Dietary and Vitamin Supplementation Advice for Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is categorized as an autoimmune disease; which is triggered when the immune system attacks and damages the myelin sheath around neurons. Myelin sheath is a layer of fatty acids which surround the axons of neurons.

It is an electric insulator which accelerates the speed at which the impulses pass through the neuron. Without the myelin sheath the neurotransmission between neurons is disrupted and slowed down.

In the absence of the myelin sheath, communication between the neuron breaks short which means that motor neurons don’t receive adequate signals and directions. The lack of impulse transmission prevents the body from performing simple functions like talking, blinking, walking and learning. If the damage is extensive, it can cause irreversible detritions in the neurons. Affecting the Central Nervous System (CNS), MS can dramatically alter the way of life.

MS has been observed to occur at any age, but the majority of the people afflicted by it are between 15-40 years of age. Symptoms can vary from numbness, speech impairment, bladder and bowel problems, vision problems, fatigue to complete or partial paralysis. Although there is no definitive treatment for it, but depending on the stage, MS can be somewhat managed. Many people choose to manage their MS with alternate medicine, diet and supplements.

Mentioned below are some tips which point out what vitamins, supplements and diet can help prevent myelin sheath damage and manage a relapse in active MS.

    • Vitamin D

MS is likely found when there is a serious deficiency of Vitamin D. Some studies found Vitamin D to slow down the progression of MS and prevent formation of new lesions in the myelin sheath.

To naturally increase Vitamin D, you should consume foods like egg, fish, vegetables and fortified milk. The other best way is to have sufficient sun exposure every day. 15-20 minutes of sun exposure is optimal for the Vitamin D to break down and produce D3. Check with your physician if you have deficiency of Vitamin D, and take suggested supplements to fulfill the requirement.

    • Vitamins A, C & E

Besides vitamin D, other vitamins like A, C and E, which are also known as antioxidant vitamins can help remove unused molecules that can potentially cause damage to tissues.

Vitamin C is found most readily in citrus fruits, green leafy vegetables and strawberries. Vitamin A is abundant in vibrantly colored fruits and veggies like carrots, apricots, squash and broccoli. Vitamin E can be found in nuts, vegetables and seeds. Any deficiency in any one or more of these vitamins can be fulfilled with supplements.

    • Linoleic Acid

Some studies have proven that Linoleic acid plays a role in regulation of cell-mediated immunity and has derivatives which have an immunosuppressive effect. Along with this α-Linoleic acid derivatives include DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) which are known to alleviate some of the MS symptoms.

Fish oil supplements are an excellent source of Linoleic acid.

    • L-Glutamine

L-Glutamine or Glutamine is the most found amino acid in the body and is the most frequent source of energy for cells. It promotes cell reproduction and is observed to aid in the production of neurotransmitters and helps repair damage caused by NSAIDS. It can be found n animal and plant based protein.

    • Flavanoids

Found in plants, flavanoids are colored antioxidants which give fruits and vegetables their color. Studies have found flavanoids to have anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor properties. Luteolin is a flavanoids that can inhibit inflammatory responses and be effective in neurodegenerative diseases. It can be found in artichokes, thyme, rosemary and chamomile.

Insufficient intake or deficiency of one or more of the nutrients mentioned above is common in patients with MS. At this level, supplements can be more effective. However, as each individual has different requirements, one supplement cannot be equally beneficial. We provide a blend of different supplements tailored to each individual, which can aid to alleviate some of the symptoms.

Before taking the supplements, consult a healthcare provider to make sure there is no interaction between the supplements and any prescription medication.

April 04, 2018 by

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