As one of the most common neurological conditions worldwide, multiple sclerosis plays a big part in over two million people’s daily lives. Since it is so prevalent, there is currently a lot of ongoing research into preventing and treating MS. Many people already diagnosed wonder whether there is a diet that can cure or slow the progression of MS.
What Is MS?
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune disease characterized by the degeneration of the myelin sheaths protecting nerve fibers in the brain. However, MS and its progression vary significantly from person to person and affect some people much more than others.
Some people may experience a small, controlled lesion that does not affect cognitive or physical functions. In contrast, others may have multiple lesions across their brain or spine and experience significant cognitive and physical disabilities.
Can the Right Diet Cure MS?
There is not a diet or treatment available that can cureMS. People who claim to know secret eating habits that will cure this chronic condition are promoting non-science-backed products. But luckily, making healthy dietary choices may helplessen your symptoms.
The diet recommended for MS patients is the same that’s recommended for the average adult. A well-balanced diet with lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and little saturated fat is ideal. For people with MS, healthy eating can help overall management of the condition, potentially slow the progression of the disease, and improve quality of life.
What to Avoid
There tends to be a lot of confusion about what lifestyle habits people with MS should avoid. Things MS patients should avoid include the following:
Eating lots of processed foods
Not exercising regularly
Some recommendations say to avoid dairy, and others say to avoid gluten at all costs if you have MS. Neither of these suggestions is significantly backed by scientific research. People with MS may be lactose intolerant or gluten intolerant. However, if you aren’t, there’s no reason to avoid these products as they have no impact on the progression of MS. One study showed a relation to Vitamin D deficiency and those with MS.
Other Ways You Can Manage Your MS
MS symptoms can become more manageable with the help of medications, lifestyle adjustments, and emerging experimental therapies. One such alternative treatment that may help manage MS symptoms is stem cell therapy. This approach has the ability, through the science of mesenchymal stem cells, to restore damaged myelin sheaths and prevent further progression.
Stem cell therapy has shown promising results in research and will continue to undergo extensive studies in the coming years. Patients may want to explore more to see if it is something that they may have a potential benefit from this alternative therapy. If you are interested in learning more contact a care coordinator today!
One of the most common causes of lower back pain, degenerative disc disease is an umbrella term for the symptoms that result from general wear and tear on a spinal disc. In addition to back pain, it can also cause shooting pains in the extremities, weakness, and numbness. In this article, we will talk about the best treatment for Degenerative Disc Disease.
While the condition can be frustrating, there are many ways to manage its symptoms. In fact, most cases involve periodic flare-ups, but the pain typically doesn’t intensify over time. For this reason, many people can avoid surgery for degenerative disc disease.
Instead of going directly to surgical interventions, the goals of treating the condition usually entail:
Relieving pain to the point that patients can participate in rehabilitation programs or perform exercises at home without discomfort.
Preventing added stress to the back using ergonomics and improved posture.
Managing discomfort so individuals can go about their normal routine uninterrupted.
There are many lifestyle modifications, self-care options, and clinical therapies that can be tried before resorting to more invasive procedures. Here are a few common approaches:
Pain relievers: Over-the-counter pain medications such as NSAIDs and acetaminophen may help control pain levels during particularly intense flare-ups.
Chiropractic care: Some individuals find that manual manipulation performed by a chiropractor can reduce the pressure on sensitive areas of the back.
Epidural injections: Spinal injections deliver steroids directly to the compromised area of the back to reduce inflammation and thus relieve pain.
Ultrasound: Ultrasound technology brings warmth to affected areas through sound waves, increases blood flow, and could potentially stimulate healing in some back injuries.
Massage therapy: Massage increases blood flow, alleviates tension in the muscles, and triggers the release of endorphins, all of which can help reduce pain levels.
TENS units: Using electrical stimulation, these units override pain signals in affected areas.
Some patients also use acupuncture and home therapies such as cool or warm compresses to reduce back pain caused by degenerative disc disease. Beyond these treatments, here are a few lifestyle modifications that may also help:
Smoking cessation: Smoking depletes oxygen, which your body needs to perform its best. Tobacco use and chronic pain often go hand-in-hand, so quitting could help you find relief.
Exercise: Working out may seem counterintuitive when you’re in pain, but many patients can achieve long-term healing through exercise. Aim for a combination of strengthening, stretching, and low-impact cardio moves.
Weight loss: Added weight puts stress on your spine, potentially intensifying your degenerative disc disease. Weight loss could reduce the stress on vertebrae and discs, alleviating back pain.
Ergonomics: Ergonomics is the application of physiological principles to products such as furniture and footwear to help support healthy posture and minimize back pain. If you suspect your work environment could be contributing to your back soreness, it’s worth looking into supportive shoes, ergonomic furniture, and modifications to your posture.
In addition to these treatments and lifestyle changes, patients seeking a nonsurgical treatment for degenerative disc disease may consider stem cell therapy. This form of regenerative medicine works at the site of injury and uses the body’s natural healing properties delivered through stem cells to repair and regenerate tissue. This treatment has been well-tolerated in studies and presents minimal risk and downtime, offering a convenient alternative to invasive procedures. If you want to learn more then contact a care coordinator today!
Regenerative therapy is an emerging subset of healthcare that leverages treatments aimed to functionally restore specific tissues in the body. It helps patients with chronic illness or persistent injuries when traditional medicine has fallen short. One of the most promising forms of regenerative medicine is stem cell therapy.
Although it’s already been in place for many years, stem cell therapy is still considered a “new” treatment, as practitioners are still finding novel applications for stem cells all the time. More than one million treatments have been performed since the therapy’s inception, and outcomes are significantly improving as protocols are refined. Here’s what you should know about stem cell therapy.
What Are Stem Cells?
Stem cells are the body’s natural repair kit. They’re the building blocks upon which all tissues and organs are built since they have the ability to transform into mature cells. While every mature cell type has a specific role – muscle cells support the muscular system, for example – stem cells’ primary role is to regenerate into other cells as needed.
If tissue breaks down due to injury, for example, stem cells will target the affected area and regenerate into the specialized cell types. When transforming into these distinct cells, they take on their properties and functions.
A stem cell can turn into any one of the following differentiated cell types:
Stem cells (through the process of self-renewal)
Stem cells are already within our bodies, so they are not a new “invention” from scientists. While they can be harvested and transplanted from external sources, they are also able to be retrieved from the patient themselves.
Stem cells have been found naturally within the brain, as well as bone marrow, adipose (fat) tissue, and the umbilical cord tissue. They are also present in the muscles, skin, and liver.
Our bodies are constantly regenerating stem cells. For instance, we shed skin cells all the time, and thus have an entirely new set of skin every two to three weeks. Our intestinal lining and liver also have innate regenerative qualities. And, while many different systems excel at regenerating on their own, other parts need some assistance. This is the very reason stem cell therapy was created.
Doctors can extract stem cells from a patient, then concentrate and activate them to ready them for therapeutic use in the body. They can then be transplanted to the area where they are needed most, where they’ll renew, multiply, and differentiate into specialized cells with distinct properties.
Where Do Stem Cells Originate From?
Stem cells are present in embryos as well as the adult body. Embryonic stem cells are only used in research applications after they’ve been donated by individuals who have undergone in vitro fertilization (IVF) after consent.
Adult stem cells referred to as pluripotent stem cells, have been used in therapeutic applications since the 1950s. While they can only multiply a certain number of times and transform into specific cell types, they still hold tremendous potential in therapeutic applications.
There are many new applications for disease and injury treatment is continuing to be discovered by stem cell researchers. Since the earliest findings of stem cells showed that there were considerable concentrations in the bone marrow, they were widely used as bone marrow transplants for patients with leukemia and other blood diseases. By 2010, stem cell therapy was being used for spinal injuries, and its applications in orthopedics have progressed rapidly since then.
In addition to patient-derived sources such a bone marrow or adipose (fat) tissues, stem cells can also be found in the umbilical cord. These cells are donated after a c-section birth by a patient who has given the proper consent and has been thoroughly screened for blood diseases. For patients who have insufficient stem cell sources or maybe of a certain age, umbilical stem cells may be a good alternative.
What Is Stem Cell Therapy?
While stem cell therapy is a cutting-edge medical option with immeasurable potential, the process itself is fairly simple. Choosing the provider is also part of the process of discovering stem cell therapy as a potential option.
First, the patient undergoes a consultation to discuss their condition and symptoms. The healthcare provider must ensure they’re a good candidate for stem cell therapy, and if so, determine which protocols will suit the patient best.
Once the stem cells have been acquired from either the patient or from a donated tissue source, they are prepared to then be readministered to the patient in targeted areas in their pre-determined treatment plan. Stringent quality control measures are in place to promote safety and optimal patient outcomes.
As the stem cells proliferate and transform into the necessary cell types, some symptoms may improve. The goal of these therapeutic treatments is to help stop or halt the progression of the patient’s condition and some also may gain symptom improvements as well as a result. Since treatment is delivered via injection and there is no large surgical site, symptoms are minimal and may include slight temporary soreness.
The benefits of regenerative therapy are vast, however. Not only is it simple and convenient, but it can help to reverse the effects of chronic, challenging conditions. As more positive research emerges, it will likely become even more widely embraced as a go-to treatment method.
According to the National Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society, there is no single test available which can diagnose MS on its own. Instead, healthcare providers must use a variety of approaches to confirm that a patient has the condition. These may include lab tests, neurologic exams, and the patient’s medical history. Here is how multiple sclerosis diagnosed.
Doctors must also rule out other conditions which bear similar symptoms. For instance, infections such as Lyme disease, inflammatory disorders such as vasculitis, genetic conditions, and vitamin deficiencies can all cause neurological symptoms. Various tests, including MRI, blood tests, and a spinal fluid analysis are used to rule out these conditions and confirm the presence of MS.
As doctors work to rule out other conditions, the diagnosis process can take considerable time. Some patients may receive a definitive MS diagnosis relatively quickly, however. An accurate and timely diagnosis is critical, since uncovering the root cause for worrisome and uncomfortable symptoms can allow you to focus on treatment and alleviate any concerns over other potential causes. Moreover, starting treatment early can help to control the progression of Multiple Sclerosis, as neurologic damage can begin early on.
What Criteria Must Be Present for an MS Diagnosis?
For a confirmed MS diagnosis, there must be:
Evidence of damage in at least two areas of the central nervous system (CNS), such as the spinal cord, brain, or optic nerve
Evidence that the damage found occurred at different times
In addition, all other potential diagnoses must be ruled out.
What Methods Are Used to Diagnose MS?
The McDonald Criteria call for specific guidelines for diagnosing MS using MRI and cerebrospinal fluid. An MRI may be able to uncover a second area of damage in an individual who has experienced only one MS attack. In some cases, cerebrospinal fluid analysis can also indicate two separate instances of damage.
In addition to these measures, doctors will also ask you to describe any symptoms you’ve experienced, and may also gather information about your medical and family history, preexisting conditions, and places of travel which could indicate other illnesses or MS. They’ll also perform a comprehensive neurologic evaluation, which will encompass an analysis of the cranial nerves through swallowing and facial sensation, among other measures. Reflexes, coordination, sensation, gait, and balance will also be looked at.
Oftentimes, medical history and neurologic exams are sufficient for getting Multiple Sclerosis diagnosed. Additional testing can confirm the diagnosis or uncover other potential causes for symptoms.
While there is no blood test that concludes the presence of MS, a blood draw can be used to rule out other conditions with similar symptoms. For instance, vitamin deficiencies, certain infections, and conditions such as Sjogren’s or lupus may be identified through a blood test. If you would like to learn more please contact a care coordinator today!
The rotator cuff is a complex network of muscles and tendons which stabilize the shoulder joint. As its name suggests, it allows you to rotate and raise the shoulder and is thus critical to the functionality of your arm. Injuries to the rotator cuff can cause pain and affect your daily life, and if they’re bad enough, may require surgery. Today, many are exploring another alternative to surgery: stem cell therapy for rotator cuff tear.
A Closer Look at Rotator Cuff Injuries
The rotator cuff can experience a partial tear or a complete tear. A partial tear occurs when the muscles that make up the cuff fray become torn, but if the damage extends through the muscle, the tear is considered complete. The tendon could pull away from the bone if left unaddressed.
Surprisingly, you won’t always experience pain with a rotator cuff tear. In fact, in 65% of cases, rotator cuff tears are considered asymptomatic. With that being said, there are still signs outside of discomfort that could indicate this shoulder problem, including:
Weakness throughout the shoulder or arm
Popping sounds or other unusual noises when moving your shoulder
Diminished ability lifting or using your arm (to wash your hair, for instance)
Pain only upon moving your arm a certain way or while lying on it
Difficulty reaching certain directions, such as up, out to the side, or behind you
Causes of Rotator Cuff Injuries
Rotator cuff tears are fairly common. An estimated two million people visit the doctor for this injury each year, though the prevalence could be much higher due to tears that go unnoticed.
Many circumstances could lead to a tear, with the most common being:
Repetitive use due to the nature of your work, such as scanning groceries, painting windows, or cleaning
Sports, such as baseball, tennis, or football
Wear and tear on the muscles that come with aging
Injury to the arm
Rotator Cuff Injury Treatment
Rotator cuff injuries must first be accurately diagnosed before you can explore treatment options. Your doctor may use an x-ray or MRI to identify the injury. From there, they may recommend traditional treatments such as physical therapy or stem cell for rotator cuff tear. Surgery could also be an option depending on the severity of your tear, but understandably, many patients wish to avoid invasive procedures.
Some patients may be good candidates for stem cell therapy. Stem cell for rotator cuff tear treatment is much less invasive than surgery, and instead uses natural healing agents (stem cells) to repair tissue, accelerate healing, and combat inflammation. The cells can even regenerate damaged tissue, allowing your shoulder to heal itself naturally. Studies for this treatment have shown promising results, such as an increase in biomechanical strength and reduced inflammation. Thus, for patients whose rotator cuff injury has begun to affect their daily lives but surgery is undesirable, stem cell therapy is a treatment option worth considering. Contact a care coordinator today!
Book Your Appointment
Rotator cuff injuries can cause pain, limited range of motion, and difficulty performing daily activities. At Stemedix, we harness the power of regenerative medicine to address the underlying causes of your injury and support the regeneration of damaged tissues.
Our stem cell therapy for rotator cuff injuries involves using mesenchymal stem cells, which have the remarkable ability to differentiate into various cell types and promote tissue repair. Schedule a consultation today!
Autoimmune diseases occur when the body’s immune system goes after healthy tissue because they can’t tell the difference between normal cells and foreign invaders. For people with these conditions, such as inflammatory bowel disease, dietary modifications may ease symptoms including inflammation. Here is a quick look at the Autoimmune Protocol Diet.
Research shows that damage to the intestinal lining, also known as the “gut barrier,” may be triggered by certain foods. When intestinal permeability increases, it could trigger certain autoimmune conditions. While there is no concrete evidence that links “leaky gut” with autoimmune diseases, experts do believe intestinal health has strong ties to the widespread inflammation seen in such conditions.
In a normal intestinal tract, there’s low permeability, meaning waste won’t leak and enter the bloodstream. On the other hand, when the gut is more permeable, foreign particles may exit the tract and entire the bloodstream, potentially causing inflammation. Certain foods have been shown to increase the intestines’ level of permeability. Research also indicates that people with certain autoimmune conditions can decrease inflammation and illness symptoms through an autoimmune protocol (AIP) diet.
Here’s what you should know about the AIP diet before talking to your rheumatologist or other specialists.
What Is the Autoimmune Protocol Diet?
The AIP diet is similar to the paleo diet, in which individuals follow the eating habits of our ancestors, who were hunter-gatherers. It has two stages: elimination and reintroduction.
During elimination, foods believed to contribute to gut inflammation are eliminated, including legumes, nuts, grains, seeds, dairy, and nightshade vegetables. All foods with added sugars, as well as alcohol, coffee, oils, and tobacco are eliminated as well. Individuals are also advised to avoid certain medications, including NSAIDs. While most people following the diet follow elimination for 30 to 90 days, some report improvements within three weeks.
After, if you see improvements in your symptoms, you can then gradually reintroduce items into your diet. The idea is to only have foods that don’t aggravate symptoms while continuing to avoid those that do. For this reason, foods must be reincorporated one at a time over a five- to seven-day period before another is reintroduced. And, since food tolerances can change over time, many people revisit the elimination diet again in the future.
What Foods Can You Eat with the AIP Diet?
The autoimmune diet is restrictive, but remember that the goal is to identify any and all foods that could be triggering symptoms. For the best results, you should avoid all grains, legumes, dairy and milk products, nightshade vegetables, nuts and seeds, and their products, and processed foods. With that in mind, here’s what you can still have during the elimination phase:
Vegetables (except for nightshade vegetables, including tomatoes, bell peppers, blueberries, eggplant, and potatoes)
Fermented foods, such as pickles, sauerkraut, and kimchi
Minimally processed meats, such as fish and wild game
Tubers, including taro, yams, and sweet potatoes
Minimally processed oils
Kinds of Vinegar
Herbs and spices, except those derived from seeds
Each person experiences different results from the AIP diet, but it is often possible to notice an improvement when triggering foods are eliminated. For instance, people with IBD have reported fewer and less severe symptoms. Just be mindful to avoid staying in the elimination phase for too long, as it could cause deficiencies in key nutrients. If you’re concerned about falling short in any vitamins or minerals by avoiding identified trigger foods, consider looking into supplements, with your doctor’s approval.
If you are seeking a more scientific overview of your gut health, Stemedix offers a Precision Health Program that provides comprehensive gut testing that will specifically give you your personal health blueprint along with recommendations unique to you from a board-certified provider. Contact them today for more information.
This website and its contents are not intended to treat, cure, diagnose, or prevent any disease. Stemedix, Inc. shall not be held liable for the medical claims made by patient testimonials or videos. They are not to be viewed as a guarantee for each individual. The efficacy for some products presented have not been confirmed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
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