"The bottom line is that the results Dr. Swank published remain “the most effective treatment of multiple sclerosis ever reported in the peer reviewed medical literature.” In patients with early stage MS, 95% were without progression of their disease 34 years later after adopting his low saturated fat dietary program. Even patients with initially advanced disease showed significant benefit. To date, no medication or invasive procedure has ever even come close, to demonstrating such success." - Dr. Micheal Greger
If you or a loved one suffer from Multiple Sclerosis (MS) you know that it's a devastating disease that can be painful and leave those suffering and their families often feeling hopeless. Fortunately, some studies are beginning to reveal that one simple lifestyle change can actually slow the progression of MS significantly.
For Sarah, Carolyn and Dr. Saray Stancic, eliminating animal products from their diet would make a world of difference for the treatment of their MS, and change their lives forever.
After waking up from a nap one day without feeling in her legs, Dr. Stancic knew something was wrong. As a physician, she knew an MS diagnosis meant a future of wheelchairs and pain, so she was eager to try anything she could to prevent a fast decline.
"It has been 25 years since my diagnosis, and today I take no medications for my MS. I live a symptom-free life and I enjoy an active lifestyle with daily runs, walks, or hikes. I consume a whole foods plant-based diet, and I tend to every aspect of my lifestyle as if it were a medical prescription."
After being diagnosed with MS at the young age of 20, Carolyn was devastated. She was overweight, used a cane, and felt as though her future had been ripped out from underneath her. One day, Carolyn booked a ticket to Macau Picchu and got to work, treating her MS symptoms with a major diet change.
"Within a week of this lifestyle change, I'd lost 12 pounds. Within 6 months, I rode in a bike marathon. Within a year, I gave up my cane for good."
After being diagnosed with MS at 31, Sarah underwent painful injections, frequent MRIs, and started to develop eczema all over her body, including irritation in her eyes. After discovering a non-profit called Overcoming MS, she decided to give lifestyle medicine a try.
"Her vertigo went away, her eczema went away. Sarah remembers: “Friends kept telling me ‘you look great!’ My skin looked better and it was so great not to have to go to the doctors all the time.
She felt so good, Sarah held off on getting any more MRIs until 2015. That scan showed brain lesions had stopped advancing. There were no new ones and some had even disappeared."
How did a plant based diet slow the progression of their MS symptoms?
High fat diets, like the Standard American Diet, can not only clog capillaries, but also cause inflammation, the root of many non-communicable diseases.
"So yes, it could be the animal fat leading to clogging of our capillaries, but now we know animal fats can have all sorts of other deleterious effects such as inflammation, so who knows what the actual mechanism may be by which cutting animal fat can cut MS progression. Regardless, patients with MS that follow a diet with no more than 10 or 15 grams of saturated fat can expect to survive and thrive to a ripe old age. Of course, cutting out saturated fat completely might be better, given that heart disease is our number one killer." - Dr. Micheal Greger
*consult your doctor before changing your diet
Have Your Own Plant-Based Transformation?!
Tell us all about it! We'd love to know how a plant-based diet changed your life and health. Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to share your story.