Recently, a lot of my patients have been asking about a ketogenic diet. Is a ketogenic diet safe? Would you advise it? Regardless of the recent hype, a ketogenic diet is not something new. In medicine, we have used it for nearly 100 years to take care of drug-resistant epilepsy, especially in children. Within the 1970s, Dr. Atkins popularized his very-low-carbohydrate diet for weight loss that began with a very strict two-week ketogenic phase. Over the years, other fad diets incorporated a similar method of weight loss.
Exactly what is a ketogenic (keto) diet? – Basically, this is a diet which induces the body to discharge ketones to the bloodstream. Most cells would rather use blood sugar, which comes from carbohydrates, as the body’s main source of energy. In the lack of circulating blood sugar from food, we start wearing down stored fat into molecules called ketone bodies (the process is called ketosis). Once you reach atkins diet, most cells will use ketone bodies to create energy until we start eating carbohydrates again. The shift, from using circulating glucose to wearing down stored fat as a source of energy, usually happens over 2 to 4 days of eating fewer than 20 to 50 grams of carbohydrates daily. Remember that this can be a highly individualized process, and a few people need a more restricted diet to start out producing enough ketones.
Since it lacks carbohydrates, a ketogenic eating habits are abundant in proteins and fats. It typically includes lots of meats, eggs, processed meats, sausages, cheeses, fish, nuts, butter, oils, seeds, and fibrous vegetables. As it is so restrictive, it really is tough to follow over the long run. Carbohydrates normally account for about 50% in the typical American diet. One of many criticisms with this diet is that numerous people tend to eat excessive protein and poor-quality fats from processed foods, with very few fruit and veggies. Patients with kidney disease have to be cautious because this diet could worsen their condition. Additionally, some patients can experience just a little tired initially, while some may have foul breath, nausea, vomiting, constipation, and sleep problems.
Is actually a ketogenic diet healthy? – We now have solid evidence showing which a ketogenic diet reduces seizures in youngsters, sometimes as effectively as medication. As a result of these neuroprotective effects, questions happen to be raised concerning the possible benefits for other brain disorders like Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis, sleep disorders, autism, as well as brain cancer. However, there are no human studies to support recommending ketosis to take care of these conditions.
Weight-loss is the primary reason my patients make use of the ketogenic diet. Previous studies have shown good evidence of a faster weight reduction when patients continue a ketogenic or really low carbohydrate diet in comparison to participants on the ciegha traditional low-fat diet, or even a Mediterranean diet. However, that difference in weight loss seems to disappear as time passes.
A ketogenic diet also is shown to improve blood sugar control for patients with type 2 diabetes, a minimum of in the short term. There exists much more controversy once we think about the impact on cholesterol levels. A few studies show some patients have increase in levels of cholesterol at first, only to see cholesterol fall a couple of months later. However, there is absolutely no long term research analyzing its effects as time passes on diabetes and cholesterol.
Key takeaways from a ketogenic diet review? – A ketogenic diet could be an interesting substitute for treat certain conditions, and may accelerate weight-loss. However it is difficult to follow and it can be heavy on red meat and other fatty, processed, and salty foods which are notoriously unhealthy. We have no idea much about its long term effects, probably because it’s so hard to stick with that people can’t eat in this way for a long period. Additionally it is important to understand that “yo-yo diets” which lead to rapid weight reduction fluctuation are associated with increased mortality. Rather than engaging over the following popular diet that will last only some weeks to months (for most people that includes a ketogenic diet), make an effort to embrace change which is sustainable over time. A balanced, unprocessed diet, abundant in very colorful fruit and veggies, lean meats, fish, grain, nuts, seeds, olive oil, and lots of water may have the best evidence for a long, healthier, vibrant life.