Here is My Question:
What diet will help those with MS who are unable to take the medication?
There have been many proposed MS diets over the years and many claim anecdotal evidence as proof of efficacy. The fact is that there is no high level scientific evidence for these diets.
Many have been packaged as “anti-inflammatory” diets which is a testable hypothesis for a well designed clinical trial. It remains a challenge to carry out such a study because people, by nature, cheat on their diets (which make it difficult to confirm actual benefit). You can certainly trial a diet yourself and gauge your response. Of course, it would be best to review the selected diet with your PCP to ensure no contraindications to the diet based on your other health factors.
It remains advisable to follow recommendations for a general well-balanced diet. Food choice affects other areas of health that MS patients are not excluded from. For instance, high salt, carbohydrate, fatty, etc diets can accelerate cardiovascular disease that can also injure the nervous system.
As far as the inability to take an MS therapy, I have to question that statement. There are so many available (and different) MS therapies that it would be hard to believe that ALL are contraindicated in one person. Even if there was a religious or other exception of conscious to a specific type of therapy, there remains a variety of medication class/type/mechanism to find a suitable therapy for everyone who would otherwise qualify for a disease modifying therapy.
Use of one of these therapies is better than nothing for MS patients who remain in the inflammatory phase of their MS.
A. Scott Nielsen MD MMSc
Neurologist and MS Specialist at Kaiser Permanente
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