I've already written a post dedicated to why I don't believe Keto is a good diet to be on. You all know how much I hate fads, especially fad diets. People think that just because some sites, a handful of doctors, or a bunch of nutritionist/dieticians/personal trainers recommend a diet and promote it as being "the new #1 diet of the year/season/decade/century, etc." that it's the one to follow.
Why? Why do you think it's right for you? Do you actually know how this diet will work for you? Do you know the long-term effects it will have on you? Has there been enough research to support its initial claims of helping benefit your health? Have you ever considered what your body needs first before following in this fad?
Every person is different with different needs. Some diets will work, some won't. Some will cause more problems, some will relieve a few. But, all are NOT long-term solutions. Restricting, dieting, and detoxing are all fine for short periods of time to reset your body, but choosing them as a long-term solution can be detrimental.
To back up my claims, I am going to attach some excerpts from studies done on Keto diets in the past few months or so. More studies continue to resurface bringing Keto into a bad light. If you don't believe me, feel free to research for yourself. I've attached my resources at the end of this post.
This excerpt came from an article written by Nick English about the effects of Keto on females and males, respectively. Though done on mice, "some researchers are suggesting it has broader implications for the ketogenic diet."
The female mice on KD (ketogenic diet) developed impaired glucose tolerance (…) relative to CD (control diet) females. In contrast, fasting glucose levels were lower in males on KD.
After the 15 weeks, the female mice had no changes in weight and had impaired blood sugar control, while the males decreased in bodyweight and had stabilized blood sugar control...But it also wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows for the male mice: when comparing the two groups on the keto diet, researchers found the males’ livers had more pronounced signs of fibrosis and fatty storage than those of the female mice.
Fibrosis - the thickening and scarring of connective tissue, usually as a result of injury
In other words, the liver doesn't function properly because of prolonged damage. Hmm...
This study claims that a Keto diet can be injurious to bone health. The article was written by Divya Ramaswamy.
The findings of the study published in the Frontiers in Endocrinology suggested that a low-carb diet such as the keto could adversely affect bone health.
The study included 30 participants who were involved in vigorous training to compete in walking races. The researchers found significant signs of bone breakdown among those athletes who adhered to a keto diet for a period of three and a half weeks compared to those who consumed a more balanced diet.
The researchers opined that the low consumption of carbs on keto could have affected bone metabolism.
Did you know that after 30, you start losing bone mass density a lot faster? So, women who are post-menopausal, who are already at higher risk of bone fractures and breakdown, now have an even high risk if they are on a Keto diet.
Building off that study, here is one for the athletes out there. This article was written by Gretchen Reynolds.
Some studies have suggested...that low-carbohydrate, high-fat diets might change bone metabolism. Children with epilepsy who use the keto diet to control their condition tend to have low bone density, for instance. And in athletes, going for a day or two without carbohydrates can change some blood markers related to bone health. But no experiments had tracked bone metabolism in competitive athletes on ketogenic diets for longer periods of time. So, for the new study, which was published in January in Frontiers in Endocrinology, researchers in Australia decided to ask a group of world-class race walkers if they could fiddle with their food for a few weeks.
Thirty of the athletes, all of whom were about to embark on intense training for upcoming world championships and other competitions, agreed...About half said that they were and subsequently began a strict low-carbohydrate, high-fat routine. The other men and women continued with a high-carbohydrate diet. Before the diets kicked off, though, the researchers drew blood from the athletes before and after a workout, to establish their baseline bone health and other markers of their health and fitness...researchers checked for the levels of specific substances in the athletes’ blood known to be associated with bone breakdown, rebuilding, and overall metabolism. Then the athletes embarked on three and a half weeks of intense training... Afterward, the researchers again drew their blood and rechecked the markers of bone health...The markers of bone breakdown were higher now among the athletes on the keto diet than at the start of the study, while those indicating bone formation and overall metabolism were lower. These same markers were generally unchanged in the high-carb athletes. The athletes on the ketogenic diet, in other words, showed signs of impaired bone health.
This is where I throw my hands up in exasperation that people are falling for this fad. I've been posting this type of stuff for years and have even talked about it to my students/clients and now the studies are finally coming out. I should be a scientist I guess and then maybe people would listen to me.
Let's close with these last two studies. One shows how Keto should only be adhered to for a week at most;
There have been reported concerns with this form of diet, which is high in protein since there are indications of increasing the risk for diabetes, cancer and overall premature mortality...Mice exposed to the diet showed signs of lower blood sugar levels and lower rates of inflammation.
However, the study also shows that over a prolonged time period – beyond one week – then the high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet lead to the mice consuming more fat than they could burn, and this led to the development of diabetes and obesity.
Isn't that the opposite of what you want? Weight-gain? Finally, the last study/article reveals that those on Keto tend to eat a lot of processed meats because they are cheaper and easier to stock up on;
The amount of fat someone following the keto diet may consume in one day could be more than five times the recommended intake for daily fat for the average American, according to Maya Feller, a New York-based registered dietitian.
..."The issue is really that we just need to be more moderate and intentional with our food," she said. "Just because a meat is grass-fed and not processed doesn’t mean that we should sit down and eat 16 ounces of it."
..."For some people, they may find that after having their labs checked and looking at their lipid profiles and cardiovascular health, that a diet like this may not be in line with their best health outcomes,"...
That's a lot of information to process, I know. I'll just apologize here and now for my passionate outbursts throughout the post. I'm not trying to criticize anyone for choosing this path. My goal is to bring the truth to light so that you can be as healthy as you can possibly be. That is my dearest hope for you, my readers. Is that you will be healthy and happy individuals who love their lives and will live their lives for many, many years.
I hope that this post has helped you in one way or another. As always, I encourage you to do your own research to fully absorb and understand what I've just firehosed to you. (haha! sorry about that)
All my love,
Resources: New Study Suggests the Keto Diet May Not Be Ideal for Women by Nick English; Following A Keto-Diet Can Be Injurious To Your Bone Health by Divya Ramaswamy; Could a Keto Diet Be Bad for Athletes’ Bones? by Gretchen Reynolds; What keto dieters should know about new study highlighting risk of red, processed meats by Katie Kindeland; New study signals health concerns with the 'keto diet' by Tim Sandle