Mar 27, 2014 – Food and ALS

March 27, 2014

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ANCHOR LEAD: CAN MORE CALORIES EXTEND LIFE IN PEOPLE WITH ALS? ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Higher calorie diets may help people with advanced ALS, or Lou Gerhig’s disease, live longer, a recent study in the Lancet found. Jeffrey Rothstein, an ALS expert at Johns Hopkins, describes the findings

ROTHSTEIN: What’s exciting about this paper is that nutrition, which of course we could all say that we know, our parents always tell us eat well, it’s important, and in fact years ago it was shown that in ALS patients good nutrition is valuable, this was a nice trial that evaluated different kinds of nutritional supplements, high calorie in both cases, one with a little bit more fat, to see if it could change the course in ALS. And it was exciting in that they actually appeared to show that patients lived longer on these altered diets, so that’s really exciting. :30

Rothstein says this group of patients had disease that was fairly advanced, so they were fed directly into their GI tract. The question remains whether such a strategy would benefit people earlier in the disease course. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.

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