Ketogenic Diet: Is The Ultimate Low-carb Diet Good For You?
Recently, many of my patients have been asking about a ketogenic diet. Is it safe? Would you recommend it? Despite the recent hype, a ketogenic diet is not something new. In medicine, we have been using it for almost 100 years to treat drug-resistant epilepsy, especially in children. In 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 approach for weight loss. What is a ketogenic diet? In essence, it is a diet that causes the body to release ketones into the bloodstream. Most cells prefer to use blood sugar, which comes from carbohydrates, as the body’s main source of energy. In the absence of circulating blood sugar from food, we start breaking down stored fat into molecules called ketone bodies (the process is called ketosis). Once you reach ketosis, most cells will use ketone bodies to generate energy until we start eating carbohydrates again. The shift, from using circulating glucose to breaking down stored fat as a source of energy, usually happens over two to four days of eating fewer than 20 to 50 grams of carbohydrates per day. Keep in mind that this is a highly individualized process, and some people need a more restricted diet to start producing enough ketones. Because it lacks carbohydrates, a ketogenic diet is rich in proteins and fats. It typically includes plenty of meats, eggs, processed meats, sausages, cheeses, fish, nuts, butter, oils, seeds, and fibrous vegetables. Because it is so restrictive, it is really hard to follow over the long run. Carbohydrates normally account for at least 50% of the typical American diet. One of the main criticisms of this diet is that many people tend to eat too much protein and Continue reading >>
Ep8: High Cholesterol Levels On A Keto Diet Experiments By Dave Feldman
In todays interview I get to speak with cholesterol biohacker, Dave Feldman, about how when some people eat a high fat or keto diet their cholesterol goes up a lot! Dave is a senior software engineer and entrepreneur who has become a leader in understanding how to manipulate high cholesterol levels quickly. Dave started eating a low carb high fat diet back in 2015, to avoid type 2 diabetes and regain control of his health and weight. The LCHF diet was making him feel better. His weight and energy levels were getting better. However, he did a blood test to check his cholesterol and glucose levels to check for changes. Boy were there changes. This was when he saw his diabetes risk markers improved, but he had very high cholesterol levels. Dave falls into a category of people he calls “hyper-responders” to a high fat diet. That means people whose cholesterol goes up instead of down on a low carb or keto diet. (Just like me after adding butter in my coffee) If you are worried about having high LDL levels on a high fat, keto or Atkins diet then this podcast is for you. If you want to know how to reduce your cholesterol without using medication and what foods to eat then this podcast is for you. I discuss with Dave how hyper-responders can be lost for answers which is why his n=1 experiments are so important to understand what is happening. We then go into the results of his experiments and how anybody can try manipulate their own high cholesterol using his Feldman Protocol. Enjoy the episode! Show Notes Highlights of what we talk about during the interview: Special thanks to Dave for joining me on the show. Thanks for Listening! Now it’s time to share your thoughts. You can: Continue reading >>
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Long-term Effects Of A Ketogenic Diet In Obese Patients.
Abstract BACKGROUND: Although various studies have examined the short-term effects of a ketogenic diet in reducing weight in obese patients, its long-term effects on various physical and biochemical parameters are not known. OBJECTIVE: To determine the effects of a 24-week ketogenic diet (consisting of 30 g carbohydrate, 1 g/kg body weight protein, 20% saturated fat, and 80% polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fat) in obese patients. PATIENTS AND METHODS: In the present study, 83 obese patients (39 men and 44 women) with a body mass index greater than 35 kg/m(2), and high glucose and cholesterol levels were selected. The body weight, body mass index, total cholesterol, low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, triglycerides, fasting blood sugar, urea and creatinine levels were determined before and after the administration of the ketogenic diet. Changes in these parameters were monitored after eight, 16 and 24 weeks of treatment. RESULTS: The weight and body mass index of the patients decreased significantly (P<0.0001). The level of total cholesterol decreased from week 1 to week 24. HDL cholesterol levels significantly increased, whereas LDL cholesterol levels significantly decreased after treatment. The level of triglycerides decreased significantly following 24 weeks of treatment. The level of blood glucose significantly decreased. The changes in the level of urea and creatinine were not statistically significant. CONCLUSIONS: The present study shows the beneficial effects of a long-term ketogenic diet. It significantly reduced the body weight and body mass index of the patients. Furthermore, it decreased the level of triglycerides, LDL cholesterol and blood glucose, and increased the level of HDL cholesterol. Administerin Continue reading >>
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- The effect of a low-carbohydrate, ketogenic diet versus a low-glycemic index diet on glycemic control in type 2 diabetes mellitus
- Insulin, glucagon and somatostatin stores in the pancreas of subjects with type-2 diabetes and their lean and obese non-diabetic controls
The Cholesterol Myth
The Cholesterol Myth There are numerous books and papers being published almost monthly regarding cholesterol and dietary fat. I would encourage you to read the following, and make up your own mind. The first is The Great Cholesterol Myth. It goes someway to explain how cholesterol has been blamed for heart disease, and how this is just so wrong. Jimmy Moore has also written a fabulous book called Cholesterol Clarity. And Nina Teicholz, Investigative Journalist for The New Yorker, The Economist and The New York Times, has spent the last few years researching the unthinkable: that everything we knew about dietary fat is wrong. The Big Fat Surprise – Why Butter, Meat and Cheese Belong In A Healthy Diet. The Cholesterol Myth There are many points raised in these books which are imperative to understand, I’ve written some important take home messages. But please, read for yourself as I cannot do the above books justice in a few bullet points. “We must be our own health advocate. Take control of your health. Find what works for you” Cholesterol is required by almost every cell in our bodies. It is so vital we are able to manufacture it. Cholesterol is made by your liver, brain and almost every cell in your body. Cholesterol is the structure which is the base of all our sex hormones, bile acid and Vitamin D are made from. Cholesterol maintains cell walls, allows cellular communication and transportation of substances. Cholesterol is a poor predictor of heart disease. Half of those with heart disease have ‘normal’ cholesterol levels. Half of those with ‘high’ cholesterol levels have healthy hearts. Most heart attack victims have cholesterol within the “normal” range. It is the carrier of cholesterol (the lipoproteins LDL and HDL) which give a clearer pictur Continue reading >>
A Guide To High Cholesterol On A Keto Diet
For most, a keto diet results in improved cholesterol values. But you might be one of the people whose LDL cholesterol has increased. Is that a problem? And if so – what can you do about it? Here’s a guide to this topic by dietician Franziska Spritzler: KetoDiet Blog: High cholesterol on a keto diet – Should you be concerned? If you want to learn more about elevated cholesterol on a keto diet, go to the links below. More Keto side effects: Elevated cholesterol Cholesterol Earlier Should you worry about your cholesterol on a keto diet? Did a citizen-scientist crack the cholesterol code? Continue reading >>
High Cholesterol On A Keto Diet Should You Be Concerned?
As keto and low-carb diets have become increasingly popular, some people who follow this way of eating have noticed a sharp rise in their LDL cholesterol. Understandably, most have become concerned, since elevated LDL is typically considered a major heart disease risk factor. However, the reason for this response - and whether it poses significant health risks – isn't completely understood or agreed upon by experts. This article takes a balanced look at the issue and its potential implications for cardiovascular disease and overall health. What is Cholesterol and Why Do We Need It? Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance that is essential for life. It plays an important role in maintaining the integrity of your body's cells. Cholesterol is used to make hormones like vitamin D, testosterone, and estrogen. Cholesterol is also needed for the production of bile acids that help you digest fat. Your liver, intestines, and other organs produce most of the cholesterol found in your body. In addition, it can be obtained from eating animal foods like meat, cheese, eggs, and butter. How Is Blood Cholesterol Connected to Heart Disease? Historically, elevated blood cholesterol levels have been linked to atherosclerosis, a condition involving deposits of plaque that cause the arterial lining to thicken and potentially impair blood flow to the heart. The process of plaque deposition is complex but involves white blood cells, calcium, cholesterol, and other substances converging at the site of inflamed or damaged arteries. However, cholesterol doesn't travel on its own in your bloodstream. Instead, it's carried in lipoprotein particles, which contain special proteins called apoproteins, triglycerides, fat-soluble vitamins and other compounds in addition to cholesterol. Different ty Continue reading >>
Video: What Eating “high-fat” Or “keto” Does To Your Cholesterol
What happens to your cholesterol when you eat high-fat, keto? Jimmy Moore and I review my 9 month cholesterol numbers since going low-carb, high-fat, keto. I’ve been following a high-fat, low-carb, keto eating style for 9 months (as outlined in my 30-day keto program) and my blood test results are in! Today; with the help of Jimmy Moore, we’re reviewing my results and chatting about what eating high-fat, low-carb, keto does to your cholesterol, HDL, LDL and triglycerides. AND! We show you how to interpret the results of your blood tests, the cholesterol numbers you should watch for, foods that put you at risk, the connection between triglycerides and carb intake, and how to change your numbers for the better. If you’re curious about cholesterol, HDL, LDL, triglycerides, today’s video will give you the full picture so that you can make a healthful, informed decision about yourself, your health and your high-fat, keto life. Highlights… What eating “high-fat” or “keto” did to my cholesterol (HDL, LDL and triglycerides) What cholesterol numbers to watch for The food your body needs to increase your HDL The connection between carb intake and triglycerides What eating high-fat, keto does to your cholesterol numbers Resources… Get Jimmy’s Book, Cholesterol Clarity My 30-day Meal Plan + High-Fat, Keto Guidebook, The Keto Beginning VIDEO TRANSCRIPTION Leanne: Jimmy, you’re here in the flesh. Jimmy Moore: Hey, hey, hey. Leanne: For those of you guys who don’t know Jimmy Moore, first of all you’ve probably been living under a rock because this guy’s huge. Excited to have you here on the show today. Jimmy busted on health scene in 2004 after a phenomenal 180 pound weight loss that enabled him to come off of his prescription drugs for high cholesterol, Continue reading >>
How Keto Diet Can Affect Your Cholesterol Levels
One of the biggest concerns when it comes to following the ketogenic diet is that some people are afraid to try this way of eating simply because they think it can increase their cholesterol and clog their arteries. From the solid scientific studies we will talk about below, a low-carb ketogenic diet is shown to improve your cholesterol levels and can be an incredibly healthy choice. Lipids, Lipoproteins and Their Impact on Health The human body consists of cells and each cell is composed of lipids and proteins. Lipids are a type of fat or oily substance which constitutes the membrane of a cell (1). The two most known types of lipids are triglycerides and cholesterol, which are generated in the liver and found in the bloodstream (2, 3). Lipoproteins are lipid-proteins which are responsible for the chemical change and transfer of lipids in the human body, such as the High-Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol (HDL cholesterol) and the Low-Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol (LDL cholesterol). HDL cholesterol transfers the extra cholesterol from the blood to the liver for removal from the body and is also referred to as “good” cholesterol. LDL cholesterol transfers the cholesterol within the bloodstream to the parts of the body where cell repair is needed and also inside the arteries. It is also known as “bad” cholesterol. Total cholesterol is HDL and LDL cholesterol combined (4). There has been extensive research on whether high cholesterol levels can cause cardiovascular disorders and which type of cholesterol lipoprotein is a valid indicator. An early clinical trial among 3641 men in the US showed that the ratios of total cholesterol to HDL cholesterol as well as the ratio of LDL/HDL cholesterol were significantly better indicators of cardiovascular risk compared to the Continue reading >>
The Ketogenic Diet And Cholesterol
A common misconception is that because ketogenic diets are high in fat, they must increase cholesterol in your body and clog your arteries. However, much of the recent research shines light on how low-carb diets can optimize your cholesterol levels and in fact improve your heart health. Here we show the most up-to-date research on how different types of cholesterol impact the body and how the ketogenic diet can be a useful tool in maintaining a robust cardiovascular system. Cutting through the Fat: What are Lipids and Cholesterol? Before we can examine the research, we need to understand the roles fat, cholesterol, and carrier molecules called lipoproteins play in the body. Fats, also known as lipids, are a diverse group of molecules with a “non-polar” characteristic that repels water. This means that you if you put a fat such as oil or grease in water they will not mix. In the human body, fats are most commonly found in the bloodstream in one of two forms. The first is triglycerides, a fatty acid that stores energy for later use. These long molecules can be broken down into other fatty acids and glycerol to create fuel for the body. Glycerol can further be broken down into forms of glucose. Elevated levels of triglycerides in your blood can increase your risk of developing diabetes, cardiovascular illnesses, and other life-threatening diseases.  The other important class of lipids in the body is a waxy substance called cholesterol. These molecules have a variety of functions in your body such as building hormones including estrogen and testosterone, maintaining the integrity of cell membranes, and aiding in the absorption of vitamins. Your body produces all the cholesterol you need through the liver and other body cells. Cholesterol is also obtained by consuming Continue reading >>
Does A Ketogenic Diet Change Your Lipid Profile
Wrong and outdated health information often causes worry about the healthiness of the ketogenic diet. One of the biggest concerns is: does a ketogenic diet change your lipid profile? In order to tackle and address these concerns, we’ll be covering what lipid profile means, why it’s included in myths about the ketogenic diet and why you don’t need to worry about most of what you’ve been told. Lipids and the Ketogenic Diet The main purpose of the ketogenic diet today is to provide a measurable state of metabolism through nutritional ketosis. There are many benefits of ketosis, including weight loss, better mental clarity, and more energy. These benefits make the ketogenic diet enticing, but what about how it affects lipids in the body? To understand this, let’s discuss what lipids are and the beliefs surrounding them and the keto diet. What is a Lipid Profile? A lipid profile is the measure of fats and fatty substances (lipids) that your body uses as energy. These are usually measured via a lipid panel of blood tests meant to look for any irregularities in your lipid amounts. Lipids include: Triglycerides Cholesterol High-density lipoprotein (HDL, often know as “good,” cholesterol) Low-density lipoprotein (LDL, often known as “bad,” cholesterol) The ketogenic diet raises some concerns around the diet negatively affecting one’s lipid profile and increasing their risks of diseases related to high cholesterol or triglycerides. Let’s take a look at these concerns. Myths About Fat and Cholesterol Below are some of the myths when it comes to the ketogenic diet and lipid profiles. We’re used to hearing many of these due to bad or old science — and we all know the internet is rampant with poor (and sometimes harmful) information. Myth: Cholesterol is bad Continue reading >>
High Cholesterol Meets Ketosis: An Update
A couple of years ago I started using the ketogenic diet to manage my blood sugar as a type 1 diabetic and to enhance my athletic performance. I wrote a series of blogs and an ebook to share that experiment because adopting a low carb high fat (ketogenic) diet has become the single most beneficial thing that I’ve done for my diabetes management and my ability to be active in the 20 years I’ve been living at this difficult metabolic crossroads. Eating ketogenic has improved my life and my ability to make photography, climbing and moving around in the outdoors the center of my life rather than fleeing the complications of diabetes. I didn’t expect those posts to take off because I’m not a dietary blogger. I just wanted to share the ups and downs of what I was trying in hopes that it would help other people. One of the major issues I encountered was the sharp increase in my LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and initially I considered abandoning the ketogenic diet because I feared that I was just trading one risk factor for another. If you want to read that post and the comment thread check it out here! I am writing this post to update you since two years have passed and I have found some information that I believe is useful. I also want to clarify my current position on the cholesterol issue and why my LDL is still high and why I’m not letting that fact deter me from eating ketogenic. In fact, I am going to share a couple more blog posts in the future detailing some new experiments I’ve been doing using intermittent fasting and exogenous ketones which has been nothing short of mind-blowing! Exhibit A: Biohacker’s Lab podcast (non-iTunes) or Biohacker’s Lab (iTunes) : Ep8: High Cholesterol Levels on a Keto Diet Experiments by Dave Feldman If you have concerns abou Continue reading >>
What Do You Do If You Get Elevated Cholesterol On A Low-carb Diet?
It’s a question I often get. Isn’t a low-carb and high-fat diet bad for the cholesterol? And what if you get an elevated cholesterol on LCHF, what should you do? The good news First the great news: A low-carb high-fat diet usually results in an improved cholesterol profile, indicating a lower risk of heart disease: The classic effect of a low-carb diet on cholesterol is a slight elevation, partly due to an elevation of the good (HDL) cholesterol, indicating a lower risk of heart disease. This especially as the cholesterol profile also typically improves in two more ways: lower triglycerides and larger, fluffier LDL particles. All things that reduce risk of heart disease, statistically. It has also been shown that two years with low-carb, high-fat diet advice results in a reduction of atherosclerosis – people actually got less signs of heart disease. The bad news However, there are also potential problems, even if they are rare. On average the elevation of total and LDL cholesterol is so small that most studies do not even pick up on it. But for a smaller number of people – possibly around 1-2 percent of the population – there can be worrying elevations of LDL and total cholesterol, beyond what can be considered normal. This potential risk is worth taking seriously. It can also be worth taking steps to correct it. I’ve written more about it on the page about potential side effects of low-carb diets: Low Carb Side Effects & How to Cure Them More Continue reading >>
Low Carb And Cholesterol – A Case History
Three months ago I had a visit from a 53 year old gentleman who was worried about his health. His name is Peter. He had been gaining weight for some time, his knees were aching and he was having trouble playing his weekly tennis with his old classmates. He told me he had probably put on approximately 55 lb (25 kg) in the past five years. “It all started when I quit smoking” he said Peter was working as an accountant. There was a lot a stress at work, long working days and sometimes he had to go in on the weekends as well. Apart from his weekly badminton, he wasn’t really exercising at all. Although he had quit smoking, he had never really bothered about his lifestyle and was totally uninterested in diet and nutrition. His wife took care of the cooking at home and was trying to limit his intake of calories. She was very conscious about cholesterol and tried to use low-fat varieties. At work however, Peter relied mainly on fast food, sandwiches, sodas, chocolate bars, chips, and an occasional fruit in between. Usually a few beers and some red wine on the weekends, bot otherwise not much alcohol. Peter had suddenly become worried about his weight gain and felt his general condition was slowly becoming worse. He was feeling out of breath. For the first time in his life he was really thinking about his health. He appeared to have suddenly realized that, he himself might have to take action. Peter told me he wanted to try a low carb diet. A friend of his had been getting good results with such an approach, was feeling well and had lost a lot of weight. Peter thought this might be the way for him to go. However, his wife was reluctant. She didn’t like the idea of eating so much fat. She had a history of elevated cholesterol herself, and had been trying to avoid animal Continue reading >>
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Lipid Changes On A Very-low-carb Ketogenic Diet: My Own Experience
I'd like to preface this blog post by apologizing for its length, including links to several long articles. Also, for anyone who doesn't know me, I'm a vocal and enthusiastic supporter of low-carbohydrate diets, but I always strive to be balanced in my writing. I'm very nonconfrontational and don't like "getting into it" with people who disagree with me. However, I expect I'll receive plenty of negative feedback from this article because of the controversial topic. Cholesterol Results From June 2013 through November 2013 My cholesterol levels have always been higher than average. LDL has ranged from 120s-150s as far back as I can remember, long before I began following a moderately carbohydrate-restricted diet back in 2011. In June of last year, I reported my NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance) LipoProfile results after almost a year of consuming a very-low-carb ketogenic diet (VLCKD) containing less than 50 grams net carb per day. I was very happy with these values and frankly a little surprised that I achieved them while eating delicious, satiating foods. Lipid Profile from November 2013 In November of last year, I had a standard lipid profile done as part of lab work for my annual physical: Total Cholesterol: 300 LDL-C: 160 HDL-C: 128 TG: 56 My numbers had increased, but I wasn't terribly concerned about the LDL-C, since on a few occasions it had been nearly that high in the past. Seeing a total cholesterol of 300 was a bit troubling, but I knew it was partially due to having extremely high HDL (Apparently high levels of some types of HDL can also be problematic, although I didn't realize this at the time). Looking back, although I wasn't tracking my intake online regularly back then, I'm pretty sure I was eating the same or perhaps a little more fat than when I had the Continue reading >>
Cholesterol And The Ketogenic Diet
Does the Keto Diet Raise Cholesterol? The ketogenic, or keto, diet is an eating plan based on high fat intake, adequate levels of protein and very low intake of carbohydrates. It is designed to change the way the body sources energy, forcing it to burn fats as energy, rather than glucose obtained from carbohydrates. Developed as a treatment for epilepsy in 1924, the keto diet is still used today to control the disorder. It is also used in the treatment of other medical issues, and has become very popular for weight loss. Given the high intake of fats, questions have been raised about cholesterol and the ketogenic diet, a concern that we'll look into here in detail. About The Ketogenic Diet A typical Ketogenic Diet plan involves getting most calories from fat (70-90%), a small amount from protein and very minimal carbohydrate intake. The high fat, low carbohydrate makeup of the diet is designed to mimic the fasting state, stimulating a metabolic state called ketosis. This is a state in which the lack of sufficient carbohydrates in the diet forces it to turn to fat as a fuel source. In order to use those fats, the liver includes High Fat Foods with few Carbohydratesconverts them into fatty acids and ketones, and the ketones then replace glucose as the body's main source of energy. The ketogenic diet was first developed by Dr. Russell Wilder at the Mayo Clinic to control epilepsy. It is still considered a very effective treatment for reducing seizures in patients who suffer the disorder. While it has been largely replaced by anticonvulsant drugs today, it is still used to treat patients with drug-resistant seizure disorders. According to the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, there is strong medical evidence that the keto diet is also beneficial for weight loss, impro Continue reading >>