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Papers of the Week

Papers: 25 May 2024 - 31 May 2024


J Pain Res



Addressing Pain Using a Mediterranean Ketogenic Nutrition Program in Older Adults with Mild Cognitive Impairment.


Klejc K, Cruz-Almeida Y, Sheffler JL


Chronic pain has negative physical and cognitive consequences in older adults and may lead to a poorer quality of life. Mediterranean ketogenic nutrition (MKN) is a promising nonpharmacological intervention for pain management, but long-term adherence is challenging due to the carbohydrate restrictive diet regimen. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of the pilot MKN Adherence (MKNA) Program on pain in older adults with mild cognitive impairment and to assess whether improvements in self-reported pain were associated with adherence to MKN. Older adults (N = 58) aged 60-85 with possible mild cognitive impairment were randomized to a 6-week MKNA arm or an MKN Education (MKNE) program arm. Both arms received the same nutrition education and group format; however, the MKNA arm received additional motivational interviewing and cognitive behavioral skills to enhance adherence. Changes in self-reported pain (Brief Pain Inventory, Roland Morris, Patient’s Global Impression of Change) and adherence to MKN (ketone levels, self-reported adherence) were assessed at baseline, 6-weeks, and 3-months post intervention. Both arms showed clinically significant reductions in pain. Greater adherence to MKN across the 6-week intervention was associated with higher ratings of pain-related changes on the Patient’s Global Impression of Change scale. Based on these findings, adherence to MKN may promote improvements in self-reported pain in older adults with mild cognitive impairment and findings support the need for future full-scale randomized clinical trials evaluating MKN programs on pain. Trial Registration: Clinicaltrials.gov ID: NCT04817176.