Home Science What scientific evidence does the ‘Keto’ diet have?

What scientific evidence does the ‘Keto’ diet have?

What scientific evidence does the 'Keto' diet have?

The ketogenic diet, commonly known as the ketogenic diet, is a high-fat, very low-carb diet that mimics the metabolic state that prolonged fasting induces.

Gustavo Daniel Frechtel, University of Buenos Aires and Maria del Pilar Quevedo, University of Buenos Aires

When designing meal plans for metabolic diseases like obesity, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease, etc., there is an unbreakable nutritional principle that is adequacy.

This principle maintains that the plan must be adapted to the habits, customs and clinical situation of each individual in case of illness, according to Pedro Escudero, an Argentine physician known as the father of nutrition.

Professor Escudero also defended that the normal diet should provide enough calories for each individual, provide all nutrients completely and through a harmonious relationship between them.

Currently, with the arrival of new nutritional strategies, it is evident that this fundamental principle is the only one that must be respected so that the treatment offered is useful for people thanks to the scientific evidence that it has.

What is the ketogenic diet?

The ketogenic diet, commonly known as the ketogenic diet, is a high-fat, very low-carb diet that mimics the metabolic state that prolonged fasting induces.

Under normal conditions, our body obtains energy from carbohydrates. For this reason, under the conditions of low availability that this diet reports, energy production in cells is obtained from fats. This produces ketone bodies (metabolic compounds generated in response to a lack of energy stores), causing a state of ketosis that has an anorectic effect or reduces appetite.

Among its benefits, this diet reports a weight loss in obese patients and causes changes in body composition. There is also a loss of fat mass.

On the other hand, it can lead to a improved insulin sensitivity and blood glucose (blood sugar) values. Indeed, in patients with diabetes mellitus, reducing carbohydrate intake improves the glycemic profile, even more so if daily caloric intake is reduced. Also, a proposed decreased inflammation and oxidative stress.

These clinically favorable effects of the ketogenic diet have been studied in different animal models of obesity and type 2 diabetes, as well as in patients with these metabolic diseases.

Who is this diet recommended for?

Ketogenic diets may be indicated for short periods of time in people with obesity and associated metabolic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, or polycystic ovary disease. But also use a low-calorie food plan that includes the aforementioned basic laws of nutrition as a basic treatment for these diseases.

Some of the adverse effects that such restriction can cause are constipation, diarrhea, nausea, cramps, tiredness, fatigue, irritability, headache, bad breath, and vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Therefore, in many cases it is necessary to take supplements recommended by professionals.

It can also produce other cardiological effects such as arrhythmias, changes in cardiac metabolism, etc. Therefore, it must be a diet indicated and controlled by a specialist.

These disadvantages or adverse effects are personal reactions that occur with prolonged use of the same, therefore its application is recommended for short periods of time. In fact, this is one of its main disadvantages: it is very difficult to maintain in the long term.

The ketogenic diet has proven an anticonvulsant therapeutic action in cases of refractory epilepsy through its action on neurotransmitters and antioxidants. In addition, it can also be an adjunct in the therapy of oncological diseases.

Not All Fats Are Valid on the Keto Diet

Many social media influencers recommend these types of diets (as other health products do) without medical supervision. This way of adapting to a diet is dangerous, as it does not have the requirements adapted to each person, as it is not recommended by a professional.

As a consequence, it is common for the recommendation of high fat intakes to be made on many occasions from highly processed foods. But is this part of the ketogenic diet?

While there are different types of Keto diets, the review of which trumps this post, we must be very careful about the type of fat that is used, as ultra-processed foods high in saturated fatty acids will end up producing undesirable increases in cholesterol. Hence the importance of medical supervision.

Intermittent Fasting and Ketogenic Diet

Intermittent fasting, which usually accompanies this diet, is a nutritional strategy that consists of alternating periods of fasting and eating for variable periods of time, between 12 and 24 hours. It gained popularity for its simplicity and promising results, but what evidence do we have in favor of its practice?

The biggest evidence in favor is weight loss between 1 and 4% in overweight and obese people.

In addition, improvement in blood pressure and reduction in insulin resistance were observed. No results have been shown in humans for the reduction of inflammatory markers, although oxidative stress has.

Finally, with regard to appetite, intermittent fasting demonstrated a greater feeling of satiety linked to changes in gut hormones. Its most notable downsides are changes in bowel habits and a dry mouth feeling. It’s also hard to hold on for a long time.

Although we have encouraging evidence of therapeutic effects and increasing understanding of the mechanisms of action, randomized controlled trials should be conducted to elucidate the metabolic basis of these diets to define their clinical use.

In short, the big problem with Keto diets is their indication and use without the proper supervision of reputable professionals with adequate scientific and academic preparation in the area of ​​Nutrition, with solid knowledge in food and especially in its impact on metabolism.

Gustavo Daniel Frechtel, Doctor. Professor in the Department of Medicine. Faculty of Medicine. University of Buenos Aires, University of Buenos Aires and Maria del Pilar QuevedoSpecialist in Nutrition, University of Buenos Aires

This article was originally published on The conversation. read the original.

No Comments

Leave A Reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Exit mobile version