Sunday, January 20, 2013

Diet Cures Multiple Sclerosis

I am fascinated by how changes in the gut microbiome can alter the course and even reverse human disease. Take the recent surge of fecal transplants for instance to treat chronic diseases such as IBD, Clostridium difficile, Crohn's, and multiple sclerosis (blog post). I am also intrigued by how plant strong and paleo diets seem to be increasingly beneficial for health.

Here is an inspirational TEDx talk by Dr. Terry Wahls (@TerryWahls) on how she used to research and develop a hunter gatherer diet rich in phytonutrients that cured her multiple sclerosis - an autoimmune disease of the central nervous system. Note that her approach focussed on the beneficial vitamins and phytonutrients from these foods. She did not mention the changes in the gut bacteria that are also occurring on this diet and that can have positive repercussions on the body's metabolites. I hope her message helps others.

Diet changes the gut microbiome, which in turn changes the metabolic, neuronal, and inflammatory networks that may cause or cure many chronic 'Western' diseases. Nothing short of awesome. The regenerative power of the gut microbiome is akin to stem cells and here to stay.


  1. I agree with your views. The effect of diet on our health is largely being ignored by pharmaceutical companies. However most people who suffered from one ailment or another and made the recommended changes to their diet have seen positive results.

  2. Hi Seth, do you collaborate with the Stratton lab, which is also at VU?

    They've done some amazing work linking chlamydial pneumoniae with MS:

    C.pneumonaie infection also causes a nasty metabolic disorder called secondary porphyria - which compromises the hosts ability to digest the amino acid tryptophan. This could explain why a diet high in complex carbs makes such a difference to people with MS.


    1. Fantastic recommendation Helen. I will definitely look into this.