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Increase of Human Milk Fat Inducing Nutritional Ketosis in Exclusively Breastfed Infant, Brought About by Treating the Mother With Ketogenic Dietary Therapy

Tan-Smith, Charlene; Little, Helen; Fabe, Jennifer; Dickson, Cameron; Shillito, Paul

Date Published:





Extra Links:

October 5, 2021


Publisher: SAGE Publications Inc STM


Introduction:Medicalized Ketogenic Therapy is commonly used to treat refractory epilepsy. Patients have varying degrees of seizure or symptom relief, responding at individual levels of ketone production. Typically, initiating the therapy necessitates the discontinuation of breastfeeding. Our case study mother was keen to continue breastfeeding if possible. We were able to achieve this by placing the healthy mother on a ketogenic diet and altering the composition of the mother?s own milk.Main Lactation Issue:Pediatric Medicalized Ketogenic Therapy is delivered through a ketogenic diet consisting of up to 90% fat, measuring of ingredients to 0.1 g matching a food prescription of fat, protein, and carbohydrate. We placed the mother on a less stringent ketogenic diet achieving 61% fat and measured both infant and mother?s blood sugar levels and ketones. The hypothesis was that changes would occur in the mother?s own milk fat content, and/or ketones would be passed directly to the infant. If therapeutic levels of ketones were reached in the infant and a reduction in seizures observed, breastfeeding could continue.Management Overview:Over 3 months we achieved a calorific increase of the mother?s mature milk by an additional 134%. The infant was successfully put into nutritional ketosis and visible seizures eliminated.Conclusion:Medicalized Ketogenic Therapy can be safely used to treat seizures of breastfeeding infants diagnosed with epilepsy, through management of the mother on a ketogenic diet. Significantly increasing the mature mothers own milk fat component could have implications for other areas, including faltering growth.

Automatic Tags

ketogenic; nutrition; epilepsy; breastfeeding; human milk; human milk – biochemistry; human milk production; infant development; maternal nutrition; medicalized therapy; milk composition

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