I believe I will be healed. The mighty Lord can heal this. He wants to heal every one. God bless you.

Today, I discovered Jenn's helpful MS Journey site searching on google: