Contrary to popular belief, the keto diet is not a new or “fad” diet. Types of keto diets have been around for many centuries. Specifically to treat seizures.
The keto diet focuses on high fat, low carb. When you eat a lot of carbs, it gives your body fuel via glucose. Your body uses glucose for fuel mostly, but when you restrict your diet and go on a ketosis diet, ketones are used for fuel. For example, if you wake up in the morning and aren’t hungry the body has shifted into nutritional ketosis because you haven’t eaten any carbs in the middle of the night.
When you’re on the keto diet, you go into optimal ketosis. When your body goes into a keto adaptive state, it means your body is now using ketones for its primary fuel. You do this by keeping your carbs less than 20% of your diet.
Doing this is great for the brain because using ketones is neuroprotective. Using ketones as fuel helps reduce free radicals in the brain. Going on a keto diet also increases GABA in the brain. When you have a dysregulation of GABA in the brain, it can make you anxious. Increasing GABA can make you less anxious, so there have been studies showing people feel less anxiety on keto for that reason. This is the reason why this diet was used to treat seizures as well due to the interaction with GABA. Now, Keto diets are being investigated as a new approach to Alzheimer’s due to the benefits in the brain.
DISCLAIMER: I am in no way endorsing nutritional ketosis as a supplement to, or a replacement for medication. Please consult your doctor before starting a new diet.