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March is Multiple Sclerosis awareness month

About 2.5 million people are affected by MS worldwide – approximately 400,000 in the USA. MS attacks the central nervous system and there is no cure; however, there are treatments for the symptoms.

MS and Supplements

In this month’s video Interactive Health Clinic’s Dr. Brian Orr shares 3 other supplements that can be used for MS in addition to Vitamin D.

Vitamin D and MS

Vitamin D is usually at the top of any supplement list for MS, and for good reason. Low vitamin D levels are one of the top risk factors for getting MS, and raising those low levels can reduce progression of the disease and alleviate symptoms in those who already have MS.

MS and Supplements – Top 3 (without Vitamin D)

1. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
These are the backbone for anti-inflammatory signals that circulate in the body. In MS in particular, they blunt the effects of TNF-alpha and interferon gamma, both of which are inflammatory compounds targeted by medications for MS. Omega-3s are usually found in fish oil, but a word of caution – watch for heavy metals in fish oil. Use quality products.

2. Alpha-lipoic Acid (ALA)
ALA is an antioxidant that protects the body from the damaging effects of inflammation. ALA molecules reside in the myelin sheath that’s under attack from the immune system in MS. They also inhibit immune cells from migrating from the blood into the brain and spinal cord. Be aware that ALA has a short shelf-life, so check expiration dates regularly.

3. Biotin
Biotin is in the B vitamin family, and it helps regrow myelin after a flare of MS. High doses of biotin may also play a role in stopping and reversing Primary Progressive MS and Secondary Progressive MS. Biotin supplements typically range in dosage from 1mg to 10mg, but the dosages shown to improve MS are 30 to 300 times this amount. Your physician will have to work with a compounding pharmacy to develop a product approximating the dosages used in studies. So, that’s it. My top 3 without vitamin D, for MS.