Next Article in Journal
Assessment of Changes over Time of Lipid Profile, C-Reactive Protein Level and Body Mass Index in Teenagers and Young Adults on Different Diets Belonging to Autism Spectrum Disorder
Next Article in Special Issue
Do Interventions with Diet or Dietary Supplements Reduce the Disease Activity Score in Rheumatoid Arthritis? A Systematic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials
Previous Article in Journal
Differences in Sweet Taste Perception and Its Association with the Streptococcus mutans Cariogenic Profile in Preschool Children with Caries
Previous Article in Special Issue
Functional Abdominal Pain and Nutritional Status of Children. A School-Based Study
Open AccessArticle

The Low Glutamate Diet Effectively Improves Pain and Other Symptoms of Gulf War Illness

1
Department of Health Studies, American University, Washington, DC 20016, USA
2
Center for Behavioral Neuroscience, American University, Washington, DC 20016, USA
3
Program in Behavior, Cognition and Neuroscience, American University, Washington, DC 20016, USA
4
Department of Mathematics & Statistics, American University, Washington, DC 20016, USA
5
Neuroscience Program, Department of Biology, American University, Washington, DC 20016, USA
6
Department of Medicine, Georgetown University, Washington, DC 20057, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2020, 12(9), 2593; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12092593
Received: 30 June 2020 / Revised: 17 August 2020 / Accepted: 20 August 2020 / Published: 26 August 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diet and Chronic Pain)
Gulf War Illness (GWI) is a multisymptom disorder including widespread chronic pain, fatigue and gastrointestinal problems. The objective of this study was to examine the low glutamate diet as a treatment for GWI. Forty veterans with GWI were recruited from across the US. Outcomes included symptom score, myalgic score, tender point count, dolorimetry and the Chalder Fatigue Scale. Subjects were randomized to the low glutamate diet or a wait-listed control group, with symptom score being compared after one month. Subjects then went onto a double-blind, placebo-controlled crossover challenge with monosodium glutamate (MSG)/placebo to test for return of symptoms. Symptom score was compared between diet intervention and wait-listed controls with an independent t-test and effect size was calculated with Cohen’s d. Change scores were analyzed with Wilcoxon Signed Rank tests. Crossover challenge results were analyzed with General Linear Models and cluster analysis. The diet intervention group reported significantly less symptoms (p = 0.0009) than wait-listed controls, with a very large effect size, d = 1.16. Significant improvements in average dolorimetry (p = 0.0006), symptom score, tender point number, myalgic score and the Chalder Fatigue Scale (all p < 0.0001) were observed after the 1-month diet. Challenge with MSG/placebo resulted in significant variability in individual response. These results suggest that the low glutamate diet can effectively reduce overall symptoms, pain and fatigue in GWI, but differential results upon challenge suggest that other aspects of the diet, or underlying differences within the population, may be driving these changes. Future research is needed to identify potential nutrient effects, biomarkers, and underlying metabolic differences between responders and non-responders. View Full-Text
Keywords: Gulf War Illness; GWI; glutamate; diet; pain; fatigue; symptoms; treatment Gulf War Illness; GWI; glutamate; diet; pain; fatigue; symptoms; treatment
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Holton, K.F.; Kirkland, A.E.; Baron, M.; Ramachandra, S.S.; Langan, M.T.; Brandley, E.T.; Baraniuk, J.N. The Low Glutamate Diet Effectively Improves Pain and Other Symptoms of Gulf War Illness. Nutrients 2020, 12, 2593.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Search more from Scilit
 
Search
Back to TopTop