- Written by Bhaavyaa

If you see anyone with symptoms of progressive weakness and loss of muscle mass, then you wouldn’t be wrong to conclude that that person is suffering from Muscular Dystrophy. 

There are more than 20 variants of muscular dystrophy, the generic term for an incurable progressive wasting disease which can affect different muscles and arise at different ages. All cases are hereditary. 

A healthy diet and careful weight control are very important in all forms of muscular dystrophy so that already weakened muscles do not have the additional burden of carrying excess weight. Losing weight not only helps the sufferers to move more easily, but it also assists their carers, who may have to lift them. Moreover, in the later stages of the disease, there will be less strain on the weakened respiratory muscles.

In all its forms, muscular dystrophy is characterised by the deterioration and wasting of muscle fibers, causing weakness in the legs and back which can make walking difficult. The most common form is Duchenne muscular dystrophy which occurs only in boys.

To keep their weight under control, sufferers should try not to eat snacks between meals, cut down on high calorie foods and eat plenty of fiber. Fiber is not only filling but it encourages regular bowel habits, relieving the constipation often associated with the disease. Sufferers should not go on a crash diet, however, as this could cause muscle wasting and they should eat plenty of lean protein.

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