Is The Keto Diet Safe? 10 Myth-busting Arguments For The Safety Of Ketosis
Is ketosis safe? The truth is that we can’t say for certain that it is 100% safe. Humans don’t understand everything under the branch of nutritional science and probably won’t for a very long time. As an individual, the only thing you can do is take a look at the research yourself and form your own conclusion. Personally, through the reading I’ve done and the experience I’ve had with the Keto diet, I’ve formed my own conclusion that ketosis is safe. Could I be wrong? Absolutely. But I could also be right. I’m willing to take that risk in order to follow a diet which could maximize longevity, well being and function. My personal conclusion shouldn’t matter to you though. You need to do your own research and come to your own conclusion. I’ve put together this post to organize all of the issues surrounding the safety of ketosis so that you can make your own decision. In trying to prove something to be safe there are two ways to go about it. Disprove the claims of danger Show evidence which may be correlated with safety This article will dispel the top 10 claims people make in an argument to label ketosis as dangerous. Like I said, the science on ketosis is still quite immature. The following data is not meant to 100% prove or disprove the safety of ketosis. It’s merely the information we have available today which can help us form a nutritional strategy we feel is best for ourselves. I’m not a doctor or a researcher. The following information is material I’ve collected in my attempt to feel confident following a Keto diet indefinitely. Most of it is sourced from doctors or authors although I have also included anecdotal accounts from experiences posted on message boards and Reddit. I know, much of the information here isn’t sourced directly from s Continue reading >>
The Keto Diet Is Gaining Popularity, But Is It Safe?
A new twist on extreme weight loss is catching on in some parts of the United States. It’s called the "keto diet." People promoting the diet say it uses the body’s own fat burning system to help people lose significant weight in as little as 10 days. It has also been known to help moderate the symptoms of children with epilepsy, although experts are not quite sure why it works. Proponents say the diet can produce quick weight loss and provide a person with more energy. However, critics say the diet is an unhealthy way to lose weight and in some instances it can be downright dangerous. Read More: What is the “Caveman Diet?” » What Is Ketosis? The “keto” diet is any extremely low- or no-carbohydrate diet that forces the body into a state of ketosis. Ketosis occurs when people eat a low- or no-carb diet and molecules called ketones build up in their bloodstream. Low carbohydrate levels cause blood sugar levels to drop and the body begins breaking down fat to use as energy. Ketosis is actually a mild form of ketoacidosis. Ketoacidosis mostly affects people with type 1 diabetes. In fact, it is the leading cause of death of people with diabetes who are under 24 years of age. However, many experts say ketosis itself is not necessarily harmful. Some studies, in fact, suggest that a ketogenic diet is safe for significantly overweight or obese people. However, other clinical reviews point out that patients on low-carbohydrate diets regain some of their lost weight within a year. Where It’s Helpful The keto diet was created by Dr. Gianfranco Cappello, an associate professor of surgery at the Sapienza University in Rome, Italy. He claims great success among thousands of users. In his study, more than 19,000 dieters experienced significant, rapid weight loss, few side Continue reading >>
How Many Carbs Can An Average Person Have Each Day To Stay In Nutritional Ketosis?
The answer is highly variable from person to person. A safe way to start is to keep under 20 grams of carbohydrates a day, avoiding all sugars and starches as much as possible. (Save those 20 grams for real food, such as vegetables or small traces of milk sugar in things like cheese that are mostly fat or protein.) This should be low enough to get almost anyone into ketosis within a week or two. Once you have determined that you are in ketosis (using the test strips or breath analyzer), you can try increasing your level of carbs to see if you remain in ketosis. Some people can go quite high (100 grams or more) and still stay in ketosis, as long as they stick with complex carbs like steel-cut oatmeal or beans. However, many who have weight issues have become insulin-resistant, and they may need to stay at very low carb levels to remain in ketosis. I find that I need to keep my carbs below 20 grams at all times to ensure staying in ketosis. If you try for yourself, maybe you will have better luck and be able to eat more. Just keep testing and remember that the strips are not incredibly accurate; if you show no ketones in the morning and some at night, you're probably in ketosis the whole day. Continue reading >>
What Is Good For Heavy Metal Detoxification? And Does Going Into Ketosis Help?
Let me start with mercury because in some ways it is the most difficult heavy metal to excrete efficiently. Mercury bonds efficiently to sulfur, much better than it bonds to oxygen. Lead bonds to oxygen better, and this defines a critical difference in detox between different heavy metals. The body can have a high mercury burden and be asymptomatic. Teenagers with idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy suddenly drop dead; that's how we find out they have toxic mercury burdens in their heart muscles. In humans, mercury is detoxified by binding to glutathione (GSH), which binds to mercury (Hg) by its sulfur (S) atoms. Glutathione is abbreviated GSH to emphasize the sulfhydryl (SH) active group, which when it bonds to mercury becomes GS-Hg-SG (two bonds to the sulfur (S) of glutathione). The H of GSH is replaced with mercury. This bound form of mercury is our body's primary mercury-defense mechanism, for storage in the cells and for elimination through the liver into the bile. The latter is where the problem begins. When mercury enters the digestive tract in bile, it runs into microorganisms. Bacteria hate mercury in the glutathione-bound form. It gets into their systems very efficiently, wreaks havoc, and they use an entirely different detox mechanism: methylation. They convert the GS-Hg-SG into methylmercury, which is eliminated by the bacteria into the gut and diffuses back into our bodies. Ouch. Because methyl mercury readily crosses the blood-brain barrier, very ouch. This is why you shouldn't get mercury chelated by your local alternative doctor with an IV. When too aggressive, IVs "stir up" too much of the mercury and it relocates in ways that aggravate many toxicity symptoms. This does not apply to lead, which IV chelates quite well. I wish I had better news to relate r Continue reading >>
Is Keto And Ketosis Safe?
The ketogenic diet and ketosis are safe. Not only are they safe, but they are useful in helping people with many different conditions. The ketogenic diet has helped cancer patients, people with diabetes (type 1 and type 2), women with polycystic ovary syndrome, people with heart disease, and many others. So, where does the rumor that the ketogenic diet and ketosis may not be safe come from? Well, it starts with ketones. Rumors Spread Like Ketones in an Insulin Deficient Body One of the primary goals of the ketogenic diet is to enter ketosis (a normal metabolic process when ketones are produced for fuel). Ketosis is primarily regulated by the liver, which helps produce enough ketones to meet the body’s needs. However, ketone production can get out of hand when insulin is deficient, leading to ketoacidosis. This may be where the rumor that keto and ketosis are not safe came from. Ketoacidosis — A Serious Condition That Is Not Caused By The Ketogenic Diet Ketoacidosis is a serious condition caused by uncontrolled diabetes. It is brought on by being born without the ability to produce enough insulin (type 1 diabetes) or living a lifestyle that promotes insulin resistance (type 2 diabetes). In both cases, there isn’t enough insulin to tell that cells that energy is available (insulin deficiency). The lack of insulin signaling causes the fat cells and liver cells to go into starvation mode, even after a calorically dense meal. The fat cells begin to dump triglycerides into the blood to provide the other cells with energy because the cells are perceiving that there is no fuel available. Meanwhile, the liver starts mobilizing stored glycogen and using gluconeogenesis and ketogenesis to provide the body with sugar and ketones that it doesn’t need. All of this causes bloo Continue reading >>
What Is Ketosis?
"Ketosis" is a word you'll probably see when you're looking for information on diabetes or weight loss. Is it a good thing or a bad thing? That depends. Ketosis is a normal metabolic process, something your body does to keep working. When it doesn't have enough carbohydrates from food for your cells to burn for energy, it burns fat instead. As part of this process, it makes ketones. If you're healthy and eating a balanced diet, your body controls how much fat it burns, and you don't normally make or use ketones. But when you cut way back on your calories or carbs, your body will switch to ketosis for energy. It can also happen after exercising for a long time and during pregnancy. For people with uncontrolled diabetes, ketosis is a sign of not using enough insulin. Ketosis can become dangerous when ketones build up. High levels lead to dehydration and change the chemical balance of your blood. Ketosis is a popular weight loss strategy. Low-carb eating plans include the first part of the Atkins diet and the Paleo diet, which stress proteins for fueling your body. In addition to helping you burn fat, ketosis can make you feel less hungry. It also helps you maintain muscle. For healthy people who don't have diabetes and aren't pregnant, ketosis usually kicks in after 3 or 4 days of eating less than 50 grams of carbohydrates per day. That's about 3 slices of bread, a cup of low-fat fruit yogurt, or two small bananas. You can start ketosis by fasting, too. Doctors may put children who have epilepsy on a ketogenic diet, a special high-fat, very low-carb and protein plan, because it might help prevent seizures. Adults with epilepsy sometimes eat modified Atkins diets. Some research suggests that ketogenic diets might help lower your risk of heart disease. Other studies show sp Continue reading >>
How Common Is It For Those On Keto Diets To Go Into Hypoglycemic Ketosis?
As long as you do not have type 1 diabetes, and you are not on hypoglycemic medications, then it is exceedingly rare to have clinically important hypoglycemia. What is interesting is that your blood sugar can and likely will decrease when you are in ketosis. But your body will not react the same way as when you are not in ketosis. The difference, of course, is the presence of ketones in your body. The danger of hypoglycemia is that your body lacks sufficient immediate energy to fuel your brain and your vital organ functions, But when you have adequate level of ketones in your body, those functions are taken care of. Therefore, it matters much less that your glucose levels are lower. In fact, that is part of the benefit of ketosis- lower insulin levels and lower glucose levels. Continue reading >>
Is The Ketogenic Diet Safe For Weight Loss?
Share it: If you’ve been contemplating various weight-loss strategies, you may have run across the ketogenic diet. This dietary strategy, which is often used in a clinical setting to help improve seizure control in children with epilepsy, is picking up steam as an effective treatment for weight loss. But is it right for you? We turned to the experts to find out more. WHAT IS IT? The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, moderate-protein, low-carbohydrate diet that forces the body into a state of ketosis, where fat is burned for fuel instead of carbohydrate. (This isn’t to be confused with ketoacidosis, a dangerous condition typically caused by a lack of insulin in the body.) According to Dominic D’Agostino, a researcher at the University of South Florida who specializes in ketogenic diets, “The ‘classic ketogenic diet’ used originally for the management of drug-resistance seizures is a 4:1 ratio of fats to protein and carbohydrates.” That equates to about 80–90% fat, 5–15% protein and 5–10% carbohydrates. For weight loss, he says, this diet is typically modified “to allow a more liberal consumption of protein” (20–30%) with the same carbohydrate restriction. IS IT FOR YOU? Advocates of the ketogenic diet are quick to point out many of the benefits this diet can have for those looking to lose weight. “Rapid weight loss and a decrease in hunger are the most common and evident benefits,” says Kristen Mancinelli, MS, RD, author of “The Ketogenic Diet: A Scientifically Proven Approach to Fast, Healthy Weight Loss.” D’Agostino references promising studies that have been shown to “lower blood glucose levels, increase sensitivity to insulin, decrease inflammation and reduce triglyceride levels while raising HDL cholesterol.” READ MORE > 21 DIETIT Continue reading >>
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 >>
Is Ketosis Safe And Does It Have Side Effects?
Some people think that ketosis is extremely dangerous. However, they might be confusing ketosis with ketoacidosis, which is completely different. While ketoacidosis is a serious condition caused by uncontrolled diabetes, ketosis is a natural metabolic state. In fact, ketosis and ketogenic diets have been studied extensively and shown to have major benefits for weight loss (1, 2). Ketogenic diets have also been shown to have therapeutic effects in epilepsy, type 2 diabetes and several other chronic conditions (3, 4, 5, 6). Ketosis is generally considered to be safe for most people. However, it may lead to a few side effects, especially in the beginning. First, it's necessary to understand what ketosis is. Ketosis is a natural part of metabolism. It happens either when carbohydrate intake is very low (such as on a ketogenic diet), or when you haven't eaten for a long time. Both of these lead to reduced insulin levels, which causes a lot of fat to be released from your fat cells. When this happens, the liver gets flooded with fat, which turns a large part of it into ketones. During ketosis, many parts of your body are burning ketones for energy instead of carbs. This includes a large part of the brain. However, this doesn't happen instantly. It takes your body and brain some time to "adapt" to burning fat and ketones instead of carbs. During this adaptation phase, you may experience some temporary side effects. These are generally referred to as the "low-carb flu" or "keto flu." In ketosis, parts of the body and brain use ketones for fuel instead of carbs. It can take some time for your body to adapt to this. In the beginning of ketosis, you may experience a range of negative symptoms. They are often referred to as "low-carb flu" or "keto flu" because they resemble symptom Continue reading >>
Is Keto Dieting Safe?
Yes, for most people, the keto diet is safe. Of course, as with any major change in diet or exercise, you should consult with your doctor so that he or she can help you understand whether this diet is safe for YOU. And especially if you are a Type 1 diabetic, I would be concerned about you starting keto without being under close supervision by a doctor because you could go into ketoacidosis which is a dangerous condition. (Ketoacidosis is different than ketosis, which is a safe metabolic condition that your body enters when you cut carbs and raise your fat levels. It’s important not to confuse the two because while ketoacidosis is very dangerous, ketosis is healthy and is actually the goal for most people on the keto diet.) But for most people, the keto diet is a safe way to lose weight, increase energy, improve sleep, help with many autoimmune conditions, and the list goes on and on. The key to getting these benefits, though, is following the basics of keto - which means low carb, moderate protein, and high fat. This is what sets keto apart from many other low carb diets that often promote high protein. On the keto diet, you should start out eating less than 20 net carbs per day - which is usually what everyone focuses on. But you also need to focus on your protein and fat levels. Women should eat between 50 and 75 grams of protein per day and men should stay between 100–125 grams of protein per day. And then for the fun part of keto - the FAT - your fat should be between a 1:1 and 1:2 ratio of protein to fat. Which means that if I eat 50 grams of protein a day, I should be eating between 50 and 100 grams of fat per day. And this is the yummy kind of fat - saturated fat is great on keto. So eat that bacon and slather on the butter because eating all that fat will h Continue reading >>