The Psychology of Beating an Incurable Illness | Bob Cafaro | TEDxCharlottesville | Summary and Q&A

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January 23, 2017
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The Psychology of Beating an Incurable Illness | Bob Cafaro | TEDxCharlottesville

TL;DR

Despite being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) and experiencing debilitating symptoms, the speaker defied expectations and used alternative approaches, such as the water cure, a healthy diet, and adopting the mindset of achieving the impossible, to completely reverse the disease.

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Key Insights

  • πŸ₯Ί MS can have severe and debilitating symptoms, but alternative methods and approaches may lead to remission.
  • πŸ’¦ The "water cure," which involves drinking half your body weight in ounces of water per day, showed signs of improvement in the speaker's MS symptoms.
  • πŸ§‘β€πŸ­ Lifestyle factors, such as adopting a diet similar to that of a deer or emulating the practices of individuals who achieved the impossible, may contribute to reversing or managing MS.
  • πŸ–οΈ The placebo effect and the power of a positive mindset played a significant role in the speaker's recovery from MS.
  • πŸ”‡ The speaker's story highlights the potential for personal determination and alternative approaches to overcome seemingly incurable diseases.
  • 😷 Medical professionals may underestimate the potential for recovery or remission, but individuals should advocate for themselves and explore alternative solutions.
  • πŸ–οΈ The speaker's encounter with Nando Parrado, who defied odds and survived a plane crash, helped solidify his belief in achieving the impossible and played a crucial role in his recovery from MS.

Transcript

Translator: David Goldovt-Ryzhenkov Reviewer: Tanya Cushman In December of 1998, after just having turned 40 years old, I started experiencing a strange numbness in my right leg, and I didn't think much of it. Until about a week later, I was at a rehearsal, and I stepped off the riser onto the stage, and my right leg collapsed from under me. At thi... Read More

Questions & Answers

Q: What symptoms did the speaker experience before being diagnosed with MS?

The speaker initially had numbness in his right leg which later progressed to collapsing legs and loss of peripheral vision in both eyes. He also experienced severe motion sickness-like symptoms and was unable to move his hands.

Q: How did the speaker approach his recovery from MS?

The speaker used alternative methods, such as the water cure, adopting a healthy and natural diet similar to a deer's, and practicing meditation to tap into the placebo effect. He also looked to examples of individuals who achieved the impossible as inspiration.

Q: Did the speaker's efforts lead to a reversal of his MS symptoms?

Yes, after years of dedication and hard work, the speaker experienced a complete remission of his MS. His brain and spinal cord showed no traces of the disease after a series of MRIs.

Q: How did the speaker's recovery impact his life?

The speaker regained the use of his legs, eyesight, and hands. He was able to return to playing the cello and continue working without missing significant time due to MS-related symptoms.

Q: What symptoms did the speaker experience before being diagnosed with MS?

The speaker initially had numbness in his right leg which later progressed to collapsing legs and loss of peripheral vision in both eyes. He also experienced severe motion sickness-like symptoms and was unable to move his hands.

More Insights

  • MS can have severe and debilitating symptoms, but alternative methods and approaches may lead to remission.

  • The "water cure," which involves drinking half your body weight in ounces of water per day, showed signs of improvement in the speaker's MS symptoms.

  • Lifestyle factors, such as adopting a diet similar to that of a deer or emulating the practices of individuals who achieved the impossible, may contribute to reversing or managing MS.

  • The placebo effect and the power of a positive mindset played a significant role in the speaker's recovery from MS.

  • The speaker's story highlights the potential for personal determination and alternative approaches to overcome seemingly incurable diseases.

  • Medical professionals may underestimate the potential for recovery or remission, but individuals should advocate for themselves and explore alternative solutions.

  • The speaker's encounter with Nando Parrado, who defied odds and survived a plane crash, helped solidify his belief in achieving the impossible and played a crucial role in his recovery from MS.

  • Early detection, experimentation with various methods, and perseverance are key to managing and potentially reversing the symptoms of MS.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • The speaker was diagnosed with MS after experiencing numbness and collapsing in his leg. He was told it was a pinched nerve but later experienced loss of vision and other severe symptoms.

  • Determined not to accept his prognosis, the speaker searched for overlooked solutions. He found success through the "water cure," adjusting his diet to mimic that of a deer, adopting the mindset of achieving the impossible, and practicing meditation.

  • Despite being initially unable to play the cello or perform basic tasks, the speaker's dedication to his recovery and alternative methods eventually led to a complete remission of his MS.

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