Mechanisms of action for the medium-chain triglyceride ketogenic diet in neurological and metabolic disorders

High-fat, low-carbohydrate diets, known as ketogenic diets, have been used as a non-pharmacological treatment for refractory epilepsy. A key mechanism of this treatment is thought to be the generation of ketones, which provide brain cells (neurons and astrocytes) with an energy source that is more efficient than glucose, resulting in beneficial downstream metabolic changes, such as increasing adenosine levels, which might […]

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Effect of Depression and Diabetes on the Risk for Dementia

Although depression and type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM) may independently increase the risk for dementia, no studies have examined whether the risk for dementia among people with comorbid depression and DM is higher than the sum of each exposure individually. It was  performed a national population-based cohort study of 2 454 532 adults, including 477 133 (19.4%) with […]

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Poor fitness linked to weaker brain fiber, higher dementia risk

Scientists have more evidence that exercise improves brain health and could be a lifesaving ingredient that prevents Alzheimer’s disease. In particular, a new study from UT Southwestern’s O’Donnell Brain Institute suggests that the lower the fitness level, the faster the deterioration of vital nerve fibers in the brain. This deterioration results in cognitive decline, including […]

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The Nervous System and Metabolic Dysregulation

A link between metabolism and brain function is clear. Since ancient times, epileptic seizures were noted as treatable with fasting, and historical observations of the therapeutic benefits of fasting on epilepsy were confirmed nearly 100 years ago. Shortly thereafter a high fat, low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet (KD) debuted as a therapy to reduce seizures. This strict regimen […]

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How the Food You Eat Affects Your Brain

When it comes to what you bite, chew and swallow, your choices have a direct and long-lasting effect on the most powerful organ in your body: your brain. So which foods cause you to feel so tired after lunch? Or so restless at night? Mia Nacamulli takes you into the brain to find out.

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Neuroprotective and disease-modifying effects of the ketogenic diet

The ketogenic diet has been in clinical use for over 80 years, primarily for the symptomatic treatment of epilepsy. A recent clinical study has raised the possibility that exposure to the ketogenic diet may confer long-lasting therapeutic benefits for patients with epilepsy. Moreover, there is evidence from uncontrolled clinical trials and studies in animal models […]

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How Sugar Affects the Brain

When you eat something loaded with sugar, your taste buds, your gut and your brain all take notice. This activation of your reward system is not unlike how bodies process addictive substances such as alcohol or nicotine — an overload of sugar spikes dopamine levels and leaves you craving more. Nicole Avena explains why sweets […]

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Low-Carbohydrate Diet Superior to Antipsychotic Medications

Dr. Palmer described the experiences of two adults in his practice with schizoaffective disorder who had tried a ketogenic diet. Whereas schizophrenia is characterized primarily by psychotic symptoms, people with schizoaffective disorder have to cope not only with psychosis but also with overlapping periods of severe mood symptoms. Signs of psychosis include paranoia, auditory hallucinations, visual hallucinations, intrusive thoughts/images, and/or […]

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The Central Role of Dietary Fat in Forging the Human Brain

There has been a great deal of speculation concerning the dramatic and rapid rate of encephalization of the human brain over the course of our hominin evolution. Our closest primate relative, the chimpanzee has a brain volume of only about 275–500 cm3; only the chimpanzee’s brain hasn’t really changed at all in 7 million years. […]

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