Monthly Archives: May 2015

Diet Multiple Sclerosis

I have had MS formally since 2003 but, like everybody with the condition, I back dated when diagnosed and realised I may have had neurological issues since 1986. I count myself lucky. My relapses have mainly been sensory although my hands work badly and I slur easily. I can move, I can run and because the progression has been slow I have time to reevaluate and reorder my life.
I live not only in a rich part of my country but a rich part of the world in general. Healthcare, although not perfect, is seen as a right. I am looked after.
That sudden jolt of diagnosis also meant I changed my lifestyle. My eating improved and I began to run firstly in the gym then 10k races. Not fast, not first but at a level where people did not believe I had MS. Because of the eating changes and the limited MS symptoms I began to joke I had diet MS.
I would love to say I have got away with it….but April 2014 gave me a slap. MS, that little silent bastard, turned over in his sleep and gave me a nip. Movement remained but the neuropathic pain and inability to sleep has hit me hard. But harder still is I can no longer drink.
It may seem like such a small price to pay. I have mainly recovered. The lack of alcohol has been instrumental in a weight loss of over a stone and a half (21 pounds). I run 5k in 22 minutes. No bad for a 47 year old. Better still for one who is immunological compromised.
Alcohol however does play such a large part of our lives. I live in a social village with two fine pubs blessed with the knowledge that the local primary school is a fine place to drink too on fund raising nights. Now I am disconnected from it all, fine for the first hour of any gathering but soon adrift. So I run more, my new binging, sprint triathlons too. Anything.
I love many of those I live with and have adjusted (almost) to diet MS as hydrated solely by diet coke. But they haven’t. I am still asked when do I return, wagons rolling. I can’t, I say (again). I’m done, I say (again), before sinking into the background of banter and stories of pints past.
One day that question will stop.
I just hope I am running still.