Keto and Neurological Dysfunction

The role of a well formulated ketogenic diet in neurological dysfunction

Brain cells (neurons) are completely different than any other cells in our bodies. Neurons thrive on something called “action potential”. An action potential is an excitatory stimulus for a nerve cell to fire an order; whatever that order is to that specific nerve cell target.

What is a threshold?

Now, another term I would like you to familiarize yourself with is, threshold. The threshold is the magnitude or intensity that must be reached for an action potential to be able to cause effect. Each neurological function in our body has a threshold. The nerve stimulus that activates a muscle, must reach a strong enough action potential to reach the threshold of this specific muscle to be able to cause a muscle movement.

Every mental function has a threshold, and every human being has a specific threshold for any mental disorder, as well. For example, any normal human being can have a seizure, a psychotic experience, a manic episode, so on and so forth, if the excitatory action potential reaches the threshold of that mental disorder that is specific to that person.

People who suffer from epilepsy (seizures) have a lower threshold than people who do not. In other words, any normal human being can experience any known mental disorder if his/her specific threshold for that disease is reached or lowered by external factors, such as street drugs, medicine, and/or alcohol. For example, people who use cocaine can experience seizures, paranoia, and delusional ideations as cocaine lowers the threshold for such mental disorders.

How to alleviate mental disorders?

The therapeutic goal here is to raise the threshold for these excitatory mental derangements. While drugs, alcohol, and glucose lower threshold, ketones are archaic metabolites which are notorious at raising mental disorder thresholds.

In many cases, patients who suffer from mental disorders, happen to have lower thresholds for these specific mental disorders. A well formulated ketogenic diet will correct this deficit and raises the threshold for these mental derangements and, possibly free the patients from the symptoms of these disorders. For example, recent studies have shown that there is a bioenergetic dysfunction characterized by abnormal glucose handling and mitochondrial dysfunctions resulting in impaired action potentials in the brain of people with schizophrenia.

Ketogenic diet, which provides alternative fuel to glucose (much cleaner fuel) for bioenergetic processes in the brain, normalize schizophrenia-like behaviors.

It is very important to note here, that I am talking about a well formulated therapeutic ketogenic diet and not what most people perceive what a ketogenic diet is. To reach the proper success with these therapies, you need to consult with a properly trained health care professional about therapeutic ketogenic diets.