Vitamins and Supplements for People With Multiple Sclerosis

Living with a chronic disability is not easy. Having to be mindful of your lifestyle every second of your life can cause significant pressure or even anxiety. But accepting the present and adapting your habits is all you need to do to make the most of your life. 

The Effect of Vitamin D on Multiple Sclerosis Relapse

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a condition that affects the spinal cord and brain. It can cause a wide range of symptoms, but the most common are vision problems, challenges with extremity movement, or balance.

MS is a chronic condition that can be mild and can cause a severe disability, and it is typically one of the most known causes of disabilities in younger adults. It affects women more often than men and is usually diagnosed in their 20s or 30s.

Luckily, symptoms can be treated with all kinds of therapy, and many people look to alternative ones to treat MS. Dietary supplements and vitamins are the most common ones people with MS choose to use. Before you try any alternative ways of treating MS or supplements for multiple sclerosis, you must first consult your MD.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D or the “sunshine vitamin” plays a couple of crucial roles in your body. Although certain foods contain vitamin D, your body naturally produces it as your skin’s response in contact with the sunshine.

Natural sources of vitamin D and Calcium good supplements for multiple sclerosis.
Vitamin D Help To Absorb Phosphorus And Calcium And The Facilitation Of Normal Immune System Function (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Vitamin D benefits are vast, but the most critical role vitamin D plays is the help to absorb phosphorus and calcium and the facilitation of normal immune system function. It helps protect your teeth and bones and plays a massive role as a defense mechanism, protecting you against all kinds of diseases.

There are some debates about whether taking larger doses of vitamins can benefit people living with MS. Still, the effectiveness of any vitamin or supplement is dependent on balance. If a concentration of one vitamin is a lot higher than it is supposed to be, it can cause a decrease in other vital vitamins and nutrients in your body.

But this might not be true for vitamin D. 

Vitamin D is one of the essential supplements in treating symptoms of MS. Health professionals are working on confirming whether low vitamin D levels increase the risk of attacks or exacerbations in people with MS.

Research shows that there might be a connection between the two, but a more detailed study might help determine whether that is, in fact, true. Studies show that people who live farther from the equator have a higher risk of MS, directly linked to vitamin D that enters our bodies via sun rays.

The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) of vitamin D for adults is 600 international units (IUs) a day. For senior adults (those older than age 70), that number can increase to 800 IUs a day. Medical professionals usually recommend doses of 4,000 units per day for those with vitamin D deficiency and MS patients.

It is always best to consume fruits and vegetables high in necessary vitamins and other nutrients rather than opting for supplements.

If you are an MS patient and want to start taking supplements for multiple sclerosis, you should visit your doctor to talk about the dosage and what vitamins to include. Your doctor might want to do some blood tests to determine your current vitamin D levels and see if you need any supplements at all.

Biotin or Vitamin B7

Biotin or vitamin B7 is a part of the group of B vitamins. Its water-soluble characteristic helps metabolize substances such as glucose and fatty acids, converting them to calories or fuel for your body.

Natural sources of vitamin B7.
Biotin Help Reduce Pain, Improve Energy, And Help Patients See Better (Image Source: Shutterstock)

The recommended daily dose of biotin for an adult is 30 micrograms. For breastfeeding women or people who drink alcohol daily, that number can increase.

Studies have shown that high doses of biotin in patients with MS reversed disability in 13% of them supporting remyelination and energy production. 

MS is the erosion of the substance called myelin that coats the central nervous system. This reduces the speed and precision of nerve signal delivery, directly affecting your vision, muscle imbalance, and speech problems. Remyelination is the opposite process where myelin gets repaired, but this process depends on the disease’s progress.

If given time and opportunity, a healthy brain can replace lost or damaged myelin, but these efforts can be interrupted by the disease’s progression.

These studies are in phase three of investigation, but some results show that high doses of biotin help reduce pain, improve energy, and help patients see better.

Because your body doesn’t store biotin, it is essential to keep adding it to your diet or get your daily dose of supplements. Biotin is found in many foods, available almost everywhere, and the primary sources are egg yolks, broccoli, yeast, spinach, milk, bananas, nuts, sweet potatoes, grains, and liver.

There’s not a single doubt that the answer to the question, “Are eggs healthy?” is an absolute yes! Egg yolks are packed with B vitamins, protein, phosphorus, and iron. One egg, if cooked fully, provides around 33% of the recommended daily dose of biotin. 

Lentils and other legumes are also high in protein but also in several other micronutrients. Peanuts and soybeans are some of the best choices if you’re looking to add more biotin to your diet.

Nuts and seeds combine fiber, unsaturated fat, and protein, and most of them are a great source of biotin, like sunflower seeds or roasted almonds.

Liver is an excellent choice for adding biotin to your diet; with just 3 ounces of liver, you have fulfilled your daily need for biotin.

Sweet potatoes are one of the best nutrients because they contain a wide range of vitamins and minerals necessary for your body’s proper function. They also contain fiber and carotenoid antioxidants, along with biotin.

Mushrooms are another great source of biotin. In fact, they are so high in biotin that it protects them from parasites and predators in their natural habitat.

Bananas are one of the most popular fruits on the planet. Children love them for their sweetness, and grown-ups love them because they’re a great source of energy. They are jam-packed with fiber, carbs and micronutrients, and of course, biotin.

While there is no cure for MS, there are ways to make living with this disability easier—and taking care of your body with the right supplements and nutrients is one of them! Try out some of these tips listed above.