Multiple Sclerosis and Dietary
Contents to Sections Below:
Below is what I've collected on diet and MS. The real
focus should be on getting the gluten and casein out of the diet.
MacDougall was a famous British playwright, who was diagnosed with MS in
the 1950's. The doctors felt it was best to keep the information from him.
They thought it was in his best interests not to tell him what he had. It
was not until he was bedridden that he learned what illness he had. When
he knew about it, he did some reading, and went on a gluten and casein
free diet. He recovered almost totally. MacDougall eventually wrote a
pamphlet. Edited for the web and now found here: My
Fight Against Multiple Sclerosis. Pamphlet published 1980 by Regenics
Inc, Rt. 10, 2660 Touby Road, Mansfield Ohio 44903, Telephone (419)
756-2994 (Cost $2).
the Oct. 5, 1974, Lancet, Dr. Norman A. Matheson's letter "Multiple
Sclerosis and Diet" was published on p. 831, wherein he outlined his
having been diagnosed with MS and subsequently reading Roger MacDougall's
story. He then described his return to good health and ended with: "I
thank Roger MacDougall, whose diet made it possible to carry out these
Chet Day's site can be found two articles by Ashton Embry: Multiple
Sclerosis and Food Hypersensitivities and The
Critical Need for Dietary Research into the Cause and Progression of
Iams' site includes Suggestions
for the Newly Diagnosed, which starts with: "at the least
eliminating gluten, all dairy, animal fat and processed sugar." Then
goes on with more recommendations.
Sclerosis, The Blood Brain Barrier, and New Treatment by Timothy R.
Stout says there are three related chemicals which have been found
effective in strengthening the blood-brain barrier in animals. These are
the anthocyanosides, proanthocyanidins, and procyanidolic oligomers (PCOs).
All three of these are variants of a common class of chemicals called
"flavonoids." Also see his MS
Pageler has a description of The
Modified Swank Lo-fat Diet. He limits less fats than Dr. Swank, and he
uses absolutely no milk products.
tells her story My
Experience with MS and Route to being Symptom Free. She took
supplements and removed foods that she had positive ELISA tests to.
Rigg used trial and error to find the foods that were bothering her. See
in the National Enquirer, and the Amazon reviews on her book Curing
MS site has Swank Diet
Information, a brief summary of the diet.
Undercover has articles on Benefits
of a low fat diet and vitamins for MS.
Natural Approach for Her MS is her story. Includes a diet component.
Lutz, MD in "The Colonisation of Europe and Our Western
Diseases" (Medical Hypotheses, Vol. 45, pages 115-120, 1995) argues
that there is a clear, inverse relationship between civilisatory diseases
and the length of time the people of a given region of Europe have had to
adapt to the high carbohydrate diet associated with the cultivation of
cereal grains that was begun in the Near East, and spread very slowly
through Europe. A quote from the first page of the article: "In over
thirty years of clinical practice, I have found, as published in numerous
papers and several books (3, 4), that diet works well against Crohn's
disease, ulcerative colitis, multiple sclerosis, heart failure, acne and
other problems." The webmaster can e-mail a copy of the article text
to those requesting.
excerpt from: Cordain L, Cereal Grains: Humanity's Double Edged Sword.
World Review of Nutrition & Dietetics, 1999;84:19-73
Determine That MS And Diabetes Are Closely Linked Diseases they point
out the role cow milk protein plays as a risk factor in the development of
both diseases for people who are genetically susceptible.
Neurology WebForum at Mass General Hospital had Ashtom Embry posting on
article on DIRECT-MS.
See many followups.
of Maryland Researchers Discover "Key" to Blood-Brain Barrier
is a press release on the identification of a receptor in the human brain
that regulates the interface between the bloodstream and the brain.
find increased zonulin levels among celiac disease patients is an
alert of a study published in The Lancet. Suggest that increased levels of
zonulin are a contributing factor to the development of MS.
Can Be Done and You Can Do It." by Dr. Robert W. Soll Dr. Soll's
theory is that the body produces "endotoxins" when an
"allergic food is consumed (this can take as long as three days).
These "endotoxins" cause "myelin delamination/destruction".
Sclerosis: The Evers Therapy discusses the success a German doctor had
using nutritional therapy, mostly a diet of only unprocessed and mostly
Sclerosis discusses Dr. Klenner's vitamin protocol. He used unusually
large quantities of nutrients, especially thiamin.
Sclerosis - The Immune System's Terrible Mistake by Peter Riskind, M.D.,
PH.D. mentions the "molecular mimicry" theory, but fails to see
a connection with food being a possible trigger.
REsearch into the Cause and Treatment of Multiple Sclerosis) is a
foundation set up by Ashton Embry to study diet and MS. The web site is Nutritional
Factors and Multiple Sclerosis. See many articles, including a
comprehensive essay on the value of adequate vitamin D supplementation for
persons with MS. A best site.
Picks, a site in New Zealand, has What
is DIRECT-MS and how can you help?
Rocky Mountain MS Center has a site on Complementary
and Alternative Medicine (CAM). There is some discussion of diet,
mostly in the area of supplements.
page on MS and Milk from the Carbondale Center for Macrobiotic Studies was
available at one time. It blamed dairy for the distribution of MS.
Formerly at: http://commercial-directory.clever.net/health/msmilk.htm.
This webmaster does have a
Sclerosis (By Appointment Only), by Jan de Vries in the UK, it
recommends absolutely no gluten and very high reduction of dairy products,
refined sugar, and saturated fats. He says that one of his most successful
case studies, confirm that 'absolutely not one pinch if flour' i.e.
absolutely no gluten at all... 'otherwise you are deceiving yourself.'
Gluten-Free Diet Help? How? Lloyd Rosenvold, M.D. tells the Roger
MacDougall story and other anecdotes. Now out-of-print, but you can read
Something Can Be Done and You Can Do It: A New Approach to Understanding
and Managing Multiple Sclerosis by Robert W. Soll and Penelope
Grenoble connects MS with food allergies, and contains simple methods you
can use at home for testing allergies in your own diet. It was published
by Contemporary Books, Inc., Chicago, 1984. It currently is out-of-print.
It should be obtainable through inter-library loan.
Intolerance Beatrice Trum Hunter writes about a Dr. R. Shatin in
Australia who "has suggested that an inherited susceptibility to
multiple sclerosis is from a primary lesion in the small intestine
resulting from gluten intolerance, and that the demyelination is
secondary. Shatin suggested that the high incidence of multiple sclerosis
in Canada, Scotland and western Ireland may be related to the predominant
consumption of Canadian hard wheat, which has the highest gluten content
of all wheat varieties. In contrast, the incidence of multiple sclerosis
is low among indigenous Equatorial Africans who mainly consume non-gluten
containing grains such as millet."
Sclerosis: A Self-Help Guide to Its Management by Judy Graham has info
on diet as well as supplements and alternative therapy.
Multiple Sclerosis Diet Book: A Low-Fat Diet for the Treatment of M.S.
by Roy L. Swank is the classic for MS diet.
From the Celiac Perspective
to Joe Murray MD (now at the Mayo Clinic) there is the possibility that
the MS patient suffers from a neurologic complication of undiagnosed
celiac disease. About 5% of celiac patients get nerve damage that can vary
from tingling and numbness in the feet to confusion, memory loss,
dizziness and loss of balance, visual abnormalities. This sometimes happen
in the absence of GI symptoms.
following is a list of articles in medical journals, which were published
at about the time that prednisone became popular in the treatment of MS.
They appear to connect MS with celiac-like intestinal morphology.
Gupta, Pertschuk, Nidzgorski "Multiple Sclerosis and Malabsorption"
Lancet; June 24, 1978, p. 1366
Fantelli, Mitsumoto & Sebek "Multiple
Sclerosis and Malabsorption" Lancet May 13, 1978 p. 1039-1040
Davison, Humphrey, Livesedge et al. "Multiple
Sclerosis Research" Elsevier Scientific Publishing New York, 1975
It is curious that the connection between
malabsorption and MS stopped at about the same time that prednisone and other
such steroids became the treatment of choice for MS. As is known, prednisone
incites the re-growth of the villi despite the ingestion of gluten, in the
celiac gut. Investigators who did endoscopies on MS patients admit that they
have not asked about the patients' use of such drugs.
literature from the celiac view point:
Drs. Cooke & Holmes in Coeliac Disease
1984; Churchill Livingstone, NY say that 10% of celiacs have neuropathic
symptoms. Many appear to be associated with demyelination. Fineli et. al. echo
that figure in "Adult celiac disease presenting as cerebellar
syndrome" Neurology 1980; 30: 245-249.
Cooke & Holmes come right out and express
some of their frustration with neurologists for ignoring the potiential for
In this article:
D, Moses P, Reeves A, Dunn J "A man with weight loss, ataxia, and
confusion for 3 months" Lancet 1996 Feb 17;347(8999):446
They discuss the neurological manifestations of
adult celiac disease which include cerebellar ataxia, sensory neuropathy,
myopathy, hyporeflexis, and seizures. These symptoms resemble those of Vitamin
E deficiency. Patients with abetalipoproteinaenemia, who lack the lipoproteins
necessary to carry fat-soluble vitamins, have similar symptoms. These patients
respond to water-miscible Vitamin E supplementation.
In this article:
WT, Neurologic manifestations of malabsorption. In Handbook of clinical
neurology, volume 28 (metabolic deficiency diseases of the nervous system,
part II), Amsterdam; North Holland Publishing Company, 1976; 225-41.
They discuss the many neurological
manifestations that are associated with coeliac disease, including ataxia,
peripheral neuropathy, myelopathy, myopathy, and dementia.
A new school has emerged, on the heels of the
et. al. "Does cryptic gluten sensitivity play a part in neurological
illness?" Lancet 1996; 347: 369-371
They found that 57 percent of those with
neurological problems of unknown cause also had antibodies to gliadin, which
is a component of gluten. Sixteen percent of them had coeliac disease, a much
higher level than normally found. Most of the patients with the anti-gliadin
antibodies did not have other symptoms of coeliac disease such as poor
absorption of vitamins.
et. al. "Clinical, radiological, neurophysiological, and
neuropathological characteristics of gluten ataxia" The Lancet 1998; 352:
The abstract summary reads, "Gluten
sensitivity is an important cause of apparently idiopathic ataxia and may be
progressive. The ataxia is a result of immunological damage to the cerebellum,
to the posterior columns of the spinal cord, and to peripheral nerves. We (the
authors) propose the term gluten ataxia to describe this disorder."
Patients with ataxia (a neuromuscular disorder)
who attended a neurology clinic were screened for celiac disease (biopsy and
HLA). The authors identified 28 patients with gluten sensitivity and ataxia
with no other predisposing cause. The neurological symptoms preceded the
diagnosis of celiac disease.
is a newsgroup for those interested in "Natural Recovery" of MS.
Ask your system administrator to add it if you can't find it. It has very
For more information on avoiding these foods see web sites listed here:
Web Site Collection (mostly
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