2015autoimmune diseaseChronic diseaseDietGilenyaMedical researchMultiple SclerosisTreatment

The gut and (MS) health: It isn’t sexy, but it is important

Your gut is important, don’t ignore it

I started to hear about how important the gut was to overall health, and specifically MS, about a year ago. I ignored it. It sounded far too crackpot (and I am all about the medication these days, go Gilenya).

But four months into taking my diet seriously, I feel better than I have for at least two years. That is quite a feat, given that I had an MS relapse in February.

And so I started to pay attention to gut health. Or in other words, the microbiome.

And I am blown away.

Depression. Anxiety. Obesity. Arthritis. Irritable Bowl Syndrome. Autism. Multiple Sclerosis. These, and a bunch of other autoimmune diseases, may be directly impacted by the microbiome.

The best part: Future treatments and cures

Watch this TED Talk by microbial researcher Rob Knight. He explains how the microbiome may influence these chronic and expensive diseases. Bear in mind, Knight does not to say that the microbiome causes these diseases – rather, that it may impact disease course and progression.

This is important because once researchers understand how these diseases are influenced by the microbiome, they can start working on disease management plans, and potentially even cures. Yes people, Rob Knight even mentioned that elusive word ‘cure’.

A word of caution

While exciting, this remains (cutting edge) research. And research mainly on mice for that matter, not on humans. I am not going to stop my MS treatment (nor should you), although I am damn well going to eat as well as I can (and so should you).

Thanks to TED Talks for the video and TED Books for the image.