Epilepsy Awareness Month is just over halfway through and I’ve wanted to write this post for awhile. I first read Treating Epilepsy Naturally by Patricia A. Murphy almost 12 years ago believe it or not when I was researching epilepsy for a documentary I made while at Brooks Institute of Photography. Looking back now, I guess even then I was fascinated by my condition.
- Stress ~ As mentioned in an earlier post, stress is one of the major contributors to causing a seizure. Stress management techniques like meditation, yoga, exercise, massage and aroma therapy can help keep the mind calm and thus limit the neuro excitability in the brain that can induce seizures.
- Lack of Sleep ~ This is also a major factor in seizure control. I know for myself, I need to try and get 10 hours minimum while I’m tapering off medication. If I get any less, I definitely feel foggy headed and my cognitive function decreases big time.
- Hormone changes ~ Particularly those related to estrogen can lower the seizure threshold. This could be why the phytoestrogen in soy is so troublesome for people with epilepsy.
- Excito-toxins like MSG and Aspartame ~ These can cause neuro-excitability and toxicity leading to seizures. These toxins are also linked to causing migraines
- Nutrition ~ Everything is covered here from food allergies to the Ketogenic Diet. Also mentioned are food groups to be avoided by people with epilepsy such as: flour, dairy and sugar (paleo template perhaps?)
- Nutrient Deficiencies ~ Epileptics tend to have deficiencies in the B-vitamins, folic acid, calcium and magnesium.
- Body Manipulation ~ Body work like chiropractic, craniosacral, rolfing, deep tissue massage and acupuncture can have a positive effect on the seizure threshold.