Can A Ketogenic Diet Help Treat Bipolar Disorder?
Bipolar disorder can disrupt every part of your life, including your job and your relationships. Medicine and talk therapy can help control the severe high and low mood swings, depression, and mania symptoms. You might have also considered trying alternative therapies, like diet changes. Although changing your diet won’t cure bipolar disorder, there is some evidence that certain food choices can help. One diet in particular, the ketogenic diet, has the potential to benefit people with this condition, according to limited research. The ketogenic diet has been around since the 1920s. It’s a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet that mimics the state your body would go into if you were fasting. Normally, carbohydrates, namely glucose, supply your body and brain with energy. Glucose is the brain’s preferred source of fuel. When you cut carbs from your diet, fat takes over as your body’s primary energy source. The liver breaks down fats into substances called ketones, which are naturally higher in energy than carbohydrates. Ketones travel through your bloodstream to fuel your brain. There are two variations of the diet: On the classic ketogenic diet, you eat a ratio of 3:1 to 5:1 fats to protein plus carbohydrates. In other words, three to five times the amount of fat compared to protein and carbs combined. The bulk of your diet is made up of fats from foods like fish, such as sardines and salmon, butter, red meat, avocado, chicken, eggs, cheese, coconut milk, seeds, and nuts. Most of your carbs come from vegetables. On the medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) diet, you get about 60 percent of your total calories from a type of coconut oil. You can eat more protein and carbs on the MCT diet than you would be able to on the classic ketogenic diet. Research over the years has fou Continue reading >>
Is The Ketosis Diet The Most Powerful Aid For Depression?
The western world is in the grip of a terrible malaise. Depression has been earmarked by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as the fastest growing health problem right now and expects it to be that way for many years to come. But why? What gives? Do they know something we don’t? Or is it, in fact, that people just don’t really understand Depression and are blithely wandering into its clutches because they just can’t see it coming? Well, I obviously don’t have all the answers, but I’m going to tell you what I’ve learned over the years with my research into food and health matters. The first piece of information worth considering is the old quote “You are what you eat”. Or the version attributed to the “Father” of Western medicine “Let your food be your medicine and your medicine be your food”. Now, I remember my A-Level chemistry, and I was pretty good at it, and I remember that the bottom line is that you can’t make certain compounds if the ingredients for those compounds are not present in the reaction vessel. Your body is the reaction vessel in this instance, and therefore it stands to reason that if you don’t get enough, say, Iron in your diet, you will find your body exhibiting symptoms which are caused by a lack of Iron. Pretty simple stuff, right? Right. Except that during the whole time that Depression has been becoming the world’s number one disease, the ‘official line’ on dietary recommendations has stressed the importance of not eating too much fat. Low-fat carbs have been the order of the day, and we have probably all seen one version or another of that Special K woman on our screens literally thousands of times. She seems to be doing alright on it… what’s the problem? Well, my money is on the fats. It takes a bit of hea Continue reading >>
5 Compelling Reasons To Stick With A Ketogenic Diet
Chances are if you’re like me, you can come up with a million reasons not to do something healthy. Wouldn’t it be cool if you could come up with a million reasons to change your life for the better? Well, it won't be a million. It’ll be five, and it’ll be about the ketogenic diet. The ketogenic diet is helping people all over the world lose weight, get healthy and feel better. However, like with any lifestyle change, you’re going to experience some resistance. If you’re only armed with one reason to do something, you could get overwhelmed by the horde of self-sabotage that lurks in the corners of our brains. That’s why, for me, it’s important to come up with a smorgasbord of good reasons to keep doing something healthy. If the only positive I was getting from the ketogenic diet was simply weight loss, I think I could talk myself out of it just to indulge in the fleeting pleasures of an afternoon muffin. But armed with multiple, interesting and cool benefits of the ketogenic diet, I can keep those harlot muffins where they belong: in apocalypse-proof plastic wrapping, next to the rack of children’s sunglasses near my drugstore checkout line. Smile, Baby! The ketogenic diet is low-carb and very, very low in sugar. Sugar and refined carbs are the main culprits behind tooth decay, causing certain bacteria in your mouth to overfeed and release excess acid, which causes cavities. The absence of sugar and carbs keeps these bacteria from going bananas, and as a result, you have a much slimmer chance of developing cavities and gum disease. You might think that not getting cavities is not really that great of a reason, but have you paid for a cavity as an adult? It costs more than taking an entire family to Disneyland. I’d personally prefer to go on Space Moun Continue reading >>
I Went On The Silicon Valley Diet Craze That Encourages Butter And Bacon For 2 Months — And It Vastly Improved My Life
Bacon became my new best friend on the ketogenic diet.Business Insider A diet that goes against conventional wisdom on healthy eating is gaining momentum among Silicon Valley tech workers. And it involves eating a lot of fat. The ketogenic, or "keto," diet — which first became popular in the 1920s as a treatment for epilepsy and diabetes — limits carbohydrates to no more than 50 grams a day, which is the rough equivalent of a plain bagel or a cup of white rice. By comparison, dietary guidelines laid out by the US Department of Agriculture recommend consuming between 225 and 325 grams of carbs a day. On the keto diet, the body goes into starvation mode and taps its fat stores for fuel. Studies suggest the low-carb, high-fat diet may promote weight loss, dull hunger, and stave off age-related diseases. More research is needed on its long-term effects, especially in healthy people. An increasing number of health nuts — from the internet entrepreneur Kevin Rose to the podcaster Tim Ferriss — swear by the keto diet. I spent the past two months eating bacon, butter, and avocados to see why the keto movement is so popular. I am no stranger to diets. I've cut sugar, counted points on Weight Watchers, and swapped solid food for Soylent, a venture-capital-backed meal-replacement shake. Here's me eating a doughnut.Melia Robinson/Business Insider I gave up breakfast for a week and drank this caffeinated meal-replacement shake instead » But those usually don't last long. I love food. I'm a chronic snacker. Melia Robinson/Business Insider When I first learned about the keto diet, it caught my interest because dieters could eat seemingly unlimited amounts of healthy fats, like cheese, nuts, avocado, eggs, butter — foods that have high "point values" on Weight Watchers and a Continue reading >>
A Keto Diet – The Best Way Of Fighting Cancer, Depression And Autism
According to numerous studies, nutritional ketosis is the answer against a variety of ailments such as autism, depression and cancer. A ketogenic diet will shift your metabolism from burning carbs to burning fats. The diet involves consumption of healthy fats and almost no carbs, so the body can burn fat for energy. You can get most of the healthy fast from avocados, macadamia nuts, grass-fed meat, coconut oil and organic eggs. When in ketosis, the body will produce compounds called ketones which it can later use as fuel. The main goal is to make your body enter ketosis first – not through starvation, but through the removal of carbs from the diet. Once you do this, the cells will use ketones as primary energy source, effectively burning your excess pounds. Avoiding carbs is surely the best way of losing weight. A ketogenic diet forbids the consumption of carbohydrates and keeps the protein consumption at a moderate level. The diet is mostly based on high-quality health fats, which stimulate the body it to burn fat and produce ketones which can then be used as a primary fuel source. The fact that cancer cells feed on sugar has been known for a long time, which is why the ketogenic diet forbids the consumption of sugar and carbs. The normal cells in our body can shift their metabolism to burn fat, but cancer cells can’t, which is why a keto diet is so effective against cancer. According to one study, a keto diet is most effective against gastric, prostate and colon cancer. Dr. Eugene Fine from the Einstein College of Medicine believes that ketone bodies fight cancer by changing the energy processes in the cells. A preliminary study by Dr. Fine and his colleagues showed that the process of ketosis is directly responsible for partial remission and a more stable conditi Continue reading >>
Ketogenic Diet Benefits
I should title this episode "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Doctor's Office." I set out to get a physical and my blood work done about a week ago, and a terrific snowstorm whipped up while I was en route - coming down so fast there was nothing you could do but crawl along, and visibility was greatly diminished. Multiple people were sliding, some off the road. By the time I arrived at the office, I was extremely anxious, and remained so for the rest of the appointment. The doctor was pleased that my weight was down, and I told her I'm trying a ketogenic diet and that I'm avoiding gluten. She explained to me that she too, avoids gluten. My blood was drawn shortly before I left the office, and the roads were still horrible, but I made it home fine, after passing by many accidents. My fasting glucose came back in at 53. 53!!?? I wasn't faint, and besides that isn't any where close to where my glucose monitor reads in the morning. My hemoglobin A1C was near the top of within normal limits. I was flummoxed when I read the report. I called them and they suggested I have repeat blood work done in 3 months, after which I will meet with my doctor again. I'm wondering if the anxiety had anything to do with these weird numbers. I don't want to be THAT ketogenic. Oh well. Continue reading >>
Your Brain On Ketones
The modern prescription of high carbohydrate, low fat diets and eating snacks between meals has coincided with an increase in obesity, diabetes, and and increase in the incidence of many mental health disorders, including depression, anxiety, and eating disorders. In addition, many of these disorders are striking the population at younger ages. While most people would agree that diet has a lot to do with the development of obesity and diabetes, many would disagree that what we eat has much to do with our mental health and outlook. I believe that what we eat has a lot to do with the health of our brains, though of course mental illness (like physical illness) has multifactorial causes, and by no means should we diminish the importance of addressing all the causes in each individual. But let's examine the opposite of the modern high carbohydrate, low fat, constant snacking lifestyle and how that might affect the brain. The opposite of a low fat, snacking lifestyle would be the lifestyle our ancestors lived for tens of thousands of generations, the lifestyle for which our brains are primarily evolved. It seems reasonable that we would have had extended periods without food, either because there was none available, or we were busy doing something else. Then we would follow that period with a filling meal of gathered plant and animal products, preferentially selecting the fat. During the day we might have eaten a piece of fruit, or greens, or a grub we dug up, but anything filling or high in calories (such as a starchy tuber) would have to be killed, butchered, and/or carefully prepared before eating. Fortunately, we have a terrific system of fuel for periods of fasting or low carbohydrate eating, our body (and brain) can readily shift from burning glucose to burning what ar Continue reading >>
Your Food And Your Mood: Carbs, Depression, And Cognitive Decline
We are all too familiar with the obesity and diabetes epidemics that plague our society. These are not the only epidemics we are facing. The United States spends about $215 billion annually on orthopedic surgeries, cancer is catching up to heart disease as the number one killer in the U.S., and we also suffer from chronically low moods and neurodegeneration as we age. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the prevalence of antidepressants is up 400% when compared to the last couple decades, and Alzheimer’s disease costs this country $100 billion annually. That is not a typo - 400% and $100 billion. Could it be that our current recommended dietary guidelines are a contributing factor to this epidemic? The answer is most definitely yes. Disclaimer: I do not think that diet is the only underlying issue here. We are chronically overstressed, sleep deprived, vitamin D deficient, sedentary, and tend to spend a lot of time alone. Those are all contributing factors to the decreased mood seen in this country. However, for today we are going to focus on nutritional aspects that are major contributing factors. The Possibilities of Eating Low Carb We are encouraged by the USDA to eat a diet high in carbohydrates and low in fat. A study performed in 2012 and published in the Journal of Neurobiology and Aging put 23 older adults on a six-week diet that was either low carb or high carb. Although depressive mood was unchanged, there were reductions in weight, fasting glucose, waist circumference, and fasting insulin, as well as improvements in the verbal memory test of the low-carbohydrate group.1 This study lasted only six weeks, yet showed increased cognitive ability for an older population with mild cognitive decline. What would happen if we ate like this al Continue reading >>
The Current Status Of The Ketogenic Diet In Psychiatry
Go to: Abstract Background The ketogenic diet (KD) has been used in treatment-resistant epilepsy since the 1920s. It has been researched in a variety of neurological conditions in both animal models and human trials. The aim of this review is to clarify the potential role of KD in psychiatry. Results The search yielded 15 studies that related the use of KD in mental disorders including anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). These studies comprised nine animal models, four case studies, and two open-label studies in humans. In anxiety, exogenous ketone supplementation reduced anxiety-related behaviors in a rat model. In depression, KD significantly reduced depression-like behaviors in rat and mice models in two controlled studies. In bipolar disorder, one case study reported a reduction in symptomatology, while a second case study reported no improvement. In schizophrenia, an open-label study in female patients (n = 10) reported reduced symptoms after 2 weeks of KD, a single case study reported no improvement. In a brief report, 3 weeks of KD in a mouse model normalized pathological behaviors. In ASD, an open-label study in children (n = 30) reported no significant improvement; one case study reported a pronounced and sustained response to KD. In ASD, in four controlled animal studies, KD significantly reduced ASD-related behaviors in mice and rats. In ADHD, in one controlled trial of KD in dogs with comorbid epilepsy, both conditions significantly improved. Conclusion Despite its long history in neurology, the role of KD in mental disorders is unclear. Half of the published studies are based on animal models of mental disorders with limited generalizability to the analog Continue reading >>
Ketosis & Depression
According to the British National Health Service, or NHS, ketosis results when too many ketones build up in your blood. Ketones are chemicals that your body produces as a byproduct of burning fat for fuel. Ketosis is a goal of some very-low-carb diets. Some people may experience increased symptoms of depression during ketosis because their bodies may have a hard time producing the mood-elevating chemical called serotonin. Video of the Day Carbs are your body's fuel of choice. When your body has very little carbohydrate available -- as it would after a week or so on a very-low-carb diet -- it is forced to start breaking down and using fat for energy. This process is called fat metabolism. The byproducts of fat metabolism include ketones, which are acidic chemicals that exit your body through urine and breath. Depressed people typically have a persistent feeling of sadness, worthlessness and emptiness. There are many possible reasons for depression; in some cases, depression results from a lack of the brain chemical serotonin, a compound that makes people feel naturally happy. According to MayoClinic.com, having too little serotonin can disrupt communication between your brain cells, making depression worse. Your body has to make serotonin; you can't get it from the food you eat. MedlinePlus explains that your body uses tryptophan, a type of protein, to make serotonin. You can find tryptophan in protein-rich foods like turkey, eggs and fish -- all foods that are allowed on a low-carb diet. So it would seem that people on low-carb diets should have all the tryptophan they need to make serotonin in excess, but that's not the end of the story. There is a tiny amount of tryptophan available compared to all the other kinds of protein in eggs. Since only so much protein can cro Continue reading >>
Carbohydrate Intake And Depression – Q&a
Question: I’m a 45 year old female. I currently weigh 221lbs. I’ve lost 30lbs in the last three months. My protein intake is roughly 120 to 130 grams per day. I’m limiting my carb intake to 180 to 200 grams a day. I suffer from life long depression and I find that when I limit by carb intake I slowly slide into a depressed state after two or three months (it’s happening to me now). My sleep is disturbed, I develop anxiety I’m bitchy as hell and I’m dragging ass. Is there a correlation between carb intake and production of neurotransmitters? If so, how can I eliminate the effect lower levels of carbs is having on me? Any information is greatly appreciated. Answer: Dieting in general tends to lower serotonin in the brain and this can cause depression in susceptible people. Interestingly, this effect seems to be more likely to occur in women than men (women being more susceptible to depression in general). In my experience, low carbohydrate/higher proteins diets tend to be even worse in this regards for reasons I’ll explain now. First and foremost, nutrient intake per se affects the production of neurotransmitters with the effects being both direct and indirect. In a very direct way, specific amino acids are the precursors for specific neurotransmitters in the brain. Tryptophan is a precursor for serotonin in the brain and the amino acid tyrosine (as well as phenylalanine which converts into tyrosine in the body) is the precursor for dopamine (and subsequently adrenaline/noradrenaline). As an extreme example of this, researchers will sometimes use something called acute tryptophan depletion (accomplished by providing an amino acid solution containing all of the amino acids except tryptophan) to drastically lower brain levels of serotonin. This is used to test Continue reading >>
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Low-carb Diet = Depression??? Not So Fast!
I’ve noticed a few blogs on the internet recently and posts within our Community from people asking about the effects of Atkins on their sleep or whether doing Atkins would increase their risk of depression. I’ve addressed this topic before, but I thought it would be a great time to revisit it. One study that was well publicized in the past followed a group of adults who were separated into two weight-loss groups: a very low-carb plan and a restricted-calorie, moderately high-carb plan. Both groups lost about the same amount of weight over a year—30 pounds. But, according to the researchers, the low-carb group reported higher levels of anger, depression and confusion vs. the higher-carb group. The researchers suggested a link to better serotonin (a neurotransmitter involved in mood) synthesis with the higher-carb group while the low-carb group had lower levels of serotonin. Concluding that higher carbohydrate intake can increase serotonin concentrations in the brain, while fat and protein reduce concentrations. But it’s just not that simple. Even the researchers suggest that more studies need to be done to support this theory. Let’s start with this indisputable fact: The body needs tryptophan to make serotonin. No one denies this—tryptophan is an essential amino acid, and we need it for all sorts of things, including making serotonin. Tryptophan is a good guy. But no one knows just how much is needed; nor does anyone know exactly how much serotonin we need to make in order to “not be depressed”. What we do know: Depression is a function of an Internet-like maze of interrelationships between serotonin, dopamine, beta-endorphins and other neurotransmitters like norepinephrine and epinephrine. The making of any of these chemical messengers can be influenced Continue reading >>
Is The Ketogenic Diet The Cure For Depression And Anxiety?
>>Shop Amazon!<< I discuss the effects of a Ketogenic Diet with Alternate Day Fasting on Mental Health. My experiences with anxiety and depression during periods of Ketogenic Fat Adaptation. Intermittent Fasting and Keto are very powerful weapons in the arsenal against mental health issues. I believe it may be a cure for mental illness at least in my situation. I also go over Tryptophan as a building block for Serotonin. So a bad diet may cause depression as well. Stress reduction and dopamine regulation are also key factors. Support this channel and more content… New Music by Wes Derrickson Like me on Facebook >>Shop Amazon!<< Continue reading >>
Why A Low Carb Diet May Not Be Best For You
Does Low Carb = Low Energy? I have yet to meet a woman on a long-term, low carb diet who is loving life. I’m here to explain why I think this may be the case. While we have, collectively, reacted to the low-fat brainwashing of the past half-century, with a defiant, “Fat rules!” attitude, this zeal may be taking us too far astray. I am passionate about the ancestral diet and everything implied by “going back to our roots”, but I also raise a brow at more rigid interpretations, assumptions, and academic flourishes about true replication of a Paleolithic diet. We’ve relinquished Darwin and redeemed Lamarck, so the truth is that we can evolve (or devolve) within one generation. Adaptations to stress and environmental exposures can change our biology and impact our grandchildren. Thanks to the work of Weston Price, we may not have to go back as far as the Paleolithic to send the body a signal of safety. As recently as the early 1900s, he found traditional cultures flourishing, many with incorporation of agricultural foods like grains and legumes. That said, we also know that the microbiome plays a powerful role in adaptation to these foods, and that some of our guts may not be up for the challenge. Back in my self-experimentation days, I spent two months on a carb-restricted diet, kicking starchy veggies, fruit, and grains to the curb. I felt great for two weeks, and not a day after. I felt cloudy, tired, and started obsessing about moisturizer and conditioner. Perhaps this is most relevant for those with a history of compromised thyroid function, as the Jaminets have discussed, but I believe it’s relevant to many women. Many Body Types = Many Right Diets I look to the Hadza whose women foster gender-distinct microbial profiles, ostensibly related to their cons Continue reading >>
Gestational Ketogenic Diet Programs Brain Structure And Susceptibility To Depression & Anxiety In The Adult Mouse Offspring
Abstract The ketogenic diet (KD) has seen an increase in popularity for clinical and non-clinical purposes, leading to rise in concern about the diet's impact on following generations. The KD is known to have a neurological effect, suggesting that exposure to it during prenatal brain development may alter neuro-anatomy. Studies have also indicated that the KD has an anti-depressant effect on the consumer. However, it is unclear whether any neuro-anatomical and/or behavioral changes would occur in the offspring and persist into adulthood. To fill this knowledge gap we assessed the brain morphology and behavior of 8-week-old young-adult CD-1 mice, who were exposed to the KD in utero, and were fed only a standard-diet (SD) in postnatal life. Standardized neuro-behavior tests included the Open-Field, Forced-Swim, and Exercise Wheel tests, and were followed by post-mortem Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) to assess brain anatomy. The adult KD offspring exhibit reduced susceptibility to anxiety and depression, and elevated physical activity level when compared with controls exposed to the SD both in utero and postnatally. Many neuro-anatomical differences exist between the KD offspring and controls, including, for example, a cerebellar volumetric enlargement by 4.8%, a hypothalamic reduction by 1.39%, and a corpus callosum reduction by 4.77%, as computed relative to total brain volume. These results suggest that prenatal exposure to the KD programs the offspring neuro-anatomy and influences their behavior in adulthood. Introduction The ketogenic diet (KD), a known treatment for intractable epilepsy, has been recently found efficacious in treating and/or managing a variety of other conditions; from type-II diabetes, to Alzheimer's disease and cancer (Veech et al. 2001; Van der Continue reading >>