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MediumWest Sat, Jul-18-20 21:19

LC/Keto for Parkinson's, other neuro diseases
Hello! in 2011-2012, I lost 100 pounds on lazy Atkins. In 2013, I gained half of it back. I've stayed within 175-185 since, probably because I have to walk at least six blocks to get to a grocery store. For the last year, I've been pretty much a junk food vegetarian.

In 2016, I was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease. This week, I found a study from 2018 that put 47 Parkinson's patients on either a low-fat or a keto diet for eight weeks. Both groups saw improvements, but the keto group had more improvement of non-motor as well as motor symptoms.

Low‐fat versus ketogenic diet in Parkinson's disease: A pilot randomized controlled trial is not behind a paywall. Near the bottom of the page, open the tab labeled "Supporting Information" and you can download both the "Low Fat Standard Diet Plan" and the "Ketogenic Standard Diet Plan", which include shopping lists and recipes for eight weeks of meals. From the paper, "The ketogenic plan provided 1,750 kcal per day composed of 152 g of fat (67 g saturated), 75 g of protein, 16 g net carbohydrate, and 11 g of fiber".

I've reached a point where I have unpredictable "off" time, ie, when my medication doesn't work very well. I fell and broke my knee cap in March, and I broke a couple of ribs two weeks ago. I'm interested in doing it, but it would mean eating meat again, which I stopped for ethical reasons, and I'd spend a lot more time fiddling around with food. When I did LC before, I was a very plain cook. Scrambled eggs in butter, a couple of plain burgers and a sliced cucumber in vinegar and olive oil, a couple of string cheeses and slim jims on the road.

I haven't looked closely at the low fat option ("1,750 kcal per day composed of 42 g of fat (10 g saturated), 75 g of protein, 246 g net carbohydrate, and 33 g of fiber") because I tried Pritikin, Ornish, etc back in the 90's, and when I could stay on the diet for a week or two, I'd start getting cold, cranky, and sleepy during the day.

Has anyone else here used LC/keto therapeutically against Parkinsons, Alzheimer's, ALS, etc? What have your experiences been?

teaser Sun, Jul-19-20 09:12

Link didn't work for me, so I googled the title, just sticking this here in case it works better for others.

Kristine Sun, Jul-19-20 14:18

Hi MW, welcome. I'm very sorry to hear of your diagnosis. :( If it were me, I'd definitely go with a therapeutic ketogenic diet, although I'm not that well versed on all the sciencey details. It sounds like you already know what would happen on a low-fat diet. That's been the unfortunate experience of a lot of us here!

I wouldn't be doing it vegetarian - in fact, I'd probably go full carnivore because there's so much that can be neurotoxic in plant foods, but if that's your ethical decision, there are ways to do it. :thup:

Amy Berger wrote a book called The Alzheimers Antidote, focusing on ketogenic nutrition for that disease. I haven't read it (I hope I don't ever have to), but I think there's a lot of crossover when it comes to different brain/neurological conditions and diet.

Dr David Perlmutter might be someone you want to look up. I believe he's a neurologist. Here's a short video he did about a study on a few Parkinson's patients. He wrote a book called Grain Brain, which I also have not read. ;) I'm a terrible reader., as for just about all topics related to low carb nutrition, is an excellent resource. They even have vegetarian ketogenic meal plans and recipes. :thup:

Maybe someone with more background will chime in here, but I hope that helps a bit. Best of luck to you.

cotonpal Sun, Jul-19-20 16:08

Originally Posted by Kristine

Maybe someone with more background will chime in here, but I hope that helps a bit. Best of luck to you.

I'm not the person with more background but another person to check out is Dr Terry Wahls and her book "The Wahl's Protocol" She has MS and reversed it through diet and believes that her protocol will help anyone suffering from these kinds of neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's, that she believes have a common cause in cellular dysfunction.

Ms Arielle Sun, Jul-19-20 19:16

I second the advice to follow the Wahls protocol. She went from wheelchair to walking in stunning time.

I raise meat animals and totally understand your ethics standing. However, right now, your health is in need of critical nutrients.

Perhaps compromise with grassfed/organic eggs and conventional meats otherwise. (Also remember that monoculture grain production is not better for the land.....)

MediumWest Sun, Jul-19-20 22:30

Originally Posted by teaser

Link didn't work for me, so I googled the title, just sticking this here in case it works better for others.

Thanks! I checked and saw that the link I'd entered had an extra http tag in front. I haven't figured out how to edit a post yet. But I think the link you included has more interesting related articles on the sidebar.

MediumWest Sun, Jul-19-20 22:33

Kristine, Jean, Ms Arielle, thank you for the suggestions. I'll check them out.

JEY100 Mon, Jul-20-20 04:01

The Charlie Foundation has a page on Parkinsonís and offer a few variations of the Ketogenic diet.

Dr Perlmutter has quite a few studies on his website.

And second Dr Terry Wahls as a source. Her website is quite wide-ranging now for studies on various diseases. Her diet has three levels of strictness to offer some flexibility.

Kristine Mon, Jul-20-20 04:53

I completely forgot about Dr Wahls. I second/third/fourth that. :)

cotonpal Mon, Jul-20-20 05:51

Here's the link to Dr Wahl's website:

She's starting an online course this Wednesday that includes direct group coaching by her but it is pricy. I don't know your financial situation but I thought I would mention it just in case it is something you can afford. e68310bb1

I do recommend reading the book which costs a lot less.

teaser Mon, Jul-20-20 07:40

I hope these guys get to do a bigger study. The meal programs are interesting--some of the keto recipes look like I might actually try them. I've done weird stuff with cauliflower and mio/koolaid type sugar free drink flavouring before, for a sort of cooked fruit feel, the cauliflower/pecan oatmeal looks interesting.

I see both a disadvantage and an advantage here--having such a well-fleshed out program right down to recipes takes out the guess work. And you can't criticize them for not making the keto 'keto' enough--they go right down to counting out raspberries. Blood ketones don't look all that high, but there was some weight loss going on, it's hard to say what would happen once body weight stabilized for a long period if the diet stayed the same.

I also like that there doesn't seem to be a strong bias here, or at least it doesn't seem to have made it into the write up. I get the feeling they would have been just as happy to report greater improvements in the low fat group as in the ketogenic group.

I'm schizoaffective bipolar. Been eating some sort of Atkins approximate approach for over ten years, more towards the ketogenic end for the last five years or so. Did better on Atkins than on the SAD, but had some residual auditory hallucinations that showed up when I was using loud machinery, that disappeared after I did a fairly long stint on a strict ketogenic approach--around 4:1, like the classic ketogenic diet for epilepsy, but I backed down to something more like 3:1 fat to carbs/protein grams. I tend to get more anxious when I go out of ketosis, especially socially. I have found it useful when being strict to have some set go-to meals that I know the ratios for.

But thinking back--on low fat, when I was dieting, that often brought me 'up' as well, although you have to be careful with bipolars--was I up because of the diet, or was I finally dieting, low fat like I thought you ought to at the time, partly because I was a bit hypomanic, or at least more up than down, in the first place? With the keto effects on mood I'm fairly certain, because I can pretty much steer things one way or the other with the diet with a good deal of predictability.

Sorry to hijack...

JEY100 Mon, Jul-20-20 07:47

Dr Wahl's became well-known after her TedX talk, and Dr Perlmutter has been on PBS specials, so our library has all the books on their diet plans with the studies, and their cookbooks.
My mother had Parkinsonís, so I understand your wanting to search all options. A PubMed search offers some more studies:

WereBear Tue, Jul-28-20 10:55

I had an autoimmune condition trending towards the severe January before last. I started with Dr. Wahls' Protocol, moved into a strict elimination diet, and wound up heavily Carnivore. Got amazing results AND lost 40 pounds strictly as a bonus.

My diet has settled into grass-fed beef, humanely raised pork, free range eggs, and wild salmon. As budget permits I use pastured dairy products as much as possible, but now we are in the "condiment" area, along with avocado, berries and cherries, and chocolate.

And that's it. That's all I eat. But it does wonders for me; what works for you might be different. But it is well worth exploring. Do the best you can.

MediumWest Fri, Jan-21-22 11:52

Wow! Thank you for all the replies! I just found my login after a year and a half. I forgot about low carb until recently, when my symptoms have been getting worse. I have been reading about the work of Dr. Matthew Phillips, in New Zealand, who has done trials of keto vs. low fat in Parkinsons and, more recently, Alzheimers patients. I know this is the way I need to go, but I am a sugar addict.

WereBear Fri, Jan-21-22 14:11

Originally Posted by MediumWest
. I know this is the way I need to go, but I am a sugar addict.

A lot of us are. But it does get better. Eating a lot of protein and fat is key to recovery for me, but others do well on one of Dr. Wahls' vegetable heavy menus.

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