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Dietary Therapy

About Us

Boston Medical Center is among three Massachusetts based hospitals that offer ketogenic dietary therapy to patients. Physicians and dietitians work closely with families throughout the induction and maintenance phases of the ketogenic diet to offer information, support, and in person food preparation lessons in BMC’s Teaching Kitchen. The multidisciplinary medical team is comprised of supervising director Laurie Douglass MD, ketogenic dietitian Catherine Fanning MS RD LDN, and nurse and care coordinator Elizabeth Lowe RN.

What is the Ketogenic Diet?

The ketogenic diet is a high fat, low carbohydrate, and nutritionally adequate protein diet that alters the body’s primary energy metabolism from carbohydrate to fat. Doing so creates energy rich compounds known as ketone bodies that serve as the primary fuel for the brain and extra-hepatic tissues.

The ketogenic diet has been used as a medical nutrition therapy for years in the treatment of refractory epilepsy, though marked benefits have also been seen in patients with neurodegenerative disorders, brain cancers, and obesity.

There are several variations of the ketogenic diet with different degrees of rigidity: Classic, Modified Atkins Diet, Low Glycemic Index Therapy, and the MCT oil diet. It’s important to work closely with your neurology team to decide what treatment is best for you.*

*The ketogenic diet should never be undertaken without the direction of a neurologist and ketogenic dietitian.

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