Tuesday, 3 November 2015

#ClinicSpeak: today is the first day of the rest of your life

How important is being healthy to you? #ClinicSpeak #BrainHealth #MSBlog

"Do you remember the cliche today is the first day of the rest of your life? It sounds silly but unless you start life is going to run away with you. Over the last few weeks I have been teaching a lot and have been presenting the science, and treatment rationale, behind brain health in MS. Several discussions came around to the point that this is not only an issue for MSers, but for the general population as well."

"As a healthcare professional can you be advising your patients to stop smoking, exercise, eat better, etc., if you are not practicing what you preach? Public health officials have been trying for decades to nudge the population's behavior towards a healthy lifestyle and have failed. I therefore think it is time to take-up the challenge and to challenge your neurologist, clinical nurse specialist, or any other health care professional you see, to join you in an attempt to improve your brain health. I am up for it. I went for a long run on Sunday; despite my ongoing hip pain I am going to see if I can get healthy again. I recommend to all my patients that they need to try and work into their schedule three to four 30+ minutes of aerobic exercise sessions a week. I intend to do teh same. I am also changing my diet, promise to drink less and plan to sleep more. I sleep far too little."

"It's time to put my money where my mouth is!"



"The Brain Health Challenge; are you and your healthcare professional up for it?"


CoI: multiple

23 comments:

  1. How timely. Off sick from work with a relapse and worried about my mental competence but I got up this morning determined to tick off my self help brain therapy today without fail. Play the uke, go for a walk, do the mindfulness meditation, write a wee poem and use CBT techniques not to worry about about being shafted by the Tory government. Already ticked the diet, low to no alcohol and sleep boxes. Good on you Prof

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    1. I started the same a few months ago. I go work out 3 times a week, do meditation (incredible how helpful this thing is to manage anxiousness and bad feelings). I feel a lot better. The difficult part is to not stop when you're experiencing a relapse.

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  2. I hate being preached the bleeding obvious / what I already know and do. And I am certainly not going to turn my life into a brain health tick box schedule / flow diagram.

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    1. Do as you please. And for the benefit of everyone make it public knowledge, thanks we needed your input on this post. Ignorance is at the problem of many of society's problems, and your attitude speaks volumes to that.

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    2. I presume you are just waiting for a medication to fix your medical problems. I certainly hope you aren't the neo-liberal "Anonymous" taking offence to the William Wallace reference. That would be too much. And I certainly hope you aren't a medical doctor, that would indicate a true failure of the system at some point along the way.

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    3. With the wealth of information and preaching available today, if people are ignorant of basic health advice, that's their fault. I'm as entitled to my opinions, as you are. (I'm not interested in your mundane bile either.)

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    4. "mundane bile", nice. You obviously haven't worked in the public health sector, nor do you understand that much of the "advice" is conflicting and forever changing. Take for example the advice on saturated fat, or sun exposure, or vitamin d, or fruit intake (and in what form). I bet your opinion on these things is also misinformed and arrogant too. But you are entitled to it. And thank Jeebus it is just an opinion.

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    5. Or things more blatantly affected by industry, like dairy, or meat consumption, or alcohol.

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    6. "nice"

      Pot calling the kettle black.

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    7. Yes knowing what is the best way for fruit intake keeps changing.
      There was the craze of juicing fruit but that misses out on intaking the vital roughage in the fruit. Too much fruit juice rots teeth due to the natural sugar. Now eating whole fruit as it comes is suggested as best.

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  3. Prof G any chance of running another marathon? Will your hip hold up? I am sure the MS Society or MS Trust will give you a place on one of their marathon teams. If you want to put your money where you mouth is you would sign-up today for next year's London marathon.

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  4. It may be obvious to say these things but sadly I know many people who do not take care of their physical and mental health. I was at the supermarket today and trolleys were full of fat, sugar and processed meat and other processed foods.

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  5. Yup you go for it Prof G. I managed to walk a mile, well almost a mile this September. Now I am getting out about 3 to 4 times a week walking 500 yards each time with my rollator. Always feel much better for it. Now trying to incorpotrate it into my day to day life but much harder in the winter.

    ProfG, your big challenge i to get the MD out into the fresh air and away from his mice and air guitar

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  6. They say a 25 minute brisk walk each day is sufficient

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  7. Changed my diet and stopped smoking within 2 days of diagnosis. Try to meditate daily to reduce stress and do some physical exercise every day. However, my last relapse makes prolonged aerobic activity impossible at the moment - can't even walk 10 yards without my stick. So, physical activity currently focused on strength / resistance training and stretching to aid spasticity. Most studies seem to focus on the neuroprotective effects of aerobic activity - what about guidance for those of us for which this is an impossibility?

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    1. Hi Anon,

      I can thoroughly recommend swimming if you're unable to get aerobic activity through walking. I use a rollator and can't walk far at anything like a pace that would get me out of breath.

      We're incredibly lucky to live near a disabled sports club that hires our local pool for a couple of hours per week. They have hoists and stairs with handrails to access the pool and a load of teenage volunteers who help the swimmers. I can take my rollator right to the pool's edge.

      I swim between 6 and 12 lengths each session (with a rest at the end of each lengths) but try to get myself out of breath so I know I'm raising my heart-rate. Swimming backstroke gives the shoulders a good but gentle workout too.

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    2. I've just started swimming. Lucky if I manage a length doing doggy paddle with feeble kicks from my legs. Its proper exercise and uses so many muscles.

      I felt so much better afterwards. I had taken proper aerobic exercise. Recommend this to people with walking and balance problems.

      Do all public swimmming pools have to provide facilities for the disabled? If not then why not?

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  8. Re "I went for a long run on Sunday; despite my ongoing hip pain I am going to see if I can get healthy again. "

    Is "being healthy" synonymous with going for long runs? And is it wise to go for long runs when you have hip pain?

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  9. Prof G, Have you tried swimming for your hip pain? A neurologist recommended it three times a week. Did the trick, my MS improved and have a great pair of lungs too. No muscle aches and pains either.

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  10. I was reading today aim for seven to eight hours sleep a night and an immunologist states "a lack of good quality sleep is a form of stress". "It can affect your immune function, leaving you more susceptible to infections".

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  11. "Public health officials have been trying for decades to nudge the population's behavior towards a healthy lifestyle and have failed."

    Because people need to do it for themselves, seek out the information themselves. Empowering people to challenge not only themselves but their neurologist etc. is a good plan.

    (But please - behavioUr.)

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  12. There is a very interesting article on the BBC. Children are encouraged to go for a mile walk/run every day. It is incorporated into their daily school life. The change to the children was incredible. Everyone should do it

    Here is the link http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-tayside-central-33006631

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