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Is Breast Milk Ketogenic

The Ketogenic Diet: Cancer Breakthrough Or Madness?

The Ketogenic Diet: Cancer Breakthrough Or Madness?

There has been a lot of buzz recently regarding ketones. As a cancer physician and researcher, I spend a lot of time thinking about ketones throughout the day. But what exactly is a ketone, you may be asking... Ketones are the energy supply our body makes to feed the brain during times of starvation, carbohydrate deprivation, fasting, or even just after a night’s rest. Our cells require a constant amount of oxygen and an energy source for survival. Sugar within the blood can provide a small amount of energy, as can proteins and fats. But when sugar is not around, the body turns to ketone production to feed the brain and other organs and cells. Through fasting and cutting carbohydrates, one can raise the amount of ketones feeding his or her brain and floating around in the body. Not only is this a clinically proven and superior method of weight loss,1–4 but it also has promise as a method of cancer treatment, or at least working together with current cancer treatments.5–8 You see, when ketone production in the body is high, your sugar levels drop, which is important, as cancer cells use sugar for energy.9 There is also a handful of data showing that cancer cells may not be able to use ketones for energy, while normal cells can.10 As an oncologist, when I heard that ketones may selectively starve cancer cells, I was excited and began aggressively researching it. However, with all the chatter on the internet of the dangers of ketones, I have been wondering if all my work regarding the ketogenic diet is putting people in harm’s way as opposed to helping them. I recently got my answer while I was stuck on an airplane. I was seated next to someone who was engaging in a ketogenic diet consisting of pure liquid. His diet was almost 60% fat, mostly in order to produce ke Continue reading >>

Use Of Expressed Breast Milk With The Ketogenic Diet

Use Of Expressed Breast Milk With The Ketogenic Diet

Breastfeeding continues to be the recommended mode of infant feeding with numerous nutritive and nonnutritive benefits to both mothers and babies. The ketogenic diet (KD) is a high-fat, adequate protein, and very low carbohydrate diet prescribed for infants and children with treatment-resistant epilepsy. Due to the high carbohydrate content of breast milk (BM) and the extremely low carbohydrate allowance of the KD, these 2 modes of feeding are typically not used together. We report our experience to demonstrate that BM can be part of a successful KD treatment. A retrospective chart review was performed and 4 patients met criteria. They were younger than 2 years and were fed BM before KD initiation. All achieved ketosis at low (2-3:1) ratios and remained ketotic while using BM. The average amount of BM consumed was 139 ± 50 mL/day, equivalent to 11 ± 4.5 grams of carbohydrates per day. Three patients achieved >50% reduction in seizure frequency within 2 months of treatment. Patients continued using BM for an average of 105 ± 50 days. For all cases, BM was discontinued due to maternal preference. BM is a viable, preferred, carbohydrate source for infants prescribed the KD. “The ketogenic diet (KD) is an effective treatment for infants and children with treatment-resistant epilepsy.” The World Health Organization, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention all recommend exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months of life and continued breastfeeding with complementary foods for 1 year or beyond.1 The digestibility, composition, and immune functions of breast milk (BM) are unique and unmatched by formula. The composition of BM is very complex, including 600 different species of beneficial bacteria and 200 oligosaccharides Continue reading >>

Ketogenic Diet Guidelines For Infants

Ketogenic Diet Guidelines For Infants

History of the Ketogenic Diet in Infants For many decades, the idea of using the ketogenic diet for infants with epilepsy was discouraged. Concerns were raised in chapters and books about the diet that infants were highly likely to become hypoglycemic, have complications, and unlikely to achieve ketosis. Although infants often have seizures, and at times very difficult-to-control seizures, until the 1990s, we also did not have pre-made, commercially-available ketogenic diet infant formulas. Even though most anticonvulsant drugs are not FDA-approved for use in infants, this was the main treatment option for most child neurologists. What’s New Things have changed drastically in the last few years. Published research has shown that not only can infants become ketotic, but they respond very well to dietary therapy. In fact, infantile spasms is one of the established "indications" for ketogenic diet treatment. An article from last year by Dr. Anastasia Dressler from Vienna even stated, "The ketogenic diet is highly effective and well tolerated in infants with epilepsy. Seizure freedom is more often achieved and maintained in infants." Adding to this rising tide of acceptance, the European Journal of Paediatric Neurology published guidelines for the use of ketogenic diets in infancy (defined as less than 2 years of age) this month. This was a group effort from 15 neurologists and dietitians with particular expertise in using ketogenic diet in infancy, convened at a conference in London in April 2015. What does this guideline say? Much of it is information about infants that already has been established and is similar to older children. The authors comment that the ketogenic diet can be helpful for infantile spasms, epilepsy with migrating seizures, and GLUT-1 deficiency (al Continue reading >>

Breastfeeding While In Ketosis: Round 2

Breastfeeding While In Ketosis: Round 2

Since my baby has been growing great, no issues breastfeeding, etc, and I found myself trending lower and lower in my daily carb counts; I decided I was going into full-on Keto again. I tend to average between 20 and 40 carbs per day. After a couple of days with this limit, I noticed Natalie wanted to nurse practically all day long. It seemed like a small drop in supply, as expected. However, the very next day my letdowns seemed normal, and I got the usual breaks between feedings. If some one else is consuming a high carb diet and wants to make the change with younger babies (~4+ months old), I would recommend starting at 100g carbs per day, and cutting 5g each day and monitoring your supply as you go along. More important than carb count while breastfeeding is your water and caloric intake. Be sure to be constantly drinking water; if you feel thirsty then you are already a little bit dehydrated. If you are having trouble with your calorie counts, I highly recommend MyFitnessPal. Great, intuitive site (and love the app!) with an extensive food database. Above all else, I recommend going gradually into ketosis and calorie restriction while breastfeeding, especially if your baby is young, and if you are not at home with the baby for unlimited nursing during the potential conversion. Check out my previous posts on breastfeeding while in ketosis - Low Carb or Keto While Breastfeeding Keto and Breastfeeding Introduction Keto While Breastfeeding: Days 1-5 Keto and the Breastfeeding Diet TIPS Continue reading >>

Babies In Ketosis

Babies In Ketosis

BABIES THRIVE IN KETOSIS Breast milk is naturally very high in fat. If a newborn is breastfed, it spends a lot of time in ketosis and is therefore keto-adapted. Keto-adapted babies can efficiently turn ketone bodies into acetyl-coA and myelin. Ketosis helps babies develop and build their brains. Click HERE to read a great article about Babies in Ketosis. The lean human body is 74% fat and 26% protein (broken down by calories). Fats are a structural part of every human cell and are the preferred fuel source of the mitochondria, the energy-burning units of each cell. A fetus naturally uses ketones before and immediately after birth. Many studies done on pregnant pigs that are placed on ketogenic diets show fetuses with increased fetal brain weight, cell size, and protein content. In the early stages of pregnancy, there is an upsurge in body fat accumulation, which is connected to hyperphagia and increased lipogenesis. In the later stages of pregnancy, there is an accelerated breakdown of fat depots, which plays an important role in fetal development. The fetus uses fatty acids from the placenta as well as two other products, glycerol and ketone bodies. Even though glycerol goes through the placenta in small proportions, it is a superior substrate for “maternal gluconeogenesis.” Heightened ketogenesis in fasting conditions, or with the addition of MCT oils, create an easy transference of ketones to the fetus. This transfer allows maternal ketone bodies to reach the fetus, where the ketones can be used as fuels for oxidative metabolism as well as lipogenic substrates. Fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E, and K which are essential in the formation of healthy fetuses. Full fat dairy is also filled with healthy cholesterol, but I do find some clients to be dairy sensitive. F Continue reading >>

How To Be In Ketosis?

How To Be In Ketosis?

Be a new-born baby reared on breast-milk [1] Use up your glycogen by exercising [3] Eat a high-fat diet [4], low in carbs with moderate protein Take exogenous ketones [5] (aka ketones in a pill) Ketosis is a metabolic state. It is normal for humans to be in and out of ketosis. Once your body starts relying on lots of fat for energy you get into ketosis. So why isn’t it called fatosis? Because when your body burns lots of fat it also turns some of that fat into ketones which then go on to be used for energy too. Is ketosis good for human body? During human evolution, we were probably in and out of ketosis. For instance, seasonal variation for our ancestors often meant little to no sugary and starchy foods which pushed us towards a higher-fat diet. Fatty nutrient dense foods like offal (the weird animal bits such as liver, tongue etc.) were seen as delicacies [6] and thus in high demand. The further North a population lived, the less vegetation was available which meant humans relied more on hunting large animals and gathering small ones (like eggs or insects! [7]). All of the essential micro and macronutrients for humans are found in animals, not plants, which directs human food gathering efforts towards animals (whose meat is low in carbs). Although the argument for ketosis isn’t as simple as “we did it back then so it’s good for us now”, the story of human evolution supports it being a normal metabolic state. In other words, it passes the first evolutionary filter (see more: Do ketogenic diets have a place in human evolution?) Ketogenesis as medicine There are many reasons to be in ketosis given to us by modern science. Lowering insulin resistance [10] (especially for the obese and diabetics) Increased fat oxidation capacity [13]…and many others. Sounds goo Continue reading >>

Lactation

Lactation

(redirected from lactation ketosis) Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Encyclopedia. Lactation Definition Lactation is the medical term for yielding of milk by the mammary glands which leads to breastfeeding. Human milk contains the ideal amount of nutrients for the infant, and provides important protection from diseases through the mother's natural defenses. Description Early in a woman's pregnancy her milk-producing glands begin to prepare for her baby's arrival, and by the sixth month of pregnancy the breasts are ready to produce milk. Immediately after the baby is born, the placenta is delivered. This causes a hormone in the woman's body (prolactin) to activate the milk-producing glands. By the third to fifth day, the woman's breasts fill with milk. Then, as the baby continues to suck each day, nursing triggers the continuing production of milk. The baby's sucking stimulates nerve endings in the nipple, which signal the mother's pituitary gland to release oxytocin, a hormone that causes the mammary glands to release milk to the nursing baby. This is called the "let-down reflex." While the baby's sucking is the primary stimulus for this reflex, a baby's cry, thoughts of the baby, or the sound of running water also may trigger the response. Frequent nursing will lead to increased milk production. Breast milk cannot be duplicated by commercial baby food formulas, although both contain protein, fat, and carbohydrates. In particular, breast milk changes to meet the specific needs of a baby. The composition of breast milk changes as the baby grows to meet the baby's changing needs. Most important, breast milk contains substances called antibodies from the mother that can protect the child against illness and allergies. Antibodies are part of the body's natural defense Continue reading >>

Weekly Q & A – Babies. Ketosis. And Misinformation.

Weekly Q & A – Babies. Ketosis. And Misinformation.

Ok guys, for those of you who were following the blog last summer, you’ve probably wondered where the heck I’ve been the last few months. Don’t worry! I’m still around – I’ve just been really busy providing face-to-face care for folks, and I’ve had less time to write and answer questions online. That being said, I have received some questions in recent weeks, and I want to get back to posting regularly. Do YOU have a nutrition question you’d like answered? If so, please send your question(s) to [email protected] Don’t worry – if you’d prefer your name not be published along with your question, simply let me know, and I’ll keep your identity secret. Now, let's check out this week's question . . . Today we're talkin' about infant nutrition. Can we just take a minute, though, to talk about how baby mugshots were a thing in the '80s? The bow scotch-taped to my bald head really makes the picture. #stylin #beforephotoshop This week’s Q & A format is going to be a little different. It’s really more of a myth-busting post. The myth we're busting is all about the infant diet and ketosis. In the last month, I’ve run into multiple people (in several different online nutrition forums, and also a few in person) who have been told at one point or another that infants, from birth, are in ketosis. The long and short of it is this: Myth: Babies are in ketosis and eat keto throughout infancy, until they transition to a solid-food diet. Fact: Babes are NOT in ketosis and are not eating keto during infancy if they are consuming breastmilk or standard infant formula. The only time that babies are maintained in ketosis is during a medically-supervised ketogenic feeding intervention, with special, prescription formula. The first time I ran into this m Continue reading >>

Babies In Ketosis

Babies In Ketosis

This post topic was inspired by the following article: Ketosis - key to human babies’ big brains? It is hosted on Tim Noakes' website and written by one of his associates in nutritional information misdirection, Tamzyn Murphy Campbell, RD. I'm going to address this misdirection and the disturbing parts of this article vis a vis Campbell in a future BabyGate Files, but for now I want to discuss the role of ketones in metabolism. In doing so, I'd also like to explain my somewhat cryptic recent post on heating my kitchen. (I've C&P'd that entire post to the end further down in this one, so if you don't wish to go to another page, you can just scroll down to The Kitchen Heating Analogy). I'm going to structure this post a little differently than most and get to my point, then provide the back up information. Let's see how this goes. The major source (6 of 12 numbered citations, 1 of 6 unique sources) for her article is: Survival of the fattest: fat babies were the key to evolution of the large human brain (2003) Stephen C. Cunnane, Michael A. Crawford (I'll call this C&C) In this paper, they make the following points: Human babies have higher body fat than other mammals and this may be as a source of ketones in early infancy. Infants have slightly elevated ketones (mild ketonemia) regardless of feeding status which differs from adults who only have elevated ketones when food is restricted (no details here). Glucose is the primary fuel for the human brain Ketones are an alternate source of fuel when glucose is less available Ketones "appear to be" an essential fuel for the midterm fetus, and may provide as much as 30% of the developing brain's needs Ketones are both an energy source and carbon source for fat and cholesterol synthesis in the brain. Campbell relates these so Continue reading >>

Breastfeeding On A Ketogenic Diet

Breastfeeding On A Ketogenic Diet

Breastfeeding on a ketogenic diet: my personal experience Having a baby is one of the most exciting and nerve wracking times in your life, one great big cocktail of emotions. With nine months to prepare, trying to absorb as much information as possible can make you panic rather than put your mind at ease. There’s an abundance of general information on the internet but a lot of this is conflicting and very confusing! I’ll seek to answer the question I know you’ll all be wondering. Breastfeeding on a ketogenic diet: Is it safe? I began my ketogenic journey during pregnancy in preparation for our daughter being born. Searching the internet for information on the ketogenic lifestyle and new mothers, I found the information on breastfeeding on a ketogenic diet was limited and very conflicting. Every mother wants to do what’s best for their child – I desperately wanted to give myself the best chance of breastfeeding our daughter as possible. My ultimate concern was that the keto lifestyle may prevent my ability to do this. I wanted to share my story with you in the hope that it may provide some of that missing resource that i was desperately seeking when my journey first began. The darkness After 12 weeks of being fully keto adapted, I was feeding my baby one afternoon and noticed that she was becoming very frustrated. She had only been feeding for a short while and began pulling at my boob, becoming very restless. Whilst looking for the cause of her frustration, to my horror I realised that my milk had completely dried up! I was immediately overwhelmed with blind panic. A moment of weakness, fuelled by sheer panic and a lack of sleep, resulted in me finding an excuse to get my hands on the forbidden foods – refined carbs and sugar! The cravings part of my brain h Continue reading >>

A Gestational Ketogenic Diet Alters Maternal Metabolic Status As Well As Offspring Physiological Growth And Brain Structure In The Neonatal Mouse

A Gestational Ketogenic Diet Alters Maternal Metabolic Status As Well As Offspring Physiological Growth And Brain Structure In The Neonatal Mouse

Go to: Abstract The use of the ketogenic diet (KD) among women of child-bearing age has been increasing, leading to increased interest in identifying the diet’s suitability during gestation. To date, no studies have thoroughly investigated the effect of a gestational KD on offspring growth. Since ketones have been reported to play a role in cerebral lipid and myelin synthesis, it is particularly important to investigate the diet’s impact on brain anatomy of the offspring. To fill this knowledge gap we imaged CD-1 mouse neonates whose mothers were fed either a standard diet (SD) or a KD prior to and during gestation. Images were collected at postnatal (P) 11.5 and 21.5 using Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Maternal metabolic status was also tracked during lactation, by following their body weight, blood glucose, ketone, cholesterol, and triglyceride concentrations. Results The KD dams exhibit a significant reduction in maternal fertility and litter size, as well as a high risk of developing fatal ketoacidosis by mid-lactation. To increase survival of the KD dams and offspring, fostering of P2.5 pups (from both KD and SD litters) by SD-foster dams was carried out. This resulted in stabilization of blood ketones of the KD dams, and aversion of the fatal ketoacidosis. We also note a slower and smaller weight loss for the KD compared with the SD dams. The average fostered KD pup exhibits retarded growth by P21.5 compared with the average fostered SD pup. An anatomical comparison of their brains further revealed significant structural differences at P11.5, and particularly at P21.5. The KD brain shows a relative bilateral decrease in the cortex, fimbria, hippocampus, corpus callosum and lateral ventricle, but a relative volumetric enlargement of the hypothalamus and med Continue reading >>

Babies Thrive Under A Ketogenic Metabolism

Babies Thrive Under A Ketogenic Metabolism

The Ketogenic Diet for Health Babies thrive under a ketogenic metabolism Some people, even some scientists who study ketogenic metabolism, have the idea that ketogenesis is somehow abnormal, or exceptional; an adaptation for emergencies only. We disagree. One reason we think a ketogenic metabolism is normal and desirable, is that human newborns are in ketosis. Despite the moderate sugar content of human breast milk, breastfeeding is particularly ketogenic. This period of development is crucial, and there is extensive brain growth during it. Although the composition of breast milk can be affected by diet [1], it is reasonable to assume that breast milk has always been ketogenic, and this is not an effect of modernisation. When the brain is in its period of highest growth, and when the source of food is likely to be close to what it evolved to be for that period, ketones are used to fuel that growth. If nothing else, this suggests that learning is well supported by a ketogenic metabolism. It is also consistent with the ability of ketogenic diets to treat a variety of seemingly unrelated brain disorders and brain trauma. In brief Newborn infants are in ketosis. This is their normal state. Breastfeeding is particularly ketogenic (compared to formula feeding). Breastfeeding longer (up to a point) is associated with better health outcomes. This suggests the hypothesis that weaning onto a ketogenic diet would be healthier than weaning onto a high-carb diet. (Mark-up ours) Human babies are in ketosis Soon after birth, human babies are in ketosis, and remain so while breastfeeding [2]. They use ketones and fats for energy and for brain growth. When this has been studied, in the first couple of hours after birth, babies aren’t immediately in ketosis. There is a short delay [3]. Continue reading >>

Babies Thrive Under A Ketogenic Metabolism

Babies Thrive Under A Ketogenic Metabolism

Some people, even some scientists who study ketogenic metabolism, have the idea that ketogenesis is somehow abnormal, or exceptional; an adaptation for emergencies only. We disagree. One reason we think a ketogenic metabolism is normal and desirable, is that human newborns are in ketosis. Despite the moderate sugar content of human breast milk, breastfeeding is particularly ketogenic. This period of development is crucial, and there is extensive brain growth during it. Although the composition of breast milk can be affected by diet [1], it is reasonable to assume that breast milk has always been ketogenic, and this is not an effect of modernisation. When the brain is in its period of highest growth, and when the source of food is likely to be close to what it evolved to be for that period, ketones are used to fuel that growth. If nothing else, this suggests that learning is well supported by a ketogenic metabolism. It is also consistent with the ability of ketogenic diets to treat a variety of seemingly unrelated brain disorders and brain trauma. Newborn infants are in ketosis. This is their normal state. Breastfeeding is particularly ketogenic (compared to formula feeding). Breastfeeding longer (up to a point) is associated with better health outcomes. This suggests the hypothesis that weaning onto a ketogenic diet would be healthier than weaning onto a high-carb diet. (Mark-up ours) Human babies are in ketosis Soon after birth, human babies are in ketosis, and remain so while breastfeeding [2]. They use ketones and fats for energy and for brain growth. When this has been studied, in the first couple of hours after birth, babies aren't immediately in ketosis. There is a short delay [3]. During that brief period before ketogenesis starts, lactate (confusingly not to do Continue reading >>

Breastfeeding & No Carb Diets

Breastfeeding & No Carb Diets

Video of the Day Cutting carbs or calories suddenly can cause your milk supply to dwindle, leaving you struggling to make enough breast milk for your baby's needs. Some moderately low-carb diets have multiple phases, so you might be able to skip the ultra-restrictive early phases and try a diet that gives you some healthy carbs and enough calories to maintain milk production. Aim for slow weight loss of 1 to 2 pounds a week and avoid dieting at all until around eight weeks after your baby's birth. At this point, your milk supply is fully established, so dieting won't derail that process. When you embark on a drastic diet, your body's fat stores may release stored toxins that could get into your breast milk. If your diet restricts carbs, you could also be missing out on vital nutrients that your body needs to support your own and your baby's health. Women on an extremely carb-restricted diet often begin to produce types of chemicals called ketones, and it is unknown whether ketones can get into breast milk or whether they are a danger to a nursing baby. Continue reading >>

Atkins For Breastfeeding Mothers

Atkins For Breastfeeding Mothers

For new mothers, losing weight is probably the furthest thing from their minds and in my opinion, this is exactly as it should be. I think that in our culture mothers are sometimes expected to bounce back to ‘normal’ as though nothing has changed! In reality, everything has changed and you have a lot more important things to think about in those first few weeks or months. As well as getting to know your baby, establishing breastfeeding, adjusting your sleeping patterns and often your expectations you need to try to give yourself time to rest and recover. However, at some point when you feel ready to begin losing the baby weight and you have consulted with your doctor, the Atkins Nutritional Approach is an excellent choice. This is true no matter how you feed your baby but when breastfeeding there are some extra considerations so I’ll focus on these for this article. Won’t breastfeeding make me lose the baby weight? While breastfeeding certainly helps with losing the baby weight more quickly, it’s not a magic fix. Just as you cannot ‘out-train a bad diet’ you can’t ‘out-breastfeed a bad diet’ either! There are many many regular gym goers and marathon runners that are overweight proving that exercise alone will not make you lose weight. In the same way, it stands to reason that if your diet is not good, the extra calories needed for breastfeeding will not make you lose the baby weight either. Should I wait until the baby is weaned? Sometimes you may see the advice to wait until the baby is weaned before starting a diet. However the World Health Organisation say: “Exclusive breastfeeding is recommended up to 6 months of age, with continued breastfeeding along with appropriate complementary foods up to two years of age or beyond.” Obviously, the deci Continue reading >>

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