"Once in a while it really hits people that they don't have to experience the world the way they have been told to."
By most accounts, I was a typical, healthy, twenty-something year old who loved DIY projects, felt meh about her day job, was (and still is) madly in love with her husband, and wasn't quite sure what her place in the world was yet.
I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in February of 2016, by accident. I had originally gone in for some lower back pain that had plagued me for years. In my MRI scan, they found a lesion on my spine. Further MRIs would show a handful of lesions in my brain. I hadn't had any MS related symptoms that I could remember, other than the severe fatigue I was feeling around that time.
I was uncertain but I was determined to not go on medication. Summer came and so didn't the heat-related tingling/numbness in my hands and feet. A particularly stressful day at work led to Optic Neuritis. They aren't kidding when they call MS a lifestyle disease - everything that you eat/feel/do can have an effect on how you are feeling.
In June of 2016, my husband and I decided to go vegan for moral reasons. In July of 2016, a quick Google search of, "MS and vegan," brought me to The Swank Diet. This diet was part of a 35 year long clinical study and has had great success. In fact, it has been clinically hailed as the most effective form of MS treatment - and that includes prescription medicines. It focuses on having a low saturated fat intake, coupled with appropriate rest and stress reduction. I later found Overcoming MS, which is another MS diet based on The Swank Diet, but allows no dairy and no meat aside from fish. (You can get an overview of both diets and veganism in my eBook.) I incorporated low saturated fat into my vegan diet the very next day.
I had a second set of MRIs done on October 31, 2016 - roughly ten months since diagnosis, four months since going vegan, and three months on Swank. I got my results back and... all of my lesions had either disappeared or greatly decreased in size!
"Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food." - Hippocrates
I will forever be so incredibly grateful to Dr Swank for his contribution to MS research. Because of him I felt confident in my decision to say no to pharmaceutical drugs in favor of changing my diet, and the proof of it working was literally right there in black and white on my MRI. I halted my progression. My tingling is gone, my energy is back, and I feel healthier than I did pre-diagnosis.
Veganism + Low Sat Fat + Exercise + Good Vibes = my success story
The life of Lindsay Makes Lemonade has gone through a lot of transformations and growth in the two years since I started a little ole' Instagram account intended to track my journey with my health.
The more I posted on social media, the more I realized I wanted to start a blog. So I did.
The more I interacted and made connections with others, I realized that posting wasn't enough. So I decided to get my certification in Nutrition and Wellness Consulting, and I opened an LLC, so I could begin to offer online nutrition coaching both for those with MS and those just wanting to go to a more plant based diet.
A few months later, I went to W.E.L.L. Summit in Boston and was completely immersed in other wellness-minded, strong women. It was then that I realized that as I was promoting Brass Roots, I wanted desperately to promote Lindsay Makes Lemonade's voice as well, but in all other areas, and not only in nutrition.
Which leads me here.
I am insecure, and strong, and funny, and extremely sensitive, and love myself and my body in most moments, and dislike my body in other moments. I am not afraid to admit my faults, downfalls, and imperfections. I'm not afraid to celebrate my hard work, successes, and strengths. I am willing to try almost anything once, but trust myself to quit something when I feel like my journey with it has ended. I am willing to say no when I need to, and more than willing to say HELL YES when I want to. I'm inpatient with projects but always glad I followed the process in the end. I feel like I am relatable.
And with that, I feel like I'm starting to find my place in this world. I hope to share my story and my life with others so that they can hopefully realize that there is an incredible freedom in honesty.