Unconventional medical approaches and lifestyle changes may help patients suffering from multiple sclerosis (MS) improve their health and well-being, according to Allen Bowling, MD, PhD, an internationally recognized neurologist and specialist in alternative medicine. The physician has designed a seven-step method based on his expertise, which is presented on his new book “Optimal Health with Multiple Sclerosis.”
The book “Optimal Health with Multiple Sclerosis: A Guide to Integrating Lifestyle, Alternative, and Conventional Medicine,” which was published this month, sets forth a strategy to fight the symptoms of the disease with unconventional methods, and the author believes that there are “three big areas that are often neglected are exercise, diet, and personal well-being.” However, “these areas are especially important for optimal health because they may impact the disease process of MS, MS symptoms, and also other medical conditions that may adversely affect MS,” he says.
The Seven Step Approach explained in the book uses 50 safe and effective lifestyle strategies, combining lifestyle, alternative, and conventional medicine. The main purpose of the approach is to improve both the health and quality of life of MS patients by providing diet instructions, exercise tips, and information on the potential benefits of dietary supplements and herbs.
“Some of these methods empower people by allowing them to use their body’s own resources for therapeutic effects,” explains Bowling. “For example, exercise in conventional as well as unconventional forms, such as tai chi, yoga, and Pilates, may improve multiple MS symptoms and may even impede the disease process itself. Dietary approaches such as vitamin D and generally healthful eating may also improve multiple symptoms and possibly slow down the disease.”
Bowling believes that his approach offers not only MS patients, but also their families, friends, and health care providers an individualized treatment plan that is both effective and manageable. The physician is highly experienced in treating MS patients, and he has incorporated this approach into the treatment of patients at his clinical practice in Colorado.
“The first year after diagnosis can be especially overwhelming emotionally, so it’s important to develop a treatment plan and also take the time to process these emotions. Over time, one can work with a knowledgeable clinician to really develop a broad-based approach that incorporates conventional, lifestyle, and unconventional approaches that are best-suited for the individual,” he says.
This the physician’s fifth book on the disease, in addition to several consultations and publications he has conducted for MS organizations, such as the American Academy of Neurology (AAN), the National MS Society (NMSS), and the MS International Federation (MSIF). Bowling is also a physician associate at the Colorado Neurological Institute (CNI) and clinical professor of Neurology at the University of Colorado.