Health and Fitness Recommendations for Managing Epilepsy

Living with epilepsy or taking care of a loved with epilepsy presents many challenges. Maintaining a healthy, well-balanced lifestyle is important for people with epilepsy because some activities and even certain foods can trigger seizures. People with epilepsy need to be especially careful about the types of exercises they participate in, what types of foods they eat, and how much sleep they are getting on a regular basis.

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with epilepsy, set up an appointment with your doctor to learn some effective epilepsy management tips. Many people with epilepsy can still participate in sports activities and maintain an exercise regiment, but they do need to follow certain guidelines. Your doctor can help you create a healthy lifestyle regiment that accommodates for epilepsy.

Fitness and Exercise Recommendations with Epilepsy

Staying active when you have epilepsy can be beneficial to your health, but you do need to be careful about the types of exercises you participate in, and where you work out. Working out in intense heat or an gym that is overheated can trigger a seizure. It’s also important to wear comfortbel, lightweight clothing, drink plenty of water before and during the workout session, and to take breaks when you think you need them. Pushing yourself too hard can trigger a seizure, and you need to know what your limits are when it comes to exeritign yourself with different exercises. Some ways to incorporate exercise into your lifestyle:

  • Workout with a personal trainer so that you are not overextending yourself or injuring yourself
  • Keep track of your workouts
  • Choose aerobics and resistance bearing exercises that you enjoy
  • Be consistent with your workouts
  • Get enough rest between exercise sessions

Diet Recommendations with Epilepsy

Certain foods can trigger seizures, so it’s important for people with epilepsy to follow a ketogenic diet. The Epilepsy Foundation recommends ketogenic diets for people with epilepsy, because this type of diet uses up the body’s own fat stores for energy and keeps blood sugar levels in check. More information about how the ketogenic diet works, and its effects can be found in Diet Tips for Patients with Epilepsy.

Other Lifestyle Management Tips for Epilepsy

In addition to maintaining a ketogenic diet and improving physical fitness, patients with epilepsy need to:

  • Make sure they are getting enough quality sleep
  • Reduce stress in their environment
  • Learn effective stress management techniques
  • Be aware of the signs and symptoms of depression
  • Join support groups or seek support from family and friends during times of need
  • Keep up with their doctor’s appointments

Talk to your doctor if you have epilepsy and are interested in learning some lifestyle management techniques. The National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion also lists several resources for people with epilepsy who want to live well. Your doctor may refer you to a specialist or help to create a customized plan that will help you maintain a healthy lifestyle.

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