Created by Dr. med. Andres Bircher |

Multiple sclerosis (MS), also termed encephalomyelitis disseminata (ED), is a chronic inflammatory disease in which the myelin sheaths, the insulating and protective layer around the rapidly conducting nerve fibres in the central nervous system, are affected. The occurrence (prevalence) of this neurodegenerative disease has drastically increased in all industrialised countries. One out of 750 Germans suffers from MS and twice as many women as men. In this disease, there are numerous (multiple) inflammation sites spread throughout the white matter of the brain and spinal cord, resulting in severe destructive inflammation in the myelin sheaths of the nerve tracts. Most of the time, multiple sclerosis manifests itself in the form of flare-ups with failure symptoms that initially recede as the nervous system is able to partially repair the damage. It often takes years before the damage extends to the innermost nerve fibres (axons), leaving the nerve tracts destroyed. Nuclear magnetic resonance imaging has revealed that MS also causes nerve cells (neurons) to die diffusely throughout the brain, even before the first signs of paralysis appear. Since the inflammation sites can develop anywhere in the central nervous system, multiple sclerosis can cause almost any neurological symptom. Visual impairment with reduced visual acuity (retrobulbar neuritis) and eye movement disorders (internuclear ophthalmoplegia) are considered typical, but these problems may also have other causes.

Numerous causes have to converge until the disease manifests itself. It is agreed that MS is not a hereditary disease in the true sense of the word. Several genetic variants have been found, but they are all related to the immune system. 3% of first-degree relatives of a person suffering from MS, 1% of second-degree relatives and 0.9% of third-degree relatives also become ill. MS is not contagious. Nevertheless, there has been a long and futile search for an infectious agent. Bacterial pathogens such as chlamydia, spirochetes, rickettsia, streptococcus mutans and avian tuberculosis can trigger flare-ups. Nonetheless, such infections are also associated with various autoimmune diseases. Infections activate interleukins (messenger substances between white blood cells) and these can also enter the brain where they activate inflammatory reactions. It is entirely conceivable that infections will trigger MS if the brain has previously been damaged by neurodegenerative processes caused by malnutrition, nerotoxins and oxidative stress. Vitamin D deficiency is extremely common. High vitamin D levels are associated with a reduced risk of multiple sclerosis. There are numerous studies from all over the world warning against the dangers of mercury. Amalgam fillings contain 50% mercury and vaccines contain even higher concentrations. MS patients have significantly more tooth decay and amalgam fillings than control subjects without MS, and the geographical distribution of tooth decay and MS overlaps. The concentrations of mercury in the cerebrospinal fluid of patients with amalgam fillings were found to be 8 times higher than in people without dental amalgam. Following amalgam removal, the composition of the proteins in the cerebrospinal fluid underwent a drastic positive change in MS patients. It is crucial to bear in mind that the highly toxic, organically bound methylmercury is mainly absorbed from food, primarily through the consumption of fish containing mercury. Most fish products, but especially canned fish such as tuna, salmon or anchovies contain a lot of mercury. Environmental toxins such as pesticides, sports textiles and cuddly toys containing tin, organic solvents, wood preservatives and electromagnetic pollution are other important causes of multiple sclerosis. 

For the past two decades, there has been a growing body of scientific work on the influence of diet on the risk of developing MS. Excessive amounts of table salt promote inflammatory processes, increase disease activity and worsen the prognosis of multiple sclerosis. Being overweight is associated with elevated homocysteine levels and an increased risk of developing MS, Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease. An animal-based diet significantly increases the risk of MS and worsens its course. On the other hand, supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids significantly reduces the risk. Numerous studies have shown that a diet typical of western industrialised countries, with copious amounts of table salt, animal fat, red meat, sugary drinks, fried and deep-fried foods, a lack of “fibre” and physical inactivity significantly increases the risk of MS and massively worsens the prognosis. Nowadays, the intestinal flora disrupted by malnutrition is also regarded as an extremely important cause of multiple sclerosis. The decomposition products of our healthy intestinal bacteria are very important for the nervous system. People with poor nutrition and disorderly lifestyles suffer from oxidative stress. In MS patients, the reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the blood are elevated. Melatonin protects the brain cells from deterioration. A lack of melatonin caused by not getting enough sleep before midnight, is now considered an important contributory cause of MS.  Scientists have come to recognise the complexity of the causes of MS and the American Neurological Association recommends a plant-based, low-fat diet. For over 100 years, people suffering from MS have been cured at the Bircher-Benner Medical Centre through an individually and expertly tailored plant-based fresh food diet (raw food), careful detoxification and a well-ordered lifestyle. This is reliably possible insofar as no permanent damage has yet occurred. However, the progression of the disease can also be massively improved in later stages. A therapeutical approach that is well worth it.

                                                                                                                 Dr. med. Andres Bircher

Tip box:

The damages that lead to neurodegenerative diseases, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease or Alzheimer's disease originate long before the onset of the disease. Arrange for toxicological tests and start prevention at an early stage. You will find all the information you need as well as practical instructions in the Bircher-Benner Manual Vol. 1.