by Bernardo Pinto Coelho
Preface by Dr. Craig
I have the pleasure of introducing to you to Bernardo Pinto Coelho from Portugal. Bernardo was diagnosed with Motor Neuron Disease (MND), the type also known as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), in 2009 and the diagnosis was confirmed in 2010.
I first learned about Bernardo’s story via a delightful YouTube video, “ALS Cure is Possible – 5 Rules I Learned to be True”. He reports that the progression of ALS has stopped and that he has experienced improvements. Following Bernardo’s essay, he provides a statement pertaining to his case, written by his treating medical doctor who is an esteemed Professor of Physiology at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Lisbon, Portugal. I don’t feel comfortable using the word “cure” to describe my case of stopping the progression of ALS and having improvements, and I am not promoting this father and son as having found a cure. Rather, I believe that it is important for people to hear about stories like Bernardo’s to see the value that an integrative/holistic approach can have for some people. Bernardo’s video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hh8k32VsxLA
Bernardo’s story captured my interest with his strong attention variables that have been important to my successful ALS healing journey: psychological factors along with nutrition, supplementation and exercise. I learned that Bernardo’s father Manuel Pinto Coelho is a medical doctor who was determined to do what he could to help improve his son’s condition. CLICK HERE to read Bernardo’s story from the perspective of his medical doctor father, Dr. Manuel Pinto Coelho, who helped Bernardo develop a wellness plan to address ALS. I see Bernardo and his father as having important stories of great inspirational and educational value. Here is Bernardo’s story from his perspective:
Bernardo Tells His Story
By June 2009 I was diagnosed with Motor Neuron Disease (MND), the kind known as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). This was confirmed in April 2010 – Hospital de Santa Maria – Neurology Service, headed by Mamede de Carvalho M.D., Ph.D. who is a full professor Faculty of Medicine at University of Lisbon, Portugal.
Later on, in February 2014 in Stockholm, Sweden, specific laboratory tests defined my illness as mitochondrial and not genetics.
I Disrespected My Body & Mind
Nobody knows our body better than us. I know exactly what my big mistake was: I disrespected my body and my mind. For everything that went wrong with me, there was always one and only one responsible – myself. I could never really be happy, especially since my marriage to my ex-wife, because I had a tendency to disregard my own needs, always putting others ahead of me. I always gave my best and did sleep with a clear conscience, but I ended up paying a high price with my health because of neglecting my own needs.
I felt my personality was eroded while I watched my friends improving their quality of life and increasing their families. Because I didn´t listen my own body and mind, I ended up never getting the same for me and I always felt like I was staying behind which was very demoralizing for me.
Emotional Shocks & Losing Myself
Eager to be happy at all costs I ended up molding my personality to other relationships, forgetting to be the Person I was before I got married and with whom I had lived so well. I had several emotional shocks personally and professionally, always doing everything in the perspective of what the others would do. No wonder my profession did change more than 16 times, with me always seeking happiness and stability but never managing to achieve it.
My Best Decision Brings Hope
Desperate and obsessed with getting the cure for my illness I experienced almost everything that appeared in front of me, in Portugal or abroad, spending more than the credit card could bear, having not sought, as would be natural, the board of my doctor father.
In October 2013 I decided to accept the invitation of him and his beloved wife to live in their home. I must say it was the best decision I could have taken by the unsurpassed support, affection and kindness they insist on giving me all the time. In addition, I have my father who researched my illness, as a doctor, until exhaustion.
Since then I have been doing a special food program, taking a significant number of supplements including homeopathic sprays from Dubai in order to adequately feed my poor suffered mitochondria.
Determinant has also been the monitoring of the excellent psychologist Dr. Carlos Fugas through a model of intervention of his own authorship –
the syntonic therapy – which has allowed me to lower the levels of my inner stress, feel much less anxious and finally be able to control myself. As I was informed, this way my brain plasticity has been promoted along with the essential regeneration of my neurons to a much more desirable level.
My Healing Approach
In my point of view, the evolution of my illness has been surprisingly positive due to:
- Paleolithic Diet – I do not eat sugars, dairy or grains (wheat, rye and barley). I eat meat, fish, legumes, vegetables, eggs, fruit and nuts.
- Supplementation tailored for me – about 14 different supplements daily.
- Exercise – for elasticity to the muscles not atrophied; weight training to gain muscle mass, exercise bike and swimming to improve in cardiovascular terms.
- Family-friendly loving environment – helps me be a positive and optimistic with faith, giving me enough encouragement in order to continue to be (although with a few distractions halfway through) the hardworking person I’ve always been.
Recently I started doing about 3 ½ hours per day varied workout exercises including swimming, elasticity, strength, cardiovascular, vibrating platform for proprioceptive stimulation (as I’ve been told) and electrical muscle stimulation.
For all this I’m feeling slightly better in my walking as well more strength in my thighs and my chest muscles. I feel more comfortable when driving.
In May 2014 something happened to “click” and finally I made up my mind that I am going to be happy and that it doesn’t matter if I get a little or a lot of money. Restored to the status of a free person, I decided to devote myself to my first and last love: – the Music. So I decided I will be a Disc Jockey (DJ). This way I’m sure FINALLY that I am going to look first at me, enriching all the time my personality (my character thankfully always was up), so I shall be at peace with myself, women will like me (still 😊 ) better and I will finish all my unfulfilled dreams 😊 .
List of My Symptoms Improved, Including Functional Improvements
- When I started my Paleolithic Diet, I really felt that my evolution stopped progressing. It was really hard to cut with sugars (all around us), dairy products and grains. I became thinner in the face and with much better skin.
- Prior to implementing my wellness program, I was becoming gradually skinnier and my muscles on my shoulders, chest and arms were becoming gradually more atrophied, especially my arm muscles. My right leg was getting thinner and with less strength, where I already felt that soon would go to a wheelchair. When I started doing elasticity in the upper and lower limbs, the muscles atrophy discontinued. When I started bodybuilding, I increased my trunk significantly. Also, my right leg became equal to the left. Although I still experience difficulties with the right leg and walk in a strange way, I started walking in a much better way. If I did not do weight training, I am sure that would be in a wheelchair. Swimming has greatly improved my breath since worked cardiovascular area where my respiratory function tests improved as well. I started doing all this at June 16, 2014.
- About Supplements, feel no difference, but maybe if I did not the feed my mitochondria, I would be worse.
Some Take Away Points of What Helps Me
- Accept the disease: This is the most difficult, but to accept it, everything got better, because “similar attracts similar” and good things happen, hence the importance of focusing on the positive.
- Believe: I believe I’ll be healed and I believe in God, because I believe that I am on earth with a purpose.
- Fight and Maintain Hope: I do what I have to do with a lot of discipline and never with self-pity. I am now making a new treatment (in addition to Biofeedback and Psychologist) of cleaning heavy metals and toxins through chelation and regenerative serum. I hope that this is part of the solution!
March 19, 2015
University of Lisbon, Portugal, Medical Doctor Summarizes Bernardo’s Case
Mamede de Carvalho, neurologist and neurophysiologist, Professor of Physiology at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Lisbon, researcher, director of Clinical Physiology Unit Translational the Institute of Molecular Medicine, Bernardo’s doctor:
I follow Bernardo since his diagnosis, established by me. I would say that about seventy percent of patients (do not know the exact number) do alternative treatments. It is very common for people to pass through acupuncture, homeopathy, osteopathy, among others. The fact that Bernardo search for unconventional alternatives as treatment, it is not something that surprised. Bernardo was framed by his father, who is a doctor, so that the treatment was girded in a way, to a diet, exercise and a psychological therapy. I note with satisfaction the help of his father and this approach. And the fact that Bernardo be enthusiastic about this strategy makes me very happy, because I think patients should have a light at the end of the tunnel, it is very important that it is on this path, which reduces anxiety and creates hope for the sick. And this is a very important dimension.
Bernardo has had a slow evolution. I have it evaluated over time. At the beginning has changed very little, then there was a phase in which progressed a little more. In the last two observations I made him (the patient are observed, generally every three months), Bernardo was stable compared to the previous observation. I can not claim that he improved, to be scientifically accurate, but can not say it got worse because it would not be scientifically correct. What I report is that in the last two observations, it was stable. What I also say is that for a patient with a slow evolution, the significance of this is uncertain. At present, the disease Bernardo has about five years of evolution and it has no respiratory compromise, or the muscles of speech or swallowing. Furthermore, the proximal upper limbs strength is normal. Obviously he has had a favorable evolution since the beginning of his illness.
On physical exercise program that Bernardo decided to follow, there are several aspects to consider, as the phase in which the person is, or the type of exercise you do. The theme of the exercise in this disease is an unresolved issue from a scientific point of view.
What we ask not to do surely is the exercise that causes a exhaustion; Now, exercise tailored to the patient’s motor skills and, above all, exercise a very early stage of clinical development, can probably be beneficial, although there is still an absolutely clear scientific evidence about it. Bernardo is doing exercise under the guidance of his father. I do not know if it is well suited to your situation, but he seems to get along. It has no breathing problems, and that makes me more relaxed about the type of exercise you are doing.
For me, the important thing is that the patient to feed well, and has a sufficient caloric load. Bernardo is the Paleolithic diet, but there is no scientific evidence to prove that diet he does is more effective than any other diet. What is true is that people should eat well, whatever the diet.