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High fat low carb ketogenic diet helps with weight loss, epilepsy and well-being

Get insights into ketogenic diets.
Victory Belt Publishing

The high fat low carb ketogenic diet has been in existence for decades. And while celebrities such as Sharon Osbourne and Kim Kardashian are now turning the spotlight on the plan's benefits for weight loss, physicians say that ketogenic diets also are being used more frequently to help control seizures due to epilepsy, reported Medscape News on August 1.

For 60 to 70 percent of people with epilepsy, prescription medication can control seizures. But that leaves a significant number of patients seeking alternatives, among which are ketogenic diets and modified Atkins plans.

And for individuals with epilepsy, the potential for controlling seizures with a diet has ramifications for every aspect of their lives. From their careers to personal lives to emotional and well-being, these patients' quality of life depends on the degree to which they can manage their condition.

But for someone who is obese, setting a goal of losing weight means more than improving one's appearance. It can also extend life, improve depression and help with conditions ranging from diabetes to hypertension. Nutrition experts Ben Greenfield and Jimmy Moore discussed how a ketogenic diet can make a difference with those goals in an August 2 podcast.

Jimmy has authored a new book, "Keto Clarity: Your Definitive Guide to the Benefits of a Low-Carb, High-Fat Diet." He explained to Ben that he utilized the latest research to show how ketogenic diets can transform physical and mental health.

Determining the correct carbohydrate tolerance level constitutes one of the challenges in customizing a high fat low carb ketogenic diet. Achieving nutritional ketosis requires monitoring, and you may need to adjust your percentage of protein and fat.

"A well-formulated low-carb diet by definition is one that is low in carbohydrates to your individual tolerance level, moderate in protein to your personal threshold, and high in dietary fat, mostly saturated and monounsaturated fats," said Jimmy in an exclusive interview. "This is the essence of a ketogenic diet where I'm burning fat for fuel instead of being a sugar-burner."

Because both Paleo diets and ketogenic diets are low in carbohydrates, some dieters assume that they can achieve nutritional ketosis by following Paleo diet guidelines. But it's not that simple. However, "adhering to the real, whole foods promoted by the Paleo diet can improve the micronutrient make-up of your ketogenic diet," said Jimmy.

Also recommending a ketogenic diet is nutrition expert Freda Mooncotch. She credits Jimmy for introducing her to the concept. In an exclusive interview, Freda revealed the benefits.

"My energy skyrocketed and my brain functioned much better," she said. By following a ketogenic diet low in carbohydrates, with moderate protein and high fat, Freda discovered that her own body fat decreased while she experienced improved well-being physically and mentally.

"It was a real eye opener," summed up Freda. And like Jimmy, she recommends combining the principles of a Paleo diet with a ketogenic plan.

"Eat high quality, grass-fed fatty meat and good protein as best as you can. When you have cravings, eat protein rather than carbohydrates," she says.

Freda's own diet usually includes a whey protein shake for breakfast. She exercises and then eats a "burger, bacon and eggs with onions, tomatoes and cucumbers." In addition, Freda consumes more eggs and meat.

For those interested in learning more, Freda recommends books by Dr. Eric Westman and Dr. Stephen Phinney. She also suggests the Atkins diet books.

In addition, Freda praises Dr. Michael Eades, creator of the Protein Power book series. "Dr. Eades has really influenced my protein intake and not worrying about being in ketosis," she added.

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