The Ketogenic Diet And Diabetes
The ketogenic diet was originally developed almost 100 years ago to treat epilepsy. Nowadays, it is used as a nutrition plan by health-conscious men and women to optimize body composition and athletic performance. Recent research suggests that high fat, very-low carb diets have another benefit: They may help control glucose, triglycerides, insulin, and body weight in people with diabetes. The research below shows the ketogenic diet may be an effective tool you can use to manage symptoms of Diabetes, alongside exercise and medication. Cutting through the Fat: What is Diabetes? Before we get to research, we need to review some basic medical terminology. Diabetes is a group of metabolic diseases in which the body has elevated blood levels its main energy source: a sugar called glucose. There are two reasons why this occurs. In some people, there is insufficient production of a chemical called insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas that lower levels of glucose in the blood. People who suffer from low insulin levels have type I diabetes and they comprise approximately 5 to 10% of all diabetics.  Type I diabetes is usually inherited and type I diabetics usually have to inject insulin to maintain proper levels of blood glucose. The other 90% to 95% of people with diabetes are type II diabetics.  In this version, the body doesn’t produce enough insulin for proper function or cells in the body do not react to insulin and take in sugar from the blood. Type 2 diabetes is not inherited. However, lifestyle factors such as high body weight, poor exercise and eating habits all increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.  It can be managed by improving dietary and lifestyle habits and also using proper medication.  Diabetes results in a higher concentration of s Continue reading >>
Type 1 Diabetes And The Ketogenic Diet
For thousands of years, something has been sneaking up on children and robbing them of their ability to control their blood sugar levels. The culprit is an autoimmune condition called Type 1 Diabetes, and its incidence has been increasing in both the United States and in other western countries. But there is no need to worry. This sneaky disease has left us with enough clues to diagnose it, manage it, and potentially reverse it. How to Know If It Is Type 1 Diabetes Type 1 diabetes is most commonly diagnosed in children between the ages of 10 and 14, although many children can present with symptoms at ages as young as two years old. The incidence is approximately 1.5 times higher in American non-Hispanic white people compared with African American or Hispanic individuals. Risk Factors for Type 1 Diabetes The three most well-researched risk factors for type 1 diabetes include: Family history. Anyone with a parent or sibling with type 1 diabetes has a slightly increased risk of developing the condition. Genetics. Specific genes can increase the risk of developing type 1 diabetes. Age. Although type 1 diabetes can appear at any age, it is diagnosed in two prominent peaks. The first peak occurs in children between 4 and 7 years old, and the second is in children between 10 and 14 years old. However, these aren’t the only three risk factors. Recent research has found that type 1 diabetics tend to have a different balance of bacteria in their microbiome then non-susceptible individuals. Vitamin D deficiency, gut health issues, and dairy intolerance are also linked to a greater risk of type 1 diabetes as well. Having all of these risk factors, however, does not mean that you will have type 1 diabetes. Its symptoms will provide us with a clearer picture. Symptoms of Type 1 Dia Continue reading >>
How The Ketogenic Diet Works For Type 2 Diabetes
Special diets for type 2 diabetes often focus on weight loss, so it might seem crazy that a high-fat diet is an option. But the ketogenic (keto) diet, high in fat and low in carbs, can potentially change the way your body stores and uses energy, easing diabetes symptoms. With the keto diet, your body converts fat, instead of sugar, into energy. The diet was created in 1924 as a treatment for epilepsy, but the effects of this eating pattern are also being studied for type 2 diabetes. The ketogenic diet may improve blood glucose (sugar) levels while also reducing the need for insulin. However, the diet does come with risks, so make sure to discuss it with your doctor before making drastic dietary changes. Many people with type 2 diabetes are overweight, so a high-fat diet can seem unhelpful. The goal of the ketogenic diet is to have the body use fat for energy instead of carbohydrates or glucose. A person on the keto diet gets most of their energy from fat, with very little of the diet coming from carbohydrates. The ketogenic diet doesn’t mean you should load up on saturated fats, though. Heart-healthy fats are the key to sustaining overall health. Some healthy foods that are commonly eaten in the ketogenic diet include: eggs fish such as salmon cottage cheese avocado olives and olive oil nuts and nut butters seeds The ketogenic diet has the potential to decrease blood glucose levels. Managing carbohydrate intake is often recommended for people with type 2 diabetes because carbohydrates turn to sugar and, in large quantities, can cause blood sugar spikes. If you already have high blood glucose, then eating too many carbs can be dangerous. By switching the focus to fat, some people experience reduced blood sugar. The Atkins diet is one of the most famous low-carb, high-p Continue reading >>
Ketosis And The Ketogenic Diet: Debunking 7 Misleading Statements
Ketosis and the Ketogenic Diet: Debunking 7 Misleading Statements The ketogenic diet is the most popular dietary trend in our world today. Especially for those living with diabetes, its likely that youve been tempted to follow a ketogenic diet to lose weight, drop your A1c, and flatline your blood glucose. Even though it may seem tempting to enter the metabolic state of ketosis, its important to understand the caveats of ketosis, so that you fully understand your risks for developing long-term complications. So what exactly is a ketogenic diet? And why is ketosis a popular recommendation for those living with diabetes? A ketogenic diet a very low-carbohydrate diet by design, containing a maximum of 30 grams of dietary carbohydrate per day. When eating a ketogenic diet, you are told to avoid carbohydrate-rich foods like fruits, starchy vegetables, legumes, and whole grains, and instead eat larger quantities of meat, dairy, leafy greens, non-starchy vegetables, nuts, seeds, and vegetable oils. At the base of the ketogenic food pyramid are eggs, dairy, meat, oil, and fish, which make up the bulk of calories eaten. Non-starchy vegetables contain too much carbohydrate energy and are avoided, while non-starchy vegetables or green vegetables are included, along with nuts, seeds, and very limited amounts of fruit (mainly berries). In order to achieve the state of ketosis, you are only allowed to eat a small amount of carbohydrate energy from fruits and starchy vegetables. The ketogenic diet explicitly prohibits the consumption of grain products (even whole grains), pasta, refined sugar, milk, corn, legumes (including lentils, beans, and peas), as well as rice. When you eat a ketogenic diet, your muscle and liver switch from oxidizing glucose as their primary fuel to fatty acid Continue reading >>
Does The Ketogenic Diet Work For Type 2 Diabetes?
You’ve probably seen dozens of headlines about the ketogenic diet by now, which has made its way into popular culture largely by celebrities and supermodels giving the long-standing fad diet a repeated stamp of approval. Is this the diet to follow if you have diabetes? Studies suggest the answer isn’t so simple. Some science shows its meal plan may be helpful, while other research, like one study published in September 2016 in Nutrients, highlights the importance of whole grains in the diets of people with diabetes — a restricted food category in the ketogenic diet. While the keto diet can offer many potential benefits for diabetes management, following it requires pretty serious commitment. So take a beat before you take the plunge — and consider these questions that can help you and your medical team determine if it’s right for you: How Does the Ketogenic Diet Work Exactly? There’s a good reason the ketogenic diet is also referred to as a low-carb, high-fat diet. Indeed, following the ketogenic diet means reducing carbohydrate intake to typically less than 50 grams (g) of carbohydrates per day, while increasing fat and protein intake, according to a review published in August 2013 in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. To put that into perspective, an individual on an average, non-restricted diet can easily eat more carbohydrates than that in one typical meal — for instance, a turkey, cheese, and veggie sandwich on whole-grain bread with a small, 1 ounce (oz) bag of classic potato chips would come in at around 51 g of carbs. These dietary changes drive down insulin levels, eventually leading your body into a state of ketosis, during which it is burning fat rather than carbohydrates. What Are Some of the Potential Benefits of a Ketogenic Diet for Continue reading >>
Reversing Type 2 Diabetes With Nutritional Ketosis
Virta is a science-based online specialty medical clinic using continuous remote monitoring and intensive coaching to help our patients reverse type 2 diabetes and prediabetes. A unique contributor to our success in this is harnessing and sustaining the metabolic benefits of nutritional ketosis. Admittedly, reversing diabetes is a rather bold goal. By way of contrast, the American Diabetes Association defines type 2 diabetes as a progressive disease whose course at best can be slowed by lifestyle change and medication. Based upon solid sciencesome old and some newwe beg to differ. Perhaps its time for a paradigm change. There are few times in the lives of medical scientists where we have the opportunity to change the course of a major medical disease; and even fewer cases where we actually succeed in doing so. In 1920, Bantings discovery that injected insulin could control type 1 diabetes (T1D) was such an event. As a result, over the last century, millions of people with T1D have achieved long and productive lives; whereas before 1920 most of them would have succumbed to this insulin-deficiency disease within less than a year. Young insulin patient circa 1920s, before insulin, and 4 months after beginning treatment. Type 2 diabetes (T2D), on the other hand, is a very different disease that affects hundreds of millions of people. It responds very poorly to injected insulin. Whereas T1D patients cannot make insulin, people with T2D typically make lots of insulin but are resistant to insulins effects across a variety of cellular functions. Despite these facts having been known for 5 decades, we are taught that the core components of T2D management are to force the body to make even more insulin or to inject more insulin to overcome the insulin resistance that characteriz Continue reading >>
Tweet Ketogenic diets are very effective at achieving two common aims of diabetes control, lowering blood glucose levels and reducing weight What is the ketogenic diet? A ketogenic diet is a very low-carb diet, considered to be when you eat a level of carbohydrate of around 30g of carbohydrates per day or below. This encourages the body to get its energy from burning body fat which produces an energy source known as ketones. The diet helps to lower the body's demand for insulin which has benefits for people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Note that it is important that you speak to your doctor if you are considering following the diet as precautions may need to be taken before starting. How a ketogenic diet works On a ketogenic diet, blood glucose levels are kept at a low but healthy level which encourages the body to break down fat into a fuel source known as ketones. The process of breaking down or ‘burning’ body fat is known as ketosis. People on insulin will typically require smaller doses of insulin which leads to less risk of large dosing errors. The diet helps burn body fat and therefore has particular advantages for those looking to lose weight, including people with prediabetes or those otherwise at risk of type 2 diabetes. How to follow a ketogenic diet Based on the understanding that carbohydrate is the macronutrient that raises blood glucose the most, the primary goal of a ketogenic diet is to keep consumption lower than that of a traditional low carbohydrate diet with moderate protein and a very high fat content. This will determine the nutrient density of the ketogenic diet as well as how to follow it, as different foods will have different effects on insulin and blood sugar levels. Which foods to eat on a ketogenic diet There are a number of differen Continue reading >>
Why I Chose A Ketogenic Diet For Diabetes Management
Often people use the term “diet” to mean something that is temporary for a specific purpose, usually weight loss. For me, it is a permanent way of eating now. I am a retired physician living with Type 1 diabetes since 1998. I started to exercise regularly in 2007 to help ward off complications, particularly cardiovascular disease. I was unaware at the time that aerobic exercise alone would have little impact on the development of cardiovascular disease. It wasn’t until 2011 when I contemplated doing an ironman distance triathlon, that I discovered diet is the most important determinate in the development of most chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease. My research led me to begin a very low carbohydrate, ketogenic diet in February 2012. Why I Chose a Low Carb Ketogenic Diet for Diabetes Management Carbohydrate is the macronutrient that raises blood glucose the most, so keeping consumption low is my primary goal. Of next importance is using whole foods that naturally have the necessary micronutrients and enough complete proteins to support my exercise. I had to add fat to my meals to replace calories from the omitted carbohydrates. My protein intake did not change after starting a ketogenic low carb high fat diet. This way of eating has resulted in a significant improvement in my blood glucose control and a 1.2% reduction in HbA1c. Most importantly, the diet supplies my body with the energy, substrates, and nutrients to enable daily resistance and aerobic/endurance exercise, with minimal need for sports nutrition (sugar), or development of hypoglycemia. I completed The Great Floridian Triathlon in October 2012 without any sugar, food, or hypoglycemia thanks to my low carbohydrate ketogenic lifestyle. Nutritional Ketosis My diet keeps me in a state of nut 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 >>
Is The Ketogenic Diet Safe For People With Diabetes?
Q: Is the ketogenic diet safe for people with diabetes? A: The ketogenic diet is one treatment option for people with type 2 diabetes who are overweight.A 2013 review found the diet significantly improved blood sugar control, A1c and weight loss and reduced insulin requirements inoverweight individuals with type 2 diabetes . Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy Originally created in the 1920s as a treatment for epilepsy , the ketogenic diet is low in carbohydrate (less than 20 grams a day), high in protein, and moderate to high in fat. Because of the extremely low carbohydrate intake, your body is forced to convert fat into energy instead of sugar. This process, called ketosis, allows for rapid weight loss when followed properly,but should be medically monitored by your doctor. The ketogenic diet restricts all forms of carbohydrate, including starches, starchy vegetables, grains, fruit, milk, yogurt and sugars. It allows meats, heart-healthy fats and limited amounts of non-starchy vegetables. Because certain food groups are eliminated completely, vitamin and mineral supplementation may be needed. (The ketogenic diet is not recommended for anyone who is pregnant, has chronic kidney disease or is prone to gout.) Its important to keep in mind that weight loss requires an individualized approach, and that multiple meal-planning options are safe and effective for people with diabetes. Dietitian Melissa Matteo, MS, RD,LD, CDE, Diabetes Center Continue reading >>
The Ketogenic Diet And My Type 2 Diabetes
I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes in October 2008. This morning and yesterday morning my fasting blood sugar was 86. That is a non-diabetic fasting blood sugar. If you have Type 2 Diabetes, the likely answer to curing/controlling it is a high fat, low carb, ketogenic diet and lifestyle. I consider myself cured, but I know there are people out there who don’t like me saying that. To them I say, “Too bad.” My doctor told me that in my current state there is no way, no how that I would be diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes, so therefore I consider that cured. I began this way of life on March 3, 2014 and by early May 2014 I was off the diabetes medication I was taking, which was 1000 mg of Metformin per day. Initially, upon going off the meds, my blood sugars went up a little for about a week, but then gradually came back down when my body realized it could do the job it needed to do. I have been off the meds for 13 months. I do not poison my body or feed that disease with the food I eat. I eat real food. I eat food that has ingredients I can pronounce. I don’t eat processed food (the packaged high carb sugar laden “food”). I don’t eat artificial sweeteners anymore (although there may be an exception from time to time in a low carb baked good). I don’t eat Atkins bars/Quest bars or shakes anymore. I stick with eggs, bacon, meat, veggies, cheese (I have cut back on that too), nuts and berries very sparingly. I put butter and good oils on my food. I use salt. Let’s take a look at what the ADA says I should eat: Whole grain breads, such as whole wheat or rye whole grain Cereal Oatmeal Grits, hominy or cream of wheat Rice Pasta Tortillas Cooked beans and peas Potatoes Corn Sweet potatoes Winter squash Low-fat crackers Low-fat snack chips Low-fat pretzels Light Continue reading >>
A Low-carbohydrate, Ketogenic Diet To Treat Type 2 Diabetes
A low-carbohydrate, ketogenic diet to treat type 2 diabetes 1Center for Health Services Research in Primary Care, Department of Veterans' Affairs Medical Center (152), 508 Fulton Street, Durham, NC, USA 27705 2Department of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA 3Private Bariatric and Family Practice, and Clinical Faculty, University of Kansas School of Medicine, Lawrence, KS, USA William S Yancy, Jr: [email protected] ; Marjorie Foy: [email protected] ; Allison M Chalecki: [email protected] ; Mary C Vernon: [email protected] ; Eric C Westman: [email protected] Received 2005 Aug 10; Accepted 2005 Dec 1. Copyright © 2005 Yancy et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( ), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. The low-carbohydrate, ketogenic diet (LCKD) may be effective for improving glycemia and reducing medications in patients with type 2 diabetes. From an outpatient clinic, we recruited 28 overweight participants with type 2 diabetes for a 16-week single-arm pilot diet intervention trial. We provided LCKD counseling, with an initial goal of <20 g carbohydrate/day, while reducing diabetes medication dosages at diet initiation. Participants returned every other week for measurements, counseling, and further medication adjustment. The primary outcome was hemoglobin A1c. Twenty-one of the 28 participants who were enrolled completed the study. Twenty participants were men; 13 were White, 8 were African-American. The mean [± SD] age was 56.0 ± 7.9 years and BMI was 42.2 ± 5.8 kg/m2. Hemoglobin A1c decr Continue reading >>
Is The Ketogenic Diet Safe For People With Diabetes?
Is The Ketogenic Diet Safe for People with Diabetes? If you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes, chances are you’re looking for simple yet effective ways to control your blood sugar. And, if at all possible, without the use of daily shots or medications. As I’ve mentioned in earlier blog posts, exercise is one of the best natural ways to manage blood glucose. But perhaps the most obvious way to keep blood sugar at a safe and consistent level without insulin is to pay special attention to what you eat. And, in the case of diabetes, limiting your carbohydrate intake may be the key. What Is the Keto Diet? At first glance the ketogenic (keto) diet may seem like a crazy idea for type 2 diabetics. After all, many patients are put on diets to help them lose weight. The keto diet is high in fat, but it is very low in carbs, and this combination can help change the way your body stores and uses energy. With this diet your body converts fat instead of sugar into energy, which can improve blood glucose levels while reducing the need for insulin. Ketosis VS Ketoacidosis Ketosis and ketoacidosis are two very different things, which are often confused. But it’s very important you understand the difference. What is ketoacidosis? Ketoacidosis (KA) is a life-threatening condition in which your body doesn’t make enough insulin. This causes you to have dangerously high levels of ketones (substances occurring when the body uses fat stores for energy) and blood sugar. The combination of both makes your blood incredibly acidic, and this can, in turn, change the normal functioning of your internal organs such as your liver and kidneys. Patients suffering from ketoacidosis must get treatment immediately or they could slip into a coma and even die. Ketoacidosis can develop in less than 24 Continue reading >>
Ketogenic Diet And Type 1 Diabetes
What is Type 1 Diabetes? Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease. The immune system is a defence that guards the body against bacteria, fungi or parasites. A combination of genetics and an environmental (viral infection, vaccines, low levels of vitamin D, cow’s milk or increased insulin demand) trigger engages the immune system to attack and destroy the beta cells in the pancreas. After these beta cells are destroyed, the body is unable to produce insulin. Type 1 diabetes is the result of the inability of the pancreas to produce insulin. With type 2 diabetes, the pancreas produces insulin. Who Gets Type 1 Diabetes? Type 1 diabetes can affect all age groups. Although the thought has been that type 1 diabetes appears during childhood, current research has found that adults are just as likely to be diagnosed with type 1 diabetes; half of type 1 diabetics are diagnosed after age 30. (1) Yet, the rate of Type 1 diabetes in children, in the US, has increased by almost 60% in 11 years (2) and approximately 1 in 300 children in the US will be affected by type 1 diabetes by 18 years of age. (3) There are too many children who are effected globally. The highest rates are in northern Europe and in individuals of European decent. Men are more commonly affected in early adult life. (2) Data suggests the incidence of T1D has been increasing by 2–5% worldwide. (5) What Happens When Your Body Does Not Make Enough Insulin? Beta cells in the pancreas are destroyed by your own immune system resulting in too little or no insulin (a hormone released by the pancreas) produced. Without insulin, energy (sugar) from food cannot enter the cells. Instead of fueling the cells, this excess sugar circulates in the blood causing high blood sugar levels (also known as hyperglycemia). If there is Continue reading >>
Ketones: Clearing Up The Confusion
Ketones, ketosis, ketoacidosis, DKA…these are words that you’ve probably heard at one point or another, and you might be wondering what they mean and if you need to worry about them at all, especially if you have diabetes. This week, we’ll explore the mysterious world of ketones, including if and how they may affect you. Ketones — what are they? Ketones are a type of acid that the body can form if there’s not enough carbohydrate to be burned for energy (yes, you do need carbs for fuel). Without enough carb, the body turns to another energy source: fat. Ketones are made in the liver from fat breakdown. This is called ketogenesis. People who don’t have diabetes can form ketones. This might occur if a person does extreme exercise, has an eating disorder, is fasting (not eating), or is following a low-carbohydrate diet. This is called ketosis and it’s a normal response to starvation. In a person who has diabetes, ketones form for the same reason (not enough carb for energy), but this often occurs because there isn’t enough insulin available to help move carb (in the form of glucose) from the bloodstream to the cells to be used for energy. Again, the body scrambles to find an alternate fuel source in the form of fat. You might be thinking that it’s a good thing to burn fat for fuel. However, for someone who has diabetes, ketosis can quickly become dangerous if it occurs due to a continued lack of insulin (the presence of ketones along with “normal” blood sugar levels is not necessarily a cause for concern). In the absence of insulin (which can occur if someone doesn’t take their insulin or perhaps uses an insulin pump and the pump has a malfunction, for example), fat cells continue to release fat into the circulation; the liver then continues to churn Continue reading >>