Does diet affect myeloma progression? It's one of the most common questions patients have.
We know that more than 3% of the general population over the age of 50 has either monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) or smoldering myeloma. We also know that these precursor conditions to multiple myeloma are linked to obesity, diabetes, inflammatory diets and diets lacking in plant-based foods.
Around 75% of multiple myeloma patients have low Vitamin D which has been linked to worse outcomes (although the prevalence in MGUS and smoldering myeloma is unknown.) Other nutrition elements such as omega-3 fatty acids and curcumin could have important effects on disease progression.
Additionally, other studies have identified that the microbiome is altered in both myeloma and precursor condition patients compared to healthy individuals and that the microbiome can impact the myeloma cells themselves. For example, myeloma patients with higher abundance of bacteria that produce short chain fatty acids have better outcomes.
Urvi Shah, MD of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center is leading a Phase II study to test whether dietary supplements and/or a whole foods, plant-based diet would lead to changes in myeloma biomarkers for MGUS and smoldering myeloma patients.
Her goal is to compare three different patient groups of 1) whole foods, plant-based diet with dietary supplements, 2) dietary supplements alone and 3) a control group to identify comparative changes over a 12 month period.
Please donate to this important study and join the study if you have MGUS or smoldering myeloma. The results will help MGUS, smoldering myeloma and all multiple myeloma patients understand how dietary and microbiome changes impact disease progression.
If you would like to consider joining this and other studies, you can pre-register below.
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The CrowdCare Foundation (now named the HealthTree Foundation) and Myeloma Crowd is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit, tax ID 45-5354811.
about the author
Myeloma survivor, patient advocate, wife, mom of 6. Believer that patients can help accelerate a cure by weighing in and participating in clinical research. Founder of Myeloma Crowd by HealthTree and the HealthTree Foundation.