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Use of the Ketogenic Diet in Adults

Kohli, Aparna MSc; Samour, Patricia Q. MMSc, RD, LDN

doi: 10.1097/TIN.0b013e31828d7866

The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet that has been used primarily to treat difficult-to-control (refractory) epilepsy in children. There are case reports and other evidence that adults with epilepsy may benefit from the diet. A less-strict regimen, such as a modified Atkins or low glycemic index treatment, may also be effective. Clinical trials and studies in animal models suggest that ketogenic diets provide neuroprotective and disease-modifying benefits for a number of adult neurodegenerative disorders. A review of the literature, case studies, and sample low-carbohydrate menus are included.

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts.

Correspondence: Patricia Q. Samour, MMSc, RD, LDN, Nutrition Services, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, 330 Brookline Ave, Boston, MA 02215 (

The authors have disclosed that they have no significant relationships with, or financial interest in, any commercial companies pertaining to this article.

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