We are often asked about the role of diet and how it can assist managing day-to-day life with MS.
MS is a complex disorder that affects everyone differently and with many different responses to treatments and interventions.
While there is currently little evidence from clinical studies that confirms particular foods or dietary changes can help reduce MS symptoms, there have been a number of studies indicating associations between certain dietary components and MS. There are also many examples of people who are living well with MS through a combination of the right treatment and some simple diet and lifestyle changes.
Many people in the MS community will be aware of the widely publicised lifestyle changes designed by high profile people living with MS such as Matt Embry, Terry Wahls, and George Jelinik which we are told have been of benefit to some people living with MS. Work is still progressing on how each of these changes impact on individuals living with MS, but we do understand they are of interest to the broader MS community and may help some people to live better.
Research into Diet, Nutrition and MS
Our colleagues at MS Research Australia regularly keep abreast of international research regarding diet, nutrition and MS.
There have been a handful of clinical trials into particular diets and dietary supplements. There have also been a number of observational studies conducted looking at particular diets and their impact on wellbeing.
Overall results are varied and it is often difficult to control for the multiple components and variables in dietary studies. It is therefore important if you are considering dietary changes that you consult your doctor or health professional in the first instance.
Here are some useful links to research into diet, nutrition and MS:
Furthermore our international colleagues have provided this information we recommend as a useful resource:
- National Multiple Sclerosis Society (USA)
- MSIF day to day living with MS
- MS Society UK Diet
- MS Society UK Special Diets and MS
- MS Society of Canada https://mssociety.ca/hot-topics/diet
Get advice from your health professional in your local area.
Introducing Dr Joanna McMillan...
To help us understand a little more about diet, nutrition and MS, we would like to introduce Dr Joanna McMillan. Dr Joanna is an Accredited Practising Dietitian with a PhD in Nutritional Science. Dr Joanna also has a personal interest in MS and has offered to share her knowledge via a series of articles available here.