Another question I get quite often is what are some supplements I can be taking to help improve my MS symptoms?
Supplements can be helpful for increasing our vitamin and mineral status and/or helping to support bodily processes.
In my opinion, supplements should not take the place of a nutrient dense diet. They are exactly what they sound like, supplements. Meant to be an add on to what you are already doing.
A few I’ve found helpful:
Obvs.. you knew this would be on the top of the list!
MS is more prevalent at locations that are further away from the equator. One of the reasons for the increased risk is Vitamin D. Obviously if you have less sun around, you’ll have less Vitamin D. Also several studies have shown that high dose vitamin D may be beneficial for MS. Vitamin D has also been shown to decrease MS risk and increase myelin regeneration!
Make sure to get your Vitamin D levels tested before you start supplementing. 50-100 range is optimal, over 100 is toxic, so make sure you’re deficient before taking a supplement willy nilly!
Glutathione is another antioxidant which has the potential to reduce brain deterioration. Unfortunately glutathione is poorly absorbed on it’s own. NAC (N-Acetylsistine) is the precursor to glutathione in our bodies and can help create glutathione in the body. NAC has also been shown to improve brain function.
Essential Fatty acids like EPA and DHA are anti-inflammatory. They have been shown to decrease a certain protein which increases inflammation. Fish oil is also awesome for brain health. Studies show that omega 3 intake is also correlated with decreased demyelination. Unfortunately you can’t make your own omega 3’s, they need to come from food or supplementation.
ALA- Alpha Lipoic Acid
ALA is an antioxidant. Antioxidants have been shown to protect myelin from an attack. ALA is also a great antioxidant because it has shown it can cross the blood brain barrier. A study showed that people taking ALA had decreased brain atrophy and improvements in mobility and gait.
CoQ10 helps with mitochondrial function, specifically energy production. Studies have shown a significant improvement in fatigue and depression after 12 weeks of supplementation.
The gut is involved in most all autoimmune disease in some capacity. One of the ways we can support our gut health is through probiotics. Ideally, you would get probiotics through fermented foods, but those are not always accessible. This is where probiotics come in!
Not all probiotics are created equal. Some strains do different things in our bodies, so if you find you feel worse after a few weeks, try another.
This isn’t an all encompassing list. There are many other supplements that can be beneficial. Our bodies are all different, so one supplement might be amazing for you and not for another person. Make sure to talk to your doctor before starting anything as well!