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500 Word Project – Day 294
6:41 p.m. 21OCT14
A Better Lifestyle – Part One of Four
Is there a magic pill that can revitalize you, make you sleep more soundly, reduce or eliminate fatigue, protect your from disease, make you look and feel younger? The basic answer is, NO. However, there are things you can do to achieve those same results.
I recently watched a TED-MED video about a female doctor who developed multiple sclerosis around 2000-2001. She deteriorated rapidly in spite of the prescription medicines that her doctors were giving her. Within a few years she was living in a zero-gravity chair and unable to get out of it without help. Her muscles had atrophied to a point that she had no strength.
She decided that the medicine was not working because she was continuing to decline in health. She started reviewing the medical research literature to find what experiments had been done on animals to see what insights she could get that would help her. She found animal trials that had good results with similar autoimmune diseases using food only. She then made a decision to go off her medicines and to go exclusively with foods as her medicine.
She calculated the quantities of various food groups for humans based on the weights of the mice and rats in the experiments. Within a couple of months there was significant progress. She continued using food as her primary ‘cure’ and was amazed that her disease had stopped and she was actually getting better. Within months she was able to stand on her own and walk. A few months after that she was able to ride a bicycle for twenty kilometers.
She stood on stage and showed us pictures of her before her decline with MS. She showed how her body had literally become emaciated with that disease. She is standing on stage and I am wondering how she achieved those results with just food. I want to have those results and I don’t have MS.
She described the lifestyle plan that she developed based on the animal experiments. I am using the term ‘lifestyle’ here since there were four distinct parts to her recovery program. In this article I will describe the dietary portion of this four-part protocol. In future articles I will describe each of the other three parts of this program.
The dietary program consists of fresh organic fruits and vegetables, grass-fed meat (beef, pork, chicken) and wide-caught fish. The second part of this protocol covers the elimination of toxins from your body. The requirement for organic food is essential to not introduce any new toxins to your body.
She ate three cups of fruits and vegetables at each meal with a little protein. There were three meals a day. The first cup contained fresh leafy green vegetables. The second cup contained colored fruits and vegetables. The third cup contained sulphur-laden vegetables. The meat was three or four ounces of whatever protein she desired with that meal. The vegetables could be consumed cooked, sautéed or raw.
My wife and I started this new lifestyle protocol just over a week ago. My choices for leafy green vegetables include kale, green lettuce, spinach, parsley and the tops of green onions. I eat these raw. My choices for colored fruits and vegetables are bell peppers (green, red, yellow and orange), onions, celery, carrots and tomatoes. I also eat these raw. My fresh organic fruits include blackberries, blueberries, raspberries and pineapple.
Sulphur-laden vegetables include onions, mushrooms, cabbage, etc. I love onions and mushrooms, so that is what I chose. I sautéed the onions and mushrooms. I buy organic meats as much as I can – free range chicken without any antibiotics, etc. The same for beef and pork – grass-fed, no hormones, etc. I use about three ounces of meat per meal.
We found out very early that it was impossible for us to eat three cups of fruits and vegetables and a little protein with each meal. It was too much food for what we could eat at one time. We decided to eat approximately one-half cup of green leafy vegetables, one-half cup of colored fruits and vegetables, one-half cup of sulphur-laden vegetables, and three ounces of meat at two meals a day.
My wife had been living in fatigue (drug induced) for the past six plus months. Nothing I tried had any effect at offsetting the side effects of the drugs that she had been on during that time. Within a couple of days she went from two naps a day to one nap. By the end of the week (seven days) she was not taking any naps. She was unable to walk to the top of the stairs without extreme exhaustion. After seven days she could get to the top with minimal discomfort.
She has regained a lot of strength in her legs and is able to get off the couch or out of a chair without a lot of effort. In the past she encountered extreme difficulty getting to a standing position from a sitting position. All this in seven days and she was doing no exercise to build up her muscles. She has greater clarity of mind and is able to do things around the house that required her to sit down and relax after five or ten minute’s activity. Nothing else except her dietary intake has changed in the past seven or eight days.
A major side effect that I noticed was that eating fruits and vegetables and minimal protein resulted in my body attaining and maintaining an alkaline condition. I have been taking my pH each morning and evening for the past seven days and observed that my body’s pH has been greater than 7.0 for the past five days in a row. Generally speaking, disease cannot exist in an alkaline environment. Your body’s normal metabolism produces acidic byproducts. If you do nothing but breathe your body will become acidic. Proteins, fats and carbohydrates are typically acidic in nature. Eating those foods will result in more acidity in your body. Fruits and vegetables are generally alkaline.
This dietary protocol is similar to the Atkins’ Diet in that there are no carbohydrates. However, carbohydrates are contained in the various fruits and vegetables being consumed in this program. I should be more explicit regarding the carbohydrates. There are no simple sugars nor refined carbohydrates in this protocol. The carbohydrates contained in the fruits and vegetables are complex carbohydrates, but the total grams of carbohydrates being consumed are typical of those seen in the Atkins Diet.
However, the issues (acidosis and constipation) of excessive fats and proteins and little to no carbohydrates are not seen with this particular dietary program compared to the Atkins Diet. I was in severe acidosis for six years when I lived on the Atkins’ Diet in the 90’s. I did not know it at the time. Severe acidosis results in your body depleting calcium from your bones to keep your blood’s pH levels normal. It can lead to osteopenia or osteoporosis.
My wife and I have lost several pounds during the first week of this program. This is similar to the Atkins Diet in that water weight is lost when carbohydrates are excluded from the diet. I would travel to Italy for a weekend when I was living on the Atkins routine and would gain twelve or more pounds in a single weekend eating pasta and bread. I would return to Germany and would lose a pound a day until I returned to my normal weight.
I find that I can easily adopt to eating these types of meals on a daily basis and see no problem with do this for the rest of my life. A diet is temporary. A lifestyle is continuous.
Please note that the format of this post (blog) is not typical for me. This format is what I use for my 500-word a day writing challenge that I adopted in January 2014. I declare the time starting and finishing the total words written as part of my writing for this format.
1350 words 7:17 p.m.
This is informative, Red. I’m glad that you and your wife are already seeing results.
As person with MS I’m familiar with the doctor you’ve spoken of in your post. I don’t know her personally but have heard her story. I’ve been on my own journey to find what works for me. While I’ve not experienced the dramatic results that she has, my symptoms to improve when I eat as close to this “diet” as possible.
I have a little trouble at first, not because of cravings, but because of detox symptoms. I often feel worse before feeling better.
I’ve not read her books but I’ve perused her blog. I need to watch/listen to the TED talk. And, I’m looking forward to the rest of this series.
Melinda – the video link is http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-14451/how-i-went-from-wheelchair-to-walking-by-changing-my-diet-dr-terry-wahls.html
Interesting post, Red. I find whenever I do a similar diet, or something Atkins like, my weight drops immediately. One way I get around the issue of too much food/too many vegetables is I parboil leafy greens which makes them far more compact. I’m inspired by what you say in this message and by the good results you and your wife are getting. Enjoyed this post.
Thanks for sharing this! I look forward to the other parts. 😉
Kendra Burrows recently posted…After This, I’ll Be Able to Catch Up
This is an amazing story. I know how healing food can be. After an auto accident four years ago, I received a brain injury and had pain everywhere in my body. My family was convinced I had developed MS as a result of the accident. Between my naturopath and my own stubbornness to improve, I changed my eating habits. I have never felt as good as I do now. And you are right, organic produce, grass-fed meats. Food the way it was intended to be. Inspirational story. Thanks for sharing this.