Diet alleviating other neuro symptoms?

Cint

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I've been involved in this debate numerous times over the past 12 years and found that no matter how many PubMed articles I post, it's still not enough if the person does not believe that proper nutrition has anything to do with their illness, which still blows my mind but...
I absolutely do believe proper nutrition has everything to do with one's health. However, the doctor(s) I choose to treat my illness(es) are ones who specialize in that one specific area of study, knowledge, practice. In my case I have Type 1 diabetes, therefore carefully watch my carb intake and exercise. I see a great endocrinologist with a good nutritionist for that so when I'm having problems they will help me solve them. I also have CP and TC epilepsy so I see an epileptologist-one who has studied epilepsy more thoroughly than any other neurologist.
 

DogtorJ

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Let's dial this back a bit:

I have been studying epilepsy for over twelve years as a result of my personal diagnosis of celiac disease. In my initial research of gluten intolerance I read in the celiac literature TWELVE YEARS AGO that epileptic children with gluten intolerance that were placed on gluten-free diets often showed dramatic improvement in the severity and frequency of their seizures.

In veterinary medicine, we see a number of epileptic patients. So...this information caught my attention. I began putting my epileptic dogs on gluten-free diets and saw astounding results. Yes...I keep using that word because it best describes what I experienced.

As I learned that gluten was not MY only problem, I found that the other culprits - cow's milk, soy/legumes, corn and even nightshade - were often incriminated in disorders of the central nervous system, both directly and indirectly (by inducing the leaky gut syndrome and thereby blocking nutrient absorption). These discoveries helped to explain the lack of response in the veterinary cases that did not respond immediately or completely as well the rising number of human cases that were being reported to me by those who found my veterinary work and wanted to apply these principles to themselves or their children.

After all, this all started with my finding this dietary information concerning gluten and human epilepsy. So, I simply referred the human cases to the same sources I found TWELVE YEARS AGO.

Is this well known? Obviously not. Has a gluten free diet been shown to help epilepsy? Yes, both by my work and that of my predecessors. Is Johns Hopkins or the Mayo Clinic doing research on or using a GFCFSFCF diet to control epilepsy in humans yet? They are certainly getting close wth the use of the ketogenic and modified Atkins diets. They will soon find what I have found in my K9 patients: Ketosis is NOT necessary to stop seizures. It is the restriction of certain inflammatory food proteins (lectins), not calories, that is the key.

And...it "just so happens" that the most inflammatory/allergenic foods - cow milk, wheat/gluten, soy - are the richest in glutamic acid, the parent protein in MSG...a known seizure trigger. That fact led to the creation of The GARD, which is now being employed for numerous neurological conditions, including epilepsy, MS, peripheral neuropathy, migraines, insomnia, ADHD, autism and even ALS.

I understand the skepticism but I am a bit confused by the somewhat violent nature of some of your reactions. It's not like this information costs anything or could do any harm if tried. There is NO downside to The GARD other than having to make a sacrifice in one's eating habits. There is NOTHING that we or our pets derive from wheat, dairy, soy, corn or nightshades that we can't get from numerous other food sources that have NO downside (fruits, veggies, lean meats, eggs).

The GARD Is basically a Paleo Diet with special emphasis on neurological conditions. Who could argue against a diet consisting of fresh natural foods rather than one of man made fast foods? Is there really any question here?
 

Bernard

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BTW - I did not give myself the title of "GARD Diet Guru". I'm not sure who did. ...
I did that. I wanted to highlight your experience and knowledge of the subject for members who may not be familiar with your work or CWE posting history.

Eric's heart is in the right place, but sometimes I think he gets a little tunnel visioned with his skepticism. I don't care much for ad hominem style "debating". Let's focus on the issue itself.
 

DogtorJ

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Please explain your reasoning for believing that a diet that works for a carnivore (dogs) would work equally well for an omnivore (humans).

Also, to clarify, are you saying you're making these claims about the success of the GARD diet, purely from your experience as a vet, and from hearing others personal experiences, without any scientific studies/experiments backing your claims?
How do you rule out things like the placebo effect, outside variables that could influence the results, and people exaggerating their personal experiences?
Dogs are actually meat-based omnivores. 75% of their natural diet would be animal origin protein with the remainder being vegetation, fruits, insects, and animal scat, including that from herbivores. Once again, the dog's physiology is very similar to humans and they suffer from nearly everything that afflicts humans, including IBS, epilepsy, hypothyroidism, lupus, diabetes, glaucoma, degenerative myelopathy, cancer and much more. We use more human drugs than veterinary with the biggest differences arising from their more rapid metabolic rate.

As far as our diets go, the natural diet of dogs and people are very similar. Neither would naturally eat gluten-rich foods, dairy products, soy/legumes, or corn. The Paleo Diet advocates have this very right. Yes, man decided to cultivate these things years ago (my site has a paper on their history) but that does not mean they were natural or healthy things to consume. The history of gluten is fascinating. Read about Einkorn wheat if you are interested.

On the claims: I have simply reported what people have told me. I have placed these in my testimonials section. What else can a person do who is the owner/operator of a single-man veterinary practitioner do? I am not in a medical institution that can do extensive research, including double blind studies. I am limited to sharing what others have reported to me.

And the testimonials ARE worth sharing. Have you read any?

The negativity here is quite interesting. I'm taking my time to share what I think is the most important nutritional information of our time and the reaction I get is what one would expect if I were trying to sell you all something? What's up with that? It's FREE information that has come from twelve years of my research from which I have received no compensation. Why wouldn't someone with a life-altering condition like epilepsy want to give something like that a look?

I won't be returning to the forum as I have too much to do to remain here and explain everything I have written on my Website. I have hundreds of emails to answer. (Yes, there is that much interest in my work. No brag, just fact.) I came here because I was alerted to the fact that someone was calling me a quack. Personally, that doesn't bother me because I know what I know. But...if it keeps someone from missing out on this life-changing information, I will get involved. I've now been here and done that.

If someone doesn't want to know the importance of gluten, casein, and other damaging foods andcadditives in neurological disorders, that is fine. But PLEASE do not be a stumbling block for those who do.
 
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DogtorJ

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I did that. I wanted to highlight your experience and knowledge of the subject for members who may not be familiar with your work or CWE posting history.

Eric's heart is in the right place, but sometimes I think he gets a little tunnel visioned with his skepticism. I don't care much for ad hominem style "debating". Let's focus on the issue itself.
Thank you Bernard. I'm done. I hope that cooler heads will prevail and that you will keep YOUR eyes open for the rapidly advancing knowledge base concerning gluten and neurological disease and report it to your readers.
 

Chaz1

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I said to my Son tonight at dinner, need to better explore the gut to brain link….. Before I read this post..My Son has always said (tonight to), his seizures start in his stomach (his)..

DogtorJ - not only your opinion but your expertise is highly valued.

So with this, I offer you sincere thanks for any link to better (potential)understanding and damn right we will explore, so dont stop sharing PLEASE.........

yes, we on other side and many sides of our wee world are listening...why would we not....

Keep sharing please..
 

RobinN

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Thank you John, for your continued support and knowledge. Your encouragement helped me to understand something that I instinctively knew, yet you gave me the tools to explore it. I will continue to be an ambassador for your research, because I also receive thank you's from people that are experiencing positive results.

@Chaz - I highly recommend his website. Read it slowly, twice, three-times. I continue to re-read his articles, letters, tid-bits. I learn something new each and every time. The more I know, the better I am able to understand it. It takes a while for this artist brain to process the scientific / biological information.

Dogtor J also has a facebook page that I recommend. He is active there, generously giving of his time.
 

Silat

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Alright... I have some free time so I'll bite. Not much of a point, because you've stated you will not be returning, but I do have the right to voice my opinion.
Dogs are actually meat-based omnivores. 75% of their natural diet would be animal origin protein with the remainder being vegetation, fruits, insects, and animal scat, including that from herbivores. Once again, the dog's physiology is very similar to humans and they suffer from nearly everything that afflicts humans, including IBS, epilepsy, hypothyroidism, lupus, diabetes, glaucoma, degenerative myelopathy, cancer and much more.
You're forgetting an important fact... Just because an animal ingests something, does not mean they're injesting it *for nutritional value*. Many animals injest things to improve their digestive function, but pull no nutritional value from it. Carnivores pull nearly 100% of their nutritional value from animal sources, but you're correct that they do injest other things. The difference is, it's not for the nutrients, it's for some other function.

Dogs injest plant matter to either add fiber to their diet to help promote regularity, or to induce vomitting when something they've already eaten is not digesting well. Much in the same way some large herbivores will eat rocks to help break down the plant material in their stomach. They're not pulling nutrition from the rocks, they're injesting them to help break down the substances they're pulling nutrition from, be it leaves, grass, twigs, or what-not. Carnivores do the same thing, but rather than rocks, they'll injest other substances that help break down things in their diets they are pulling nutrition from.

You're making it sound like dogs/wolves/other canines spend portions of their time eating plants and pulling fruit off of bushes for nutrition. That has not, and at no point in their evolutionary history has not been the case. In certain rare cases, typically on islands where nutrients are limited, it has been observed... but the same goes for herbivores as well. There are deer who turn into carnivores and eat rabbits to get nutrients from them that they can not get to any other way, but the rabbits can because of their much smaller size and different diet. Look up a video of that if you want to watch a horrifying video of a deer killing and eatting a rabbit... I'm not going to post one because it's actually a lot more horrifying to watch than it sounds. :?

--

I also have a problem with these extensive claims. In my honest opinion, it sounds to me like you compiled a list of similiar neurological disorders and lumped them all together, without looking into what each disease actually stems from.

For example, I'll quote your site:
I will try to make it clear which foods should be avoided when coping with the "excitotoxin"-related disorders such as epilepsy, insomnia, ADHD, chronic pain (e.g. fibromyalgia), and neurodegenerative diseases such as ALS, MS, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, Huntington's, and more.
http://dogtorj.tripod.com/id31.html

I put Huntington's in bold because I'm going to focus on that as an example.
Your claim that Huntington's Disease is an excitotoxin related disorder is flat out wrong, and here is why...

Huntington's Disease is a genetic disease caused by a mutation in the Huntington Gene. The symptom's are caused because a certain portion of the gene repeats itself many times (Read - at bare minimum 40 times, up to as many as 250 repeats).
To claim that the G.A.R.D. diet is a treatment method or cure for such a condition means you're claiming that the GARD can either alleviate the symptoms caused by a genetic mutation which doesn't respond or have anything to do with diet, or that it can literally change the structure of the gene itself so the disease goes away.
Such an claim is almost comical in it's absurdity, except I also realize that many people will believe most of what they read on the internet without investigating it further and finding the actual causes of the disorder they're reading about or effective treatment methods.

--

I'd like to explain myself though, I don't have any problems with you reporting others experiences. However, I do have a problem with those personal experiences being touted as medical fact. They're untested experiences which may or may not be true, and should be regarded as such. Until more research is done, I feel it's irresponsible to tout it as the "Miracle Diet for Epilepsy" or "Epilepsy: The Dietary Solution" when the facts supporting that claim simply don't exist. They may exist for dogs, but for humans that's a different matter.

However, I do realize that this is the internet... and those who realize what I'm saying will agree, and those who hold fundamental differences than I do will disregard what I'm saying. It's the nature of how these things work. I try to keep as open a mind as possible about these things, but at the same time I dislike bold claims with no scientific support...

And no, I don't consider "Google" as a good citation either. There's lots of garbage on the internet, so using search engines can lead to a lot of conflicting information and misinformation being touted as fact for corporate interests. :?

One last question, if you ever do return:
If there's so much interest in your work by the scientific community, then why have there been no attempts by other medical professionals or scientists to study the effects of the GARD diet independantly.
Just because you don't have access to the needed funding for such a task, doesn't not mean others don't have access to it. If it's such a miracle cure, why are they not doing actual medical studies about it, and why haven't they for the past 12 years?
 

Bernard

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If there's so much interest in your work by the scientific community, then why have there been no attempts by other medical professionals or scientists to study the effects of the GARD diet independantly.

Just because you don't have access to the needed funding for such a task, doesn't not mean others don't have access to it. If it's such a miracle cure, why are they not doing actual medical studies about it, and why haven't they for the past 12 years?
That's not really a fair question. There are only 2-3 doctors in the USA that are studying *any* diets as a means of seizure control and they are all on the Advisory Board of the Charlie Foundation. We have the Abrahams to thank for creating the Charlie Foundation and renewing interest in the Ketogenic Diet (and diets in general). Research into the MAD and LGIT were largely a result of the seeds they planted.
 

Nikkal

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sweetie, I do know how Google works - but Google searches also lead to crap like Natural News, Mercola, Whale.to and pages written by just about anyone who fancies themselves knowledgeable.

That's why I ask for citations. If you are going to make claims, it's incumbent upon you to provide evidence. It's not up to me to find it. That's how this whole "making claims" thing works.

You don't need to provide me with 12 years of journal articles - I don't have time for that. But something published recently, with solid methodologies and quality peer review in, say, Journal of Neuroscience, would be a good start.
 

Chaz1

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RobinN- thank u as always....it was u that inspired me initially on the gut to brain link....my search is far from over in exploring this link. Going back to Dogtor J website for a 1st read (complete read, been before several times & agree, takes some digestion for this brain to) and 2nd and 3rd and some reads will follow.

I’d sure hate to see this kinda of info disappear from CWE, to silence the messenger does not sit well with me. This girl is thankful for ALL information... applying/ ignoring what we choose is our right..
 

Silat

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I’d sure hate to see this kinda of info disappear from CWE, to silence the messenger does not sit well with me. This girl is thankful for ALL information... applying/ ignoring what we choose is our right..
None of this info should be deleted, I'm completely against deleting it.
That said, I don't believe it should be talked about without being questioned. Just like with any other theory, it should be talked about and tested/explained.

I personally have nothing against DogtorJ himself, nor do I want him silenced. I'm just posing the hard questions that need to be answered, and the questions that he and the people who believe in his work have been avoiding answering for a long time.

@Bernard - You gave a perfectly acceptable answer. "Fair" and "Unfair" are subjective, so I don't worry about how people view the questions and simply ask questions that come to mind when I feel they should be asked.
 

no.guru

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Yay insomnia!

Deleting posts? Not sure how that got into the discussion. Ridicule and satire are much more effective.

Labeling dogs as meat-based carnivores or opportunistic carnivores is based on more than simply the content of their diet; it's also based on the presence or absence of taste receptors, as well as their type, and the ability or inability of the animals to digest certain foods.

It's hard to tell sometimes, but since this is a casual discussion rather than a thesis defense, I will resort to the argument from authority. These passages are from well-respected author Stanley Coren in How Dogs Think, which this thread reminded me of. (Chapter 5, with an extensive selective bibliography on p. 324 of the Free Press's hardbound edition)

"Early research showed that a dog's taste receptors respond to the same kind of chemicals that trigger human taste receptors. ..the cat's taste buds are tuned specifically to flesh: Cats are true carnivores. Anything other than meat from animals, birds, and fish is difficult for a cat to digest. ..the cat will tend to reject virtually anything that does not cause a response to these 'meat detectors.'

...

The sweet taste buds in dogs resond to a chemical called 'furaneol,' which is found in many fruits, including tomatoes. Cats are virtually 'taste-blind' for this substance, but dogs like this flavor. Preference for sweet probably evolved because in a natural environment dogs frequently supplement their diet of small animals with whatever fruits happen to be available. .. A dog's sensitivity to furaneol and many other sugars is accompanied by a preference for foods containing these substances."

On the thread's overall topic I'm neutral, but I'm listening.
 

KarenB

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Ask any nutritionist who works at a hospital with the Ketogenic diet, and they will tell you that this diet (which by its nature eliminates gluten) often alleviates other issues including autistic traits, hyperactivity, etc.

Beth Zupec-Kania, RD, CD, of the Charlie Foundation, who has administered the Ketogenic diet for over 18 years, always advocates a gluten free, sugar free diet prior to initiating the more strict Ketogenic diet. She has found in her experience that these measures will eliminate seizures without having to go the the extreme measures of the Keto diet.

Dr. Peter Green, of the Celiac Center at Columbia University recognizes gluten sensitivity that is not necessarily connected to Celiac Disease (although he says that some testing is not properly done, and some cases of Celiac Disease are not diagnosed).

http://www.delightglutenfree.com/petergreen

http://celiacdisease.about.com/b/20...osis-method-proposed-by-group-of-experts.html
 

KarenB

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Our epileptologist (a co-author of Wyllie's Treatment of Epilepsy has recommended Jonathan remain on gluten free diet for lifetime, even if he weans off the Ketogenic diet.

He tested negative for Celiac (blood test) but seizures (and diarrhea) increased when he went from a rice based Asian diet to a wheat based American diet. And he has calcifications on his brain that are characteristic of those with Celiac.
 

AlohaBird

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I know this thread is old but I am a newcomer to CWE.

I have been doing a lot of reading at Dr. Symes' site and it is making a lot of sense. This forum would be a poorer place if input from such intelligent and well informed people were disregarded.

Argue against a specific medical point with credible counter information if you want to, but don't just insult someone who can be very helpful to a lot of other readers to the point where he thinks this forum is not worth his time.

For me Dr. Symes' work is finishing what I started with paleo and ketosis. By their very nature, those diets cut out, trans-fats, artificial ingredients, grains, corn, soy and dairy. I had always gone with the gentler version of paleo called Primal (basically Mark Sisson's trademark) which allows dairy. I am going to try cutting out the dairy too and see how that goes.

No I don't have a n=10K double blind placebo controlled study to back up anything but I do have my own personal n=1. Does Dr. Symes have ALL the answers? Probably not. Does he have a piece of the puzzle that could be very useful to me? Definitely.
 
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