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Medical Miracles: Ketogenic Diet

Ketogenic Diet: Epilepsy and Alzheimers


Lydia Breihan, class of 2016, is a student planning to major in dietetics and nutrition in the coming year. She hopes to eventually specialize in pediatric and neonatal dietetics. She has many family members with medical problems related to nutrition, and she hopes not only to help those people in which nutrition is the basis of their health concerns, but also help threat those with major chronic illnesses through nutrition. 

Significant Discovery

For many years, dating back to about 500B.C., people have been using fasting and other dietary methods to treat epilepsy. In the 1920's the Ketogenic Diet was introduced as a way to mimic the effects of fasting. Two decades later the usage declined significantly due the era anti-epileptic drug treatment. By the end of the 20th century only a few childrens hospitals were using this treatment, but over the past 15 years, the use has grown extensively and the intrest in the diet being used for other medical problems has increased as well.      

Source: History of the Ketogenic Diet

Future Directions

Epilepsy, Cancer, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Autism and more...the Ketogenic Diet is helping reduce the symptoms of all of these medical problems. While reducing the symptoms is life changing in itself, what if this diet could reduce seizures by 100% in all patients? What if it would help adults as much as it helps kids? This is the way we are going with the diet. Imagine how miraculous it would be if surgery or a life of treatment was not your only options. Imagine a world where what you eat can prevent and almost cure any major health complication. I believe that the ketogenic diet will be the one the take the world and change the healthcare world as we know. 

Emerging Inovations

The effects of the Ketogenic diet on epileptic seizures are know and its success rate and usage is only becoming greater. Now we ask ourselves, "Is there more that this medical miracle can help with?" The answer is yes. While over the years doctors have been focused on the diet in relations to epilepsy, there are many other things being tested. Cancer, Autism and even Alzheimer's. What is miraculous is that even slightly changing your habits can make a life changing difference. Dr. Mary Newport, a doctor board certified in pediatrics and neonatal, tested this on her own husband. Article by Dr. Mary Newport


Medical Miracle: Epilepsy

Seizures have been documented and researched for many centuries. This neurological disorder of Epilepsy dates as far back as the bible, but for many years was believed to be caused by supernatural forces. Epilepsy is a recurrent, lifelong condition that must be managed on a long-term basis. In the 1920's and 30's a new treatment for epilepsy came into play, the Ketogenic Diet. When tested by Johns Hopkins Medical Hospital, the diet was shown to be completely effective in 20% to 30% of patients and significantly reduced 30% to 40% in other patients. This diet is, however, is extremely new even Johns Hopkins only places around four children on this diet each year. The Ketogenic Diet is difficult because it essentially manipulates the body into changing its ways. Ketosis is what your body goes through on a daily basis and is the process of making food into fuel. Our bodies can go through this process using proteins, carbohydrates and fats. Low carb and high fat are what this diet requires and by that, it is 75% fat and only 5% carbs, with the other 10% being protein. These restrictions change what a person eats on an everyday basis. Our bodies break down carbohydrates for energy, but when you lessen the carb intake and heighten the fats intake our bodies learn to metabolize fat instead. The great thing is, this incredible change is what reduces the number of seizures in the patient with epilepsy.


Social Impact

  Positive Effects Negative Effects
  • Reduces and eliminates seizures in patients with epilepsy.
  • Autism improvement
  • Improvement in Alzheimers
  • Improved bipolar symptoms
  • Decreased tumor size
  • Other side effects
  • Impaired cognition and mood 
  • Digestive problems 
  • Muscle cramps 
  • Menstrual irregularity 
  • Death 
  • Other side effects.
  • Training is relatively easy and only takes two and a half days.
  • CEU Accredited after attending workshop.
  • Mush have some experience to attend training conference.
  • Must be a registered dietitian.
  • While dietitians can suggest, it is encouraged to consult a physician as well.

  • Non invasive solution 
  • Easily accessible compared to surgery and drug treatments
  • Costs less 
  • The diet goes against the beliefs of the following religions:
    • Hinduism - no red meat
    • Islam -  no pork
    • Buddhism - vegetarians
    • Jainism - strict vegetarians
  • Also against the morals of vegetarians who are not so due to religion. 
  • Currently there are no know factors of the Ketogenic diet that would result in legal complication.
  • Legal disclaimer need for all who suggest the use without certification. 
  • Increase in sale for the following industries:
    • Meat (any)
    • Eggs 
    • Vegetables (grown above ground)
    • Dairy (milk, sour cream, heavy cream)
    • Nuts and seeds
  • Bad for the following industries:
    • Sugar (cake, candy, juice, chocolate, ect.)
    • Grain and Starch (pasta, bread, rice, ect.)
    • Beer



What do you think?

KEEP Would you try the ketogenic diet?
YES: 1 votes (20%)
NO: 0 votes (0%)
Already Have: 0 votes (0%)
Possibly: 4 votes (80%)
No Answer: 0 votes (0%)
Total Votes: 5




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