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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Clever lady and highly admired by me!
I have MS, diagnosed in 2001 and followed the George Jelinek diet for last 3 years however was so interested in reading about Terry in the MS Pathways magazine and what she was doing with her health. Being someone who also believes food is so important I started adding wild meat and organic meat to my diet, gave up soya products and gave up wheat and gluten products. I...
Published 2 months ago by Ani13

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Beat MS?
I have had secondary progressive MS for 35yrs, still get about, (not so well as I use to). Where upon I agree with a healthy life style, to say you have beaten MS is a broad statement. Time alone will tell! I maintain a healthy life style, positive view, and to enjoy life to my best.
I do eat the majority of the foods advocated in this book, take exercise, so I...
Published 10 days ago by merstham fox


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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Clever lady and highly admired by me!, 9 May 2014
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This review is from: The Wahls Protocol: How I Beat Progressive MS Using Paleo Principles and Functional Medicine (Hardcover)
I have MS, diagnosed in 2001 and followed the George Jelinek diet for last 3 years however was so interested in reading about Terry in the MS Pathways magazine and what she was doing with her health. Being someone who also believes food is so important I started adding wild meat and organic meat to my diet, gave up soya products and gave up wheat and gluten products. I still eat eggs as I love them and am not allergic to them. For 6 weeks I have been eating this way and my energy has increased quite significantly
still suffer with tingling and paranthesis down my left leg but do feel that I am doing well. My skin is a lot clearer too and recent ovary scans for PCOS showed everything 100% healthy so just wondering if giving up gluten and soy is the reason! Reading this along side the "Brain Drain" by David Perlhutter has really opened up my eyes again and I will continue along this path too. Kale smoothies with seaweed supplement daily also dramatically improved my cognitive function so thanks Terry and hope you continue to recover ;-)
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant book, 13 April 2014
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I think this is a revolutionary book. It will give hope to many people with chronic disease. It will guide you and teach you in how to care for your own body with nutrition. Its based on sound scientific evidence and there are inspiring stories of people who have recovered or greatly improved from MS and other diseases. It is the future of medicine, fix the broken biochemistry and give your body what it needs to heal..Go Terry Wahls, you are my hero.

A Wahls Warrior - Louise Courtney.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must-have resource for anyone with an autoimmune condition, 31 Mar 2014
By 
Z. Rudin "Zoepottery" (Glos. UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: The Wahls Protocol: How I Beat Progressive MS Using Paleo Principles and Functional Medicine (Hardcover)
Over the last two years I have purchased and read every new publication relating to autoimmune disease. This is by far the most succinct, well laid out and informative. Additionally (and for me reassuringly) it brings together lots of the learning and progress made with regards to diet, lifestyle and autoimmunity. Dr Wahls is inspirational. She used herself as a 'human guinea pig' sending her Multiple Sclerosis into remission and regaining cognitive and physical function.

This is a must-have resource not just for those suffering from MS but also for those (like myself) struggling with any of the huge raft of different autoimmune conditions. Applying the protocol is challenging but not as challenging as suffering with the symptoms of progressive autoimmune symptoms! I am two weeks into the protocol and am already feeling a reduction in severity of symptoms. Can't recommend this highly enough.

12 WEEKS INTO THE PROTOCOL:
I wanted to add an update after 12 weeks. The change in my energy levels, pain and inflammation is nothing short of amazing! I followed the Wahls Paleo for 2 months (as recommended by Dr Wahls) and I saw a steady improvement in my health. I then progressed to Wahls Paleo Plus (ketogenic diet) and the improvement has been dramatic. My crushing fatigue has gone! My joints and muscles are pain free, my brain works well again!! I am not good at sticking to something or at being self disciplined however this book is clear cut enough to follow and stick to and once you start to feel the positive benefits you won't look back. I am currently reading 'Grain Brain' by Perlmutter. His research backs up all the benefits of the Wahls Protocol. Fascinating science and it really works!!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you have an auto immune disease or are just unwell try it, 29 May 2014
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This review is from: The Wahls Protocol: How I Beat Progressive MS Using Paleo Principles and Functional Medicine (Hardcover)
I have been diagnosed with MS since 2000, my health was deteriorating slowly with each Relapse I was on Beta Interferon for over 8 years and unwell every week with side effects. Started the diet, kept strictly to it and have felt amazing, it is difficult to do strictly but you are the only loser if you cheat. I have come off all medication and feel stronger every week. I have done this for two months and the temptations are becoming less difficult to resist. It can seem difficult to become gluten and dairy free etc but you soon find ways to choose things that suit the diet and taste really good. I found that after two weeks I was noticeably better you have nothing to lose than a few pounds, which incidentally I have lost 2 stone as well! If it sound evangelical I believe everyone would benefit from this way of eating and feeding your body.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You'll regret not buying this book, 14 April 2014
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This review is from: The Wahls Protocol: How I Beat Progressive MS Using Paleo Principles and Functional Medicine (Hardcover)
Just brilliant. Dr Wahls takes what has the potential to be a very complicated topic, makes it massively easy to understand, and changes lives as a result of her research.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read, 29 Mar 2014
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Good book should make it simpler to understand. The book should be layed out simpler too. Very long, not necessary
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book, 26 May 2014
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This review is from: The Wahls Protocol: How I Beat Progressive MS Using Paleo Principles and Functional Medicine (Hardcover)
Terry Wahls, thank you for this book, I appreciate that you are sharing your experience with us and although I know that each human being is unique and your method might not be a miracle cure for everyone, I hope it will help many in living a quality life with MS.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 12 May 2014
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This review is from: The Wahls Protocol: How I Beat Progressive MS Using Paleo Principles and Functional Medicine (Hardcover)
Excellent book. Very comprehensive and up to date. Scientifically understandable and reader friendly. Highly recommended for anyone seeking to make positive healthy lifestyle changes.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book backed with science and evidence, 11 May 2014
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Worth reading and questioning the food you eat and the way you live. My only criticism is that it is typically American - why use one word when three will do! So it gets a bit repetitive and boring, so skim those bits. Change your life and change your lifechances!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A bible for brain health, 26 Jun 2014
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This review is from: The Wahls Protocol: How I Beat Progressive MS Using Paleo Principles and Functional Medicine (Hardcover)
I first heard of Dr Terry Wahls from the excellent Ted talk* she gave in 2011 called Minding Your Mitochondria. The talk caused quite a stir as Dr Wahls, who was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 2000, explained how nutrition and lifestyle changes helped her to radically transform her life. Her return to walking and even biking after being confined to a tilt-recline wheelchair is at once inspirational and fascinating. I had stumbled across the video shortly after starting Paleo in April 2012 as I was looking for every available resource on the lifestyle. Dr Wahl’s story was particularly relevant to me as I had suffered with ongoing gut issues for over 20 years, followed by neurological symptoms such as Trigeminal Neuralgia and Facial Palsy. My consultant had warned about keeping a look-out for symptoms of MS, so I was intrigued by Dr Wahls’ story. I had also read the brilliant Grain Brain by Dr Perlmutter and the link between the gut, neurological problems and auto-immune disease is a topic that I find fascinating. When I learned of Dr Wahls new book The Wahls Protocol, I ordered it immediately.

A clinical professor of medicine and a previously active marathon runner, mountain climber and tae kwon do black belt, Dr Wahls was seemingly fit and healthy individual with a full (although at times stressful) career and loving family. She writes very movingly of her diagnosis and the realisation in hindsight that something was wrong many years ago; the clues that appeared but were not investigated, the warning signs, the niggling problems…Post-diagnosis, and as her condition declined, Dr Wahls discovered the work of Ashton Embry and Loren Cordain. She began to adopt a nutritional strategy based around the Paleo diet but sadly her decline continued. Undaunted and with a thirst to find out everything that she could about her disease, Dr Wahls went on to study MS in more detail – in particular the relevance of healthy mitochondrial function - and eventually devised a treatment plan that incorporates food as the core component, along with electrical-stimulation, targeted supplements, exercise and stress management. The Wahls Protocol outlines this plan in an easy to read, incredibly practical way.

The importance of food and other lifestyle factors in the treatment and prevention of disease lies at the heart of this wonderful book. However, Dr Wahls’ message is bigger than this. There is a power that lies within each of us to overcome symptoms and to improve our condition, if we adopt the right methods. The Wahls Protocol is about reinstating that power to individuals. It is about giving control back. It is not about throwing away medication, or ignoring your doctor. It is about working gradually to reclaim health; seeing how things improve, how you feel, monitoring symptoms. It is about ensuring that your illness no longer controls your life. A reduction in medication may be part of this - or it may be not - and Dr Wahls makes it very clear to discuss this carefully with your doctor. Testimonies from ‘Wahls Warriors’ – people who have adopted the Protocol with excellent results – are placed throughout the book. These moving accounts stand as a reminder that things can improve, even when hope has been lost.

Dr Wahls stresses that tackling MS or any other major disease starts with the realisation that ‘Genes are not your destiny’ p.25. The importance of environmental factors in switching on genes for disease is huge. Although Dr Wahls discovered that she had a genetic vulnerability for MS, she reminds us that ‘scientists believe that environment determines 70-95% of the risk of developing autoimmune problems’ p.24. In the same way that environmental factors can ‘switch on’ these genes, so they can influence whether they remain ‘switched off’. The lifestyle choices we make can mitigate our genetic propensity for disease and merely possessing the gene for a particular illness is not an automatic route to that disease.

So how do we ensure that we make the correct choices that enhance our genetic make-up? Dr Wahls argues that healthy cellular activity should be at the root of all such choices. ‘Cellular nutrition is everything. It is the very basis of all health.’ 26 Healthy cellular function is dependent upon the correct workings of our mitochondria, the energy power-houses within cells that also regulate cell signalling, cell death and cell growth. Their optimal function is of critical importance to cell health and mitochondrial breakdown leads to chronic disease. Making sure that we do everything we can to look after our mitochondria – particularly when it comes to neurological conditions - will ensure that cells function properly. One of the most important ways we can achieve this is through our diet and Dr Wahls urges us to remember this vitally important piece of information: Our cells are ultimately fuelled by what we eat.
Recognising that we can target our nutrition for brain health is one of the first steps in successfully applying the Protocol. Dr Wahls looks at micronutrients that are essential for making myelin and for healthy neurotransmitter function, both of which contribute to brain health. Her exhaustive work in compiling this range of nutrients and her years of research, first upon herself and her own condition, then followed by her patients and Wahls Warriors, are brought together in an extremely detailed and easy-to-follow plan.

One of the most memorable passages of this book is when Dr Wahls explains the problem with naming and treating diseases based on symptoms. In reality, we are experiencing the same disease with different symptoms. Auto-immune diseases, along with the major diseases of Western societies are the result of ‘mitochondrial dysfunction, excessive inflammation, high cortisol levels and other markers of broken biochemistry. In a very real sense, we all have the same disease…’ p.47. I found this way of thinking about disease very interesting. By treating the various symptoms, conventional medicine names and classifies the disease yet fails to address the underlying cause. It treats auto-immune diseases by prescribing drugs which – in many cases – undermine the natural functioning of the body, and as a consequence inhibits the very immune system that needs help. An alternative, functional medicine approach which treats the whole person rather than the symptom, involves ‘optimizing the body’s environment to minimize immune hyperactivity’ p.55. As you read the Wahls Protocol, there is a realisation that our whole medical system is based upon treating disease from completely the wrong angle - damage limitation rather than prevention. It’s depressing to think about, but maybe we can begin to turn things around.

The Wahls Protocol gives an excellent breakdown of the causes and characteristics of autoimmune disease, as well as explaining the conventional vs functional medicine approach. I found this to be an extremely fascinating part of the book. The link between inflammation and disease is explored and we learn that ‘excessive inflammation is a factor in many if not all psychiatric disorders.’ P.65 Dealing with inflammation is at the heart of the Wahls Protocol and addressing this important issue is a must if we are to tackle diseases such as MS.

There are three levels of diet to the Wahls Protocol, increasing in strictness: the Wahls Diet, Wahls Paleo and Wahls Paleo Plus. Paleo diet principles underlie all of these and Dr Wahls gives an excellent background to Paleo nutrition with thorough explanations of issues such as leaky gut: a potential disaster for health. However, the Wahls Protocol is specifically tailored to address chronic disease and to maximise nutrients for mitochondrial function – taking Paleo principles to a whole new level. At all 3 stages, the diet centres around a diverse range of vegetables, together with pasture-raised meat, and wild-caught fish and eliminates gluten, dairy and eggs. I could write that the Protocol increases in strictness, but instead I like to think of it as becoming increasingly liberating. Depending on which stage you choose to follow, additional foods (such as all forms of grains) are eliminated and others increased (coconut fats). I was happy to see that those who experience difficulty digesting large amounts of raw vegetables can also scale the quantities down to suit and as the gut heals, reintroduce them.

At the Paleo Plus level, smaller quantities of vegetables are desirable. The highest stage of the Protocol takes the basics of a ketogenic diet but modifies it to include a slightly higher carbohydrate content from non-starchy vegetables. Staying in mild ketosis is possible due to the liberal use of ketone-producing MCTs from coconut products which are essential at the Paleo Plus stage. Some measurement of blood ketones may be desirable to track progress. At this stage of the Protocol, meals are also reduced to two per day (something that many Paleo followers find happens naturally), fat is increased, carbohydrates are decreased and protein limited.

As a Paleo devotee, I naturally slotted in to the Wahls Protocol. I had already eliminated all grains and dairy. After reading the book I cut eggs out too and I have got to say that I feel so much better for doing that. I have never found that following a Paleo eating template is hard, restrictive or unenjoyable. It is the complete opposite. However, sometimes I feel like I need help with structuring my food choices in a more systematic way to ensure I receive the full benefits of a wide range of foods. I have to say that this is one of the many things I found invaluable when reading The Wahls Protocol. Dr Wahls gives a very detailed explanation of the importance of foods such as seaweed, bone broth, organ meats and fermented foods and gives practical steps for integrating them into your diet on a regular basis. There are fantastically comprehensive lists of nutrients too. There are also full lists of the three vegetable groups that form an essential part of the Protocol (greens, sulphur-rich, colour), making it easy to plan shopping lists etc. as well as lists of foods permitted for each stage of the Protocol. There is even a handy recipe section. In addition, the book is filled with tips and advice for ensuring you get the full range and correct amounts of various foods. I found this so helpful. The Wahls Protocol is bursting at the seams with helpful information and the whole book is geared towards making your transition as easy as possible.

Of course the Wahls Protocol is about more than food. We are encouraged to keep a Wahls Diary in order to monitor progress, feelings, symptoms, etc. and to help us focus on the changes that we need to make. Dr Wahls also urges us to look at the toxins that surround us – in our home, even in our mouth - and look at ways to eliminate them. Natural detoxification through sweating and skin brushing is also encouraged. Exercise is a major part of the Protocol, in particular stretching, strength training (interestingly Dr Wahls explains that ‘strength training generates the largest gains in nerve growth factors’ p.234) and gentle cardiovascular. There are also many helpful illustrations of stretching exercises to supplement the text. Electrical stimulation is advised for MS sufferers to improve mobility and Dr Wahls also discusses when - and if – to reduce medication.

The Protocol provides extensive information on supplements but Dr Wahls always maintains that the majority of nutrients should come from food first and foremost, listing the various food sources to increase. If supplementation other than the basics (Vitamin D, Magnesium etc) is desirable, there is a wealth of information here regarding the research and recommended doses, but Dr Wahls stresses that supplementation should be carefully individualised.

I found the section on alternative therapies extremely interesting and as someone who was previously rather sceptical of such things; Dr Wahls takes a measured and considered viewpoint on some of the treatments available. She provides a helpful list of questions to ask before embarking on such therapies but always stresses the underlying importance of healthy cellular function; maximise this first through food choices and lifestyle changes and then consider some alternative therapies as a helpful addition. There are some great tips on stress management and the connection between stress and insulin resistance is explored. Quality sleep is also a vital component of the Protocol and Dr Wahls explains the effect of sleep deprivation on stress levels and general health.

The depth of detail and the sheer amount of information contained in this book is fantastic – hence my long review! It really is a bible for brain health. I read it once and then went back and read it again. Everything is so clearly and comprehensively explained and you will find yourself referencing it time after time. In my opinion it is not only a ‘must read’ for anyone who suffers from MS or other auto-immune conditions, this book is for anyone who wants to do as much as they possibly can to avoid these conditions and live a healthy life (that’s everyone right?).

The Wahls Protocol is also a testament to one woman’s determination to fight and transcend her disease and to help others do the same. Dr Wahls’ story, along with the story of her many Wahls Warriors, is inspirational and gives hope not only to those with MS, but to all of us. Taking control over our health and recovery begins with the Protocol set out in this book. Let’s pray that Dr Wahls gets the funding that she needs to expand her research even further and I look forward to reading more about her work in the future.

*This Ted talk now contains a warning: ‘This talk, which features health advice based on a personal narrative, has been flagged as potentially outside of TED’s curatorial guidelines. Viewer discretion advised.’
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