The Ketogenic Diet as Health Therapy:
Recently, the ketogenic diet is being revisited as one that might truly have the potential to help manage, and even reverse, a number of chronic health conditions.
What are these conditions? Is the ketogenic diet effective in treating them?
Some of the key health conditions with good evidence are:
How does it work? The abundance of ketone bodies and scarcity of glucose disrupt certain neural connections (called glutamatergic synaptic transmissions), inhibit the generation of more glucose, and activate potassium channels, which helps to control muscle spasms.
Some amazing work by Chris Palmer / The Baszucki Group
- Metabolic Syndrome and Type 2 Diabetes
The use of the ketogenic diet to manage glucose levels in people with metabolic diseases is intriguing to many who are at risk of metabolic diseases like pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes.
Studies that have examined the application of the ketogenic diet for glucose levels found that people with type 2 diabetes who were also overweight resulted in a reduction in body weight and an improvement in glycemic control.
Some excellent work in this area by Swissre / James Meucke / Prof Peter Bruckner
The use of the ketogenic diet in people with cancer is a controversial topic. In theory, the nutritional ketosis caused by a ketogenic diet could cause oxidative stress in cancer cells but not in healthy cells. Experiments in animals have shown that the ketogenic diet is effective against the metastasis of cancer. Specific case studies for certain cancers have shown some evidence of cancer regression.
Some great work by @Thomas Seyfried, @Kelly Turner, @dominic D’Agostino
- Alzheimer’s Disease and Parkinson’s Disease
The ketogenic diet is proposed to have protective effects on the brain of people with neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. In fact, some hypotheses propose that the keto diet might even be able to modify the effects of the disease, including reducing symptoms.
Some excellent work by Dale Bredesen and David Perlmutter
- Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) is a common disease where excess fat accumulates in the liver. Since fatty liver could result from drinking too much alcohol, this condition is different in that it arises in people who drink little to no alcohol.
The people who are at most risk of developing NAFLD have diabetes or insulin resistance; are overweight or obese; or have elevated cholesterol, triglycerides, or blood pressure.