Thankfully it is becoming more and more apparent that the medical world are starting to recognise the role exercise can play in helping people who live with multiple sclerosis, manage their symptoms.

Most of you who know my own story are aware of how i have been able to manage and reverse my MS through exercise, food and attitude over the last four years.  For me, my exercise program is my nuclear weapon and I thoroughly believe that it is the major driving force behind my good health in the past few years.

There are some terrific blogs and pieces of information out there about MS nowadays, and none better than the work and research carried out by the very forward thinking and passionate neurologist Dr Gavin Giovannini, in the London clinic of Neurology.  I have copied an extract from his most recent blog which may interest you. 

"Exercise is the next big thing in neurodegenerative diseases. It looks as if exercise delays the onset of age-related neurodegenerative diseases. It may have a similar effect in MS. Hence the interest in using exercise as a treatment for MS; to improve symptoms and possibly as a disease-modifying therapy to delay the onset of clinically-apparent progressive MS and to slow the rate of progression. The abstract below describes a randomised controlled trial that has started in Ireland to assess the impact of exercise on MS."

"How does exercise work? Firstly, it conditions you and as a result improves your overall health. As a result you feel better. Exercise also stimulates the production of endorphins in the brain that act as anti-depressants. In addition, it causes the production of growth factors, in particular IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor-1) that may be neuroprotective. People who exercise regularly sleep better and generally have an improved quality of life."

"We recommend to all our patients to try and engage in an active exercise programme. Even patients who are disabled can do exercise; physiotherapists are very good at designing exercise programmes if have a disability. Exercise is a core component of the brain health initiative that many public health doctors are beginning to promote at a National level to deal with the incipient dementia epidemic in developed countries."

I have spoken to many GP's and also neurologists in the past few years and the information you get back from the vast majority of them to the exercise question is a very general "take it easy, don't be overdoing things, etc etc etc".

Thankfully it is now becoming accepted within medicine that exercise is not only good for you but also for MS patients there appears to be a great chance that it can be a great tool to help you manage your symptoms.

Now i appreciate there has to be some research and trials to confirm this from medical point of view, however for me personally i don't need to read this off some medical journal as I am walking proof that exercise can and does help MS patients. 

So I would encourage everyone to embrace exercise, try and do a little and speak with your physio, trainer or MS nurse who should be able to help you get started.  For everyone else who doesn't have MS to manage 24 hours a day, its now time to get up off the couch and start moving.  We only have one life and the healthier you are, the more enjoyable your life can be.  

Most people unfortunately are in a comfort zone and simply won't put the effort in to stay healthy, but remember you can change your ways, you are not a tree. 

Start NOW, and make 2015 your fittest year to date..!!!


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