All sources linked are in french.

The ketogenic diet is a diet originally developed for children with epilepsy, forgotten for decades and studied again over the last decade.

In ketosis, the body no longer works by burning carbohydrates (via glucose) but by burning lipids (via ketones). According to studies, this has many benefits and is likely to improve symptoms or even to cure many diseases.

The drastic reduction of carbohydrates (5% of calories), the moderation of proteins (15 to 20% of calories) and the increase of lipids (75 to 80% of calories) make it possible to preserve all essential macros and micro-nutrients while bringing all the benefits of ketones.

Ketogenic nutrition restores optimal hormonal function: people suffering from insulin resistance (state of pre-diabetes) can restore a low level of insulin, thus curing metabolic syndrome-related diseases
 (1)(2) :

  • diabetes(3). This study indicates that the ketogenic diet should be the first-line treatment for people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. This second study specifically addresses type 2 diabetes (4), while this one is about type 1 diabetes
    (5). It may be beneficial for overweight mothers-to-be with gestational diabetes (6).
  • cardiovascular diseases. This study indicates that the reduction of dietary lipids leads to an increase in coronary risks (7) :
  • obesity. This study highlights the long-term benefits of the ketogenic diet over a low-calorie diet, as well as it being safe (8).

Photo of researcher conducting microscopic examination of sample

According to studies, the ketogenic diet is recommended and could improve the health of people who suffer from:

  • epilepsy (9) : The ketogenic diet has been the subject of many studies, especially on children and adolescents on whom the pharmacopoeia produced no positive effect (10).
  • neurological diseases in general (Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, …) (11) :
  • cancer, specifically brain tumor (12),

and other forms of cancer (13).

The ketogenic diet is likely to deprive cancer cells of their essential fuel, which is glucose. When blood glucose is reduced through diet, healthy cells in the body use ketones, while cancer cells are deprived of the only fuel they can use. Studies show three benefits of using the ketogenic diet as a supplement to conventional cancer treatments:

  1. The ketogenic diet is not toxic for the rest of the body, it is even beneficial and allows the patient to better withstand the effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
  2. The ketogenic diet increases the effectiveness of conventional treatments. Cancer cells become more sensitive to radiation therapy and chemotherapy.
  3. The ketogenic diet seems to force cancer cells to behave in a similar gene expression to healthy cells.

Source : http://www.ketogenic-diet-resource.com/cancer-treatments.html

Other conditions: this very complete article lists all the indications of the ketogenic diet (acne, neurological trauma, polycystic ovary syndrome, Stein-Leventhal syndrome, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) (14).

How to eat Keto / LHCF in order to lose weight?

– Identify foods that cause insulin production and avoid them (sugars, starches).

– Pick good sources of fat every day, including coconut oil, omega 3 sources (oily fish, rapeseed oil, linseed), as well as saturated lipids of animal origin (animal fats, raw butter, raw milk cheese). This meta-analysis advances the safety of saturated lipids and the absence of a link with cardiovascular diseases (15).Alimentation - Les corps gras

-Keep protein intake to one per meal (i.e. 30gr of proteins).

– Make sure you choose foods that contain enough micronutrients (there are no micro-nutrients that doesn’t fit the keto diet. All vitamins and polyphenols found in fruits are also found in vegetables).

Does the Keto / LCHF diet have contraindication or side effects?

For the studied patients, the ketogenic diet knows only few contraindications (16) and the listed side effects are usually only transitional (17) : constipation, fruity breath, sugar cravings associated with sugar being cut, transient mineral loss resulting in fatigue, headache, diarrhea, increased urine, hair loss, heart palpitations).

Moreover, in addition to the weight you can lose more or less quickly depending on the person, your metabolism and your hormonal levels, you can also improve your health:

– A stable and positive mood (18)

– More energy during the day (thanks to a constant supply of ketones)

– Reduced inflammation, leading to better immune defenses (19)

– Clear skin (skins with acne tendencies can become clear) and healthy hair (20)

– Better cognitive abilities (the brain consumes a lot of fat) (21)

– Better absorption of lipid-soluble vitamins

– Better blood tests (lower triglycerides, LDL cholesterol) (22)