The ketogenic diet, assistance for epilepsy but also a risk
The ketogenic diet can help patients with epilepsy reduce seizures. Being high in fat can lead to an increase in cholesterol that can lead to cardiovascular problems.
Surely you heard of ketosis. However, you may not know so much about how the ketogenic diet affects people with epilepsy. Therefore, today we address this issue so that you know what is known from a scientific point of view.
The reality is that for years, the ketogenic diet used in some epileptic patients who do not respond adequately to medications. This is because it is associated with a dramatic reduction of seizures in a good part of the patients.
Why can the ketogenic diet help patients with epilepsy?
As a publication made in 2010 by the journal Current Treatment Options in Neurology points out, the ketogenic diet used since the 1920s as a treatment for intractable epilepsy.
Apparently, this feeding model, which is very high in fat and low in carbohydrates, has the ability to modify neuronal metabolism and excitability to reduce the frequency of attacks.
Therefore, it is also being suggested as a therapeutic measure for disorders related to metabolic defects, traumas and ischemia, autism and neurodegenerative diseases.
Composition of the ketogenic diet
For ketosis to occur, it is necessary to drastically reduce carbohydrate intake. This will force the body to use fat for energy. Like glucose, ketones can be used by muscles, heart, and brain to produce energy.
A ketogenic diet should be very low in carbohydrates and high in fat content. Consumption of carbohydrates below 50 grams per day can induce ketosis. Although it is recommended that they remain below 20 grams per day.
A low to moderate protein intake should be maintained because excess protein can be converted to glucose. That would lead to being out of ketosis. For epileptics, carbohydrates and proteins together should not contribute more than 10% of calories.
Fats provide 70 to 90% of calories in a ketogenic diet. The so-called MCT fat or medium-chain triglycerides, help promote ketosis. You should know that they found in large quantities in coconut oil.
Risks of a ketogenic diet in people with epilepsy
Despite the benefits of the ketogenic diet in people with epilepsy, it must be taken into account that it can be dangerous in the long term and cause:
- High cholesterol, which is a risk factor for heart disease, strokes and certain types of cancer.
- Excessive production of uric acid, which increases the risk of kidney stones and gout. In addition, it is associated with hypertension, heart disease, and kidney disease.
- Fatigue and physical weakness.
- Mild to severe constipation with stomach symptoms due to low fiber intake.
Did you know the efficacy of the ketogenic diet in people with epilepsy? It has been used for years and has been proven to be very useful in reducing crises. So if you know any epileptic, advise him to consult his doctor if he could use this diet. Published By Healthzigzag.com
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