This diet may lower the risk of multiple sclerosis

Published 22 February 2022

A new study from Iran suggests that eating a diet high in green leafy vegetables, nuts, beans and berries may lower the risk of getting multiple sclerosis (MS).

The research team looked at whether the Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay (MIND) diet could be protective against MS. The MIND diet is inspired by the Mediterranean diet, and is combined with the DASH diet that can help manage high blood pressure.

They interviewed 77 newly-diagnosed MS patients about their dietary habits, as well as 148 healthy controls. The researchers assigned each person a MIND score based on their reported dietary habits.

After adjusting for the between-group differences, people in the top third of MIND scores were approximately 90% less likely to get MS.

“According to the present outcomes, fast fried food consumption more than once per week increased the odds of MS by 32.8 times compared to eating this type of food less than once a week,” the researchers wrote.

They also suggested the results may partly explain why the western world, where diets tend to contain a lot of salt, fat and sugar, has a higher prevalence of MS.

The researchers said that there is a need for more research which includes controlled trials to discover whether dietary changes can actually help prevent MS or manage symptoms.