The postdoctoral scholar at the University of Iowa commented on why the multiple sclerosis field should lean on registered dietitians to help alleviate symptoms of patients with multiple sclerosis. [WATCH TIME: 2 minutes]
WATCH TIME: 2 minutes
“I think registered dietitians could play an extremely important role, especially in regard to comorbidities, where there are evidence-based interventions. Many of these comorbidities are associated with negative outcomes in MS populations. To me, it seems obvious that you would use dietitians giving evidence-based recommendations for these comorbidities in an MS population.”
Although there is no evidence that a specific diet can prevent, treat, or cure multiple sclerosis (MS), research has suggested that a diet low in saturated fats and supplemented with omega-3 fatty acids may benefit this group of individuals. There are several diets to choose from, including ketogenic, Swank, Mediterranean, Paleo, and Wahls, among others. Although these diets can have positive effects for patients, registered dietitians (RD) are usually not incorporated into the standard interdisciplinary care model that patients with MS encounter.
Tyler Titcomb, PhD, RDN, IFMCP, post-doctoral scholar, Wahls UIHC Clinical Research Lab, University of Iowa, is an advocate of utilizing diets to the fullest advantage, but notes that there is an astoundingly low number of patients who seek the help of an RD. His research presented at the 2021 Annual Meeting of the Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers (CMSC), October 25-28, highlighted the benefits the Wahls and Swank elimination diets can have on symptoms such as fatigue and cognitive dysfunction.
In an interview with NeurologyLive®, Titcomb provides his thoughts on the role RDs and nutritionists play in the care of patients with MS. He cited what has been previously observed in the literature and why there needs to be an increased effort within the research.