The Swank Multiple Sclerosis Diet - Discussion

Wish to learn more about a useful anti multiple sclerosis diet for sufferers of the disease?

There are a variety of treatments for multiple sclerosis. In general, it is best to approach any health issue from a multi-dimensional perspective; in consultation with your physician, you can develop a plan that combines natural therapies, lifestyle medications (if necessary), and the technology of modern medicine.

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A note about The Swank Multiple Sclerosis Diet - Discussion

In natural health and healing, we believe in holistic health and healing, as we realize that different parts of the human body are highly interlinked, often beyond Man's understanding. We also believe that the body has the ability to heal itself of any disease, even supposedly incurable diseases.

In order to do so, the body needs the support of some basic dietary and lifestyle good health habits, such as a full body detox and a proper understanding and application of nutrition. No matter how remote or unrelated a health condition may seem, these fundamental health steps will greatly magnify the effects and benefits of any of our health-promoting efforts, including the use of specific natural health remedies.

One facet of treatment, lifestyle modification, is a fact of life after diagnosis for anyone who has been diagnosed with a condition; this is particularly true in the case of multiple sclerosis. Because it is a progressive illness, one should truly reevaluate their life in the context of their illness, and do all that can be done in terms of modifying one's lifestyle in a manner that will promote a positive outcome.

A major aspect of anyone's lifestyle and one that has a significant influence upon health is diet. Diet modification can yield positive results for people who have been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Though there are a few different theories out there, the most well-known and reputable "Multiple Sclerosis Diet" (also known as The Swank Multiple Sclerosis Diet) was developed by the late Dr. Roy Swank.

The said diet is one that has a few key features. One benefit of the diet is that as far as formulaic, pre-set diet plans go, it is certainly amongst the most simple, making it easy to commit to memory and implement in one's life.

This is an additional reason why individuals with MS may benefit from trying the plan, because often, changes in eating fail to occur not due to one's failure to operate but because there is a lack of structure and action prior to the implementation of the diet.

This will not occur with the MS diet, because there are several clearly set guidelines, thereby removing the duty of an individual to develop a concrete plan and to integrate it on a cognitive level (before integrating it into one's life). In general, the fundamental "take-away" of the diet is that it is based on significant limitation of saturated fat intake. However, the entire diet is encompassed by a few simple guidelines.

The Multiple Sclerosis Diet Guidelines

Here are some basic guidelines of the said multiple sclerosis diet.

  • Saturated fat should not exceed 15 grams per day.
  • Unsaturated fat (oils) should be kept to 20-50 grams per day.
  • No red meat for the first year.
  • After the first year, 3 oz. of red meat is allowed once per week.
  • Dairy products must contain 1% or less butterfat unless otherwise noted.
  • No processed foods containing saturated fat are allowed on this multiple sclerosis diet.
  • A good source of omega-3 along with a multivitamin are recommended daily.
  • Some good sources of omega-3 fatty acids are: oily fish, fish oil, etc.
  • There are no restrictions on wheat, gluten, or dairy; however, any food that is found to be intolerable should be avoided.

Dr. Swank's research was conducted on 144 patients over the course of 34 years, and was published in 1990. The results showed that individuals who had been followed the diet did not show any significant deterioration over the 34 year period, whereas individuals who did not follow the diet did show significant deterioration.

However, Dr. Swank's multiple sclerosis diet, as well as the research upon which it is based, have been disputed on a number of different issues, but in particular, many have questioned his flagrant failure to control for bias by using double-blind testing.

Nonetheless, the simplicity of the diet in itself almost makes it worth a try, and for individuals with MS, who must alter their diets anyway, it is certainly a wonderful option as a component of the natural healing facet of a complete treatment plan.

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