A diet rich in vegetables, fruits and whole grains may decrease symptoms and lessen disease progression in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), a study suggests.
The report, “Diet quality is associated with disability and symptom severity in multiple sclerosis,” appeared in the journal Neurology.
“People with MS often ask if there is anything they can do to delay or avoid disability, and many people want to know if their diet can play a role, but there have been few studies investigating this,” Kathryn C. Fitzgerald, the study’s lead author and a researcher at Baltimore’s Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, said in a press release.
“While this study does not determine whether a healthy lifestyle reduces MS symptoms or whether having severe symptoms makes it harder for people to engage in a healthy lifestyle, it provides evidence for the link between the two,” added Fitzgerald, who belongs to the American Academy of Neurology.
Researchers enrolled 6,989 patients with all types of MS — recruited from the North American Research Committee registry — and analyzed their responses to a questionnaire on diet habits.