Adult Epilepsy Diet Services
Patients whose epilepsy isn't controlled by medication often find relief by changing their diet.
Our UCI Health Comprehensive Epilepsy Program specialists have decades of combined experience using nutritional therapies to help control seizures. We offer a modified Atkins diet as a treatment option.
The link between diet and epilepsy dates to biblical times and the ancient Greeks. The classic ketogenic diet was introduced in 1921 to treat epilepsy, primarily in children.
Modified Atkins diet
The modified Atkins diet is a less restrictive, flexible version of the ketogenic diet. Since it was introduced in 2003, the modified Atkins regimen has been used to control seizures successfully in children and adults.
Research consistently shows that seizures are reduced at least by half in 40% to 50% of patients on the modified Atkins diet, and even eliminated for a small number of them. Results are usually seen within a few months.
How it works
Much like its predecessor, the modified Atkins diet works by switching the body’s metabolism from burning carbohydrates to burning fat. This is done by limiting carbohydrates and increasing fat intake. Unlike the ketogenic diet, however, there is no limit on daily calorie or fluid intake.
The modified Atkins diet calls for a ratio of 2:1 or 1:1 grams of high-fat to non-fat foods (protein and carbohydrates). With minimal planning, delicious meals can be created from low-carbohydrate, high-fat ingredients.
Premade Atkins-friendly products are also widely available.
Tracking your health
Like any other medical therapy, the modified Atkins diet for epilepsy control must be supervised by both a physician and dietitian to ensure it is appropriate for you and to avoid potential side effects.
Blood and urine tests may be ordered first to determine whether the diet is safe for you.
For more information about our dietary services or to make an appointment, please call 714-456-6203 or request an appointment online.