This specific diet rests on the three basic factors, those being high quantity of the fat, low in carbohydrates and proper quantities of protein. The diet in question is formed in such a manner so as to mimic numerous changes, biochemical in nature, which is known to occur inside the body once it undergoes a prolonged starvation period. It was introduced to the general public sometime in the 1900s. Back then, this particular type of diet was employed in the treatment of epileptic seizures in children, mostly during the 1920s and 1930s. But given the fact that in the course of time there came to be developed numerous medications, anticonvulsant ones as well, this type of diet soon became a time of the past. Though there may have been some mishaps that turned people away from it, the fact remains that this diet is not a fad diet. Instead, it has been confirmed as a medically approved alternative treatment technique, which is, most of all, employed in the treatment of children suffering from epilepsy, especially those specific cases whose control is made extremely difficult due to the severe nature of the illness in question.
It is a wide known fact that food abstinence has been employed by people, either for religious reasons or purely personal, for centuries. But it is only at the beginning of the 1920s that more concrete discoveries were made. Another thing that was spontaneously discovered is that all the effects of food abstinence could be replicated by means of adhering to the diet that abounded in fats, and was poor in carbohydrates. The direct consequence, or rather effect, of this was the burning of fats utterly and completely. And the leftover from the burned fat was comprised of ketones in the blood.
Even though this diet slowly disappeared from the list of the treatment techniques due to the development of anticonvulsants, in 1994 the children who suffered from the above-mentioned illness were treated with great success by means of this diet.
Ketogenic diet under the microscope
The basic principles according to which this diet is governed, have been mentioned above. In addition, what needs to be mentioned as well is that the calories are always kept under a rigorous control, for if measured up properly, the child in question is surely not to lose or gain any above normal additional weight and the growth process will also be unhindered.
What this particular diet stimulates refers to the metabolic effects, which arise in the course of the starvation process. Once the person’s body reaches starvation-mode, glucose is the first substance to be used up, as well as glycogen, both of which are kept aside as energy sources. Once used to their full length, the body starts to burn up all the fat that it has in store. But when there is no glucose left, our body is unable to burn the fats completely, thus bringing about the formation of ketone bodies. And it is exactly these bodies that have shown the potential in suppressing and eliminating epileptic seizures.