Ketogenic Diet Therapy
The ketogenic (“keto”) diet is a high fat, very low carbohydrate, whole food-based diet that is a proven medical nutrition therapy. It forces the body into burning fat (“ketosis”) instead of sugar. The positive effects of keto therapy are not new; the Bible references a convulsing child who stops seizing when deprived of food. Until the 1930s, the keto diet was the front-line treatment for epilepsy in the United States.
The keto diet has been proven to help a wide variety of populations including those with epilepsy, Alzheimer’s, glioblastoma, autism, and migraines. It has also been adopted by many as an effective method to lose weight. Achieving a healthier weight often improves high blood pressure and insulin resistance; these sometimes resolve entirely and medications are reduced or stopped all together.
Keto has also caught on with endurance athletes. With keto, they can achieve being “keto adapted”–the body’s transformation from needing frequent carbohydrate sources during prolonged activity to using the body’s largest energy reservoir–body fat. Having the body trained to tap into body fat leads to better performance and less “bonking/hitting the wall.”
The keto diet is a purposeful manipulation of the body’s metabolism and therefore should always be done under medical supervision with close monitoring by a registered dietitian and physician.