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Why Keto Is Bad

How Too Much Protein Is Bad For Ketosis

How Too Much Protein Is Bad For Ketosis

One of the well-known mantras of the ketogenic diet is very low carb intake and high fat intake. But there’s another nutrient that’s important to monitor when going keto—and a lot of people make the mistake of not considering its importance. That would be protein. Although protein is a critical element in the diet we need for optimal health, it’s important to not eat TOO much protein on the ketogenic diet. Why? Well, there are a couple reasons that we’ll be discussing below. How Too Much Protein is Bad for Ketosis The biggest energy source on the ketogenic diet is fat. In fact, around 75% of your diet should come from healthy fat sources. The key here is that, unlike the traditional idea of low-carb diets where protein is higher, protein intake should bemoderate, not high, on keto. Not following this advice will never allow your body to enter ketosis, which is the main point of going keto and reaping all of the amazing benefits. The reason too much protein is bad for ketosis is because our bodies have a fundamental energy process called gluconeogenesis. For a deeper dive into the topic, see our post on fixing the biggest ketosis mistakes. For now we shoud know the basics. Let’s break it down this mouthful of a term. The word gluconeogenesis has three parts to it, Gluco – coming from the greek root glukos – literally meaning “sweet wine.” Neo – “new” Genesis – “creation” So a great way to think about it is this is how your body creates new sweet wine for your body. Some people tout that “you don’t need carbohydrates to survive,” which is only partially true. To clarify, you don’t need to eat any carbs to survive, but make no mistake, your body needs carbs in the form of glucose and glycogen, and it will get this via survival mechan Continue reading >>

A High Fat, Low Carb Diet? The Good - And Bad Side - Of The Keto Diet

A High Fat, Low Carb Diet? The Good - And Bad Side - Of The Keto Diet

I had a considerable response to my recent column about how we Americans too often have a knee jerk response to fad diets that promise overnight weight loss and improved health. Invariably, such diets fail miserably and you get fatter and less healthy as a result. Ironically, savvy folks who would never fall for a get rich quick scheme or be duped into buying swamp land in Florida, fall for one fad diet after another, refusing to realize that they all have a major flaw in common. They offer a short term solution to a long term problem. Even so, there is always a brand new “amazingly successful” diet that promises the moon. And with 70.7 percent of American adults being either overweight or obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, plus our epidemic of chronic diseases (heart disease, stroke, Type 2 diabetes, and various forms of cancer) there are millions of folks ready and eager to sign on. You may like: Why the 'boring' daily diet of a health nut is worth your time I say it again, as I have said countless times in the past, true and lasting change requires a commitment to making good choices many times a day, every day, for the rest of your life. If you are not willing to do this, admit it to yourself and keep doing what you are doing, because it probably is no worse than jumping into a crazy diet. Anyway, despite my stance stated clearly above, I received several email notes from folks who are certain the Keto Diet is the exception to the rule because they have experienced short term success. When I respond to such notes, I am always polite and I congratulate them on losing weight, then I request that they please update me a year from now on how they are doing. In all the many years I have been doing this, and with regard to all kinds of Continue reading >>

Is A Ketogenic Diet Good Or Bad For You?

Is A Ketogenic Diet Good Or Bad For You?

A ketogenic diet is well known for being a low-carb diet, where the body produces ketones, which are byproducts or the result of using fat for fuel instead of carbs (or glucose/sugar). These ketones or byproducts are produced in the liver to be used as energy. How It Works Glucose (sugar) is the easiest molecule for your body to convert and use as energy so it will always be chosen over any other energy source. When we consume glucose, insulin is produced to process and circulate it. When glucose (carbs or sugar) is being used as a primary source energy, fats are not needed as much and therefore can be stored, when we might want to be burning those instead. When there isn't sufficient glucose, glycogen levels become depleted, blood sugar and insulin are lowered in the body, and now your body starts looking for an alternative fuel source, in this case, fat. The body, in its infinite wisdom and resourcefulness, now uses ketones as fuel for both the body and the brain. This puts you in a state of fat burning called ketosis. You can also achieve this state with fasting or prolonged exercise. If you were out in the wild starving, your body would go into ketosis pretty quickly – here we're doing it with food, but starving it of carbs. This diet has many different names – the ketogenic diet, low carb diet, low carb high fat (LCHF), etc. When you eat something high in carbs, your body will produce glucose and insulin. Most people who have experienced ketosis claim to have reached that state at about 20-50 grams of net carbs per day. The grams of carbs you should consume daily depend on your weight. Ultimately, if your goal is to achieve ketosis, then you'll want to keep your carb intake to 5% or less of total calories. When considering which carbs to consume, keep in mind t Continue reading >>

What Is Ketosis?

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 Keto Bad For The Thyroid?

Is Keto Bad For The Thyroid?

, everyone says. It’s a great way to lose weight, improve cognition, and stave off degenerative disease. It may help your performance in the gym and on the track. It could even give Grandpa some respite from Alzheimer’s. But it’s hell on your thyroid. Right? Keto detractors and proponents alike often warn that remaining in ketosis will tank your thyroid. The thyroid’s an important gland, exerting major influence over essential systems like fertility, energy, metabolism, body temperature regulation, blood lipids, and general wellness. It controls the metabolic rate of every organ in the body. We want it working well, so this is a major blow to keto—if the criticism holds true. Fortunately, there’s much more to this story. The Problem with Keto—Thyroid Research Up till now, the vast majority of studies on the effects of low-carb, high-fat diets on thyroid health have used high-PUFA high-fat diets. Could this confound the results? Yes. It turns out that linoleic acid suppresses thyroid signaling. See the impact for yourself…. Rats on a corn oil diet convert less T4 to active T3 than rats on a lard diet. Rats on a safflower oil diet have a more greatly reduced metabolic response to T3 than rats on a beef fat diet. Rats on a high-PUFA diet have brown fat that’s less responsive to thyroid hormone. Remember, brown fat is the type that generates heat to keep us warm. Rats on a long-term diet high in soybean oil have terrible body temperature regulation, which thyroid function in large part controls. The more rapeseed meal (from which PUFA-rich canola oil is derived) you feed turkeys, the worse their thyroid signaling gets and the less meat/eggs they produce. Heck, back in the 70s, researchers proposed using vegetable oil as a treatment for hyperthyroidism. Thi Continue reading >>

Is The Keto Diet Safe? 10 Myth-busting Arguments For The Safety Of Ketosis

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 >>

4 Reasons A Keto Diet Is Bad For Your Health

4 Reasons A Keto Diet Is Bad For Your Health

Every couple of years a new low-carbohydrate (low-carb) fad diet pops up and rears its ugly head. First it was the Atkins diet. Then the South Beach and Zone diets sprouted up. Today, we have the paleo and whole 30 diet. But there’s a new kid on the low-carb block—the keto or ketogenic diet. The keto diet is a high-fat, high-ish protein, and extremely low-carb diet. Along with other low-carb diets, meat, eggs, seafood, oils, and high-fat dairy products like cheese and butter provide the majority of calories. Nuts and low-carb vegetables are also included, but higher-carb vegetables, fruit, potatoes, grains, and beans are excluded, or severely limited. This type of diet is meant to induce a metabolic state called “ketosis”, in which the body is depleted of glucose (carbohydrate) and glycogen (the storage form of glucose). In the absence of glucose, the body produces ketone bodies, which it uses for fuel. This diet is occasionally used to treat epilepsy in children who aren’t responding to therapy, but it’s often considered a last resort. However, the recent spike in interest over the keto diet isn’t from epileptic children, but from people looking to lose weight and improve their overall health. A quick Google search directs you to numerous websites touting a long list of benefits that you’ll experience if you adopt a keto diet. These claims, which are often mentioned without any supporting study or link, include: weight loss, improved diabetic control, improved mental focus, increased energy, improved cholesterol levels, better skin, improved gastrointestinal health, reduced sugar cravings, improved blood pressure, migraine control, improved heartburn, reduced ADHD symptoms, and it is even mention as a treatment for polycystic ovarian syndrome and brain Continue reading >>

Long-term Effects Of A Ketogenic Diet In Obese Patients

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 >>

The Truth Behind The World's Most Cutting-edge, Fat-burning Performance Meal Plan: The Keto Diet

The Truth Behind The World's Most Cutting-edge, Fat-burning Performance Meal Plan: The Keto Diet

Timothy Noakes, M.D., is an emeritus professor in the Division of Exercise Science and Sports Medicine at the University of Cape Town. While his name may not ring a bell here in the U.S., he’s a full-blown celebrity in his native South Africa and one of the most accomplished exercise physiologists on the planet. You can’t walk by a restaurant in Cape Town that doesn’t offer a “Noakes option”—say, an avocado stuffed with breakfast sausage and eggs, or a double cheeseburger with lettuce sans bun—and evidence of his teachings seems to be everywhere, mostly in the form of the nation’s best-known athletes, including ageless golfing legend Gary Player and eight-time Ironman World Champion Paula Newby-Fraser. In fact, Noakes’ celebrity these days is such that he’s even been pulled into South African presidential politics: To echo the country’s papers of record, “Is President Jacob Zuma’s and his wife’s dramatic weight loss a result of the Noakes Diet?” No one is sure about the president, but his wife, definitely: She’s lost 66 pounds following the Noakes plan. To high-performing athletes, Noakes preaches that the bedrock tenet of endurance athletic nutrition—that winning performance is best fueled by eating lots of carbohydrates—is simply wrong. Instead, he believes athletes can alter their bodies so that their metabolism burns fat as a primary fuel source, a physiological process known as ketosis, either from stored body fat or from the foods they eat every day. For non-athletes and anyone trying to lose weight or keep it off, Noakes’ advice is that eating a high-fat diet, with few if any refined carbs and as little sugar as possible, will switch on the same fat-burning system and keep your body lean and your weight stable without making Continue reading >>

The Keto Diet: Is It Good Or Bad For You?

The Keto Diet: Is It Good Or Bad For You?

You have probably heard of the recent diet trend Ketogenics, or perhaps are familiar with the very popular diet Atkins. Both of these diets are known for their strict limitation of carbohydrates and heavy presence of fat. Essentially they are a high-fat, low-carb diet, with a moderate amount of protein. You may be wondering what the rewards are to this diet, is it better than a balanced Macronutrient based diet? Could you lose more weight even quicker than you would on any other diet? Will practically eliminating carbohydrates from your diet serve any purpose to your health? Here's what we know. Carbs can be good or bad, it's all about how you use them First things first, there tends to be a negative connotation around carbohydrates. So many people relate a presence of carbs to a weight gain. Why is that? Why is there such a bad connotation around carbs. It's likely the USDA retraction and the surge of the Paleo movement along with other heavy anti-carb movements. Carbohydrates produce glucose and insulin in your bloodstream. Glucose is the easiest molecule for your body to process and use as energy so it will be chosen over any other energy source. Insulin is then produced to process the glucose in your bloodstream by taking it around the body. So yes carbs are the easiest thing for your body to convert into energy and if you are not using the energy your body will store it as fat. However when carbs are worked into a healthy balanced diet they will NOT make you fat. Eating too many calories, too quickly, without being able to burn off those calories will lead to the energy not used being stored as fat. So what's the deal with low carb diets? Low carb diets come with a lot of promise of weight loss. So why is that? Well, naturally you will lose a lot of water weight on Continue reading >>

The Keto Diet Is Gaining Popularity, But Is It Safe?

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 The Ketogenic Diet Right For You? Nutritionists Weigh In

Is The Ketogenic Diet Right For You? Nutritionists Weigh In

You may be hearing a lot about the ketogenic diet as a way to slim down while noshing on butter and heavy cream. This way of eating is suddenly hot among venture capitalists in Silicon Valley, who believe it will help them live longer and healthier, CNBC reports. Some praise the high-fat/ultra low-carb plan for helping them to lose weight and have energy all day long. Other advocates say it finally helped them to get control of their body. How does it work and could it help you? We asked Bonnie Taub-Dix, a registered dietitian nutritionist and author of “Read It Before You Eat It”; and Keri Glassman, nutritionist, registered dietitian and TODAY Tastemaker. To start with, both said they would never advise the ketogenic diet for weight loss. “Cutting out carbs is usually an invitation to overeat them at another point,” Taub-Dix said. “For a diet where you’re looking to lose weight, look good and feel good… I would not recommend a diet like this.” “For safe and effective weight loss, the carb reduction is too extreme,” Glassman added. RELATED: Read inspiring stories of ordinary people slimming down in TODAY's My Weight-Loss Journey Here’s what you need to know: What is the ketogenic diet? It’s a diet fine-tuned in the 1920s to help treat epilepsy. It does help to control seizures in some children, but it’s not recommended for adults “mostly because the restricted food choices make it hard to follow,” the Epilepsy Foundation says. The diet has just recently begun to be touted as a weight loss plan, Glassman noted. She described it as eating “mostly fat with a teeny bit of protein and carbs.” How does it work? Your body normally relies on carbohydrates for energy. It breaks them down into glucose, which is your main source of fuel. If that Continue reading >>

Adverse Reactions To Ketogenic Diets: Caution Advised

Adverse Reactions To Ketogenic Diets: Caution Advised

As the ketogenic diet gains popularity, it’s important to have a balanced discussion regarding the merits of this diet. Let me emphasize right out of the gate that this is not a diet without merits (excuse the double negative); in fact, it has significant therapeutic potential for some clinical pathologies. However, it is also a diet with inherent risk, as evidenced by the extensive list of adverse reactions reported in the scientific literature—and this has not yet been a thorough enough part of the public discussion on ketogenic diets. The AIP Lecture Series is a 6-week video-based, self-directed online course that will teach you the scientific foundation for the diet and lifestyle tenets of the Autoimmune Protocol. This is the first of a series of articles discussing various facets of a ketogenic diet with an inclination toward balancing the discussion of the pros and cons of this high-fat, low-carb, low/moderate-protein diet. My interest in this topic stems from concerns I have over its general applicability and safety, simultaneous with its growing popularity. I feel a moral and social obligation to share what I understand of these diets, from my perspective as a medical researcher. The dangers of a ketogenic diet was, in fact, the topic of my keynote presentation at Paleo F(x) this year (links to video will be provided once available). This series of articles will share the extensive research that I did in preparation for this presentation, including all of the topics covered during my talk as well as several topics that I didn’t have time to discuss (also see the free PDF Literature Review at the bottom of this post). For every anecdotal story of someone who has regained their health with a ketogenic diet, there’s a counterpoint story of someone who derai Continue reading >>

The Keto Diet, The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly

The Keto Diet, The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly

Is it Paleo? Ketogenic? Portion Fix? Mediterranean? Atkins? Grapefruit? Hot Dog? LOL…just checking to see if you’re paying attention. One of my students told me there is a REAL diet out there based around the Hot Dog Diet. We all need to read this article to prevent more of that going on in the world. In all seriousness, crap like grapefruit diets, miracle pills, and one size fits all solutions are assailing the consumer, your clients, all the time. People are so desperate for something to help them, that they will almost believe anything anyone says that promises the quick fix to their problems… especially their trainer. This is why, more than ever, you need to be a trusted resource people can turn to for help and guidance. You better know your stuff. Being up on, and having the know how to talk about sound nutrition practices and behavior change for your clients is a must today in the industry. That said, what’s the most successful diet you should recommend? I’ll give you a hint- the answer isn’t above, or is it? I recently had Chris Mohr, a leading dietician in America, on The Fitnesspreneur’s Life Show Podcast and he shared that the data shows that the most successful diet is the one that people stick with, plain and simple. Not brain science, right? Are you teaching that to your clients? Or… are you treating them like you and giving them the same plan that works for you? Or… is the latest fad that helps them stay with you what you suggest? Or… do you have them surviving on bars and shakes all day as though they love the “trainer way of eating?” Or… maybe you have them taking pills, formulas, and gels because it makes you a few dollars as a rep? Or… worse, are you doing nothing at all and not even having the nutrition conversation with yo Continue reading >>

Is Ketosis Really Bad For You?

Is Ketosis Really Bad For You?

A patient recently asked me how bad being in nutritional ketosis was for her. I responded that the worse problem I’ve seen recently is the patient that broke his toe when he slipped on bacon grease. Are there risks with a ketogenic diet? Yes, but these usually only occur when you cheat or fall off the wagon. What problems can arise? Lets talk about them individually. First, as I stated above, make sure you don’t slip on bacon the grease. It really can be an issue if you’re not used to using increased amounts of fat in your kitchen. So, be prepared for how to cook and use fat. Grandma understood this well, we could learn a great deal from her if you ask her about using bacon grease. Second, let’s define the difference between ketosis and keto-acidosis and try to clarify the misinformation that is being spread around the blogosphere. A ketone is a molecule the body produces from the breakdown of fat (specifically triglycerides) and some proteins (amino acids). There are specifically three types of ketones: beta-hydroxybutyric acid, acetoacetic acid and acetone. If ketosis was “bad,” then why would our bodies produce these molecules? They are not bad, and in fact, multiple studies show that the body is often more efficient in weight loss, inflammatory reduction, bowel function, epigenetic influence and maintenance of lean body mass more effectivly when it functions on ketones rather than glucose as its primary fuel source. You can see these studies here, here, here and here. The body can only supply a limited amount of sugar or glucose for fuel. If you talk to runners, marathoners or triathletes, they will tell you that after about 45-90 minutes of continuous endurance exercise the glucose supply runs out and they will experience what is termed a “bonk” (ha Continue reading >>

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