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Thread: My Neurologist pushed veganism, and scoffed at me. =( page

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    PoeticPixe's Avatar
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    My Neurologist pushed veganism, and scoffed at me. =(

    I had my first appointment today with my new neurologist. I see a neurologist every 6 months, due to my M.S. I moved recently, and needed a neurologist nearby. My original neurologist didn't have an opinion on diet and M.S. At my appointment today, the nurse mentioned the doctor believes there's a link between diet and MS. At first, I was thrilled to hear this . However, it turns out he considers the Swank Diet to be absolutely necessary for those with M.S. This is coming from a doctor who, 5 minutes before, offered to refer me to an MS specialist, when I mentioned The Myelin Repair Foundation and the work they do. He had no idea what I was talking about. Anyway, he printed out literature for The Swank Diet and stressed that it's actually best to just go vegan. “Don't even bother with the animal proteins at all, it's better to just go vegan,” is actually what he said.

    Well, I certainly didn't agree. I stated that I follow The Paleo Diet (autoimmune protocol) and have seen great success. I've been at it two years, stopped taking my MS medicine, and have had no relapses. The only medicine I do take is for my Hashimoto's. I also gave reasons why I chose Paleo in the first place. Ya know, the whole grains are bad deal, etc. He retorted with “That doesn't make sense, where do you get your fiber and other nutrients, if just eating meat.” I informed him that I don't JUST eat meat. I eat lots of veggies and some fruit as well. He began to tell me about leaky-gut, cell mimicry (he put them in other terms), and related it to animal protein and fat, and not grains/dairy/legumes. I told him that, to my knowledge, it was the grains and such causing those issues. The studies he quoted had people eating little to no meat, alongside grains. I tried to explain why that makes a difference in results and he wouldn’t listen. He just kept saying it doesn't make sense, and “we evolved to eat plant matter.” It ended with him saying no one had ever challenged him and we “would continue this discussion next time.” I did manage to slip in Dr. Cordain's name, when he asked for proof. I really hope he reads up. I have a strong feeling he's a vegan and that was partly why he was pushing it. The Swank Diet does permit some meat.

    I just felt attacked and now feel discouraged. I guess I'll be asking him for a referral to another neurologist next time. I kept calm during our debate, while he was getting upset, and I guess that's what bothers me. I never like to be the cause of anyone's stress. I try not to let words stress me, or know-it-all people (including doctors). I figure, what works for some, may not work for others. There is proof Swank works for some individuals. Sorry, I like my meat and don't like what grains do to me. I really needed to vent to those that understand my frustration. I feel I should go in armed with material next time I go, but it just doesn't seem worth it. I also feel I could have said more, but at the time I couldn’t. I was kind of in disbelief, really. I still am. he just seemed so condescending. Sorry for the incredibly long post.
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    Dirlot's Avatar
    Dirlot is online now Senior Member
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    There are books and studies out there that show the importance of fat in the diet esp for diseases like this.
    Eating primal is not a diet, it is a way of life.
    PS
    Don't forget to play!

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    JoanieL's Avatar
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    Get a new neurologist pronto. I'm sorry, but anyone who thinks we "evolved" to eat plant matter only is a bit of a goofball.

    Anecdotal: My landlord has a friend whose symptoms from MS have been in remission for five years since she went on "the Caveman Diet," as he calls it. As a happy other side effect, she's also back at her high school weight, which was not even a concern of hers since she did it specifically for the MS.

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    @ Dirlot, Yes, I know. I don't know how he isn't aware of it (at all). We need fat and protein. He wasn't very open-minded. Maybe I'll just bring a list of books, and tell him to read up. I'll be asking for a referral to another neurologist though.

    @ JoanieL, Yes, this is why I was astounded! It's incredible that he actually believes it.
    Sleep is the best meditation.
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    PoeticPixe's Avatar
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    I honestly don't know why I didn't mention Terry Wahls to him. I've researched extensively over the years, and became ecstatic when I first read of Terry's triumph with MS. I admire her fortitude.
    Sleep is the best meditation.
    - H.H. 14th Dalai Lama

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    Dr. Wahls was my first thought when I read your post. I'm glad someone beat me to the punch. Good luck!
    I wish I liked to eat liver.

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    Unfortunately a large percentage of doctors seem to be idiots.
    I don't have MS, but had a mystery illness which got shuffled under the term CFS. I got progressively worse over a decade of doctors shrugging their shoulders.
    After eating primal for a week(!) I was out of bed, not needing a wheelchair and able to shop and cook for myself.
    CW and it's doctors can take a hike as far as I'm concerned. Don't let them get to you. I am sure you can find someone else who is at least neutral.

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    PoeticPixe's Avatar
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    Thanks, Unique.
    Sleepy-roots, My hope is to find one that is, at least, neutral. Your story is amazing btw. One week? Wow!
    Sleep is the best meditation.
    - H.H. 14th Dalai Lama

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    JoanieL is offline Senior Member
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    If I understand from your first post, you have about six months to find a new doctor? Maybe take the time to find all the neurologists within a reasonable driving distance and call their offices to find out where they stand on nutrition and MS. Then if you find one working in a manner you can be comfortable with, call your insurance carrier and tell them Dr. Vegan is a bit of a bully. Don't mention diet, nothing. Ask if you can go to Dr. XYZ.

    The reason I'm suggesting this is that I'm concerned that if you get a referral from Dr. Vegan, he'll steer you in the direction of someone who thinks like he does. And for some reason, whenever I use the "bully" excuse, my insurance carriers have always bent over backwards to accomodate me.

    "Aggressive" works also.

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