What Is A Ketogenic Diet?
Alright, here’s what the ketogenic diet (often referred to as “keto”) is and the basics of how to follow it. What is the ketogenic diet? For those who don’t know the ketogenic diet is a low-carb, high fat diet (LCHF) with many health benefits. It involves drastically reducing carbohydrate intake, and replacing it with fat. The reduction in carbs puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis. When this happens, your body becomes incredibly efficient at burning fat for energy. It also turns fat into ketones in the liver, which can supply energy for the brain. Benefits: Ketogenic diets generally cause massive reductions in blood sugar and insulin levels. This, along with the increased level of ketones provide the numerous cited health benefits. Ketogenic benefits include: Fighting diabetes Epilepsy control Alzheimer’s disease Certain cancers Cognitive performance High blood pressure control Satiety Weight/fat loss Reduced cholesterol levels The most obvious and commonly cited benefits is the decreased insulin levels. This is why fasting becomes a great solution to people’s type 2 diabetes, cushing’s disease and many other metabolic diseases. Fasting as well as the ketogenic diet increases insulin sensitivity, improves insulin resistance and allows your body to use the hormone insulin more effectively (which is important for fat loss). There are also four different classifications of the ketogenic diet. The standard ketogenic diet is accepted as reducing your carbohydrates intake to 5% carbs, with just enough protein (20%, let’s say) and the rest coming from fats. Inflammation is the root cause of so many of our ailments, which lower insulin levels decrease. Energy use: The basic principle around ketogenic diets is that our bodies first port of call f 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 Constant Ketosis Necessary – Or Even Desirable?
162 Comments Good morning, folks. With next week’s The Keto Reset Diet release, I’ve got keto on the mind today—unsurprisingly. I’ve had a lot of questions lately on duration. As I’ve mentioned before, a good six weeks of ketosis puts in place all the metabolic machinery for lasting adaptation (those extra mitochondria don’t evaporate if/when you return to traditional Primal eating). But what about the other end of the issue? How long is too long? I don’t do this often, but today I’m reposting an article from a couple of years ago on this very topic. I’ve added a few thoughts based on my recent experience. See what you think, and be sure to share any lingering questions on the question of keto timing and process. I’ll be happy to answer them in upcoming posts and Dear Mark columns. Every day I get links to interesting papers. It’s hard not to when thousands of new studies are published every day and thousands of readers deliver the best ones to my inbox. And while I enjoy thumbing through the links simply for curiosity’s sake, they can also seed new ideas that lead to research rabbit holes and full-fledged posts. It’s probably the favorite part of my day: research and synthesis and the gestation of future blogs. The hard part is collecting, collating, and then transcribing the ideas swirling around inside my brain into readable prose and hopefully getting an article out of it that I can share with you. A while back I briefly mentioned a paper concerning a ketone metabolite known as beta-hydroxybutyrate, or BHB, and its ability to block the activity of a set of inflammatory genes. This particular set of genes, known as the NLRP3 inflammasome, has been linked to Alzheimer’s disease, atherosclerosis, metabolic syndrome, and age-related macular d Continue reading >>
Is It Correct To View Ketone Bodies As Some Sort Of Super Fuel Helping To Energize The Entire Brain? Even More Than Glucose Could Ever Do?
Super Fuel is probably a misnomer inspired by contemporary marketing of food items like the "superfoods" Dried Goji Berries and Acai Fruit Smoothies. What you're referring to (I think) is this: “Ketones”, or “ketone bodies” is actually an umbrella term for 3 different molecules, β-hydroxybutyrate (BHB), acetoacetate (ACA) and acetone. All three can be delivered into the brain and metabolically converted into ATP in both neurons and glia. BHB may provide a more efficient source of energy for brain per unit oxygen than glucose. A microarray study showed that keto induced a coordinated upregulation of genes encoding energy metabolism and mitochondrial enzymes, increasing the number of mitochondria in the hippocampus, a brain area associated with learning and memory. A few studies in epileptic children and healthy volunteers demonstrate that keto exerts a biphasic effect on cognition, with initial lethargy and subsequent heightened vitality, physical functioning, and alertness. Whether this translates into overall cognitive enhancement remains to be seen. Brain, livin' on ketones - a molecular neuroscience look at the ketogenic diet What does all this mean? Your brain might prefer BHB over glucose for its energy needs. When ketone bodies are converted into energy for the brain, some studies have shown positive side effects like increased energy efficiency, better cognition (learning and memory), and increased alertness. Nice! Is it a miracle? A super fuel? Not necessarily, since initially there is a transition period that includes lethargy and other symptoms (like headaches), ketosis is no magic bullet for studying the night before your test. If we move beyond the brain, the more interesting fact is that your heart definitely prefers BHB/Ketosis. From a 2004 study Continue reading >>
What Would Happen If I Had A High-protein, Low-carb, Low-fat Diet For A Month?
Hi Douglas - Thanks for reaching out! I believe I answered a similar question of your's earlier today. The type of diet you're suggesting would definitely put you in a state of ketosis, which is very effective for fat-burning. There's a lot of back-and-forth in the health and fitness community about whether or not ketosis is a healthy long-term dietary solution, with issues like kidney disease being brought to light if you're in a constant state of ketosis. Personally, I'd suggest a high fat, moderate protein and low carb diet. Carbs are a NON-ESSENTIAL macronutrient, meaning that our bodies produce more than enough 'fast energy' on their own to support optimal functioning. On the flip side, fat and protein are ESSENTIAL macronutrients, and are foods that we MUST eat frequently in order to insure optimal functioning, as our bodies do NOT produce enough of these macros on their own. Fat is important to ingest for the sake of cognition, of joint lubrication and of inflammation reduction. Protein helps to build and repair lean muscle tissue. Hope this helps! If you have any further questions, feel free to email me at the address below. Continue reading >>
How Do I Get Over A Long-term Relationship Breakup?
Here are five ways to help you get over your ex… 1. Don’t Contact Them… At All You need real time apart to get closure on your ex. As nice of a thought that it is, trying to convince yourself that they are your “best friend” is only damaging whatever connection you may continue to have after you have both finish grieving the loss of your romantic relationship. This means no hanging out (even in groups), late night texting (delete their number), or scrolling their Facebook page (to see how much fun they’re trying to seem like they’re having without you). 2. Process As Much Available Emotion As Possible Encourage your emotional residue to move through you as much as possible. Dive into your grieving process fully. If you don’t choose to process it now, it will surface later without your approval when you least expect it. 3. Write A ‘Positive’ Learning List The more we live, the more we grow. It is inevitable that you learned a lot from your relationship. Acknowledge the benefits and takeaways from your relationship by making a list of all of the positive things that you learned from them. Maybe they taught you that you respond really strongly to nurturing, encouragement, or passion. Maybe they taught you how to love more fully. Whatever you can think of, write it down. 4. Write A ‘Negative’ Learning List Although you learned a lot from your ex, they (being human) were far from perfect. It’s time to take them off the pedestal by making a list of what you didn’t like about them. What character traits did they exhibit that you do not want to repeat in future partners? Were they overly critical? Passive Aggressive? Unreliable? Write it down. 5. Make A List Of Where You Fell Short As surprising as it may seem, this is where you get your real, iron-c Continue reading >>
Long-term Effects Of A Ketogenic Diet In Obese Patients
Go to: Abstract 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. 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. In the present study, 83 obese patients (39 men and 44 women) with a body mass index greater than 35 kg/m2, 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. 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. 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. Administering a ketogenic diet for a relatively longer period of time did Continue reading >>
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Is Longterm Ketosis Healthy?
Yes with caveats. Some want to stay as low as possible incorrectly thinking since low carb is good lower must be better. Don't do that. Staying just barely in ketosis while eating as much veggies as you can while in ketosis is healthy. For most that's around 50 grams net per day. It's a lot of low carb veggies. The reason lower is not better have to do with thyroxine levels dropping on a 2 week time scale, leptin levels dropping on a 3 month time scale, cortisol levels rising on a time scale different for each person. Stay near 50 instead of near 20 to avoid these issues. Continue reading >>
How Long Can You Stay In Ketosis Safely?
Are you looking for a diet for weight-loss or fat-loss? If so then you might be interested in ketosis. The question is whether you can stay on it permanently. That’s because it’s critical for any ‘diet” to become part of your everyday life and eating habits. It’s important to first understand what it is all about. It’s a natural state of the human body when it’s fueled almost 100% by body fat. This state takes place during a low-carb or “keto” diet as well as during fasting. It’s important to understand how this process is related to fat loss. The term originates from the fact that the human produce produces tin fuel molecules known as “ketones.” When the body doesn’t have enough blood sugar/glucose it gets energy from this source. The body produces chemicals when it gets a very low supply of carbs and a moderate amount of protein. The liver’s fat produces ketones then the body and brain use it for fuel. The process is especially important for the brain since the organ can only run from glucose/ketones. Medical research shows that early humans probably experienced the state very often. The reason is that hunter-gatherer societies ate a high-meat diet and had less access to carbohydrates than modern humans. As a result human bodies evolved so they could get energy from fat even though it mimicked starvation mode. Today there are various reasons why people use the ketogenic meal plan. Some of the most common ones are to lose weight or control epilepsy. The firm supporters point out the health benefits of the diet but others note that it’s a dangerous “hack” of the body’s regular metabolic system. These are the benefits to this process: Less eating due to no appetite More fat loss from abdominal cavity Lower blood sugar/insulin levels Lo Continue reading >>
Open Relationships: What Is The Key To A Healthy And Successful Long-term Open Relationship?
I have been non-monogamous my entire adult life, and I currently know many, many people in successful long-term open relationships. On the other hand, I've known at least 6 monogamous relationships that didn't work. :) The skills and techniques for making open relationships work are beyond the scope of a Quora post. Most of them are not that different from the techniques for making monogamy work (and no, you don't have to be magically immune to jealousy--you simply have to know that if you do feel jealous, which you might, it's only a feeling. It doesn't control your actions. Look at it, learn what it's trying to tell you, then let it go.) If I had to pick the most essential skills, they would be: Communication. Everyone knows communication is necessary for healthy relationships, but few people communicate well. Communication means being able to talk openly about things that make you uncomfortable, and listen when your partner talks about things that make you uncomfortable. Courage. Open relationships will find and press on your insecurities. You have to be willing to face your own insecurities, no matter how scary they are. If there's a monster living under your bed, make that bastard pay rent! Compassion. If you don't have this, you probably shouldn't be doing relationships at all. I currently have 5 partners; those relationships have lasted for 13 years, 10 years, 9 years, 5 years, and 2 years, respectively. I've written a lot about how to make open relationships work at One of my partners and I have also written a book on the subject: Continue reading >>
Is Weightlifting Healthy In The Long Term?
Yes definitely! Weight training can do these few things for your body in the long run: Weight training maintains a healthy metabolism by retaining muscles in your body. As we age our metabolism drop mostly due to muscle loss as we age. Weight training boosts anti stress hormone, growth hormone, and testosterone hormone for healthy weight management. Weight training can also boosts our mood and it can help prevent over eating due to stress. Weight training help better support our bone mass and also joint health. If you do weight training in circuit style, you can also improve or maintain your cardiovascular health. To learn more about weight training and why it is healthy for us in the long run: P.S. here is a 12 week weight training program if you are interested to help you build muscles and lose fat: Take care! Continue reading >>
Is Paleo Healthy For The Long Term?
Yes, YES, YES!!! Real food diets like Paleo and Wheat Belly are incredibly healthy because you are eating REAL FOOD instead of government subsidized and promoted fake food--GMO grains, sugars, artificial sweeteners. Your skin and hair get better in days. I lost 18 years of arthritis, mostly knees, in 10 days on Wheat Belly. I am down 35 pounds from my peak weight 10 years ago, never count a calorie and don't feel hungry. I do exercise a lot now that my arthritis is gone. The main difference between Paleo and Wheat Belly is Paleo eliminates dairy. So if your not sensitive to dairy (many people of non-European back ground are), then your can still do dairy and a Wheat Belly lifestyle might be better for you. If these were really passing fad diets why would Monsanto and the grain/food industry be spending millions of dollars on their failing Save the Grain Campaign, hiring dozens of PR people to work social media, like Quora, telling people that if they aren't Celiac's they should keep eating all the grain based processed foods that are making them sick, obese, diabetic, and old before their time. Note that these real food diets are not succeeding because of heavy corporate advertising and promotional budgets of millions of dollars per year. They are succeeding because they work! They are rapidly spreading because of word of mouth recommendations--almost everyone now knows some who has lost lots of weight, reversed serious health and digestive issues, and is no longer a carboholic. These incredible health benefits happen because you are eating REAL food instead of processed food with all of it's unhealthy preservatives, fillers, colorings, and flavorings. Fresh produce, fish, and meat. People hired to attack real food diets NEVER study the results of these diets. They neve 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 >>
Is There Evidence Of A Vegetarian Or Vegan Diet Being Healthy Long Term?
I would be interested in seeing some valid proof that backs up this claim that 85% of those who try these two diets revert back to a meat-eating diet for health reasons, and not just some reference to blog posts on Google by “some” who did. Note that I am able to provide numerous sources that are actual Medical studies posted on such reputatable sites as the Journal of the American Medical Association, the U.S. National Library of Medicine, and the American Dietetic Association . There is definite scientific and medical evidence that a vegetarian and vegan diet is healthy long-term. Physicians should consider recommending a plant-based diet to all their patients, especially those with high blood pressure, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, or obesity. Non-vegetarian diets were compared to vegetarian dietary patterns (i.e., vegan and lacto-ovo-vegetarian) on selected health outcomes. Vegetarian diets confer protection against cardiovascular diseases, cardiometabolic risk factors, some cancers and total mortality. Compared to lacto-ovo-vegetarian diets, vegan diets seem to offer additional protection for obesity, hypertension, type-2 diabetes, and cardiovascular mortality. It is the position of the American Dietetic Association that appropriately planned vegetarian diets, including total vegetarian or vegan diets, are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases. Here is someone who is a very good example of a vegan diet’s long term benefits. There is a concerted effort by the meat and diary industries to counter act the growing awareness of the inhumaness of factory farming, and the benefits of a plant based diet. Numerous profiles are on the internet now, all “questioning” vegan and veget Continue reading >>
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 >>