Looking to reduce your symptoms in the most natural way possible? There is a variety of research showing that changing your diet can lead to symptom relief. Dr. Adam Meade provides some helpful tips and suggestions for improving your diet and ultimately improving your health in his Basic Diet. The basic diet suggests that there are three changes that all individuals should make to their diet.
1. Remove bad fats and replace them with good fats
2. Change the meats that you eat
3. Remove all processed grains and refined sugars from your diet
Dr. Meade suggests that the first two steps should be easier to implement because they simply involve replacement. However, the third step is a little more challenging, as it requires the person to remove processed grains and refined sugars entirely from one’s diet. It’s also important and recommended that you make some strict goals for yourself to complete these milestones. This will ensure you are more likely to make the change.
So, what exactly are bad fats? Bad fats include hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils, trans fats, and rancid vegetable oils. Bad fats are not only linked to chronic inflammation, but also cancer and chronic fatigue. Therefore, eliminating these from your diet will lead to better health overall. Recommendations for healthy fats include: avocado, coconut, raw nuts, and eggs.
Why should I change the meats that I eat? Commercial meats contain pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics, and hormones. The accumulation of these chemicals in commercial meats far surpasses that of commercial vegetables. These chemicals are linked to cancer, heart disease, and chronic illness. Additionally, grass fed meats offer many fatty acids that are typically missing from the Standard American Diet.
How do I know if the grains I’m consuming are processed? A good rule of thumb is to check whether the word “whole, stone ground, or spout-ed” is before the word wheat in the product you are consuming. This also means that any white rice, pasta, or bread should be eliminated from your diet. Other than whole-grain products, brown rice, quinoa, steel cut oats, barley, and high fiber vegetables can replace the grains you may currently be eating.
You may be thinking you’re not consuming much sugar if you don’t eat candy or drink soda. However, refined sugars are often found in many unexpected products, such as lunch meats, sauces, fruit drinks, and condiments. Refined sugars lead to an elevation of glucose (and insulin) in the body, which is linked to heart disease, type II diabetes, and cancer. Not only does sugar not offer any nutritional value, but it actually reduces your bodies nutrient stores. Stevia can be substituted for sweetener when needed.
As mentioned earlier, removing processed grains and refined sugars from one’s diet can be difficult. People become addicted to sugar and can experience headaches, shakes, fatigue, and mood swings when removing it from their diet. It will take approximately one week for cravings to subside. It is very important to not indulge in any sugar during this time, as this will trigger cravings.
These are just some basic recommendations for improving your health and well-being through your diet. Future blogs will cover the importance of other lifestyle changes to improve your symptoms and overall health.
Are you ready to make the change? These steps, recommended by Dr. Adam Meade, will improve your health and get you on the right track. Change MS can empower, educate, support, and advocate for you while you take the journey to a healthier lifestyle. If you’d like to learn more about improving your diet attend one of our upcoming workshops or reach out today at changems.org for more information.
-By Jennifer Valenti