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Influence of Blue Mussel (Mytilus edulis) Intake on Disease Activity in Female Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis: The MIRA Randomized Cross-Over Dietary Intervention.

Journal article
Authors Helen Lindqvist
Inger Gjertsson
Tove Eneljung
Anna Winkvist
Published in Nutrients
Volume 10
Issue 4
ISSN 2072-6643
Publication year 2018
Published at Institute of Medicine, Department of Rheumatology and Inflammation Research
Institute of Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine and Clinical Nutrition
Language en
Subject categories Rheumatology and Autoimmunity


Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is a chronic inflammatory disease. This study evaluates the effect of blue mussel intake on disease activity and quality of life in women with RA. Thirty-nine women with established RA and a disease activity score 28 (DAS28) >3.0 were recruited to a randomized 2 × 11-week cross-over dietary intervention. The participants continued with their medication and habitual diet and exchanged one cooked meal a day, five days a week, with a meal including 75 g blue mussels or 75 g meat. Diets were switched after an eight week washout period. Data regarding quality of life (SF-36), blood lipids, erythrocyte sediment rate (ESR), C-reactive protein (CRP) and tender and swollen joints were examined at the start and end of each dietary period. Thirty women completed one period, and twenty-three completed both. Intake of the blue mussel diet led to a significant reduction of DAS28-CRP (p = 0.048), but not DAS28. The number of EULAR (European League Against Rheumatism) criteria moderate and good responders were higher when consuming blue mussel diet (p = 0.036). Blood lipids did not change. To conclude, blue mussel intake reduced disease symptoms in women with RA and improved perceived health. The reported effects need to be confirmed by non-patient reported outcomes, such as inflammation markers.

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