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Clin Nutr. 2012 Apr;31(2):246-9. doi: 10.1016/j.clnu.2011.09.012. Epub 2011 Oct 20.

Effects of the ketogenic diet on nutritional status, resting energy expenditure, and substrate oxidation in patients with medically refractory epilepsy: a 6-month prospective observational study.

Author information

1
Human Nutrition and Eating Disorders Research Centre, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy. anna.tagliabue@unipv.it

Abstract

BACKGROUND & AIMS:

This 6-month prospective, single-arm observational study was designed to assess the effects of the KD on the nutritional status, resting energy expenditure (REE), and substrate oxidation in patients with drug-resistant epilepsy.

METHODS:

Eighteen patients with medically refractory epilepsy underwent assessment of body composition, REE, and substrate oxidation rates before and after 6 months of KD.

RESULTS:

Compared with baseline, there were no statistically significant differences at 6 months in terms of height, weight, BMI z-scores, and REE. However, the respiratory quotient decreased significantly (from 0.80 ± 0.06 to 0.72 ± 0.05, p < 0.001) whereas fat oxidation was significantly increased (from 50.9 ± 25.2 mg/min to 97.5 ± 25.7 mg/min, p < 0.001). Interestingly, we found that the increase in fat oxidation was the main independent predictor of the reduction in seizure frequency (beta = -0.97, t = -6.3, p < 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS:

Administering a KD for 6 months in patients with medically refractory epilepsy increases fat oxidation and decreases the respiratory quotient, without appreciable changes in REE.

PMID:
22019282
DOI:
10.1016/j.clnu.2011.09.012
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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