Friday, December 13, 2013

"The Nervous System and Metabolic Dysregulation: Emerging Evidence Converges on Ketogenic Diet Therapy"

Fascinating.

"The KD might offer fewer chronic negative side effects than medication, and given that it has been in use for over 90 years, serious or systematic negative consequences would likely have surfaced by now."

Indeed. They make a strong case in this paper that epilepsy is effectively glucose poisoning...

"Converging lines of evidence suggest the utility of a KD for pain relief. First, it has long been known that reducing glucose metabolism influences pain. There is an overall increase in pain thresholds (and thus reduced pain) when glycolytic enzymes are inhibited..."

"...Thus, we predicted that the KD, which reduces glucose metabolism and is anticonvulsant, would reduce pain."

I've certainly noticed this effect since adopting a very-low-carb diet. I have a scar on my arm now from falling down steps. I didn't even notice the injury to my arm until I was in the shower many hours later. It's been a consistent reduction in pain from injury... And I get injured pretty frequently with the sports I do. ;)

"A better understanding of the relationship between metabolism and pain could help multiple and comorbid conditions, and the KD might prove uniquely useful against diabetes and diabetes-related neuropathy. Although work with rodents has produced mixed results (Al-Khalifa et al., 2009, 2011; Garbow et al., 2011; Park et al., 2011; Poplawski et al., 2011), clinical studies have found exclusively positive outcomes: after KD treatment, patients with type I or II diabetes had improved control of blood glucose, and many could have their medications reduced or eliminated (Gumbiner et al., 1996; Yancy et al., 2005; Westman et al., 2008; Dressler et al., 2010). In addition, type I diabetic patients (and, based on one report, children with epilepsy) prefer foods that are high in fat and low in carbohydrates (Amari et al., 2007; Snell-Bergeon et al., 2009), which might be attempted self-medication."

Only a doctor is dumb enough to prescribe more poison to a patient suffering from glucose poisoning...

Although polyunsaturated fatty acid content of the KD seems not to be important in the diet’s anticonvulsant effect (Dell et al., 2001; Dahlin et al., 2007), it might be a crucial characteristic for KD influence on inflammation.

It might seem ironic that the KD is discussed here as reducing inflammation, given that other high-fat diets and obesity are definitely linked to chronic inflammation (Thaler and Schwartz, 2010; Ding and Lund, 2011; Laugerette et al., 2011). Those high-fat diets that lead to obesity, including the so-called Western diet, include a high amount of fat along with normal amounts of carbohydrate, a crucial difference from the very low-carbohydrate KD which typically leads to weight loss (Gumbiner et al., 1996; Halyburton et al., 2007; Tendler et al., 2007; Westman et al., 2008). Thus, the high-fat-plus-carbohydrate diet promotes fat storage whereas the high fat, low-carbohydrate diet promotes fat metabolism.

This is fascinating. Not sure what they mean in the first paragraph. My bet would be that increased omega-6 polyunsaturated fat increases inflammation, even on a ketogenic diet, and is responsible in large part for the negative effects on obesity of the "Western diet".

A key part of my personal diet is avoiding omega-6 fats. The diet used to induce metabolic disruption in lab animals contains a large portion of omega-6 fat.