Side Effects Of Keto Diet That You Must Know About
As a ketogenic diet alters the very energy source in the human body, it can lead to some short-term and long-term side effects. Let us take a look at what to expect:
Short-term side effects
When you switch to a keto diet from your regular eating pattern, your body might show symptoms similar to withdrawal from something like caffeine for the short term. Some of the symptoms you might experience are:
However, in most cases, the side effects are temporary and fade off in a little while. In general, people do not experience any side effects in the long run.
Long-term side effects
Some of the long-term side effects are listed below. Let us have a closer look:
Ketones Sound Great So Why Are People Afraid
The reason medical professionals may be concerned about people deliberately trying to achieve a state of ketosis is that ketone molecules are acidic. Your body aims to keep your blood very slightly alkaline, so if the concentration of ketones in your blood becomes too high, the fear is that your blood will become overly acidic, which is indeed a potentially life-threatening situation.
But its important to know that this almost never happens solely as a result of carbohydrate restriction in the context of a keto diet.
Except for using ketogenic diets as a treatment for epilepsy, the only exposure to ketosis that many healthcare professionals had during education and training was this harmful, out-of-control ketoacidosiswhen the blood ketone level is extremely high, the blood is dangerously acidic, and typically blood glucose is also very high. Only recently are they becoming more educated about the numerous benefits of safe, benign, nutritional ketosis.
Pro: Less Hunger & Controlled Appetite
Besides body fat stores breaking down, weight loss on a ketogenic diet occurs for a couple of different reasons:
- Participants in several research studies reported feeling less hungry and eating less food overall, likely because fat and protein fill you up more than carbohydrates do.
- High amounts of ketones in your body may also suppress the hormones responsible for controlling appetite.
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Weight Loss Possible But Not Well Studied
Another potential benefit of the ketogenic diet is weight loss. Obesity in patients with type 1 diabetes is a common problem that has worsened in recent decades. This may be in part due to the use of long-term insulin, an anabolic hormone that promotes weight gain. Obesity in type 1 diabetes can lead to metabolic syndrome and insulin resistance, as well as increased risk for microvascular complications.
The ketogenic diet has been suggested as a tool for weight loss in overweight or obese patients with type 1 diabetes, although it has not been well studied in this population. In a well-designed crossover study, Rosenfalck et al looked at insulin sensitivity and BMI and found no significant change in weight or BMI after 3 months of a ketogenic diet in 10 patients with type 1 diabetes.
Diet Lowers Blood Glucose Sometimes Dangerously
Leow et al investigated the effects of a ketogenic diet in 11 adults with type 1 diabetes who self-initiated the diet before study recruitment. Mean HbA1c of study participants was excellent at 5.3%, and participants spent an impressive average of 74% of time within target range. However, many had a disproportionately high frequency and duration of hypoglycemic episodes.
Lennerz et al evaluated the effect of a very low carbohydrate diet on 316 patients with type 1 diabetes, using an online survey of a social media group. Average carbohydrate intake was 36 ± 15 g of carbohydrates per day for an average duration of 2.2 ± 2.9 years. Patients achieved good glucose control and reported high satisfaction. The rate of severe adverse events was low and included 7 patients with diabetes-related hospitalizations and 4 with DKA.
In their small, randomized crossover study, Ranjan et al compared 1 week each on a low-carbohydrate diet and a high-carbohydrate diet in patients with type 1 diabetes using insulin pump therapy. The low-carbohydrate diet group had significantly lower average daily blood glucose levels , longer time in euglycemia , less glycemic variability , lower total daily insulin dose , and fewer daily units of bolus insulin administered .
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Keto And Diabetes: What The Research Says
Because the keto diet limits carbs, it makes sense that it would lower blood sugar. And numerous studies confirm that it does.
A 2017 study compared two online interventions for overweight adults with type 2 diabetes where one group followed a low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet and the other followed a program based on the American Diabetes Association’s “Create Your Plate” diet. After 32 weeks, or about 7 months, the keto group lost more weight and had lower A1C and triglyceride levels. While this is compelling, no long-term follow-up was conducted so it’s unclear if participants kept up with this diet and maintained the results over time.
Another study compared a low-carbohydrate diet to a low-glycemic, reduced-calorie diet in obese adults with type 2 diabetes. Both groups had improved blood glucose control and weight loss, but the low-carb group saw better blood sugar control. The keto diet often leads to weight loss, which alone can improve blood sugar control, but this study found that the low-carb group had improved blood sugar control independent of weight loss. So it could be beneficial to reduce daily carb intake below the standard recommendation of 45-50 percent of calories from carbs, the researchers said.
Can A Keto Diet Help Reverse Type 2 Diabetes
The ketogenic diet has gained a lot of attention because of its benefits for effective weight loss. Initial research shows that the keto diet can help people lose more weight than both low-calorie and low-fat diets in the short and long-term.
However, physicians and registered dieticians are becoming increasingly interested in the potential therapeutic effect of the ketogenic diet for people with metabolic disorders, like insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.
Can a ketogenic diet help to treat, or even reverse type 2 diabetes? Here, I will go over the latest scientific research to help answer this question.
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Diabetes And Keto Diet: Relationship Explained
The keto diet and diabetes are pretty closely connected. The keto diet holds many more benefits than just aiding weight loss. It improves diabetes and helps with hormones, among other health issues. If we consume carbohydrates, insulin is released into the body due to high blood sugar levels. The release of insulin in the body marks sugar diffusion into the blood. Insulin is the storage hormone that indicates the body cells to store as much energy as possible. The cells initially store energy as glycogen, followed by fat.
The keto diet for diabetes type 2 works by diminishing the carbs content from the body that bars the release of insulin into the body. Controlled insulin release helps in maintaining normal blood sugar levels.
As per research in 2008, a 24 weeks study was conducted on people to study the effects of a low-carb diet with obesity and type 2 diabetes. At the end of the 24 weeks program, individuals who followed the ketogenic diet showed a reduction in medication and glycemic control compared to those who followed the low-glycemic diet.
Another study conducted in 2017 over 32 weeks found the ketogenic diet better than a conventional low-fat regime for diabetes for weight loss and diabetes.
A study in 2013 stated that the keto diet leads to significant results in weight loss, diabetes, A1C, and discontinued insulin requirements compared to other available diets.
How To Start The Keto Diet If Youre Living With Type 2 Diabetes
If you decide to start the keto diet, dont go it alone.
Youll also find heat-and-eat keto meals that you can order online at Factor. Subscribe and you get a complimentary session with a registered dietitian.
Above all, if youre interested in trying keto to manage diabetes, talk with your diabetes medical team including your endocrinologist and a registered dietitian who is also a certified diabetes care and education specialist before trying this eating plan. Start the diet slowly, cutting carbohydrates gradually, Zanini recommends. Dramatic reductions could lead to hypoglycemia, especially if youre on oral diabetes medications or insulin.
Regularly test both your blood sugar and ketone levels to prevent serious side effects. Doing so is very important for avoiding DKA, says Sylvia White, RD, CDCES, who works in private practice in Memphis, Tennessee. Warning signs of DKA include consistently high blood sugar, high ketone levels, dry mouth, nausea, vomiting, and frequent urination and complications can cause a diabetic coma.
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Could Reducing Carbohydrate Intake Play A Role In The Pathogenesis Of Type 1 Diabetes
A normal gut homeostasis is the consequence of a fine-tuned balance between intestinal microbiota, gut permeability and mucosal immunity . In this complex interplay, the alteration of one or more of these factors may contribute to the development and progression of inflammation or autoimmunity, that may result in diseases such as T1D or multiple sclerosis . Gut microbiota plays a key role in gut homeostasis, and for this reason it is currently being so intensively investigated. Clostridia are mainly butyrate-producing and mucin-degrading bacteria, with immunomodulating properties, and are generally associated with a normal gut homeostasis . De Goffau et al. observed that -cell autoimmunity is associated with a reduction in lactate-producing and butyrate-producing species, with an increased abundance of the Bacteroides genus. This finding agrees with what reported by Endesfelder et al., who suggested a protective role of butyrate in the development of anti-islet autoimmunity and onset of T1D furthermore, a reduced number of Clostridia was also observed in long-standing T1D patients .
It is known that diet influences gut microbiome and that an acute change in diet alters microbial composition within just 24 h, with reversion to baseline within 48 h of diet discontinuation . So how could a reduction in dietary carbohydrates, with a relative increase in fat or protein intake, affect gut microbiota and type 1 diabetes risk?
Is It Good Or Bad For People With Diabetes
The short answer here is it definitely depends on the type of diabetes that you have, but the ketogenic diet does seem to have health benefits and consequences for all types of diabetes.
As I stated earlier, and forgive me if I am blunt, forget it if you are pregnant. Momma, you need your nutrition!
For people with Type 1 Diabetes, you probably have heard of their diabetic emergency, diabetic ketoacidosis, also referred to as DKA. This can be life threatening condition for people with Type 1 diabetes and Certified Diabetes Educators spend many hours teaching preventive care for DKA. This condition should not be confused with nutritional ketosis, the fat burning state reached when following the Ketogenic diet. The two conditions are quite different.
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Can A Ketogenic Diet Reverse Diabetes
I cant tell you how often through the years I have been asked the question, If I lose 20 pounds, will I no longer have diabetes? Let me answer this very clearly, there is currently no cure for diabetes. Once you have been diagnosed, you have it for life. Every day, our most brilliant researchers are busy searching for a cure though. There is good news however you can manage your diabetes, get it under control, prevent all the complications of diabetes and live a normal, healthy life.
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What Are The Types Of Keto Diets
There are varying types of ketogenic diets. Let us know more about some of them all in the following list:
When you consume carbs before or after a high workout session, your carbs get processed quite efficiently as the body requires much more energy.
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The Two Main Types Of Diabetes
Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is an organ-specific autoimmune disease that causes your immune system to destroy the cells in your pancreas responsible for producing insulin.
This happens due to a combination of genetic and environmental factors. As a result, people with Type 1 diabetes cant produce insulin naturally and have to take insulin every day.
Despite sometimes being referred to as juvenile diabetes, you can develop Type 1 diabetes at any age. Type 1 accounts for just 5% of all diabetes cases in the United States.
Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes, accounting for 95% of all diabetes cases in the United States.
In the case of Type 2 diabetes, you either become insulin resistant meaning your pancreas is producing insulin, but your cells reject it. Or, your pancreas stops creating enough insulin to deal with chronically high blood sugar.
Either way, Type 2 diabetes is usually the result of chronically high blood sugar from poor diet and lifestyle choices.
You can develop Type 2 diabetes at any age, but its most common in middle-aged and older adults.
People With Diabetes Who Shouldnt Try The Keto Diet
Whats certain is this diet isn’t for you if you have kidney disease one reason being that you want to limit protein in that case, Zanini says.
Last, if you have a history of struggling with an eating disorder, work with your doctor to determine if this is the right diet for you. Despite what you may have read online, the keto diet and a personal history of binge eating disorder do not mix. In fact, Because of the severe carb limits imposed by the ketogenic diet, the risks of bingeing, compulsive overeating, and other eating disorders is much higher, says White.
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Safety On A Ketogenic Diet
There is generally a lack of long-term studies into the safety and effectiveness of ketogenic diets and, this is why a doctors opinion is needed before starting the diet.
There are a few groups of people for whom a ketogenic diet may not be suitable, or at the very least, warrants close supervision.
These include pregnant women, children, people at risk of hypoglycemia, people with a very low BMI, and those with conditions that a ketogenic diet may exacerbate.
Quick Tips For Going Keto
Yes and no. While the basic premise is easy to grok, in reality, it requires some planning and effort. Nothing good in life comes easy, right?
Here are some tips to get you started:
One last thing. Adapting to burning fat for energy can take 2 to 4 weeks, and maybe more if youre very insulin resistant. This doesnt mean youll be suffering for a month, but it does mean your desired benefits probably wont manifest overnight.
Hang in there. Your health is worth it.
Looking to get started with some tasty Keto recipes? Weve got thousands of Keto and low-carb recipes available in the Carb Manager kitchen. Check them out.
Disclaimer: If you have a diabetes diagnosis it is important that you consult, and work with, your doctor or healthcare provider should you choose to manage your health with the Keto diet.
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