Multiple sclerosis and alternative treatment strategies

Nervous system disorders and multiple sclerosis

The multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune neurological disease of the central nervous system. A dysfunction of the immune system leads to lesions causing motor, sensory, cognitive, visual or even sphincter disturbances (most often urinary and intestinal). In the more or less long term, these disorders can however progress towards an irreversible handicap. And if current treatments make it possible to reduce relapses and improve the quality of life of patients, they are most often insufficiently effective to prevent the progression of the handicap in the medium term.

However, particularly promising new therapeutic strategies could be a game-changer in the years to come. A better understanding of the disease has made it possible in particular to significantly improve treatments that have an action on the immune system.

The exact causes remain unknown to this day, we are talking more about contributing factors :

  • Genetic predisposition
  • Climate (a lack of sunlight during the first 15 years of life affects vitamin D levels)
  • Smoking (active or passive) during childhood
  • Alcoholism
  • Respiratory pollutants
  • Changes in the microbiota (certain bacteria of the intestinal flora are, in fact, suspected as being able to be at the origin of the abnormal immune reaction)
  • Obesity
  • Poor food hygiene, in particular a high consumption of sugar (the increase in the production of guanosine diphosphate-L-fucose synthase , the enzyme ensuring the remodeling of sugar in the brain, indeed leads to an overactivation of certain types of lymphocytes. T)
  • Infection with Epstein-Barr virus or measles
  • Heavy metal poisoning or re-intoxication secondary to a release of those already stored in the bone tissue
  • Hypersensitivity of the body, especially in allergic subjects
  • Abnormally low levels of nocturnal melatonin

Currently, its prevalence is 110,000 people in France; 70% of new patients are between 20 and 40 years old, the majority of whom are women (2 women for a man).

How does it work ?

In the myelin sheath that surrounds certain neurons, certain areas of myelin are replaced by fibrous tissue. These areas (plaques) are mainly located in the brainstem, spinal cord, periventricular region and optic nerve. It then follows conduction abnormalities of the nerve impulses responsible for the symptoms of the disease.

Is multiple sclerosis related to hepatitis B and papillomavirus vaccines ?

Complaints have been made by patients vaccinated against hepatitis B and against papillomavirus (HPV). Several studies have been carried out, including at Inserm, to assess the safety of these vaccines. The reassuring results, which are the subject of an international consensus, have led health agencies to reaffirm the lack of accountability of these vaccines in the occurrence of multiple sclerosis.

Regarding the HPV vaccine, around 5.5 million doses of vaccine were distributed at the end of 2013 and 503 cases of serious adverse effects, including 17 cases of multiple sclerosis, were reported over the same period. The National Agency for the Safety of Medicines and Health Products (ANSM) conducted a study on nearly two million young girls and found in particular that the rate of hospitalization for autoimmune diseases was the same among young people. vaccinated and unvaccinated girls (approximately 2 per 10,000 patients per year).

What naturopathic research has been done to slow the progression of symptoms of multiple sclerosis ?

  • Along with drug treatments, rehabilitation by a physiotherapist is nevertheless an important aspect of patient care. It is essential at each stage of the disease, for muscle maintenance, to avoid complications related to immobility and to allow the patient to continue with daily activities.
  • Other researchers are interested in the microbiota (intestinal flora) of patients, whose composition would play a role in inflammation and regulation of the immune system. This seems to be established for certain autoimmune diseases and could also be true for multiple sclerosis.
  • A vitamin D intake seems essential. Indeed, a high level of vitamin D demonstrates a low activity of the disease, whether it is on the frequency of the attacks or the occurrence of new lesions on the MRI. Conversely, a low level of vitamin D leads to more disabilities and greater severity of MS.
  • The anti-inflammatory diet rich in good fats is an alternative treatment for sclerosis that helps to slow the progression of the disease:
    • To eat less
    • Choose the right fats
    • Avoid milk and gluten in multiple sclerosis
    • Adopt a predominantly plant-based diet
    • Make sure you have a good intake of vitamins and minerals

Myelin is a substance made up largely of fat. Food therefore influences its composition. According to some authors, less saturated fat and more unsaturated fat in the diet may help reduce disease progression. A balanced diet low in saturated fat remains the most appropriate approach. In this sense, it would be better to favor polyunsaturated fats (such as evening primrose oil or borage seed oil).

Which plants for multiple sclerosis ?

The active substance of CBD is indeed part of the exogenous ligands acting against the spasticity of multiple sclerosis. There are endogenous cannabinoid ligands, naturally present in the brain (endogenous cannabinoids or endocannabinoids, including anandamide (also found in chocolate) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol . CBD could thus reduce the progressive degeneration of the cerebral dopaminergic system, by reducing inflammation, and modulating the signaling system in the basal ganglia, reducing excitotoxicity, calcium influx, glial activation, and oxidative damage that contribute to the degeneration of substantia nigra.

Used in homeopathic protocols against certain cancers and multiple sclerosis.

Some therapists advise them in autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis or Crohn’s disease.

Decreases recurrence and EDSS score in patients with multiple sclerosis.

Immunomodulatory, anti-inflammatory, immunomodulating and remyelinating effect in autoimmune encephalitis

Some observations conclude on the effectiveness of curcumin in treating autoimmune diseases. This is partly explained by the anti-inflammatory action of this molecule extracted from turmeric.

 

Clementine. M.
Naturopath – Aromatherapist / Herbalist – Phytotherapist
Consultant in Clinical Phyto-aromatherapy and Ethnomedicine

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