Monday 29 May 2017

Dr Susan Nyanzi - Is A Balanced Healthy Diet Enough To Manage Chronic Conditions? Scleroderma, Raynaud's, Autoimmune Rare Disease

Dr Susan Nyanzi
Dr Susan Nyanzi 

Is A Balanced Healthy Diet Enough To Manage Chronic Conditions?
Scleroderma, Raynaud's, Autoimmune Rare Disease

A presentation I went to, asked, ‘Is a proper diet enough to prevent and manage obesity?’. 

The majority of the audience, close to 1000 people, thought that this was true, as do most Americans.

Many chronic autoimmune conditions such as Scleroderma, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Fibromyalgia or even Mixed Connective Tissue Disease, a balanced healthy diet alone is not enough to manage it or protect against. 

To truly manage the condition, a healthy lifestyle that integrates nutrition, physical activity and stress management is the best comprehensive approach in addition to your medical treatment protocol if you are on one.

Research in healthy lifestyle continues to show benefits of physical activity are not just limited to healthy people, they are more pronounced for those with chronic autoimmune conditions.

Examples of Benefits

There are many forms of physical activity that “we” can integrate into our daily routine. 

Walking, yoga, qi gong, tai chi and even swimming are all great options. They increase range of motion, allow joints and muscles to loosen which in turn helps reduce pain.

When done regularly, physical activity can eventually eliminate pain. 

It additionally increases endorphins that make us happier after we exercise. 

When the activity of choice is done right at sunrise, the twilight light in addition to the activity releases a chemical in the brain called Serotonin that controls happiness. 

Happy people are in less pain, are more active and have restful sleep.  

Try it out the effects are immediate! Something that many are not aware of, physical activity improves our self-efficacy. 

Self-efficacy is the belief we have, in how we can get things done. It determines how we feel, think and motivates our actions. 

One other big benefit is weight management, by being active we are burning excess calories.

Many of us may additionally have lifestyle conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and Osteoporosis- physical activity is the best medicine. 

For high blood pressure, it helps the heart pump blood efficiently, it widens blood vessels for efficient blood flow and it adds that extra spring in your step.

Physical activity increases happy cholesterol (HDL) levels and lowers lousy cholesterol (LDL). For Osteoporosis, it protects against bone loss. 

Of course, not all physical activity is created equal and some forms of physical activity are better for certain conditions compared to others. 

Case in point - strenuous exercise such as weight lifting, will worsen high blood pressure, where as aerobic exercises will lower it.

Starting your physical activity plan

With a medical condition, it’s always best to first get the okay from a trained health professional, then work with someone knowledgeable about your condition. 

A program should be tailored to your needs, we want to avoid injuries. A full assessment should be done before the routine and a nutrition plan should additionally be in place.

Numerous studies prove that lifestyle measures such as a balanced healthy diet together with moderate physical activity and stress management produce superior results compared to medication alone, in preventing and managing, many chronic conditions.

To read more about Dr Susan Nyanzi, Click here  

To read about Dr Susan’s Patient to Patient Experience Symposium, Click here 

To read my articles: 

Rare Disease Day 2018, Research - Taking Part in Clinical Trials, Click here   

March Autoimmune Disease Awareness Month 2018, Click here   

Global patient video, Click here   

Becoming a Patient Research Ambassador for the NIHR, Click here  

If we only had more RESEARCH investment for Scleroderma, Raynaud's, Autoimmune Rare Disease, Click here   

Scleroderma Awareness Month 2017 Patient Profiles Campaign, Click here     
Scleroderma Awareness Month 2017 Patient Profiles Campaign Patient Index, Click here        
The Pandora’s Box of the rare autoimmune disease Scleroderma, Raynaud's and Cancer, Click here

Key Event Dates 2018, Click here     

Importance of an Early Diagnosis, Click here     

Taking Part in Clinical Research Trials, Click here    

The Importance of a Multi Disciplinary Medical ‘Dream Team’, Click here 

Expert Specialist Centres, Click here      

My Skin is Cured from Scleroderma, Click here      

UK Guidelines for Managing and Treating Scleroderma, Click here      

Fatigue, Click here      

Mobility, Click here    

Diet and nutrition, Click here     

Raynaud's, Click here    

World Scleroderma Day 29th June 2016, Click here

World Scleroderma Day 29th June 2017, Click here   

Why Global Collaboration is important to the Rare Disease Patient, Click here      

The theme to this years Rare Disease Day is Research

Rare Disease Day 2018 – Research, Taking Part in Clinical Trials. Scleroderma, Raynaud's, Autoimmune Rare Disease, Click here     

2016 Rare Disease Day Patient Voice
2016 Rare Disease UK Parliamentary Reception   

2017 Rare Disease Day Flashback  

Rare Disease Day is a fantastic opportunity for the entire rare disease community to shine a spotlight on their reality, combining as one unified voice. Where, at least one commonality presides –  
Medical Research provides the brightest light
for the illumination of the rare disease patients’ plight. 

I highlighted other areas of medical research interest within Week 3 of my Patient Profiles Campaign for Scleroderma Awareness Month 2017. 


Although rare disease patients are few in number, eg. 2.5 million scleroderma patients worldwide, (the World Scleroderma Foundation), the commonalities and golden hallmark for each rare disease patient are the same: 

Early Diagnosis
Expert Specialist Centres
Access to Innovative Medicines

Where MEDICAL RESEARCH investment is VITAL.

Research is the key. Abstracts from 2016 World Congress, Click here

Scleroderma Awareness Month Campaign 2016, Click here


View video, here   

Preamble - here

The Family Day at the Scleroderma Unit, The Royal Free Hospital is taking place on the 19th May 2018. Browse the program, here

This year, I am celebrating 20 years of being a patient at this world leading expert specialist research centre. 

Sept 2017

I am eternally grateful to the global scleroderma trail blazers Dame Prof Black and Prof Chris Denton, whose commitment and dedication to unlocking the scleroderma enigma, is nothing other than, superhuman.
I am truly humbled and inspired by their work ethic. I am wholly appreciative for Prof Denton’s continued medical expertise and support, especially during my barrister qualifying years, 1997 - 2004. 

1st March 2004, I qualified as a self employed practising barrister. Further to having been told in 1997, by my diagnosing doctor, that I was looking at a 15month prognosis. 

I very much hope to utilise my professional skills and qualifications along with my patient experience, to help achieve the #SclerodermaFreeWorld dream, hoping to improve understanding and best practice, in the meantime.
For latest updates follow: 

Facebook Page:

Twitter: @SclerodermaRF  @RaynaudsRf  

#SclerodermaFreeWorld           #RaynaudsFreeWorld
#ADAM #Scleroderma

Living the dream, scleroderma style.  

Please DONATE to help fund medical research at The Scleroderma Unit,The Royal Free Hospital, London.  

100% of your monies will be used for medical research purposes only. No wages or admin costs. Thank You.


Last Update: April 2018

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