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By Aabigayle McIntosh
A medical doctor is making a link between diet and epilepsy- a neurological disorder characterized by seizures or unusual sensations and behaviors.
“WE use medicine to actual so because of that if you actually treat someone with that specific diet, heavy certain types of fat, proteins not much my carbs and when you treat them is very effective in reducing seizures,” Dr. Dave Clarke.
Studies dating back to the 1920s have shown that diet can improve seizure control in people who have epilepsy.
Although these studies are based on a strict diet recent evidence has shown that less restrictive diets may also be helpful.
November is National Epilepsy Awareness Month (NEAM). This occasion aims to get people talking about epilepsy and raise awareness of the condition, which affects millions worldwide.
Dr. Clarke is a US-based Neurological and Epilepsy expert who was part of a medical contingent that facilitated the health screenings in the St Paul’s Constituency as part of the annual health fair.
It is his goal to establish a dietary program in Antigua and Barbuda and the wider Caribbean region.
“The Dietary programs, we will have the teachings in Jamaica, but we will have folks from Trinidad so that dietary programme hopefully will be regional, so the dieticians here hopefully they get a chance to participate as well.
The medical also spoke about surgery for people with the condition, however, he says this is in the infancy stage.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), people with epilepsy tend to have more physical problems (such as fractures and bruising from injuries related to seizures), as well as higher rates of psychological conditions, including anxiety and depression.
Similarly, the risk of premature death in people with epilepsy is up to three times higher than in the general population, with the highest rates of premature mortality found in low- and middle-income countries and in rural areas.