A high-fat low-carb diet, also known as a ketogenic diet, has been shown to be helpful in controlling seizures in children with epilepsy. A new study suggests that adults with hard-to-manage seizures may also get some benefit from such a diet.
The scientists reviewed 10 studies of diets rich in cream, eggs, butter, bacon, leafy green vegetables and fish. Five were specifically ketogenic diets, while the remainder were modified Atkins-style diets. Not all of the volunteers with intractable seizures responded, but many did.
About one third of subjects with epilepsy had 50 percent fewer seizures on a ketogenic diet. A small number had a remarkable response with a 90 percent or better reduction in seizures. The effects become apparent quickly.
The diet can be challenging to follow, in part because it defies conventional wisdom about a healthy diet. A growing number of physicians has become convinced that ketogenic diets have other health benefits, though, including reducing the risks of diabetes and heart disease. You can learn more from this interview with Dr. Eric Westman.