Here is a question (originally sent to Dr. Bass) about epilepsy, which was answered by as many as 3 hygienic doctors on INHS email discussion list.
It is especially interesting since it highlights 2 current dietary methods: the traditional raw vegetarian diet of Dr. Shelton's Natural Hygiene, and the newer views of modern NH involving the insulin mechanism.
Hi Dr Bass;
I'm writing this email on behalf of a friend;
I was talking with my friend, who's brother suffers from Epilepsy with generalised tonic clonic seizures and learning difficulties. His cocktail of drugs include: Carbamazepine, Sodium Valproate, Phenobarbitone, Clobazam and Desmopressin. I appreciate that these may be the English names of drugs.
Are you able to treat forms of Epilepsy with a specific dietary regime or otherwise? It would be greatly appreciated to know that there is a chance of help for his condition, which conventional medicine seems unable to resolve!
I look forward to receiving your response.
With the kindest of regards
MODERN NATURAL HYGIENE
Hi again, now I have finally talked to Dr. Bass. (He doesn't use email.) This is from my notes:
It is today getting to be more and more clear what causes epilepsy. Look at the quick onset of the epileptic symptoms, just as quick as the blood sugar overflow after we eat sugar or other carbs. It is mainly a high-carb problem.
E.g. an epileptic can feel perfectly fine, go to a banquet, eat a lot of sweet stuff, and suddenly have an attack. It seems to be a function of insulin response to increased blood sugar, after eating sweets/carbs. After the excess blood sugar is removed there is still insulin in the blood - so the blood sugar continues to go down until an extreme, which then causes an attack and unconsciousness.
Before the insulin mechanism research started two decades ago, Dr. Bass used (typically vegetarian) raw diets to improve the condition of epileptics, which was only partly successful. Now many have written about the connection blood sugar and epilepsy - probably see e.g. Body, Mind and Sugar by Abrahamson, or Protein Power by Drs. Eades.
For optimal recovery Dr. Bass uses a (for the problem) specially designed low-carb diet, optimally designed for quick and safe recovery, based on 60 + years of experience and constant experiments. This diet has to be mainly raw food-combined, special foods introduced in order, and exact amounts are also very important. Using cooked foods, and haphazard combinations will also work, (even overcooked food and too much meat will work, if low-carb), but it will then take longer for the body to recover, and the result may not be absolutely optimal in the end.
Probably 75%+ of today's diseases have a high-carb connection, Dr. Bass now thinks.
Note that if an epileptic has been on strong drugs there also has to be a period of detoxification from these drugs. This detox period can be designed to be short or long, and should preferably be monitored closely by someone experienced in detoxification. With today's strong drugs there can sometimes be serious and scary body reactions, perhaps fevers, fits, breakouts - and the detox may have to be stopped and started repeatedly to minimize the dangers. Read more about detoxification at www.drbass.com . Make certain that the specialist you choose understands detoxification.
Also see Dr. Stanley S. Bass' website: www.drbass.com
Epilepsy is mentioned in the free pdf file: "Remarkable recoveries".
From Dr. Goldberg:
To throw in my own experiences with patients with epilepsy....Experience has taught me that each person with epilepsy will have vastly different things going on with them. It would be arrogant of any of us to think that we can list with precision exactly what is going on with all persons with epilepsy since it is a symptom and not a cause of itself.
Precisely because it is such an individual problem a detailed case history on the patient is very important. One must be a detective in working with all patients (what I refer to as "clinical epidemiology") to attempt to track down the factor(s) involved and in cases of epilepsy this is particularly important.
This past week at The Goldberg Clinic we had two patients with a history of epilepsy come in as new cases. One had been assaulted by a baseball bat over a decade ago and another was a 12 year old girl with no history of trauma at all. Both clearly have different factors at play although their symptoms are very similar.
There are two inter-related goals I undertake:
1) If possible to determine the etiological (causal) factors involved and address them at their roots.
2) If it is not possible to determine the precise etiological factor(s) involved (and in epilepsy this is often the case), then to take every possible measure to increase the overall health and thereby raise the threshold for epileptic fits to occur.
Example: Two years ago a 23 year old female presented at our clinic with severe epilepsy, with seizures occuring at least one to two times per day over a 15 year period despite using phenobarbitol and dilantin. One of the tests I administered was a six hour glucose tolerance test where the patient drinks a quantity of glucose and we check the glucose level every hour for six hours. During the fourth hour her blood sugar dropped considerably and she had a seizure in our office. It was clear to us that her fits were triggered when her blood sugar level dropped.
She was put on a balanced program after this taking all steps to keep her blood sugar in balance including timing of meals and a natural whole foods diet without simple sugars. Other hygienic measures were employed to increase her general state of health and resistance. We also checked her for food allergies via antibody titers to determine what foods she was sensitive to and removed all these from the diet.
Since that time (two years) she has had only one seizure whereas before during a two year period she would have had over 700 of them. The one time a seizure occured was when she drank a large quantity of orange juice (simple sugars) that shifted her blood sugar and precipitated a seizure.
Note, that even though she is now symptom free, I did not fix her...I merely found a way for her to increase her health and raise her threshold so that seizures no longer occur.
Thanks for allowing me to give my experience on this topic.
Paul A. Goldberg, M.P.H., D.C., D.A.C.B.N.
Senior Director of Physician Relations
A Division of Garden of Life, Inc.
The Goldberg Clinic
TRADITIONAL NATURAL HYGIENE
Quantum physics tells us that our reality is the sum total of our experiences. And as I have been handling epileptic cases for some forty odd years now thought you might be interested to hear another perspective to add to the sum total of knowledge.
I will cite one case to illustrate many instances. This is of a child who was quite normal until he had a fall onto concrete from a table on which he was playing. The subsequent effect was that he began to experience frequent epileptic seizures. Subsequently the child became my client and in the ensuing years the differences between the parents as to how the child was to be treated, caused the parents to separate and eventually divorce. This introduced a further perspective to the formula, a psychological one, and in my opinion,gave rise to an extension in the time required for recovery.
I would wish to point out that over the whole period of time, three to four years, that the child required for complete recovery, there was a close and intimate relationship between myself and the parents at all times. Without this I do not feel the success that was achieved could have been possible.
As I have mentioned above, there was dissension between the parents as to how the child should be treated. The father was agreeable to and in favour of, raw food. The mother believed that a percentage of cooked food would cause no harm. In both instances though they were both in favour of a high intake of of fruit, relatively speaking. That is at least 50/50. This couple lived, and still do live, in the tropics in a sub-tropical climate.
The treatment recommended and given was that as soon as there was any indication of a seizure occurring all food was to be withheld, and then for at least three days. Recovery was immediate if this regime was followed. If food was introduced too early, there were further seizures. After the fasting period at least one day of only fruit was followed. Progress was slow but sure, except when the mother provided cooked food when the father was away from the home.And as this was a frequent yet not every day occurrence fortunately, the recovery was delayed.
Upon the parents separating where the child spent half his time with each parent it was a continual push-pull situation until eventually the father took complete control of the child and only raw foods were permitted.
Today the child is fully recovered to the point of where he is completely free of any seizures, eats lots of fruit, and can tolerate small amounts of cooked foods, although he now chooses of his own accord to eat only raw food.
John L. Fielder DO,DC,ND(Adel)
Osteopath & Lifestyle consultant
Academy of Natural Living