Statin Effects Of Low-carb Diets
A recent study published in the online journal Lipids in Health and Disease demonstrates that low-carbohydrate diets act in much the same way statin drugs do to reduce cholesterol. Before we delve into what this study shows, lets take a moment and discuss the synthesis of cholesterol in the body. Although every cell can make cholesterol, most is made in the liver and small intestine. The fact that every cell can make cholesterol should at least imply that cholesterol is a pretty important molecule, which indeed it is. Most of the cholesterol in the body is made in the cells, but about 15 percent of it comes from the diet. When a cell needs cholesterol it has two places from which to get it: it can make it and/or it can get it from the blood. Usually it does both. If the cell makes cholesterol it goes through the multi-step process shown above. If the cell wants to get cholesterol from the blood, it synthesizes little protein structures called LDL receptors that it sends to the surface of the cell. Once on the surface of the cell these receptors bind to LDL-cholesterol in the blood and transport it into the interior where the cholesterol is released for use by the cell. As in all synthesis pathways there is a single reaction in the long chain of reactions that is the rate-limiting one, the reaction that determines the overall output of the pathway. In the case of cholesterol synthesis this reaction is the step shown in the diagram below in which hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA (HMG-CoA) is converted to mevanolate, catalyzed by the enzyme HMG-CoA reductase. Scientists have known for years that the enzyme HMG-CoA reductase is the rate-limiting enzyme in the entire cholesterol synthesis cascade. They figured that if they could design a drug that would interfere with this enzyme, Continue reading >>
Ketogenic Diet And Epilepsy
What is Epilepsy? Epilepsy is a chronic neurological disorder that is associated with a disruption in the normal electrical activity within the brain. The main symptom of this abnormal brain activity results in repeated seizures, which can range from brief lapses to severe and prolonged convulsions. Epilepsy is a variable condition that can differ in its impact from person to person. There are over 40 different types of seizures that people can experience. The classification of seizures is based on how much of the brain is affected: Partial (or focal) seizures= affects a small part of the brain Generalised seizures= where most or all the brain is affected Epilepsy is classed as one of the most common neurological diseases as it affects 50 million people worldwide, occurring at any age. What Causes Epilepsy? There exist several causes of epilepsy including genetic, environmental and physiological factors. All of which modify neuronal function or cause functional changes within the brain. The most common form of epilepsy, which affects 6 out of 10 people, is known as idiopathic epilepsy. The exact cause for this type of epilepsy remains unknown, with genetic factors appearing to be key. The presence of a family history is known to enhance an individual’s risk for developing epilepsy (1). For all other types of epilepsy that exists, the cause is believed to be secondary to an environmental or physiological factor. The term epileptogenesis is what is given to describe the development of the state of epilepsy (2). Such causes include: Brain damage Severe Head Injury Stroke An infection in the brain i.e. meningitis Brain tumours Certain genetic syndromes Is There a Cure for Epilepsy? At present, there is currently no known cure for epilepsy. However, there does exist some v Continue reading >>
The ketogenic diet is one of the oldest treatments for epilepsy, especially in children with difficult-to-control seizures. It’s a special high-fat, low carbohydrate diet recommended for children whose seizures have not responded to treatment with traditional anticonvulsant medications alone. A high level of carbohydrate intake can be correlated to the lack of seizure control and dietary modifications to reduce the intake of high carbohydrate substances is a cornerstone of the ketogenic diet. In addition to dietary changes and monitoring nutritional intake, compounded medications that conform to the ketogenic diet can be taken to increase the diet’s effectiveness in controlling seizures. They are an excellent alternative to commercially manufactured medications because they contain no sugar or sorbitol and are carb free. Contemporary pharmacy compounding is the process of preparing customized medications for individual patients. We formulate compound medications that fit the dietary and nutritional requirements of a ketogenic diet by using the raw chemical, rather than the commercially available drug. Commercially available tablet and liquid forms of medication may contain lactose and other carbs which reduce the effectiveness of the ketogenic diet in controlling seizures. We recommend liquid medications rather than crushing tablets and dissolving them in a liquid. Particles of the crushed tablet may not dissolve completely and there is a risk of clogging a feeding tube. Many commercially available liquids do not clog the feeding tube, but are not sugar or carb free. The ingredients used in specially compounded liquid medicines comply with the guidelines of the ketogenic diet. A compounding pharmacist, working closely with your child’s pediatrician can prescribe m Continue reading >>
Is The Ketogenic Diet Safe For Everyone?
Is a ketogenic diet safe for you? Is a ketogenic diet safe? Before you try this at home… First and foremost, if you pick up a copy of Jimmy Moore and Dr. Eric Westman’s excellent new book, Keto Clarity (which I highly recommend–see my review here) and feel (understandably) inspired to immediately embark on a ketogenic diet, I would caution anyone with a serious chronic health problem, especially anyone who is taking prescription medications, not to attempt a ketogenic diet on his/her own without medical supervision. Medications and Early Ketosis Even though I personally believe in the power of ketogenic diets to improve and even reverse many chronic illnesses, from diabetes to chronic fatigue to mood disorders, the diet does this by causing very real shifts in body chemistry that can have a major impact on medication dosages and side effects, especially during the first few weeks. Examples of problematic situations include sudden drops in blood pressure for those on blood pressure medications (such as Lasix, Lisinopril, and Atenolol), and sudden drops in blood sugar for those on diabetes medications (especially insulin). These changes in blood pressure and blood sugar are very positive and healthy, but the presence of medications can artificially intensify these effects and cause extreme and sometimes dangerous reactions unless your dosage is carefully monitored by you and your clinician in the first month or so. Another important example of a medicine that would require careful monitoring is Lithium, an antidepressant and mood stabilizing medicine. The ketogenic diet causes the body to let go of excess water during the first few days, which can cause Lithium to become more concentrated in the blood, potentially rising to uncomfortable or even toxic levels. These Continue reading >>
You hear a lot about fad diets and why you shouldn't use them and all of them have unusual pseudo-scientific sounding names. You'd be forgiven then for thinking that perhaps the ketogenic diet was just another such fad, but you would be off the mark. The ketogenic diet rather than being used for weight loss or muscle building is a diet used to control refractory epilepsy (particularly in children) and is thus a vital tool for many sufferers and their parents (and no, not suitable for dieting... ). Here we will look in a bit more detail at what the ketogenic diet entails, how it works to help treat epilepsy and how to go about following it. The Diet The diet consists of a lower (but adequate) intake of both dietary protein and carbohydrates along with a higher intake of fat. The ketogenic diet contains a 4:1 ratio of fat to combined protein and carbohydrate giving you an idea of just how much to reduce protein and carbs and how much to increase fat. This then simulates to some extent the results of fasting in which the body ends up burning fat as its major source of energy – except in that case there is normally no new fat being added to the body. When an individual fasts then their body will burn stored fat leading to weight loss and this will provide the energy the body needs while leading to weight loss and there will be no new fat coming in. In the ketogenic diet the body is still forced to turn to fat as its main fuel source as it is there in the highest quantities, except here that fat is also being replenished in the diet leading to less weight loss. It is highly important for the diet to still contain adequate amounts of protein and carbohydrates however as these provide some energy that is more readily accessible and at the same time provide the amino acids th Continue reading >>
Diabetes & Ketogenic Diet: Can You Manage Your Diabetes On A Ketogenic Diet?
In this article we will cover what a Ketogenic diet is and if you can manage your diabetes while on this diet. Ketogenic diet for diabetics is a highly controversial topic, but we will break down everything here for you! As a Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE), I have to tell you from the start I will have a biased view here. Sorry, but I feel that I need to be completely honest right up front! I will however, present all the evidence that is available currently on the subject. As a CDE, I have been taught to follow the American Diabetes Association Dietary Guidelines for Americans which is low in carbohydrates, high in fiber, with fresh vegetables, fruits and whole grains. The Ketogenic Diet this article will be discussing is much lower in carbohydrates, in order to promote the state of nutritional ketosis, or the fat burning state for weight loss. What is a Ketogenic Diet? The Ketogenic Diet is a low carbohydrate diet, consisting initially of less than 20 carbohydrates per day. Not per meal, yes, you heard me correctly, per day. It is not for the faint of heart and yes I am writing from experience. Of course I have tried it! Hasn’t everybody in America at some point who has wanted to lose weight? Does it work you ask? Of course it does! The problem is how long can you keep it up? Your body uses the carbohydrates you eat for energy, so if we restrict how many carbohydrates we eat, the body has to get its fuel source from fat. A byproduct of this fat burning state are ketones which are produced; this is called nutritional ketosis. You can determine if you are in this fat burning state by purchasing urine ketone testing strips from your local pharmacy. The Ketogenic Diet with Diabetes Some precautions must be made clear; this diet is not appropriate for people with any Continue reading >>
Quieting The Bipolar Mind: Can A Ketogenic Diet Stabilize Mood?
Disclaimer: Please note that I am in no way endorsing nutritional ketosis as a supplement to, or a replacement for medication. There is very little data actually supporting the use of a ketogenic diet as a treatment for bipolar, and a well-documented case where a bipolar patient on valporic acid developed full-blown mania with psychosis after starting a ketogenic diet (thanks to @neurocritic for pointing me to this report; read about it below). This post talks about the theory behind using keto for bipolar disorder and a few recorded clinical cases. Bipolar disorder is often described as a dizzying, sinister and emotionally draining roller-coaster ride. It is marked by dark periods of severe depression interspersed with mania or hypomania – insane energy levels, difficulty concentrating, distorted thinking, euphoria and thoughts that tumble around and around in the brain. To date there is no cure for bipolar disorder, but mood swings can be managed effectively with lithium or anti-seizure medication, such as valporic acid. While effective in many cases, these drugs unfortunately come with a price: in some women lithium may lower thyroid levels causing rapid cycling of depressive-maniac cycles; valporic acid may increase the level of testosterone in young women leading to disruption of menstrual cycles and excess body hair. Many drugs also suffer from the “rebound effect”, where suddenly stopping the medication may worsen bipolar symptoms. In many cases, using a lower drug dose may minimize side effects, but sometimes at the cost of decreased efficacy. What if there’s an alternative way –say, a diet – to stabilize mood in conjunction with drugs? Lucky for mood clinicians, there is in fact a successful pre-existing case: the use of the ketogenic diet to treat Continue reading >>
Can Invokana Trigger Diabetic Ketoacidosis?
Invokana Research has shown that taking the diabetes drug Invokana (canagliflozin) can trigger diabetic ketoacidosis, a potentially fatal condition. Invokana is used to treat Type 2 diabetes. There are more than 450,000 Invokana prescriptions filled every three months in the United States. The drug is made and marketed by Janssen, a partner of Johnson & Johnson. It was the first drug of its kind to treat Type 2 diabetes and drug makers were hopeful it would help patients who did not respond to other diabetes drugs. Sadly, it has been linked to many medical risks, including potentially deadly diabetic ketoacidosis. Type 2 Diabetes Type 2 diabetes is a disease that affects the body’s ability to process insulin. The disease affects about nine million Americans. Over time, it can lead to high blood pressure, heart disease, blindness, kidney disease, damage to the feet and hands, and other health problems. In order for the body to manage sugar and turn it into energy, insulin must help cells absorb it. When this does not happen because of problems with insulin, sugar remains in the blood system, causing blood glucose levels to raise to unhealthy levels. This is why diabetics must pay attention to their blood sugar. About Invokana Invokana is part of a group of drugs known as SGLT2 anti-diabetics. It works by preventing glucose from being reabsorbed by the kidneys. It also allows excess sugar to be let out in urine. Studies have shown Invokana users excrete up to 450 calories of extra sugar in urine. Despite Invokana working for some users, it comes with a variety of side effects. Most are mild and might be a problem with all diabetes medications, including: Yeast infection Urinary tract infection Nausea Fatigue Photosensitivity Increased LDL (bad) cholesterol One of the bi Continue reading >>
The Keto Diet Explained (and Who Does Best On A Ketogenic Diet?)
Eat Right For Your Body Type Diet Series: The Keto Diet Explained (and Who Does Best with a Ketogenic Approach) The keto diet explained is one of a series of posts about eating right for YOUR specific body type. In this post, we’ll explain ketosis, the keto diet and the “ketogenic approach” (a less-rigid, more lifestyle-focused way to apply the principles of ketosis) – and, you might also want to read my rant, here about the use of the word DIET. We’ll also explain who may (or may not) benefit from being in ketosis (using either of these two approaches). First – some definitions. Ketones and ketosis When your blood sugar levels are low, available fuel is low. In response, your liver produces small molecules of fuel (ketones) from fat, to provide the fuel your body needs to function. When you are using ketones for fuel, your body is said to be in a state of ketosis. Why would you want to be in a state of ketosis? Simply, when your body is in ketosis, it becomes incredibly efficient at using stored fat for fuel. Your body finds carbs are much easier to burn, so it can become overly reliant on carb metabolism, and lazy at fat metabolism. That’s where going into ketosis can help – to improve the way you metabolise fats. Pros and cons of ketosis This diet was first developed by doctors in the 1920’s as a treatment for epilepsy, to reduce the frequency of seizures. Although it’s incredibly effective, the use of the keto diet for epilepsy declined as new epilepsy drugs became available. However, the keto diet underwent a revival in the 1990’s and it has been advocated as treatment for a variety of health conditions. Subsequently, numerous studies have shown that compared to other diets, low-carb and ketogenic diets typically result in more effective weigh Continue reading >>
Can Ketosis Help You Pass A Drug Test?
Just like most potheads, I’m into my health and have tried a few different types of diets. I would say that at least half to most of the year, I’m in ketosis. It isn’t too hard to maintain and has a number of health benefits, but can you use ketosis to pass a drug test? Ketosis: Whats is Ketosis? How to do the Ketogenic Diet? When are you Keto-Adaptive? Detox with Ketosis Using Ketosis as a THC Detox Ketosis Can Mess Up Urine Drug Test Results? Trigger a false positive for a urine drug test? How Long Does It Take To Detox Weed With Ketosis? Improving your chances Whats is Ketosis? Ketosis is actually a metabolic state that results from a prolonged lack of carbohydrates in your diet. By cutting carbohydrates from your diet, your body will naturally switch from using glycogen for energy to Fat. When you eat carbs, your body is in the “normal” metabolic state of Glycolysis. That means your body is converting carbs and sugars into Glycogen, a simple and readily available form of energy. Eating carbs triggers insulin, a hormone that travels through the blood and stores nutrients and fat from your bloodstream. When your are in the state of ketogenesis, insulin levels stay almost flat. So instead of storing fat and nutrients like THC into fat cells, your body burns it. top How to do the Ketogenic Diet As stated above, the ketosis diet is simple to follow. Just don’t eat carbs, that means staying away from bread, sweets, fruits, starchy vegetables and sugar. You are only allowed to eat foods high in fats, proteins and fiber. So basically that would include leafy greens, meats and cheeses. Its all so important to note, that increasing your fiber and electrolytes intake is crucial! 90% of all the bad stuff you hear about the ketosis diet is do lack of electrolytes and Continue reading >>
Following A Ketogenic Diet Without A Gallbladder
Since the 1920s, ketogenic diets have been used as a therapeutic method to treat obesity, epilepsy, diabetes, neurological disorders, cancer and many other pathological diseases (1). This very low carbohydrate diet that combines moderate protein consumption with high amounts of quality fats puts the body into a state of fat or ketone adaptation. Following a ketogenic diet without a gallbladder can pose complications because of the body’s inability to adequately secrete bile to break down fatty meals. Fortunately, these 7 strategies will answer your concerns for maintaining ketosis without a gallbladder. What Is Ketosis? When net carbohydrate consumption remains less than 50 g/day (in some cases under 30g/day), insulin concentration reduces and the body begins using stored fat for energy via lipogenesis (1). Following 3 to 4 days of this dietary carbohydrate restriction, the central nervous system (CNS) has an inadequate supply of glucose and must seek other fuel. The alternate energy source the CNS seeks along with tissues and organs is ketone bodies. These ketone bodies are produced at high concentrations in the liver during the metabolic state of ketogenesis which is also attainable during periods of prolonged fasting. The 3 major ketone bodies include acetate, acetoacetate and beta-hydroxybutyrate. Ketosis results in numerous health promoting benefits including: (1) Decreased fatty acid production Increased metabolism of fats and lipids Higher metabolic rate to use ketone bodies Improved mitochondrial function Modified satiety hormones including ghrelin and leptin Regulates blood lipid levels including triglycerides and cholesterol Reduced insulin signaling Improved glycemic control Reduced whole body inflammatory levels Is a Ketogenic Diet Right for You? When nutr Continue reading >>
Ketones To Combat Alzheimer’s Disease
Despite decades of efforts to develop a drug that prevents or cures Alzheimer’s disease (AD), the most prevalent form of dementia afflicting our aging population, there is currently no treatment for this devastating condition. Emerging research suggests that such a miracle treatment might already exist, not in the form of a pill, but as a simple dietary change. A growing number of studies report that interventions to improve metabolic health can alleviate symptoms and reduce brain pathology associated with AD. A popular theory posits that AD has multiple causes, but their common thread may involve metabolic dysfunction. Indeed, markers of poor metabolic health, such as diabetes, inflammation and high cholesterol, are major risk factors for AD. Just like our muscles, the brain requires energy to function properly. Both neurons and muscles have the unique capacity to metabolize ketones as an alternative fuel source when glucose is in short supply, for instance during fasting or on a low-carbohydrate diet. In the 1920s scientists discovered that a high fat diet promoting ketogenesis controlled epilepsy, and ketosis remains one of the most effective treatments for the condition. This raised the possibility that ketones may also be neuroprotective against other diseases that stem from aberrant neural metabolism, such as AD. Since then, research has confirmed that ketones do in fact alter brain metabolism in ways that reduce neuropathology and relieve behavioral symptoms. Ketones alleviate symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease Over the past decade, several studies have supported the clinical value of ketosis in cognitively impaired patients. In a 2004 study twenty individuals with AD or Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) were treated with placebo or medium chain triglycerides, a t Continue reading >>
Epilepsy - Treatment - Nhs
Treatment can help most people with epilepsy have fewer seizures, or stop having seizures completely. medicines called anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) surgery to remove a small part of the brain that's causing the seizures a procedure to put a small electricaldevice inside the body that can help control seizures a special diet (ketogenic diet) that can help control seizures Some people need treatment for life. Butyou might be able to stop if your seizuresdisappear over time. You may notneed anytreatment if you know your seizure triggers and are able to avoid them. Talk to your specialist about the treatments available and which might be best for you. AEDs are the most commonly used treatment for epilepsy. They help control seizures in about 70% of people. AEDs work by changing the levels of chemicals in your brain. They don't cure epilepsy, but can stop seizures happening. The best type for you will depend on things likethe type of seizures you have, your age and if you're thinking of having a baby. Some AEDs can harm an unborn baby see living with epilepsy for more information. If your doctor recommends taking an AED, ask them about the different types available and which is likely to be the most suitable for you. AEDs are available in a number of different forms, including tablets, capsules, liquids and syrups. You usually need to take the medicine every day. Your specialist will start you on a low dose and gradually increase it until your seizures stop. If the first medicine you try doesn't work, your doctor may recommend trying another type. It's important you follow any advice about when to take AEDs and how much to take. Never suddenly stop taking an AED doing so could cause a seizure. If you haven't had a seizure for a few years, ask your doctor if you might be able Continue reading >>
Avoid Unnecessary Drug-related Carbohydrates For Patients Consuming The Ketogenic Diet.
Abstract The ketogenic diet is intended for use in patients with epilepsy whose seizures are resistant to conventional drug therapy. It is a diet high in fat and low in carbohydrate and protein content, and is intended to produce ketosis from the incomplete metabolism of fats. It is safe and effective--many patients with severe, drug-resistant epilepsy show improvement. Limiting carbohydrate intake in patients to obtain the necessary ratio of fats to carbohydrates and protein requires careful planning and, in children, parental involvement. Although the ketogenic diet is professionally planned, an unrecognized source of carbohydrates is prescription and over-the-counter medications. If the carbohydrate content of medications is overlooked, ketosis can be inhibited with potential loss of seizure control occurring. Thus, it is essential for care providers and parents to know the carbohydrate content of medications, including not only the typical sugar content, but also the content of reduced carbohydrate (e.g., glycerin). From information supplied by drug manufacturers, we determined the carbohydrate content of commonly used medications. By knowing the carbohydrate content of these often used medications, the additional carbohydrate content of the medications can be taken into account and adjustments can be made in the ketogenic diet. Continue reading >>
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This article is about a dietary therapy for epilepsy. For information on ketogenic diets as a lifestyle choice or for weight loss, see Low-carbohydrate diet and No-carbohydrate diet. The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, adequate-protein, low-carbohydrate diet that in medicine is used primarily to treat difficult-to-control (refractory) epilepsy in children. The diet forces the body to burn fats rather than carbohydrates. Normally, the carbohydrates contained in food are converted into glucose, which is then transported around the body and is particularly important in fueling brain-function. However, if there is very little carbohydrate in the diet, the liver converts fat into fatty acids and ketone bodies. The ketone bodies pass into the brain and replace glucose as an energy source. An elevated level of ketone bodies in the blood, a state known as ketosis, leads to a reduction in the frequency of epileptic seizures. Almost half of children, and young people, with epilepsy who have tried some form of this diet saw the number of seizures drop by at least half, and the effect persists even after discontinuing the diet. There is some evidence that adults with epilepsy may benefit from the diet, and that a less strict regimen, such as a modified Atkins diet, is similarly effective. The most common adverse effect is constipation, affecting about 30% of patients—this was due to fluid restriction, which was once a feature of the diet, but this led to increased risk of kidney stones, and is no longer considered beneficial. The original therapeutic diet for paediatric epilepsy provides just enough protein for body growth and repair, and sufficient calories[Note 1] to maintain the correct weight for age and height. The classic therapeutic ketogenic diet was develope Continue reading >>