Epilepsy in very young children ranks as one of the most challenging conditions to manage. In the past few years, however, some physicians are turning to high fat low carb ketogenicdiets to provide a solution when drugs fail. And a low carb diet proved the answer recently for a family who felt helpless when it came to their baby’s diagnosis of Lennox–Gastaut syndrome, reported Nature on July 9.
A form of epilepsy, the syndrome results in multiple daily seizures and severe cognitive impairment. As he grew from an infant to a toddler, Elijah continued to become more seriously ill. At age two-and-a-half, he had more than 50 seizures a day, lack of speech and a halt in his cognitive development.
And then his neurologist proposed a high fat low carb ketogenic diet. Dubious initially, the family quickly became believers when Elijah was seizure-free within six weeks of starting the ketogenic diet. The plan consists of 90 percent fat, based on a weight ratio of 3:1 or 4:1 of fat to a combination of protein and carbohydrate.