naf_logoEngage Organics is a proud supporter of The National Ataxia Foundation and its mission to improve the lives of person’s with ataxia through support, education, and research. Ataxia is a group of rare diseases of which there are over 50 known types. It is estimated that 150,000 Americans are affected by ataxia. The challenges this neurological disorder presents to those with the disease are extraordinary.

Symptoms and time of onset vary according to the type of ataxia. Typically balance and coordination are affected first. In coordination of hands, arms, and legs, and slurring of speech are other common symptoms. Walking becomes difficult and is characterized by walking with feet placed further apart to compensate for poor balance. Impaired coordination of the arms and hands affect a person’s ability to perform tasks requiring fine motor control such as writing and eating. Slow eye movements can be seen in some forms of ataxia. As time goes on, ataxia can affect speech and swallowing. The hereditary ataxias are degenerative disorders that progress over a number of years. How severe the disability will become and whether the disease will lead to death depends on type of ataxia, the age of onset of symptoms and other factors that are poorly understood at this time. Respiratory complications can be fatal in a person who is bed bound or who has severe swallowing problems. Some persons with Friedreich’s ataxia develop serious cardiac problems.

Engage Organics co-founder, Jon Gage, was diagnosed with spino-cerebellar- ataxia, a genetic progressive disease in his mid-60’s, while two out of three of Jon’s younger brothers also have the disease. Jon is committed to raising money to help others with the disease. Please join Engage Organics in supporting the National Ataxia Foundation http://www.ataxia.org to raise awareness about ataxia and raise funds for ataxia research. Thank you for your support