Preliminary research results demonstrate that people with Multiple Sclerosis who adhere to the ketogenic diet may experience less fatigue and depression, while reporting improved quality of life.
A ketogenic diet is a form of eating rich in fats and low in carbohydrates that allows the body to utilize fat as the main source of energy. It has been shown to help lower blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes and to reduce seizures in people with epilepsy.
However, it has not been well studied in people with MS.
To test the effect of this diet on people with multiple sclerosis, researchers from Virginia, USA conducted a study involving 65 patients with relapsing-remitting MS. Participants were asked to adhere to the ketogenic diet and measure ketones in their urine daily for 6 months.
83% of the participants adhered to the diet throughout the study period. Indices taken at the beginning of the study and after 3 and 6 months, showed that after 6 months the participants had less fat percentage and they reported improvement in energy and quality of life indices. Additional metrics such as disease progression, gait test, and inflammation-metrics have also improved.
The researchers noted that the results of the study demonstrate that a ketogenic diet may be safe and beneficial for MS patients if they are adhered to for a period of six months.
If so, stress that further studies are needed due to the potential risks associated with a ketogenic diet, such as kidney stones, indigestion and nutritional deficiencies.
Therefore – it is important that people with MS consult with their doctor before making major dietary changes.
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