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Eating issues

Hi. I have RRMS and find that I have progressively been putting on weight and nothing seems to help. I find exercise hard and am always hungry. I have an awful diet and eat all the wrong stuff. Can anyone suggest ant diets or exercise that could help.

There are some really good exercise videos on the MS Trust website - all specially designed for us msers.

As for diet, there are lots out there but healthy eating is the key.

Hope you can find something that works for you.

eat whole foods (brown rice, wholemeal bread etc) they make you fuller for longer. they taste better than the refined white versions too. it will take some getting used to but it’s well worth it. exercise isn’t easy for anyone. even before ms i used to see it as a punishment. the trick is to vary what you do. alternate tough work out with something gentle like yoga or pilates. or running with swimming. join a gym - (i hear you groan but you get one to one with a trainer) there are plenty of offers on memberships, off peak is cheaper and less busy. it’s a really big ask but if you really want to improve your weight and well being you should give it a try. some meds make you put on weight, ask your pharmacist because they know more about prescription meds than anyone. cobble together an exercise plan from the MS Trust as mentioned by moirah. pilates is brilliant for strengthening the core and most physiotherapy is based on it.

I also recommend the MS Trust exercise videos. They’re available on YouTube as Move it for MS with Mr Motivator. He does warm up, sitting exercises, abdominal exercises, among other things. I also recommend going for a walk, if you’re able to. It’s low impact and it’s free, unlike gym membership. Choose exercise that you can build into your day, rather than something you have to go out of your way to do. Then you’re more likely to stick with it. (Years ago I walked to and from work, and my weight plummeted!) I agree about doing a variety of exercises. Experts suggest a mixture of cardiovascular, strength and flexibility exercise. So you could alternate aerobic exercise with yoga, for example.

As for diet, the Mediterranean diet is widely recommended. You switch to whole-grain foods like brown rice and wholemeal bread, as Carole suggested, reduce or cut out processed carbohydrates like white bread and sugar, eat more fruit and vegetables, reduce red meat and eat more white meat and fish. It’s a big change, but it’s a more healthy way of eating. Also, prepare and cook meals for yourself, if you can. That way you can control what you’re eating.

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Plus, see what prescription drugs you are taking. Lots have side effects including weight gain (Pregabalin and Gabapentin for eg), and any that include drowsiness or sleepiness could add to the problem. People sometimes find they are eating high fat foods when taking Tecfidera too. So think about what drugs you are taking and think about what steps you could take to reduce the weight gain while on these drugs and/or talk to your doctor about whether you could get the same effects from a different drug.

I personally would recommend avoiding abdominal surgery - I’ve put on weight and found exercise very difficult since having surgery last year.

I’d also avoid eating too many sweets and chocolate. They make you fat. I have found this out the hard way!!!

In addition, being too happy makes me fat. This has definitely been the case and has caused me to need to buy lots more clothes in bigger sizes. Mr Sssue and me eat nice meals, drink lovely wine and loll about getting fatter (both of us). Being single and miserable definitely makes me thinner.

Other than that, the advice given you by Carole and the Dragon is probably more sensible.

Sue

First off, don’t blame everything on the MS. From experience, try Slimming World - it does work, your meeting ppl and there is generally one for a time of day when you actually can function!

Exercise is a struggle, but I’ve lost stone and half with very little exercise. I try and swim once a week. Tai chi occasionally. But I use a wheelchair outside, so even when Im moving, i ain’t moving, if you get my drift! So joining the gym, zumba class, running may be for other folks but it ain’t gonna happen here. Good news is there are seated exercise classes.

Goodluck and give it a whirl.

Thanks so much everybody for your comments. To summarise, i guess i just need to stop being a lazy ass and do some exercise and stop eating all the wrong foods. I am on Pregabalin and have been for a while and also Tecfidera, but it would be so easy to blame it on the meds. Although I am sure they are probably adding to the issues they are not the cause. Iam…!

Yep,

My addled ms brain tells me to; just stick to a simple Mediterranean diet & I do! … including plenty of fruit & veg.

With the exception of Dark Chocolate…of course!

My philosophy has always been - ‘We are what we eat’ even with this dammed ms in tow.

Re: Exercise I use manual hoists & hand weights most days.

Take care.

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May I suggest you are being being awfully tough on yourself? That you have been dealt a tough hand by life, as we all have on account of our MS and maybe a lot of other things besides? Believe me, I am a veteran of addressing my bad habits with self-blame, but I can’t honestly say that it has ever helped a much, or not for long anyway. Has it helped you?

I have had more luck with the gentler approach of viewing with understanding and compassion the things I used to see as my weak-willed lack of moral fibre. Strange but true, this can enable small but important positive course-corrections that have a surprising way of adding up over time. So I would suggest you be gentler with yourself and be your own kind friend. Adopting healthy habits to be kind to yourself might be an easier matter than imposing them on yourself in a blaming, punishing way. And more sustainable long-term, maybe.

Good luck.

Alison

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