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Really? MS study finds better diet leads to "signficantly" better QOL

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  • Really? MS study finds better diet leads to "signficantly" better QOL

    At first glance I was encouraged by this study and the robust effect of diet on MS, as researchers from the study stated: "Traditionally, people with MS have been advised that dietary change has no proven benefit; in contrast, our data show significantly better QOL for those eating a better diet in line with current cardiovascular recommendations that promote a wholefood diet with reductions in saturated fat intake and increased consumption of fruit, vegetables and fish [37]."

    The problem? The lead researcher for the study sells MS diet books. And the participants of the study? Found on online forums, such as the one hosted by the lead researcher. And the method for interviewing said patients? Survey Monkey.

    Sigh. - D

    Lifestyle, medication and socio-demographic determinants of mental and physical health-related quality of life in people with multiple sclerosis

    George*A*Jelinek, Alysha*M*De Livera, Claudia*H*Marck, Chelsea*R*Brown, Sandra*L*Neate, Keryn*L*Taylor and Tracey*J*Weiland

    BMC Neurology

    Published: 22*November*2016


    Health-related quality of life (QOL) is a key outcome for people with multiple sclerosis (MS). While modifiable lifestyle factors, like smoking, physical activity and vitamin D, have strong associations with development and progression of MS, few studies have examined such associations with QOL.

    Using patient-reported data from 2312 people with MS from 54 countries, regression models explored associations of socio-demographic, therapeutic and lifestyle factors with QOL, using the Multiple Sclerosis Quality of Life-54 (MSQOL-54).

    Participants were on average 45.6*years old, 82.4% women, mostly partnered (74.1%), with a university degree (59.5%). Controlling for socio-demographic factors and disability, factors associated with better physical health composite (PHC) (on a 100 point scale) were: moderate and high physical activity compared to low (5.9 [95% confidence interval: 4.2, 7.6] and 9.9 [CI: 8.1, 11.6] points higher score respectively); non-smoking compared to current smoking (4.6 points [CI: 2.4, 6.7]); better diet (per 10 points on the 100 point Diet Habits Questionnaire scale (DHQ) 1.6 points [CI: 1.0, 2.2] points); normal body mass index (BMI) versus overweight or obese (2.1 points [CI: 0.4, 3.7] and 2.4 points [CI: 0.5, 4.3]); fewer comorbidities (4.4 points [CI: 3.9, 4.9]); and not taking a disease-modifying drug (DMD) (2.1 points [CI: 0.7, 3.4]).

    Better mental health composite (MHC) determinants were: moderate and high physical activity compared to low (4.0 points [CI: 2.0, 6.0] and 5.7 points [CI: 3.5, 8.0]); non-smoking compared to current (6.7 points [CI: 4.1, 9.3]); better diet (2.8 points [CI: 1.9, 3.5]); normal BMI versus overweight or obese (3.1 points [CI: 1.1, 5.1] and 3.5 points [CI: 1.3, 5.7]); meditating regularly (2.2 points [CI: 0.2, 4.2]); and no DMD use (2.9 points [CI: 1.3, 4.6]).

    While causality cannot be concluded from cross-sectional data, the associations between modifiable lifestyle factors and QOL suggest significant potential for secondary prevention of the known deterioration of QOL for people with MS through lifestyle risk factor modification.


    Dave Bexfield

  • #2
    IMO, a good diet can help anyone's QOL.