Creating your own health: Using Diet & Nutrition to Treat MS

Probably one of my biggest factors in managing my MS symptoms is the use of diet and nutrition.  During my three years in the double-blind, T-cell study, back in 2001, my hopes were on nutrition and all things alternative.  I willingly went off all DMD in search of a cure for MS.  But then reality set in, and it was all engines forward in the battle of natural ways to fight the progression of this disease.

Sporting my flower peace wreath
There is a lot of incoming research on Diet and MS.  There are also some active clinical trials.

Click this out:  Here is my article on Diet as a treatment for multiple sclerosis.

Diet - or better yet, a nutritional protocol, is essential in my daily battle against MS.  If my daily intake has too much salt, too much caffeine, too much gluten, too many processed foods, then I will pay the price.  And while that price may not be paid that same day, trust you me that it will not forget and will rear its ugly head.  And, more often than not, all of the prices will want to be paid on the same day at the same time, wreaking complete havoc on your life.

Go for color when cooking and creating healthy menus 
Fresh lemon is key!  Use in water, tea, baths, etc.

Click here for my article on Diet as a treatment for multiple sclerosis.

Become friends with your body and find a new level of wellness.  

Welcome to living with multiple sclerosis.   As you know it often does not bode well for us MS patients.  Out diseases are random and progress willy nilly.  But there are modifiable risk factors that we can take into consideration to help us strive for the best life possible despite's our illness.  These risk factors include cigarette smoke, alcohol, nutrition, supplement intake, exercise, and other situations that we have control over.
~if need be - pee on it and walk away~

Cig smoking is bad.  Bottomline, cut it out.  Alcohol is considered OK in moderation.  Consult with your neurologist or medical expert.  Often people find that Vitamin D, B12 and Biotin can all be beneficial supplements.  In addition, the nrf2 activator, Protandim, is found to be great at fighting oxidative stress.

So, that brings us to Diet, or nutritional protocol.   Everyone is different so finding a protocol that works best for you is key.
Gluten free bread is an option.
Here it is paired with home-made soup and fresh salmon salad.
One person who is making a difference with diet and MS is Dr. Terry Wahls and her Wahl's Protocol. I had the great fortune of speaking with Dr. Wahls a few weeks ago for an article I was writing for - "Diet as a possible treatment for MS".   And wow!   So much great information going on with diet and MS.

The Wahl's Protocol is a modified paleolithic diet.  More about it click here. For those who do not know, Dr. Wahls has made diet a form of treatment for progressive MS.  Thank you Dr. Wahls!   I have been following and almost identical diet based on my own experience for over 15 years.  It is the number 1 "go to" when things are going bad with my MS.

And if you don't have fresh flowers, the fake ones are fun too!

First, I ask myself:  How is my diet?  Where am I going wrong?   And most of the time, this usually fixes it for m!   Like I say, everyone is different.  This is one reason I love the Wahl's Protocol - as it suggests elimination type diets to see what you personally are sensitive to and this is BIG!

Here is my article on Diet as a treatment for multiple sclerosis.

Here are some food common sensitivities:

Processed foods
Red meat
Simple carbs
Diet anything / excitotoxins or NaStY for MS

FYI - I eat dairy.  Cheese.  I tried to take it out of my diet once and my boss told me to add it back as the rest of the staff was complaining about my horrid mood.  That was near 30 years ago and I haven't tried to remove it since~  I don't eat a lot of it but like it now and then.   I will willingly cut everything else out, before the cheese~

Lately I haven't been able to eat much meat.  My body, probably due to the warm summer months, is craving cooling salads and fresh fruit.  Unfortunately I like beer, especially in the summer months.  It's not the alcohol that bothers me but rather the carbs and gluten.  Talk about a weight gainer!  And then if I add bread....Oh dear save me.

Last winter I made the mistake of letting way too much beer, bread and gluten get into my diet.  Showing no restraint at all for about six months eventually led to a 15 pound weight gain, horrid dry skin and then the dreaded MS relapse!   Ugh.

My vertigo and vision got so bad that driving was out of the question...even just to a friends house.  Lethargic and inflamed my life consisted of laying in bed and "trying" to motivate.  Oh how I hate this feeling!   My skin was dry and eczema appeared all over.  Hair loss was abundant and my breath was so bad it even grossed me out.   What have I done?  So healthy last summer and then wowza, what a defeat brought on by my own weaknesses.

Time to make a change!

Feeling the summer spirit, light and fresh!
Nothing huge at first, just cut the carbs back down to no more than 10% of diet or so.  Eliminated processed foods again and removed gluten for the most part.  A little now and then does not bother me.  But a six pack of beer and loaf of bread is not considered moderation.   That's OK, the change feels good.

Back to juicing and healthy eating.  Beautiful summer produce combined with beans and grains cooked fresh are making the table.  Herbs from the garden and cheeses and meats from local farmers inspire this cook to create.

Some of recipes for your enjoyment:

Anti-inflammatory Rice Pudding

Obsessive Gaspacho 

Juice Recipes

Chia Pudding

Words of Advice:

Try different diets.  Work with nutritionists who understand MS and the different trending diets.  This is your health - it is your body.  Do not try whack-doodle eating schemes.  Try stuff that has worked for others, the key word being "try".  Give yourself a chance with different foods and see what you might be sensitive to.  Everyone is different!  

Add color and energy throughout your house with fresh flowers.
Here is my article on Diet as a treatment for multiple sclerosis.

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Self-Care Challenge: Make it Positive!

Time to "Make a Change - Make a Difference"!

Challenge #12

Turn a negative into a POSITIVE!

For one day or five days or everyday, start turning your negatives into a POSITIVE!

This can be one of the toughest challenges yet, but I know you are ready for it.

  1. Wellness begins in the heart and with a positive attitude.  
  2. We often dwell on the negative, forcing ourselves away from the beauty of what might really be happening.  
  3. Problem is we have our own expectations and agendas which may not flow well with others.  
  4. Remember to let go, let God...
  5. Know your limits and controls, learn the serenity prayer.        
  6. Many times, a negative situation will be something you look back on and laugh.  
  7. Remind yourself that energy is limited and best spent on positive living.  
  8. Staple it shut, throw it away, and smile as big as you can!   
  9. You've got this!  

Take action toward wellness with the Health Storylines App by recording your feelings in the MyJournal.

While often associated with AA, this prayer is one that every person should learn and abide by.  Our lives are better because of it: 

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change; 
courage to change the things I can; 
and wisdom to know the difference.

Time to Bloom!

"I am worthy of a healthy life"

1.     Carefully and with intention be aware of negative energy and turn it into a positive. 

2.     When positive becomes habit, living with MS will be better.  

3.     Make a change and help yourself to a healthier life. 

4.     Record feelings in My Journal

5.     Share the moment:  #selfcareMVMT

We waited months for schedules to mesh so we could pet an owl, but the owl had to go to school!  So we got photobombed anyway.  #takeTHATms! 

Let these intentions carry you away into a beautiful positive life.  


Instagram – Facebook – Twitter

Because together we’ve got this!

#challenge #dowhatyoucan #spon #takethatms 


Smile at the World!

Register at the Health Storylines App,  

use the My Journal tool.


brought to you by Caroline Craven, GirlwithMS, Self-Care Catalysts and Health Storylines

Erasing MS the Nancy Davis Way!

The Race to Erase GALA 2018 is here!   This Friday, April 20 at there Beverly Hilton Hotel.  And there are still ways to get involved and help this magnificent cause.

I sat down with Nancy Davis for my radio show, and we chatted about MS, Gala, and the Forum coming up.  It's my favorite forum ever and psyched to go see everyone this Saturday.

Here are my memories from last year attending the Gala 2017.  Very empowering to see everyone stepping up to help find us a cure!

Belle of the Ball

                 at least for one night.
MS Advocates: @Longhaulpaul & @thegirlwithMS
And boy was it worth it!

In just two weeks, Gala ticket in hand, it became game on for this girl with MS.  Complete with orange carpet, the 24th Annual Race to Erase Gala is an event not to be missed.  From Hollywood movie stars to MS Celebrities, the Beverly Hilton was packed with folks wanting to make a difference.  And make a difference they did!

MS Advocates: Caroline Craven & David Osmond
A variety of celebrities attended the Gala, including Marg Helgenberger, emcee Kathy Griffin, Medal of Honor awardee Jamie Lynn Sigler, David Osmond (living with MS), Kris Jenner, Paris Hilton and so many more wonderful supporters of the race.

The actual money raised for Nancy Davis' Center without Walls MS Research is not yet known, but one car went for $290,000 at the silent auction.  Wowza!

My escorts were amazing. As the MS took hold of my legs and made me weeble and wobble, out of the blue came an arm and a voice, "Here, walk with me."  Whew!  I thought for sure I'd topple over at any moment.  And who was this voice?  None other than MS advocate Paul Pelland, aka @longhaulpaul.  Well this was convenient.  Two MS advocates walking the orange carpet.  Woot woot!  Yes, we are in La La Land.

And then walks down David Osmond, who I got to meet on the phone during an interview a few months ago.  But we had not met in person. Finally!  And well worth the wait.  David who lives with MS does so much to help build awareness.

When Chicago is playing for a private party at the Beverly Hilton a good time can be expected.  Add the bonus of Quincy Jones, David Foster and Siedah Garrett.  It was the tops!

Not only does this Race to Erase MS raise awareness for MS but it raises a significant amount of funds for MS research. On Saturday, the day after the Gala, there is an MS Forum which has become one of my favorite events. Ever.

The MS community is family.  The hope and inspiration found at the MS Forum is contagious and is greatly appreciated by this MS patient.

A lot of great information was shared by the MS Forum.

The panel included medical specialists:  Peter Calabresi, M.D., Adam Kaplin, M.D., Ph.D, David Hafler, M.D., Daniel Pelletier, M.D., Nancy L. Sicotte, M.D., Emmanuelle L. Waubant, M.D., Ph.D., Howard Weiner, M.D., Vijayshree Yadav, M.D.

Those living with MS on the panel included Nancy Davis, David Osmond and Arnetta Hollis.

Claudia Hurry Hill, living with MS for over 32 years, was the moderator.  More on the forum to come.

The Gala was quite amazing. And prepping for it was even more entertaining. After arriving at the Beverly Hilton we ventured over to Neiman Marcus for their amazing popover, consommé and glass of rose before moving on to the Chanel counter to replace some make up. Natasha from Chanel worked her magic and provided my face with a much needed professional touch as well as replenished some product for later use.

In prepping for the Gala, much fun came from the dress shopping and the hunt for accessories.  Just the right look was of importance.  Orange is the color of MS but it's not necessarily the best color for me.  Also, when one is searching the internet for gowns and evening wear, there are a lot of choices.  Especially when one starts looking at designer and/or vintage gowns. But where was that one dress that would work the best?

Several friends and family in the industry suggested looking at Rent the Runway.  After a simple search, several orange gowns were found. And while my body is usually quite easy to fit, the thought of not being able to try it on was a concern.  So a dress that fit easy and was soft and fluid would be perfect.  And a dress in a softer shade of orange would be even better.  It did not take long for RTR to produce the perfect dress. Easy to wear, and comfortable!  Thank you RTR and Solani dresses for this optimum look.

Once the dress was chosen, time for the accessories.  OK, if the budget matched the choices, I could have spent $1000's of dollars getting ready for this gala.  Tinsel town was on my mind. But instead went for a slight bohemian feel, allowing for fun, costume jewelry.

A friend and I hit the stores. She's also my stylist and I highly recommend her.  Contact me and I'll connect you two.  We hit almost every TJ Maxx, Ross, Zara and H&M within a ten mile radius and found everything we needed and wanted.  We even found back-up options and a back up dress incase they are needed.  Whew.  This is coming together quickly and easily.

The Gala was extraordinaire!  Of course staying at the Beverly Hilton is a treat in itself.  Love this place.

After a lovely day, and an even lovelier evening of food, drink and good cheer, this Girl with MS is inspired and energized.  

I can not thank Nancy Davis enough for all she does to help everyone with MS.  The research provided by her fundraising is invaluable to our wellbeing.  


Win a FREE medical bracelet!

It's April and what better way to kick off spring then to have a #takeTHATms contest.  

I Love this time of year - Easter, spring, renewal, hope.  I find it a lovely way to say #takeTHATms!   In order to do that best this year, opted for bunny ears and a trip to Descanso Gardens to see spring in full color.

The bunny ears are keeping me focused during this busy time.  Seems like there is so much going on!  Life is at it's fullest and the days are getting longer.  Being silly helps me to stay positive.

I've been needing a new ID bracelet showing that I have MS.  Saw these bracelets from MyID the other day and was like, man, I've got to get me one of those!

They're really cool looking, and look basically indestructible.   I'm excited to get mine in the mail.  But it was difficult to decide which color and design to get.  Many cool options.

I spoke with MyID and they are giving one winner a bracelet of their choice as a way to say #takeTHATms.

 Enter here for a random drawing to win a free MyID medical bracelet.  

There are two basic designs, the MyID Hive and the MyID Sport.  And then there are additions you can make, customization.  Color, sliders, information.  Sliders are these little metal ID tabs that slide onto the bracelet.  Especially important if you suffer from more than one illness, which many of us do.

And all you have to do is enter your name and email at their website here.

Your emails will only be used for the random drawing, then they will be destroyed.  You are not entering any mailing list nor will you receive anything from us.   

Winner will be drawn APRIL 17! 

Thank you MyID for donating one bracelet for our contest.  

Self-Care Challenge #11: Mind your P's and Q's

Time to "Make a Change - Make a Difference"!

Challenge #11

Help someone feel better -  MIND YOUR P's and Q's!

For five days choose to show good manners!

Respect others, respect yourself.  

Remind yourself that you are worthy of a healthy life.

Wellness begins in the heart. 

It feels good to be respectful and thoughtful.  To not take things for granted.  

 You did not do anything to deserve this illness.  But there is something you can do to change it.  You can take control.  You can practice "Self-Care".

Take action toward wellness with the Health Storylines App by recording your feelings in the MyJournal.

"I am worthy of a healthy life"

1.     Carefully and with intention be aware of saying Please and Thank You. 

2.     This helps show respect for others and for you.

3.     Make a change and help yourself to a healthier life. 

4.     Record feelings in My Journal

5.     Share the moment:  #selfcareMVMT

After taking good care of myself -
Out on an adventure!

Let these intentions carry you away into a beautiful positive life.  


Instagram – Facebook – Twitter

Because together we’ve got this!

#challenge #dowhatyoucan #spon #takethatms 


Smile at the World!

Register at the Health Storylines App,  

use the My Journal tool.


brought to you by Caroline Craven, GirlwithMS, Self-Care Catalysts and Health Storylines