I’m Learning to Love My New MS Diet

Jessie Ace avatar

by Jessie Ace |

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Three weeks into the Overcoming MS (OMS) diet, I’m pleased to have made the switch. The diet focuses on eating fish and seafood, and lots of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, it excludes dairy, and has minimal saturated fats. I’ve seen a difference already. 

I’ll admit that in the beginning, it was hard. So hard. These kind of changes always are, right?

Smelling the once comforting aroma of takeout food or watching my husband eat pizza (previously my favorite food in the whole world) was almost torture. Knowing I could no longer eat those things started to affect my mental health

I decided to start thinking differently and reprogram my mind. I knew that type of food was terrible for me. I knew I’d have to make sacrifices. I reminded myself why I chose to follow the OMS diet in the first place: to manage my multiple sclerosis

Whenever I smelled the takeout food or had a craving for things I used to love, I caught myself thinking, “Oh my gosh, that smells amazing. I miss it so much. I’ll never be able to eat it again! This diet sucks!” It made me upset and triggered a downward spiral. I didn’t need that. 

Instead, I changed my thinking. I’d say to myself :

“That is the smell of my leg not working.”

“That is the smell of the embarrassment I felt when I fell over in public. My leg was so weak that the dog pulled me down.”

“That is the smell of being numb from the neck down.”

“That is the smell of my hand being unable to draw and that career path going down the toilet.”

That way of thinking helped pull me back out of it. 

I started researching OMS recipes like crazy. There had to be something I liked just as much as a greasy pizza. 

I thought about my favorite foods. Instead of feeling frustrated that I couldn’t eat them, I asked myself, “How can I make a healthier version of that?”

When I asked, “How can I?” instead of thinking, “This sucks,” it changed everything. 

The other night, I ate something I’d never enjoyed before: tofu! Even long before MS, when I was a vegetarian, I didn’t understand why the weird, sponge-like food that tasted of nothing was so popular. “How can people like this?” I thought. I was so wrong. 

I cooked tofu with a miso and mirin glaze along with soy sauce, pak choi, spring greens, garlic, and black sesame seeds. It was amazing. I love the taste of miso, and it completely changed the tofu. I enjoyed the meal rather than letting it contribute to my “I hate this diet!” mentality.

I’ve since learned hacks for cooking the dishes I used to love while keeping them within OMS guidelines, such as switching out coconut milk for soy milk in many recipes. 

I learned that by soaking cashew nuts in water for a few hours, then blending them with several basic ingredients, I can make OMS-friendly mayonnaise

My new favorite thing is roasting nuts in the oven with a mix of honey, cinnamon, salt, and cayenne pepper. (I ignored the sugar in the recipe.) I’ve tried it with almonds, cashews, and pecans, and pecans are my favorite. 

I suddenly feel so creative in the kitchen. I love it. 

Do you follow the OMS diet? Have you found any awesome hacks you love? Please share in the comments below.

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Note: Multiple Sclerosis News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Multiple Sclerosis News Today or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to multiple sclerosis.

Comments

Patricia Roodhof avatar

Patricia Roodhof

My MS specialist also nixed any gluten, in addition to dairy alcohol. Coconut yogurt is great, tofu with pasta sauce with mushrooms is great, red lentil veggie soup. It's mind over how our MS matters. Love your new outlook

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Greg Bond avatar

Greg Bond

I have researched both the OMS and Wahls diets. The only common element is eating healthy unprocessed foods. Meat and eggs encouraged with Wahls; no good for OMS or Swank. Bottom line in my opinion (and my neurologist who has had MS for 40 years and still going strong at 63 and fully ambulatory) is healthy eating is good for overall health, but it is not a magic bullet and by no means a substitute for DMTs. If you think otherwise you are fooling yourself.

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itasara avatar

itasara

I am glad this diet is helping. kind of sounds like Mediterranean diet which is supposedly good for everyone. I started a low carb lifestyle pretty sure before I knew I had MS. I lost 25 pounds basically sitting at my computer in a short amount of time. I had gained 25lbs by not watching what I was eating. I have a very sweet tooth. Now I am around 116 pounds plus or minus and many years older. I like it because I decide on my daily goal for the day somewhere between 60-100 net grams of carbs. I started giving myself leeway on the weekends to "cheat." It probably is not as healthy as your diet but does allow me to eat some foods I prefer as long as they are lower carb. Many fruits are higher in carbs. Most fish are 0 carbs. Meat is mostly 0 unless it is prepackaged like in meatloaf. I like the choices. I don't cook all that much lately. I do take a lot of suppliments because I cannot be sure I get everything I need. For instance I never drink OJ or other juices unless they are lo carb drinks.So esterC is one of my suppliments. I never drink milk except half n half in lo acid coffee. Anyway, Sounds like you are doing well.

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Veronica Odom avatar

Veronica Odom

It took me a very long painful time to learn how important my diet is to my RRMS Recovery and Survival. The OMG/OMS diet is phenomenal!

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Rita White avatar

Rita White

OMS diet is a very healthy diet. It's mainly plant based diet with added sea food.
Hope you will see gradual improvement in your MS symptoms.

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Tom Anderson avatar

Tom Anderson

I follow Greg Bond's comment above. Don't look for a cure in diet, you are wasting your hope. Put your hope elsewhere where it may have a chance. Eating healthy is very important and secondary health issues will only add to the confusion of MS, and they too will eventually come as you age. I've been on my version of Swank for 30 years. But being informed with MS such that you continue as best you can is more important. Facing truth is part of that, and miracle cures abound so be careful. MS is persistent and not caused by diet. A good healthy diet is important for anyone, and the less you weigh, the less your leg will be bothered. But there might not be a way to stop that and you have to look it up, learn, discern fact from fiction, and try anything and everything.. Remember Bee Stings?

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