Changes to your lifestyle can help you manage symptoms and prevent flare-ups or worsening of symptoms. Your coping skills and attitude toward your illness are important factors in successfully managing the disease. Habits to consider include:

  • Get regular, moderate exercise.
  • Eat a healthy diet.
  • Practice stress-reduction techniques.
  • Avoid excessive heat.
  • Avoid infections.
  • Get adequate rest.
  • Eat a Healthful Diet

    Doctors recommend eating a healthful diet. It should be low in saturated fat and rich in whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. The fiber in grains, fruits, and vegetables helps prevent constipation.

    Omega-3 fatty acids, found in fish oil, are sometimes recommended for people with MS. It is not clear if omega-3s are helpful for this condition.

    It is also important that you drink plenty of water. Aim for about 8 glasses per day. Avoid drinks that cause dehydration, like caffeinated beverages.

    Practice Stress—Reduction Techniques

    Many people with MS notice that stress makes symptoms worse. Consider getting regular massages and participating in other stress reducing practices, such as meditation, yoga, and relaxation. You may also find it helpful to join a support group. These groups can provide emotional support for you and your family.

    Quit Smoking

    Smoking may worsen MS symptoms. It can make MS progress to a more severe form. If you smoke, talk to your doctor about your options for quitting. There are smoking cessation classes, online self-help programs, nicotine replacement products, prescription medications, and many other options.