Misconceptions of the “Dangers” of a Ketogenic Diet
There are many misconceptions of potential “dangers” of a ketogenic diet by the uninformed public, as well as many medically- trained people.
You may have heard some of these lingering arguments opposing the use of low-carb, high fat ketogenic diets. The vast majority of them are either grossly overblown or patently untrue.
First of all, it is very important to draw a distinct line between metabolic ketosis (benign or even beneficial) and diabetic keto-
acidosis (life threatening). The difference is that keto acidosis is a combination of high ketones in the presence of high blood sugar, while metabolic ketosis is high ketones with low blood sugar.
One criticism of this diet is the claim that it will cause kidney damage and kidney stones. This has not been seen in clinical practice nor in numerous studies done over the last 15 years. Instead, all the results have been positive.
Another criticism is that very low-carb diets induce insulin resistance and a “glucose de ciency.” There is no such thing as a “glucose deficiency” (this is not hypoglycemia)! This cannot be found in any medical textbook on the planet! It is nonsense! Switching over to burn fats for energy has been shown to normalize insulin levels as well as sensitivity and stabilize blood sugars.
Some people have a concern that the consumption of saturated fat leads to an increased chance of a heart attack. In actuality, it is high levels of LDL (low density lipoproteins [fats]) that are the problem makers in heart disease. Interestingly, it is people who consume plenty of “healthy whole grains” that have astoundingly high level of LDL. People who eliminate grains and sugars and enjoy a healthy state of ketosis have dramatic reductions or even complete elimination of LDL levels!
It has been said that eating a ketogenic diet will lead to scurvy due to lack of vitamin C. Two artic explorers from Sweden lived and traveled with the Eskimos for 9 years in the 1930s eating an animal-based, low-carb, high-fat diet. They were later studied for 1 year at Bellevue Hospital in New York on the all-meat (including organ meat and bone broth) ketogenic diet. They remained healthy during the study and didn’t develop scurvy or any other nutritional deficiencies.
It is possible to maintain intake of antioxidants and vitamins C, K and E while in ketosis by eating more organ meats, greens and sulfur-rich vegetables such as onions, cabbage, broccoli and Brussels sprouts.
There are many more reasons to try this diet than to be afraid of it and not try it. Greater health is waiting for you.
For further information contact Reno Integrative Medical Center, 6110 Plumas St., Ste. B, Reno at 775-829-1009 or www.RenoIntegrative.com.
Moore Jimmy, Westman Eric, Keto Clarity, Victory Belt Publishing, Inc., 2014
Moore Jimmy, Emmerich Maria, the Ketogenic Cookbook, Victory Belt Publishing, Inc. 2015