I have been nourishing my body with a vegan, gluten free, organic diet for about 7 years now. When I was initially diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis back in March of 2008 I followed the Swank Diet for MS for a year. I wasn’t symptomatic during that first year so I let the Swank diet slide by the wayside.
I then attended Hippocrates Health Institute in Florida for a 3 week stay and that experience switched me to a vegan, raw, organic diet for one year. I felt wonderful on the raw diet but it was very stressful preparing a raw meal for myself and and a cooked meat meal for my hubby.
After one year of that my hubby said he would meet me in the middle and eat a cooked vegan diet at home. That was a huge relief as I was then only having to prepare one meal we both could enjoy. I stopped the raw diet then and started the cooked vegan, organic, gluten-free diet that I am still following today …95% of the time. Sometimes I have an egg or a bit of Parmesan cheese or an organic grass fed chicken breast but the majority of my meals are vegan. Adding a bit of organic chicken to my diet made it easier for me to go to friends and family homes for dinner. The vegan diet is certainly a healthy way to eat.
It is hard to say whether this diet is having any affect on my MS. My physical abilities are getting less and less and rather quickly. Definitely quicker then I thought this would happen.
So after much consideration I have decided to go back on the Swank Diet for Multiple Sclerosis. It is a lifetime commitment and one I am mentally prepared to make. Who knows…..maybe it will help repair some myelin damage that is causing my fading mobility. I can only try it and hope for the best.
The Swank Diet is a low saturated fat, but allowable good fats, diet. It is a heart healthy diet for anyone but has been proven to help people with MS stay mobile and as healthy as they can be. It will be a bit of a switch from my vegan diet but I’m ready, willing and able to do this going forward.
Basically the rules of the game are to keep saturated fats below 15 grams a day and unsaturated oils between 20 – 50 grams per day. Now that may seem pretty generous with the saturated fat allowance but when you start to count up the grams here and there it adds up very quickly. There is a bit of saturated fat in many whole healthy foods that you wouldn’t think there would be. The recommended level for the saturated fat is at the low end of this range….staying closer to 5 grams of saturated fat is even a better goal.
The nice thing about this diet is that fruit and veggies are allowed in any amount. I love fruit and veggies so I’m happy about that. I am permitted to enjoy organic, skinless boneless white poultry prepared in a lean way and also can include white fish. If I want dairy it has to be below 1% butterfat. Egg whites are allowed but no yolks.
I need to add 1 teaspoon of cod liver oil per day with a good multi-vitamin and mineral supplement which is no big deal for me. I already take top quality supplements.
The diet allows whole grains, brown rice and whole grain pastas….I will continue to seek out the low gluten and no gluten foods in this department as gluten is inflammatory and I want to keep inflammation to a minimum.
Nuts and seeds are good snacking foods on this diet, of course in moderation. They contain healthy fats.
So this next adventure will begin very soon, once I get all of the supplies needed to make this work .
Any future recipes I include on my website will be geared towards the Swank eating plan and/or vegan and gluten free recipes low in saturated fats containing good oils.
As I mentioned earlier, this diet is a good diet for all of us. Fifty years of studying this way of eating with Multiple Sclerosis patients has proven this diet has a profound affect on many for the better.
So I start another phase of life living with Multiple Sclerosis.