Do your research

May 20, 2006 at 3:34 pm

Thinking outside the box:

CIDP affects each patient differently. If you have a slow onset CIDP it is possible that your body is very depleted in the building blocks necessary to repair your myelin. I think some unorthodox experimentation with supplements might be necessary – to augment, not substitute the traditional approaches.

Always check with your neurologist before you play with herbal remedies. (Our own Doctor David does not think supplements and vitamins are a good idea.) Supplements – especially herbs – are not benign. Do your research for your own particular symptoms, avoid over dosing, avoid toxic prescription drug interactions and purchase only from a quality supplier. You are responsible for taking care of your health – but only you truly knows what it feels like inside there so do look into all possiblities.

Miracles don’t happen in the first week of course – but I think you’ll notice a difference within the first few weeks. (In addition, think “happy thoughts” about learning meditation type breathing exercises to get you through the tough moments.) You’ll still have CIDP and need your prescriptions but hopefully you will feel stronger and have less pain.

I am a huge convert to using antioxidants to combat oxidative stress. That’s a lot more than just vitamin C. ( Eat brocolli !!)There’s a whole integrated system that repairs tissue. I am constantly tweaking my own supplement package to deal with my specific nerve damage.

For instance, I found a tremendous difference in pain level and sleep patterns when I added grape seed extract to the more publicized antioxidants. On the other hand, GSE did not do a thing for an email friend with CIDP. This is a highly individualized process. ( Another example is my friend with arthritis who noticed immediate symptom relief when she started taking MSM and ALA. However she can’t tolerate the magic food brocolli.)

Take your clues from your own body and symptoms. These will change over time so be prepared to tweak your supplements. You cannot direct certain molecules do do certain tasks of course – but you can supply the necessary materials for your body to work with. The worst you will do is flush very expensive pee down the toilet.

Utilize a “licensed natural pharmacist” if you find one you like. He has the training to start your program (I don’t believe in reinventing the wheel). Later as you do more reading you will feel confident to adjust and experiment on your own. Always remember that no single supplement is a magic bullet for anyone. (Do not go to a health food store. Ordinary pharmacists are not usually specially trained to help you either.) If you carefully read the literature that is available on the various prescriptions then you can avoid any possible “toxic” combinations with the vitamins.

If you are already eating a sensible healthy diet then I doubt you need to alter it drastically for your CIDP. You do need lots of protein. Do try to avoid the “whites” – sugar, salt , fat. Supplements are not substitutes for food; they are meant to provide the body with extra nutrients to address specific needs.

I do realize that it is a leap of faith to think that nutrients might be important like prescription drugs – but even medical schools are beginning to incorporate this idea.