i 1.00 Hours

Course Overview

Epilepsy impacts individuals by causing jerking or twitching movements, temporary paralysis, loss of consciousness, respiratory failure, and even death. One-third of individuals have seizures that cannot be controlled despite the use of multiple medications. For these individuals, the ketogenic diet may be a viable option. The ketogenic diet is an extremely low-carbohydrate, high-fat plan, which induces nutritional ketosis and can have adverse effects including acidosis and gastrointestinal dysfunction, along with long-term worries about poor growth, kidney stones, and vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Despite these challenges, neurology experts have concluded that it is a valuable and effective treatment for many individuals. In 2017, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics published its first practice paper on the use of the ketogenic diet for epilepsy. Dietitians working with individuals on ketogenic diet therapy require a thorough understanding of ketogenic diet guidelines, necessary supplementation, and monitoring protocols to help clients succeed and remain healthy throughout the use of this strict therapy, especially as it becomes a viable option for individuals without epilepsy. 

About epilepsy: the basics. Epilepsy Foundation Web site. http://www.epilepsy.com/learn/about-epilepsy-basics. Published January 2014. Updated March 19, 2014. Accessed May 20, 2019.

Roehl K, Sewak SL. Practice Paper of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Classic and Modified Ketogenic Diets for Treatment of Epilepsy. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2017;117(8):1279-1292. doi: 10.1016/j.jand.2017.06.006.

About the Course Author

Julie Stefanski, MEd, RDN, CSSD, LDN, CDCES, FAND is a SME Writer focused on topics related to food, nutrition & dietetics for Relias. She is a registered dietitian nutritionist and has been a certified diabetes educator since 2003. Ms. Stefanski earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Dietetics and a master's degree in Adult Education with a special focus on distance learning. She was an adjunct instructor in the Stabler Department of Nursing at York College of Pennsylvania for 13 years. Stefanski is the owner of Stefanski Nutrition Services where she specializes in pediatric nutrition, diabetes, gastrointestinal issues and sports nutrition. Stefanski serves as national media spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics.

Julie Stefanski, MEd, RDN, CSSD, LDN, CDCES, FAND has declared that no conflict of interest, Relevant Financial Relationship or Relevant Non-Financial Relationship exists.

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Accreditation Information

Certificates provided by accrediting body (3 Match)

  • Commission on Dietetic Registration


    As a Jointly Accredited organization, Relias LLC is accredited to offer dietetic continuing education by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). The CDR is an associate member of Joint Accreditation for Interprofessional Continuing Education.

  • Florida Council of Dietetics and Nutrition


    Florida Council of Dietetics and Nutrition (CEBroker Provider #50-290)

    This course is approved for 1.0 contact hours.
  • Certified Health Education Specialist


    Sponsored by Relias LLC, a designated provider of continuing education contact hours (CECH) in health education by the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc. This program is designated for Certified Health Education Specialists (CHES) and/or Master Certified Health Education Specialists (MCHES) to receive up to 1.0 total Category I continuing education contact hours.

Course Details
  • Course Code:

  • Hours:

  • Type:

    Online Course
  • Release Date:

  • Expiration Date:

  • Learning Objectives:

    Cite three differences between the classic ketogenic diet, low glycemic index treatment, and modified Atkins diet; Identify research supporting ketogenic therapies for epilepsy; List four major nutritional concerns for a child or an adult on a ketogenic diet
  • Outline:

    Dealing with intractable epilepsy can be a parent’s worst nightmare. Despite the use of multiple medications, implanted nerve stimulators, and even brain surgery, one-third of children experiencing seizures remain in the grip of this unpredictable and sometimes fatal condition. The question remains: Can epilepsy be helped by food? Concerns include possible acute adverse effects including acidosis and gastrointestinal dysfunction, along with long-term worries of poor growth, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, and kidney stones. Despite these issues, the neurology community has concluded that ketogenic diet therapy is a viable option not just for epilepsy, but possibly for other conditions as well. Healthcare providers working with individuals on this extremely low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet require a thorough understanding of ketogenic diet guidelines, necessary supplementation, and monitoring protocols to help clients succeed and minimize adverse effects throughout the use of this strict therapy. 
  • Target Audience:

    The target audience for this course is: Health Educators; Level II level Dietitians; in the following settings: Acute Care Facility.
  • Course Delivery Method and Format:

    Asynchronous/Online Distance Learning; please see certificate details for specifics on delivery format.
    Relias has a grievance policy in place to facilitate reports of dissatisfaction. Relias will make every effort to resolve each grievance in a mutually satisfactory manner. In order to report a complaint or grievance please contact Relias.
    If you require special accommodations to complete this module, please contact Relias Support by completing the web form (https://www.relias.com/help) or by using the chat functionality.
    All courses offered by Relias, LLC are developed from a foundation of diversity, inclusiveness, and a multicultural perspective. Knowledge, values and awareness related to cultural competency are infused throughout the course content.
    Reference herein to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, service mark, manufacturer or otherwise does not constitute or imply any endorsement, recommendation, or favoring of, or affiliation with, Relias, LLC.
    All characteristics and organizations referenced in the following training are fictional. Any resemblance to any actual organizations or persons living or dead, is purely coincidental.
    To earn continuing education credit for this course you must achieve a passing score of 80% on the post-test and complete the course evaluation.
  • Accommodations:

    If you require special accommodations to complete this module, please contact Relias Customer Support here.
  • Disclosures:

    Expert Reviewers, Instructors, and Staff Writers disclosures will be listed above after the individuals' biographical paragraph. All other members involved within the planning of this educational activity have declared no conflict of interest exists when planning and developing this course.