These Mice Stopped Eating Carbs So You (maybe) Don't Have To
In the ever-more masochistic world of wellness-boosting, pound-shedding diets, the latest trend involves putting your body into a controlled state of starvation known as “ketogenesis,” by cutting out nearly all carbs. If that doesn’t sound like your particular brand of torture, guess what? You’re already on it. Well, at least while you’re sleeping. Two independent studies published Tuesday in the journal Cell Metabolism raise hopes that ketogenic diets, if followed full-time, do more than just slim waists. They also appear to improve the odds of living longer and remembering better … if you’re a mouse. The same effects have yet to be proven in humans, and plans for that are in the works. But in the meantime, self-experimenting biohackers (i.e. dieters) are collecting anecdotal evidence all around the world. Every time you wake up from a solid snooze and exhale out the fiery iron breath of a thousand rotting apple cores, that’s the taste of the “keto” lifestyle. That smell is acetone, and a little bit of it in the morning is a normal sign of a healthy metabolism. Over millennia, humans evolved a backup energy production system, for when glucose—your body’s main fuel source—gets depleted. Like during a famine, or just a good long nap. The goal of keto diets is to switch your body over to to this alternative metabolic pathway not just at night, but during your waking hours as well. By limiting carbs to just a few grams per day, your body begins to rely on its fat stores instead, and voila, epic weight loss. That works pretty well for things like your heart and lungs and muscles. But your brain—that electrical power suck, which consumes about a quarter of your daily calories—can’t burn fats. So in the absence of glucose, it snacks on somethin Continue reading >>
Ketogenic Diet And Brain Cancer
Brain cancers accounts for 1.8% of all cancers worldwide (1). The number of new diagnoses made annually is 2 to 3 per 100,000 people in the US and Europe. Brain and other CNS tumors are the 11th most common cancer in the UK, accounting for 3% of all new cases (2). Types of Brain Cancers Primary brain tumors are a varied group of both benign and malignant tumors. There are over 120 types of brain and central nervous system cancers. Some tumors are often given a grade to signify the rate of growth (3). Grade I is classed as the least malignant with grade IV being classed as the most malignant. Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) is the most aggressive type of brain tumor. The average lifespan of patients diagnosed with GBM is between 12-18 months, with less than 10% surviving at 5 years. The survival for low-grade gliomas ranges from 7 to 14 years (4). Standard Treatment Approaches The treatment of brain cancers generally involves a multifactorial approach of surgery followed by chemotherapy with or without radiation therapy. Conventional treatment options for GBM are more regarded as palliative and rarely curative due to their aggressive nature. Likewise, complete surgical resection is often impossible due to GBM’s ability to infiltrate normal brain tissue. Due to this, other types of treatments are being looked at to help with the overall prognosis of these types of cancers. Proposed Mechanism of the Ketogenic Diet in Cancer The way in which cancer cells work in the body are very different to that of normal cells. Namely, cancer cells have been shown to exhibit an altered metabolism. Compared to normal cells, cancer cells appear to have a greater glucose uptake, even when oxygen is present. Certain tumors function and thrive purely on glucose. Image source: Role of ketogeni Continue reading >>
#147: Ketosis And Your Brain
There was a time not so long ago when nutrition was simple: carbs good, fats bad. But since this neat summary was from the same people who told us to eat more margarine and fewer eggs, well, let’s just say that advice wasn’t the most accurate. Welcome to the ketogenic diet. A high fat, low carb diet based on how our ancestors probably ate, it can control epilepsy, help you get a leaner body, and make your thinking clearer and sharper. Dr. Dominic D’Agostino, Associate Professor of Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology at the University of South Florida and Senior Research Scholar at the Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC), is here to talk to us about what exactly is going on in your body on a ketogenic diet. The Evolution of Human Diets When you think about how our caveman ancestors lived, they didn’t have access to a glut of high glycemic load foods like ripe fruit or honey, and they definitely weren’t snacking on white bread. They were eating a diet high in fiber and fat, and low in carbs. They were also probably in ketosis for most of the year. Cognitive Benefits of a Ketogenic Diet When your body is in ketosis, your brain just works better: you’ll feel more lucid and sharp. Like so much about the brain, we don’t know exactly why this is. But from an evolutionary perspective, it makes sense. If you haven’t been successful in getting food, it’s time to make a new plan, and you more likely come up with a successful one if your thinking is clear and sharp. Getting into Ketosis Ketosis is a metabolic state in which your brain and body’s energy comes from ketone bodies, instead of from glucose. There are a few ways of pushing your body into ketosis, including sustained periods of fasting and following a ketogenic diet (as the name so obvio Continue reading >>
That's Why They Can't Stop Talking About Their Diet! Eating Only Low-carb Foods Can Have Similar Effect On Brain As Ecstasy
Some people on very low-carb diets say they feel euphoric, have clear minds and lose their appetite. Going low-carb might even mimic the effects of GHB – the recreational drug better known as fantasy, liquid ecstasy or grievous bodily harm – on the brain. To understand why we need to look at how the body processes a very low-carb diet, one that typically limits carbohydrates to no more than 50 grams a day. Your body thinks it's starving A very low-carb diet flips your metabolic switch from burning more carbs than fat, to more fat than carbs. This usually takes a few days in a process known as ketosis. During this time, your body thinks it's starving. Once it uses up most of your glucose (carb) reserves, the body stimulates the breakdown of stored fat into fatty acids and releases them into the blood. When fatty acids reach the liver they're converted into acetoacetate, an excellent metabolic fuel that belongs to a family of chemicals called ketones. That's why very low-carb diets are sometimes called 'ketogenic' diets. Acetoacetate decomposes to carbon dioxide and acetone, the smelly solvent best known for its ability to remove nail polish. This is why very low-carb dieters and people who are fasting often have sweet smelling breath. A healthy liver minimises the acetone lost via the lungs by converting most of the acetoacetate it produces to a more stable substance, called beta-hydroxybutyrate or BHB. And this is where those euphoric feelings could come from. Even the Italians are giving up on pasta, mirroring a pattern seen in Britain, with the rise of 'carbophobia'. One in four Italians – 23 percent - say they are limiting the amount of spaghetti they eat for health reasons. A shift towards protein rich diets has seen sales of bread, pasta, potatoes and rice fa Continue reading >>
Ketone bodies Acetone Acetoacetic acid (R)-beta-Hydroxybutyric acid Ketone bodies are three water-soluble molecules (acetoacetate, beta-hydroxybutyrate, and their spontaneous breakdown product, acetone) that are produced by the liver from fatty acids during periods of low food intake (fasting), carbohydrate restrictive diets, starvation, prolonged intense exercise,, alcoholism or in untreated (or inadequately treated) type 1 diabetes mellitus. These ketone bodies are readily picked up by the extra-hepatic tissues, and converted into acetyl-CoA which then enters the citric acid cycle and is oxidized in the mitochondria for energy. In the brain, ketone bodies are also used to make acetyl-CoA into long-chain fatty acids. Ketone bodies are produced by the liver under the circumstances listed above (i.e. fasting, starving, low carbohydrate diets, prolonged exercise and untreated type 1 diabetes mellitus) as a result of intense gluconeogenesis, which is the production of glucose from non-carbohydrate sources (not including fatty acids). They are therefore always released into the blood by the liver together with newly produced glucose, after the liver glycogen stores have been depleted (these glycogen stores are depleted after only 24 hours of fasting). When two acetyl-CoA molecules lose their -CoAs, (or Co-enzyme A groups) they can form a (covalent) dimer called acetoacetate. Beta-hydroxybutyrate is a reduced form of acetoacetate, in which the ketone group is converted into an alcohol (or hydroxyl) group (see illustration on the right). Both are 4-carbon molecules, that can readily be converted back into acetyl-CoA by most tissues of the body, with the notable exception of the liver. Acetone is the decarboxylated form of acetoacetate which cannot be converted Continue reading >>
Do Low Carbohydrate Diets Make You Dumber?
Low-carbohydrate diets, where carbohydrates constitute anywhere from 5 to 30 percent of total caloric intake (approximately 25 to 150 grams each day), are all the rage right now. For many, they're a successful impetus to sustained weight loss and improved health. But there could be an unforeseen toll. Because of the way that the human brain functions, low-carbohydrate diets may adversely impact cognitive ability. Does a low-carb diet really make you duller? To examine this question, let's first discuss its focus: the brain. There's no reason to beat around the bush, your brain is a pig. Though idle enough when observed outside its home cranium -- all pink, squishy, and squelchy; kind of cute really -- the brain is a charged biological machine. In an unseen electrical storm that would rival even the mightiest lightning display, 86 billion neurons fire -- almost nonstop -- to create the mosaic of thoughts, emotions, and mental images that we call the mind. The whole operation is an immense power suck, ravenously consuming roughly 250 to 300 calories each day, 20-25% of a human's base energy expenditure. As far as food goes, the brain is a fairly picky eater. Like a young candy-craving child, it prefers simple sugar molecules -- glucose to be specific -- and when the brain doesn't get glucose, it gets crabby and distracted. Since the body most easily creates glucose by metabolizing carbohydrates, it stands to reason that limiting carbohydrates could dampen cognitive function. When consuming low-carb diets in the short term, this is certainly true. In a 2008 study, psychologists placed 19 women on either a calorie restricted low-carb diet or a calorie restricted high-carb diet for 28 days. Throughout the study, participants' memory, reaction time, and vigilance were tested Continue reading >>
Ketosis Makes Your Brain Work Better
Every morning for the last four and a half months, I’ve broken off a large chunk of grass fed butter (usually around 50 grams or just over three tablespoons) and a couple tablespoons of coconut oil and thrown them in a blender with my morning coffee. You might have heard of this idea, dubbed ‘bulletproof coffee’ and created by a guy called Dave Asprey. 1 (this essay was originally posted at Aaron’s blog HERE) You might ask why the hell somebody might want to put butter in their coffee, but all you’d be proving is that you haven’t tried it (because it tastes amazing) and according to Dave Asprey, apparently will help make you healthier, feel better, perform better, think better – everything short of give you superpowers. Now, I didn’t want to like Dave Asprey… he’s just a little bit too charming – especially once you realize he’s created a whole line of supplements and other consumables that meet his extra-special toxin-free super-executive standards. I tried his upgraded mycotoxin free coffee beans and didn’t notice any difference between them and any other local fancy-shmancy coffee I’ve purchased since – not that I doubt that some people are more sensitive to these toxins, I just didn’t notice a difference. Nevertheless, I do like him. He does a good podcast and he clued me into something that I previously would have thought was completely insane, but now am starting to think is key to keep my brain working optimally – eating a high fat diet. A diet that is high in fat (60-70% of calories), is almost by definition low in carbs, and this means that when eating a high fat diet, it is likely that one is at least partially and some of the time in a state of ketosis. For those of you who don’t know, ketosis is what it is called when the Continue reading >>
Clinical Review: Ketones And Brain Injury
Go to: Ketone metabolism Ketones are by-products of fat metabolism and are produced in hepatic mitochondria . More specifically, the three KB are: AcAc - if not oxidized to form usable energy, this is the source of the two other KB; acetone - not an energy source, but instead exhaled or excreted as waste; and BHB - not technically a ketone, but reversibly produced from AcAc. The precursor for the synthesis of ketones is acetyl coenzyme A (acetyl CoA), which is formed by β-oxidation of free fatty acids in the liver. The two important determinants of ketogenesis are the availability of acetyl CoA and the mobilization of fatty acids liberated from white adipose tissue during fasting or catecholaminergic stress [2,3]. AcAc is the central ketone body. AcAc is reduced to BHB by β-hydroxybutyrate dehydrogenase (BHD) in a NADH-requiring reversible reaction : The extent of this reaction depends on the state of the cellular pool of NAD+ . When highly reduced, most or all ketones will be in the form of BHB. The ratio of BHB to AcAc reflects the redox state within the mitochondrial matrix . BHB is nonvolatile and is chemically stable. This ketone body's only metabolic fate is interconversion with AcAc. Once synthesized, ketones diffuse into the circulation. Fate of circulating ketones Plasma concentrations of circulating KB range from <0.1 mM/l in the postprandial state to as much as 6 mM/l during fasting, with levels reaching 25 mM/l in diabetic ketoacidosis [6-8]. Under normal dietary conditions, ketogenesis from fatty acids is at very low levels. This is attributable to the relatively high blood levels of the ketogenesis-inhibiting hormone insulin, and low blood levels of ketogenesis-promoting hormones, glucagon and cortisol . One of the prerequisites for ketoge Continue reading >>
Does Ketosis Affect Caffeine Sensitivity?
Caffeine might cause disturbance in glucose metabolism, which could affect ketosis, although only anecdotal evidence of this exists. Insulin resistance, which is the inability of cells to respond to and absorb glucose, can raise glucose levels and cause weight gain. Ketosis decreases insulin resistance by improving insulin sensitivity, which is the the ability of cells to absorb glucose which ultimately help in weight loss. Caffeine might increase insulin resistance. Increase in insulin resistance makes losing weight difficult. It also increase the chance of having type 2 diabetes. Although caffeine might raise glucose levels after eating a meal high in carbohydrates, it's unclear that this effect occurs after a low-carbohydrate meal such as those eaten by low-carbohydrates dieters. It's also unclear whether blood glucose would rise high enough to keep a low-carbohydrates dieter out of ketosis. Continue reading >>
Powerful Role Of Ketone Fats In Brain Health And Alzheimer’s Treatment
Brain cells function with far greater efficiency when they are utilizing fat (ketones) as a fuel source as opposed to sugar. The exciting news is that scientists are now taking advantage of this finding in the actual treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, as you can see in this recent research publication. This research clearly substantiates the health benefits of a low-carb, high-fat diet as a powerful lifestyle change to achieve the goal of brain health and functionality. While there actually exists a pharmaceutical “medical food” based on the science explained in this report, you can boost the availability of ketones for your brain by simply adding coconut oil or MCT oil to your daily regimen. But to make this effective, carb restriction is a must! Alzheimer’s now affects some 5.4 million Americans. It is my belief that this dietary approach may well go a long way to keeping the brain healthy and allowing us to remain free of this dreaded condition. Continue reading >>
Your Brain On Ketones
The modern prescription of high carbohydrate, low fat diets and eating snacks between meals has coincided with an increase in obesity, diabetes, and and increase in the incidence of many mental health disorders, including depression, anxiety, and eating disorders. In addition, many of these disorders are striking the population at younger ages. While most people would agree that diet has a lot to do with the development of obesity and diabetes, many would disagree that what we eat has much to do with our mental health and outlook. I believe that what we eat has a lot to do with the health of our brains, though of course mental illness (like physical illness) has multifactorial causes, and by no means should we diminish the importance of addressing all the causes in each individual. But let's examine the opposite of the modern high carbohydrate, low fat, constant snacking lifestyle and how that might affect the brain. The opposite of a low fat, snacking lifestyle would be the lifestyle our ancestors lived for tens of thousands of generations, the lifestyle for which our brains are primarily evolved. It seems reasonable that we would have had extended periods without food, either because there was none available, or we were busy doing something else. Then we would follow that period with a filling meal of gathered plant and animal products, preferentially selecting the fat. During the day we might have eaten a piece of fruit, or greens, or a grub we dug up, but anything filling or high in calories (such as a starchy tuber) would have to be killed, butchered, and/or carefully prepared before eating. Fortunately, we have a terrific system of fuel for periods of fasting or low carbohydrate eating, our body (and brain) can readily shift from burning glucose to burning what ar Continue reading >>
The Fat Burning Brain: What Are The Cognitive Effects Of Ketosis?
41 Comments Although mainstream sources still mistake “the brain needs glucose” for “the brain can only run on glucose,” regular MDA readers know the truth: given sufficient adaptation, the brain can derive up to 75% of its fuel from ketone bodies, which the liver constructs using fatty acids. If we could only use glucose, we wouldn’t make it longer than a few days without food. If our brains couldn’t utilize fat-derived ketones, we’d drop dead as soon as our liver had exhausted its capacity to churn out glucose. We’d waste away, our lean tissue dissolving into amino acids for hepatic conversion into glucose to feed our rapacious brains. You’d end up a skeletal wraith with little else but your brain and a hypertrophied liver remaining until, eventually, the latter cannibalized itself in a last ditch search for glucose precursors for the tyrant upstairs. It would get ugly. That’s adaptation. But is there an actual cognitive advantage to running on ketones? Maybe. It depends. It certainly helps people with neurodegeneration. People whose brains suffer from impaired glucose utilization see cognitive benefits from ketones. In Alzheimer’s disease, aging-related cognitive decline, epilepsy, and Parkinson’s disease, brain glucose uptake is depressed—even before any actual cognitive decline appears. Despite high glucose availability, the aging, epileptic, Alzheimer’s, or Parkinson’s brain can’t utilize enough of it to handle cognition. Enter ketones. Ketones act as an alternative energy source for the glucose-starved brains. It’s no coincidence that ketogenic diets can improve symptoms (and in some cases abolish them) and cognitive function in all four conditions. Okay, but those are in unhealthy people with existing (or looming) neurological d Continue reading >>
How To Use The Ketogenic Diet For Productivity And Mental Performance
Beginning in the 1920’s, the ketogenic diet, or “keto” diet — which involves eating mostly fat and protein as an energy source with low intake of carbohydrates — has been used by many for weight loss and in helping patients with diabetes or epilepsy. But there’s another less-talked about benefit of this diet: ketosis for mental performance. If you’re experiencing brain fog, lack of productivity, or poor mental performance, ketosis might be a solution for you. We’ll go over some of the ways ketosis can have a positive effect on cognition and may help you be more productive throughout your day. KETOSIS FOR MENTAL PERFORMANCE First, let’s start with a little refresher around ketosis and energy. The basis of the ketogenic diet is that it uses specially designed macronutrient balance to get a certain response from the body. Those on the keto diet eat normal amounts of protein, higher amounts of fat than the average person, and they keep their carbohydrate intake very low, less than 50 grams per day. When carb intake is this low, it triggers a response in the body that is similar to how it would act during starvation. Instead of simply utilizing glucose, the primary source of energy, the brains pulls from its alternative energy source: fat. But before fats can be used by the body, the liver has to first convert them to ketone bodies. Then, these ketone bodies are used as energy for the body and brain when there is lack of glucose. This is how ketosis works. Now that we’ve understood that, let’s talk about how ketosis might be used as an advantage for your mental state and productivity. KETONES IMPROVE BRAIN FUNCTION The standard Western diet is deficiency in many areas, including the very important essential fatty acids. This is detrimental to health bec Continue reading >>
The Ketogenic Diet Brain
To live without it, is to not live at all. It tells everything in our body what to do, when to do it, and how much to do. It’s command central – and it is imperative that it is taken care of. The brain. Our brains are instruments of immense capability. But if not tended to well, they can also be wasted assets, with their potential never being realized. Of the known benefits the fat burning lifestyle has – the Ketogenic Diet brain – and it’s empowering possibilities are some of the most exciting. By cutting out all of the junk we feed our bodies, and focusing on a fat-fueled diet, we can take our brains to the next level. The western world is in a never-ending search for the culprit of why many of us (and our children) are underperforming at work, in school, and at life. Obviously many environmental factors go into play here, but the 1,000 lb gorilla in the room is what we’re eating. With our public schools all but erasing fat from our children’s diets in the classroom, to the FDA providing us with questionable nutritional guidelines, we’ve become voluntarily ignorant to the fact that with the eradication of fat from diets, has also come the eradication of health. And our brains are suffering for it. The Ketogenic Diet brain offers an opportunity to turn the ship around on poor health and cognitive function. But don’t just take our word for it, look at the facts: they’re everywhere – screaming to be heard. 1. The brain is an energy consuming organ, and it has a close relationship to fuel – especially fat. You use your brain everyday, (even your sleep is affected by your brain’s health). The simple decisions you make in the morning and the career altering choices you make at work are both dictated by the same thing – your brain. When your brain Continue reading >>
How Does Isolation Affect The Brain?
First of All What is Isolation: Social separation Form Other or The condition Of Being Alone How does Isolation Effects the Brain: A number of true Stories shows how it Blow the Mind. Story No:1 In a summer the 32year old Sarah Shroud had been hiking with two friends in the mountains of Iraqi Kurdistan. They were arrested by Iranian troops accused of spying. She were kept in solitary confinement in Evin Prison of Tehran For more then one year. Results Shows Hallucinations: Sarah mind began to slip after two months.She heard ghostfootsteps flashing lights and she spent most of her day crouched on all four listening through a gap in door. StoryNo:2 In 1993 a sociologist spent 366-days an underground Cavern in Italy that had been design to Stimulate space mission. When he emerged he was convinced that he spent only 219-days. Result show time Drifting His sleep-wake cycle had also been doubled.Many researchers found that most people in dark Eventually adjust to 48hours cycle-: 36hour of activity was followed by 12hours of sleep. Some other Effects on Brain: Chronically lonely people have High Blood Pressure. More vulnerable to Infection More likely to develop Alzheimer's disease and dementia. Greatly Effect on Sleep pattern Verbal reasoning logical thinking and attention. The Sciences behind these events and facts are still unclear that why these Happens.There are some assumptions of which researchers are not surely clear. If you like this article plz upovate.Your upovates will Encourage me to write further …..cheers Continue reading >>