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New to a Low-Carb Keto Diet? Avoid These Common Mistakes

By: The Dr. Perlmutter Team

The ketogenic diet is one of the most talked about and debated diet trends today. You’ve probably heard celebrities, athletes, and neighbors raving about the benefits of this dietary approach. Interestingly, the science backs up its rapid growth in popularity, as a ketogenic diet has been shown to have numerous health benefits for its adherents. The diet can reduce the risk of heart disease, improve glycemic control in both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, help individuals struggling with obesity lower their BMI, and even improve or control symptoms of debilitating neurodegenerative conditions like Parkinson’s and epilepsy. There is even some evidence to suggest that a ketogenic diet can play a role in the treatment of cancer! If it is implemented properly, adopting a ketogenic diet can be a very powerful tool in the fight against a variety of chronic diseases.

If you’ve recently made the decision to transition to a ketogenic diet or are exploring the possibility of a change, chances are you might currently find yourself in a world of confusion. What is ketosis? What are ketones? Can I really eat all the fatty foods I want? How can this possibly be good for me?

Allow me to address some of these questions. Continue reading

Anonymous from Wicklow, Ireland

I’m a 38 year old female and I have epilepsy. I have focal motor seizures that mimic dystonia. I suffer from night seizures and occasional daytime seizures, presenting themselves as cramping in my right arm and leg, lasting 1-10 seconds. For most of my years, I believed this was a life sentence. However, I’ve remained mainly seizure free on a gluten-free diet and haven’t taken daily medication for years. I take muscle relaxants when I have seizures (about once per year for a few weeks).

Further, although I have remained mainly seizure-free over the last few years, I have been a terrible sleeper….very restless and wakeful. But I have had great success on my new diet and supplement regimen. I have never slept so good! I’m sleeping through the night and I feel so well-rested in the morning.

21- Anonymous from Wicklow, Ireland

Monica D.

I only adapted a low-carb, high-fat, gluten-free lifestyle a couple of weeks ago, and I already feel incredible! I cut out all gluten, wheat and sugar from my life, and have started taking a robust supplement regimen. Not only do I feel great, I even lost a couple of pounds!

I was diagnosed with epilepsy when I was 13 years old, diagnosed with ADD when I was 14 and at 21, I was diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome. Recently I went to the doctor because I’ve been having migraines and feeling dizzy after my workouts. My blood test showed my cholesterol levels were low and my sugar levels high. However, all my doctor recommended was to stop exercising.

Despite being diagnosed with epilepsy, ADD, and polycystic ovary syndrome, I feel great! I have energy, no migraines, no dizziness and I even got my period back! I am even able to concentrate better on work!

-Monica D.

New Study Validates Ketogenic Diet for Epilepsy Treatment in Adults

Epilepsy can be caused by a variety of different conditions including head trauma, infection, brain tumor, and stroke, but by and large most cases of epilepsy have no readily identifiable cause. Epilepsy affects some 2.3 million adults in America and close to half a million children. Further, about one in 26 people will be diagnosed with epilepsy at some point in their lives. It’s been estimated that there are approximately 150,000 new cases of epilepsy diagnosed in the United States each year and overall about $15.5 billion in medical costs as well as lost earnings and production are attributed to this disease.

The mainstay of treatment for epilepsy is pharmaceutical intervention. As I recently noted, more and more we are seeing surgical procedures being performed for those individuals who have not had a significant improvement with drugs. I indicated that at least some individuals are gluten sensitive and may benefit from a gluten-free diet which potentially could keep them from undergoing potentially life-threatening surgery as a treatment for their epilepsy.

But it is also important to understand that there’s another extremely effective dietary intervention that has proven itself quite useful in the treatment of epilepsy.

Continue reading

Epilepsy & Gluten Sensitivity

Epilepsy.  It affects 3 million Americans and generally we as treating neurologists do not know the cause.  Certainly in some cases the cause is readily identifiable, but most cases of epilepsy are what we call “idiopathic,” meaning we don’t understand the cause.  The go-to treatment for epilepsy is using anti-convulsant medication.  That said, let’s have a look at another perspective on what we should be thinking about in terms of this sometimes devastating situation.

Will P.

My name is Will. I’m 42 years old and have been diagnosed with epilepsy since the age of 14. Additionally, I have been diagnosed with hypothyroidism and stomach ulcers. Over the past 5 years my health has been deteriorating steadily. My weight was up to 355lbs as well. My wife was getting very concerned that I may not be with her much longer. When she read a book about gluten and its effects on the body, she realized almost immediately that I fit into either the celiac or gluten intolerance category (we still aren’t sure which one).

I read the book after she did and we decided to try going without gluten for two weeks to see if there was any truth to it.

What a difference this has made. I was on medication for my stomach issues (heartburn and stomach upset), thyroid medication, and Dilantin and Tegratol for my epilepsy. Not only have my aches and pains subsided, but I am no longer taking ANY medication. I have been off my stomach and thyroid meds for at least 4 months and I feel great. I have now been off my epilepsy meds for 6 weeks with no seizures or any repercussions what so ever.

-Will P.

The Ketogenic Diet fights Alzheimer's, epilepsy, and more, says the NIH

Ketogenic Diet Benefits

If you’re a part of our community on Facebook, you may remember seeing a study I recently posted regarding the long-term impacts of the ketogenic diet in a study of obese patients. The study, available thanks to the US National Library of Medicine and the NIH, had some very interesting findings on the impact of diet on brain and body health, and my post on the subject saw a lot of traction. Because of that, and because the findings have such importance, I wanted to share the research with you here. The study shows that the ketogenic diet has efficacy as a treatment for Alzheimer’s, epilepsy, depression, migraines, and many other illnesses that plague huge portions of our population. I encourage you to read this study and to learn more.