Ketogenic Diets, Reviewing This Approach As a Treatment of Epilepsy and Seizures

Ethel Gonzales

Ketogenic Diets is such a valuable book that it should be the first point of education for foundational knowledge for all people involved with the Ketogenic Diet for the reduction of seizures in epilepsy – parents and professionals alike. It has “saved the lives ” of thousands of children with seizures and epilepsy who were previously unresponsive to traditional treatment with anti-epileptic drugs or surgery. Using the Keogenic Diet has brought life and joy back into families who had lost hope for their epileptic child, who, once on the diet, reportedly gradually regain alertness, energy, happiness and lost physical milestones.

All 4 contributing authors of Ketogenic Diets (John Freeman now deceased, in Jan ’14, although his legacy will live forever) work at the Johns Hopkins Hospital and are absolutely eminent and influential in their field, including the use of the Ketogenic Diet to reduce seizures in situations of refractory epilepsy. Their contribution to the lives of so many families is unimaginable.

John Freeman: Paediatric Neurologist and ethicist, founding Head of the John Hopkins Paediatric Division of Paediatric Neurolgy and Head of the Birth Defects Clinic.

Eric Kossof: Associate Professor of Neurology and Pediatrics, “has dedicated his career to investigating and researching the impact of putting children and adults with epilepsy on a 90% fat diet to control their seizures.”

Zahava Turner: Dietician.

James Rubenstein: Neurodevelopmental paediatrician.

The concept of this once controversial but amazing diet, which contains up to 90% fat and very little protein or carbohydrate, forces the brain to break down fats for the body’s need of energy, because of the absence of the normal source of energy, glucose. Although recognized as early as the 1920, it was Freeman who re-instigated this approach to treating refractory epilepsy in the 1980’s,adhering to his ethics and withstanding professional criticism.

The book states clearly that the Ketogenic Diet cannot be approached lightly. It requires total commitment and discipline of the parents. The meal preparation needs are time consuming, precise and constant. It is essential to have the Ketogenic Diet managed and supervised by a neurologist and dietician, because despite the amazingly positive outcomes for 60% of people using the diet, significantly children, there are potentially serious side affects which need regular and constant monitoring. It must be the joy of success and the evidence of regained developmental loss that fuels the parents determination along this difficult path of strictly adhering to the Ketogenic diet.

In it’s 5th edition, the authors now have included over a decade of scientifically analysed data as well as exciting current research to explain how the diet works, exactly how it needs to be used, how and when it can be modified with a little flexibility ( including the Modified Atkins Diet for Epilepsy).

Also included in the book are personal anecdotes of success, practical applications and recipe ideas that embrace multicultural cuisine and ethnicity. The style of writing in Ketogenic Diets is easily understood for the layperson, but with significant detail for professionals making it highly recommended as a resource for anyone associated with the Ketogenic Diet.

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