We have solid evidence showing that a ketogenic diet reduces seizures in children, sometimes as effectively as medication. Because of these neuroprotective effects, questions have been raised about the possible benefits for other brain disorders such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis, sleep disorders, autism, and even brain cancer. However, there are no human studies to support recommending ketosis to treat these conditions.
Long-term use of the ketogenic diet in children increases the risk of slowed or stunted growth, bone fractures, and kidney stones. The diet reduces levels of insulin-like growth factor 1, which is important for childhood growth. Like many anticonvulsant drugs, the ketogenic diet has an adverse effect on bone health. Many factors may be involved such as acidosis and suppressed growth hormone. About one in 20 children on the ketogenic diet develop kidney stones (compared with one in several thousand for the general population). A class of anticonvulsants known as carbonic anhydrase inhibitors (topiramate, zonisamide) are known to increase the risk of kidney stones, but the combination of these anticonvulsants and the ketogenic diet does not appear to elevate the risk above that of the diet alone. The stones are treatable and do not justify discontinuation of the diet. Johns Hopkins Hospital now gives oral potassium citrate supplements to all ketogenic diet patients, resulting in one-seventh of the incidence of kidney stones. However, this empiric usage has not been tested in a prospective controlled trial. Kidney stone formation (nephrolithiasis) is associated with the diet for four reasons:
The ketogenic diet reduces seizure frequency by more than 50% in half of the patients who try it and by more than 90% in a third of patients. Three-quarters of children who respond do so within two weeks, though experts recommend a trial of at least three months before assuming it has been ineffective. Children with refractory epilepsy are more likely to benefit from the ketogenic diet than from trying another anticonvulsant drug. Some evidence indicates that adolescents and adults may also benefit from the diet.
I’d heard recommendations of using only egg whites with psyllium, but whole eggs are more convenient. Besides, egg yolks are a natural leavener, so including them, makes the bread rise better in combination with the baking powder. Fortunately, whole eggs worked! It turns out that my friend, Lisa from Low Carb Yum, used whole eggs in her coconut flour psyllium husk bread, too.
Implementing the diet can present difficulties for caregivers and the patient due to the time commitment involved in measuring and planning meals. Since any unplanned eating can potentially break the nutritional balance required, some people find the discipline needed to maintain the diet challenging and unpleasant. Some people terminate the diet or switch to a less demanding diet, like the modified Atkins diet or the low-glycaemic index treatment diet, because they find the difficulties too great.
I don’t know anyone doing keto with cardiac issues, but yes for diabetes. I’ve noticed though many doctors are not promoting keto at all and it’s disappointing to be honest. I hope you’ll find out what works for you or at least your doctor will research it before saying it isn’t a good idea. Anyway, sound advice can be found from Jimmy Moore who has been doing keto for years and years and his website and podcasts are full of interviews with doctors. He’d probably be the best source of info for your condition. Best of luck to you!
One downside to a ketogenic diet for weight loss is the difficulty maintaining it. “Studies show that weight loss results from being on a low-carb diet for more than 12 months tend to be the same as being on a normal, healthy diet,” says Mattinson. While you may be eating more satiating fats (like peanut butter, regular butter, or avocado), you’re also way more limited in what’s allowed on the diet, which can make everyday situations, like eating dinner with family or going out with friends, far more difficult. Because people often find it tough to sustain, it’s easy to rely on it as a short-term diet rather than a long-term lifestyle.
Epilepsy is one of the most common neurological disorders after stroke, and affects around 50 million people worldwide. It is diagnosed in a person having recurrent, unprovoked seizures. These occur when cortical neurons fire excessively, hypersynchronously, or both, leading to temporary disruption of normal brain function. This might affect, for example, the muscles, the senses, consciousness, or a combination. A seizure can be focal (confined to one part of the brain) or generalised (spread widely throughout the brain and leading to a loss of consciousness). Epilepsy can occur for a variety of reasons; some forms have been classified into epileptic syndromes, most of which begin in childhood. Epilepsy is considered refractory (not yielding to treatment) when two or three anticonvulsant drugs have failed to control it. About 60% of patients achieve control of their epilepsy with the first drug they use, whereas around 30% do not achieve control with drugs. When drugs fail, other options include epilepsy surgery, vagus nerve stimulation, and the ketogenic diet.
Flax meal, or ground flaxseeds, plays a dual role in baking: it acts as a flour and egg replacement. Flaxseeds are a super food because they contain the highest levels of alpha lipoic acid of all plant foods, an essential fatty acid otherwise thought to be found in fish that promotes healthy brain function. Two tablespoons contain 4 grams of carbs and 3 grams of protein.
Hi Carl. I had never heard of it and upon research, it appears that Smucker’s (the parent company) does not make it available for sale in the States. I looked at the ingredients and it lists: cracked wheat, cracked rye, cracked and whole flax seeds and rice. At 27g carbs and 5g fiber, it would me my whole days worth of carbs. However, some people who do low carb diets can eat 100 carbs a day and still lose/maintain weight. If this is you, it might be something you can have. Most people on a ketogenic diet avoid grains as they tend towards inflammation. Other’s would not eat this product because it would cause too much of an insulin spike for them. I hope I answered your question. -Kim
What a great post. I thought i would add about the selection of food you eat on keto and that everyone is different. Some food gives you energy and some doesnt, this varies person to person. I started and quit keto 3 times before i managed to find my balance. The first few times it made be poorly, from the shock of diet change. However, you can wean yourself into the diet which i did the last time when i had the most success.
The primary outcome was the change from baseline to week 16 in hemoglobin A1c. Changes in all variables were analyzed by the paired t-test or Wilcoxon signed-ranks test, as appropriate. Linear regression analysis was used to examine predictors of change in hemoglobin A1c. A p value of 0.05 or less was considered statistically significant. Statistical analysis was performed using SAS version 8.02 (SAS Institute, Cary, NC).
Made this today for my husband. It is delicious. I used coconut oil (the hard kind) and added 1 tsp of cinnamon. Only problem is that it did not crisp up. It’s more “bendy” than crispy. Not dry enough. Definitely baked it long enough. Should I use less coconut oil next time. Any ideas. Thanks. I will definitely make again because the taste is awesome.
But I just made some biscuits from an old cooking book, which had Almonds grounded (so I just used my almond flour) & I switched sugar for some xylitol & then thought I’d use the Coconut flour in place of ordinary Plain Flour! I did it cup for cup, so it was 2/3 cup……remembered about needing more liquid, so I added an egg (receipt already had 150g butter, which I put in 160g) They taste nice, but I think maybe I should have reduced the coconut flour, after reading your points, or added another egg, or more butter, what would you do? They also have an almond on top. thanks, Pam
A systematic review in 2018 looked at 16 studies on the ketogenic diet in adults. It concluded that the treatment was becoming more popular for that group of patients, that the efficacy in adults was similar to children, the side effects relatively mild. However, many patients gave up with the diet, for various reasons, and the quality of evidence inferior to studies on children. Health issues include high levels of low-density lipoprotein, high total cholesterol, and weight loss.
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of a low-carbohydrate, ketogenic diet (LCKD) in overweight and obese patients with type 2 diabetes over 16 weeks. Specifically, we wanted to learn the diet's effects on glycemia and diabetes medication use in outpatients who prepared (or bought) their own meals. In a previous article, we reported the results observed in 7 individuals ; this report includes data from those 7 individuals along with data from additional participants enrolled subsequently.
If there is a certain amount of glucose available in the blood, the body will choose to burn that as energy before it burns fats. This obviously prevents you from entering ketosis. While the general recommendation for most people is to shoot for 40 grams of carbs or below on a daily basis, this is actually somewhat relative to the individual. I will often go by percentages, saying that between carbs, proteins, and fats, carbs should make up between 5-10% of total calories.
Advocates for the diet recommend that it be seriously considered after two medications have failed, as the chance of other drugs succeeding is only 10%. The diet can be considered earlier for some epilepsy and genetic syndromes where it has shown particular usefulness. These include Dravet syndrome, infantile spasms, myoclonic-astatic epilepsy, and tuberous sclerosis complex.
I made this today and the flavor is outstanding! My only thing about it I’m not completely thrilled with is the lack of clumps of nuts and seeds. I put some pecan pieces in hoping they would form some clumps with the nuts, but it didn’t really help. I’m wondering if a thicker liquid would make a difference. Perhaps Sukrin gold syrup instead of coconut oil and sweetener? Could maybe add some maple flavoring to it. You might not be able to find Sukrin in the UK, but it is accessible through Amazon. Would maybe some of your followers from the US have an opinion about this?
These take care of my bread craving. And, being a person who didn’t want to start out by purchasing a donut pan, I used and 8×8 glass pan; greased and lined (the bottom) with parchment paper. The recipe has the consistency of pudding before it sets and easily conforms to the pan. Also, since I used a glass pan, I lowered the temperature to 325 degrees, cooking time was the same. I cut my ‘donut cake’ into 6ths and it’s delicious. I also I don’t add the topping. Thank you for this recipe.
For cavatelli: cut dough into 4 pieces, roll out into even-sized logs and slice off even-sized pieces. This will ensure evenly-sized pasta. Lightly dust the board and pasta pieces with coconut flour. Place a piece on the board and using a knife press the dough towards you, angling the knife tip upwards as you press (see post for gif images), making the pasta curl into shape.
After going low-carb, I was resigned to never eating a satisfactory brownie ever again. And then... I made these brownies. Holy smokes! I followed the directions on the back for the fudgy brownies and they were everything I wanted in a brownie (basically a low carb version of what I used to get from those Gihardelli high carb mixes from Costco) AND sugar free/low carb!
This is a wealth of information. My husband and I are starting the keto diet tomorrow and I knew nothing about it. When I sat down to look up information about it, I found this. Thank you! This is everything I need to know in one place. We are not as healthy as we’d like to be and I am optimistic this will help us obtain our goals, along with an exercise plan.
Absolutely love this flour. My husband and I are living a low carb lifestyle and this just makes it so easy for us to stay on track. In the last two weeks, I have made a turkey pot pie, a pizza crust, breaded deep fried perch, cheese biscuits, sausage biscuits and gravy, and buttermilk biscuits, and we loved everything we have made with it. Awesome that we can stick to our low carb diets and still treat ourselves.
While there are many almond-flour pastas advertised as low carb, be sure to triple-check the label. Many brands contain more carbohydrates than you’d believe. Al Dente Carba Nada contains over 24 grams of total carbohydrates, or 17 grams net carbs[*]. Fiber Gourmet, also advertised as low carb, contains over 40 grams of total carbohydrates per serving and 3 grams of sugar[*].
5. Ciao Carb: Like Carba-Nada, there are still plenty of carbs in this pasta, but fewer than traditional pasta, at 17 grams per serving after subtracting the fiber. Made with a variety of soy, gluten, wheat, and egg, in my opinion these don’t come anywhere near the wholesomeness of the bean pasta varieties at the top of this list. But if you’re looking for something that looks like pasta and tastes like pasta, without quite as much carby-boom, this will do it for you!
The first modern study of fasting as a treatment for epilepsy was in France in 1911. Twenty epilepsy patients of all ages were "detoxified" by consuming a low-calorie vegetarian diet, combined with periods of fasting and purging. Two benefited enormously, but most failed to maintain compliance with the imposed restrictions. The diet improved the patients' mental capabilities, in contrast to their medication, potassium bromide, which dulled the mind.