Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune disease that is caused by damage to brain and spinal cord tissues, specifically the myelin sheath, the protective barrier surrounding nerve fibers. The body’s immune cells attack the nervous system, causing inflammation that eventually leads to damaged nerves and impaired signaling. The most commonly accepted causes of MS include a virus or gene defect, but others suspect environmental factors may play a role. Symptoms vary depending on location and severity, but may include altered muscle function, digestive and GI issues, numbness, pain, sensory disruptions and fatigue. MS symptoms may be reduced with proper diet and lifestyle changes.
If you are not familiar with Dr. Terry Wahls, view her amazing story here. She shows the miraculous benefits of incorporating more produce into your daily routine and discusses the specific nutrients that help nourish our neurotransmitters and mitochondria. Fortunately, the NutriBullet can help you get more fruits and veggies into your diet! However, before beginning any new dietary changes, please consult with your doctor.
The following foods contain nutrients that have been shown beneficial for protecting the brain, mitochondria, and myelin sheath:
These foods contain the B vitamins thiamine (B1), folate (B9) or B6 that help the brain cells to regenerate myelin and nourish your mitochondria.
These sulfur-containing vegetables support neurotransmitters, the brain, and mitochondria, as well as help remove toxins by way of the liver and kidneys. Cabbage is also a source of lecithin, often deficient in those with MS.
The brain is 60-70% fat, therefore omega-3 fatty acids are critical for its health. Not only do they support the myelin sheath, they have been shown to reduce inflammation. Beware of the fats you choose; saturated and trans fats cause more harm than good.
These seaweeds and algae are great additions to meals or as powders added to your NutriBlast. The brain requires iodine, abundant in sea vegetables, and selenium, (think Brazil nuts), for myelin production.
The abundant antioxidants help reduce free-radical damage to boost your immunity and fight against MS.
In addition to including these foods into your diet, there are some foods that should be avoided depending on severity or progression of the condition. Both the protein found in certain grains and gluten, and the dairy protein, casein, have been shown to aggravate symptoms of MS. For those in the most advanced stages, diets closer to those of our ancestors - vegetables, berries and other fruits, grass-fed organic meats and wild fish - are reccommended.