- •Thirty-seven percent of participants were obese.
- •People with multiple sclerosis were no more likely to adopt a diet than controls.
- •Being obese, younger, female, or non-Hispanic were associated with dieting.
Obesity is common in the United States and is associated with a higher risk of relapse and comorbidities, and increased disease progression, in people with MS.
We examined the prevalence of overweight and obesity in the MS Sunshine Study, a matched case-control study of multiple sclerosis in Southern California (470 cases, 519 controls). We reported the proportion of participants who adopted a specific diet for nutrition or weight loss purposes, and identified independent predictors of dieting.
In the total population, 32% and 37% were overweight and obese, respectively. Case participants were no more likely to adopt a specific diet for nutrition or weight loss purposes than control participants (10% and 11%, respectively). Being obese, younger, female or non-Hispanic were independently associated with dieting.
Despite the evidence that obesity can worsen MS prognosis, and the high prevalence of overweight/obesity, case participants were no more likely to adopt a specific diet than control participants. Improved nutrition education may help people with MS make healthy dietary changes for nutrition or weight loss purposes.
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Published online: December 09, 2019
Accepted: December 7, 2019
Received in revised form: November 12, 2019
Received: August 21, 2019
© 2019 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.