Why I Said No To Prescription Drugs & The Consequences Of That Decision.
It was early in my flying career, when I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. I was teaching student pilots to fly, while also accumulating the flying time I needed to join the airlines.
As a pilot, you are considered unfit to fly if you so much as take an aspirin, before your flight.
Medication either excites our nervous system, or dulls it, both of which can be a hazard when flying an aircraft.
So when my neurologist told me that I’d have to get on DMDs, i.e, disease modifying drugs to slow down the inevitable progression of MS, it was earth shattering, to put it lightly.
Slow it down? Wasn’t there a cure?
I was about to lose my career, and seemingly, my health.
One of my mother’s friends had MS, and he died at age 40, bed ridden, unable to do a thing on his own. The last time I saw him before he died, I didn’t have the courage to go in to his room.
The whole house was heavy with.. death.
I remained outside, and all I saw was his feet, at the foot of the bed. And to me, his immobility became the symbol of MS.
Coming back to aviation, and the time I was diagnosed. I was also newly married, Uday and I married in 2014 after 2 years of dating. And in July of 2015, the diagnosis came.
This was a time in my life where I broke down. I felt like I was on the brink of losing everything.
I knew that if I got on the DMDs, I would not be able to pass my pilot’s medical exam; I would lose my flying privileges, and my job.
I decided that I would try everything else before agreeing to take the drugs.
My neurologist thought I was being naive when I put that idea before her.
Stubbornly, I searched the internet, made phone calls & visits to alternative medicine practitioners.
I bought books on nutrition & anti inflammatory diets, until I found.. hope.
Motivated to take massive action, I threw out flour, sugar, milk, and processed junk from my kitchen.
10 days into eliminating processed food & animal products, and eating more whole foods, my eye sight started coming back to normal. I had neuromyelitis optica, a classic MS symptom, and it started fading away. No pun intended, but from that moment, I never looked back.
Food is powerful, and transformative!
I turn 40 tomorrow, and I am well. I can walk, see, and I love my life. I still have my pilot’s license!
I believe prescription drugs have their place. Life threatening injuries and illness require the intervention of doctors and medicine.
But the approach to chronic illness, needs to change.