Can we control Multiple Sclerosis through Diet?
MS is an inflammatory disease of the central nervous system and researchers are constantly trying to find ways to halt this debilitating disease. We already know that there are certain gut bugs missing from the gut microbiota of those with MS but there is a new study which is looking at controlling MS through the Keto diet and fasting. Although this study doesn’t focus on the gut as such, these two forms of dieting can affect the gut microbiota so there may be a link yet to be found.
The medications for MS have substantial side effects and eating more resistant starch in your diet can help with this for some sufferers. During fasting and the keto diet, ketone bodies are produced which are thought to be a more efficient energy source for the brain. Studies on mice have shown that this provides beneficial effects with disease progression an, disability, cognition and inflammation levels.
This study is a long-term study and has only just started so it will be interesting to see the results. The preclinical data suggest a Keto Diet in combination with fasting may have a positive effect on immunity, may reduce disease severity and may promote remyelination as it has in the mouse model of MS. But clinical evidence is lacking and this study is the first of its kind to investigate this type of dietary intervention in MS. Cross our fingers.
Bahr, L. S., Bock, M., Liebscher, D., Bellmann-Strobl, J., Franz, L., Prüß, A., . . . Mähler, A. (2020). Ketogenic diet and fasting diet as Nutritional Approaches in Multiple Sclerosis (NAMS): protocol of a randomized controlled study. Trials, 21(1), 3. doi:10.1186/s13063-019-3928-9