Updated: Jul 17, 2020
When I was first diagnosed with MS, life felt completely hopeless. To say I was devastated is an understatement. I was uncertain about what the future had in stall for me.
Soon after this earth shattering news I quickly typed the words "MS and nutrition" into a Google search. I was flooded with information on what to eat, what not to eat and skepticism that diet did anything for the progression of the disease.
I also joined a secret Facebook group for people with MS in South Australia. People were posting about their issues with walking, pain and incontinence and it scared me even more. A woman I now consider a friend wrote "Have you heard of OMS?" in response to one of my first desperate posts, apparently it had been working for her.
I found the OMS website and finally had some evidence that diet and lifestyle actually DOES influence the severity, progression and relapse rate of the disease. I joined a local group of OMSers who catch up regularly to discuss tips and tricks to staying focused and compliant. I receive a free copy of Professor George Jelinek's book, Overcoming Multiple Sclerosis and devoured it. I attended an Overcoming MS Retreat at the Gawler Foundation in the Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia. I left that retreat knowing that I was no longer afraid of having MS. It gave me HOPE that life was going to be OK. I was going to be OK.
About a year later a little thought popped into my head... what if I gave up fish and eggs? Going whole food plant-based was the next step. I learned about how animal protein promotes inflammation in the body and decided I didn't need it any more. Like most chronic illnesses, MS is an inflammatory disease and George's book is all about reducing inflammation. To be honest, I think the OMS program incorporates fish and eggs into the protocol so that people can follow it and remain compliant. If someone picked up a book titled "Go WFPB to recover from MS" they might think it was too radical. I think Prof Jelinek needs to give people more credit.
I've been whole food plant-based for over 2 years now and have never felt better. I'm fitter and leaner than I was in my 20's. I have more than hope, I have evidence that eating plant-based is the path to recovery.