Some individuals who follow the ketogenic diet boast about the amount of butter and bacon they are able to consume. If you suffer from heart disease, are at risk of developing it, or are worried about the health of your heart, you may be perplexed about if this diet, consisting of at least 70% fat and very little carbs based on which form of keto you adhere to, is suitable for you. It is possible to try out the keto diet, however, it is recommended to do so under the guidance of a doctor who is knowledgeable about the diet and, if possible, with the help of a registered dietitian. Many cardiologists are discouraged from recommending the keto meal plan for optimal heart health.
What are the effects of the Ketogenic Diet on Type 2 Diabetes?
What is the Keto Diet?
Back in 1921, physicians utilized the ketogenic diet to deal with seizures in kids. When antiepileptic drugs were created by scientists, the ketogenic diet did not remain popular for very long. Recently, it re-emerged as a weight-loss tool.
A ketogenic diet alters the manner in which your body generates energy. A regular eating pattern involves carbohydrate consumption. When your system is aware of the higher availability of carbohydrates, it converts them into glucose to be used as a power supply.
If you greatly reduce your carbohydrate intake, your body will start to burn stored fats as fuel. When your body digests fat, it produces ketones to create energy, putting it into a metabolic state known as ketosis.
When not engaging in strenuous physical activity and when only doing light to moderate exercise, the majority of your body’s energy comes from fat rather than carbohydrate. The keto diet is a way of increasing the utilization of fat by the body.
The general recommendations for macronutrient (macros) distribution for a keto diet are:
Fat: 55%-60 %
On an everyday diet of 2,000 calories, your consumption of carbohydrates should be between 20-50g.
Generally speaking, when confronted with a dearth of carbs, your body will instinctively begin an energy-producing procedure known as ketosis. This dietary plan may work for certain individuals, however it may not be a wise option for others.
If you decide to go on a ketogenic diet in order to lose weight, you cannot anticipate losing the excess fat right away. Generally, the initial few pounds are dropped most quickly since the body converts saved carbohydrates into energy, resulting in an expulsion of water from the body. Subsequently, the method of losing weight is usually no different than other weight reduction regimens.
What Are the Possible Heart-Healthy Benefits of the Keto Diet ?
According to Audrey Fleck, RDN, who is an integrative and functional nutritionist and certified diabetes care and education specialist located in Perkasie, Pennsylvania, inflammation of the heart is detrimental, as it can damage the arteries. She states that high blood sugar levels often result in inflammation. In addition, a ketogenic way of eating may be useful in decreasing blood sugar level and increasing the effectiveness of insulin, improving inflammation symptoms as well. Insulin serves as a hormone to keep blood sugar levels in check.
A study published in June 2020 in The American Journal of Medicine recognizes that alterations in nutritional habits are essential for reducing the potential of developing cardiovascular disease. The researchers desired to shed some light on the uncertainty surrounding the effects on cardiac health of popular diets, for instance the keto diet, seeing as personal stories (e.g. that friend of yours that stands by the keto diet) and social media have been providing a lot of hype. It has been found that the ketogenic diet can lead to meaningful weight loss for those who are obese, and this can result in lower blood pressure and glucose levels, beneficial changes in lipid levels, and decreased insulin resistance in the short-term. Nevertheless, there is much concern about the allowance of saturated fats and animal products because they are known to associate with increased heart disease risks. As such, due to the restrictive nature of the keto diet, it might drive people to eat an excessive amount of these items. It is necessary to be cautious when suggesting that people start the ketogenic diet, since this type of diet will not be right for the majority of dieters. There is, however, a small population of dieters who could benefit from going on the keto diet. Patients who are conscientious, well-regulated, and eager may find utilizing a ketogenic diet useful for the prevention of heart conditions.
It is important to note that the types of food you consume on a keto diet make a difference. Studies have previously been conducted to investigate the effects of a low-carb diet on women and men, and it was found that those who mainly obtained their fat and protein through animal sources, like cheese and meat, had a 23 percent greater possibility of dying early than those who based those nutrients on vegetable sources, like avocado and nuts. The veggie low-carb group saw a decrease of 20 percent in likelihood of death before their due time and a 23 percent reduction in risk of contracting heart disease.
People with diabetes have a much higher risk of heart disease or stroke than people without the disease, as stated by the CDC. Evidence does not demonstrate that the ketogenic diet is the best choice for everyone who has diabetes. Consult your healthcare advisors before making any big adjustments to your diet if you are living with diabetes.
What are the advantages and dangers of the Keto diet?
Should you try the keto diet for type 2 diabetes?
Medical supervision is necessary when you decide to follow the keto diet and your doctor and dietitian should be consulted. Ask your doctor for their medical opinion. If you are not managing your diabetes with insulin medication, it is probable that your physician will propose attempting a diet as an alternative.
If you’re using insulin to treat a health condition, extra caution is key. This is because you might be susceptible to hypoglycemia when consuming a ketogenic diet.
It is essential to recall that the early stages of the keto diet can include a range of disagreeable outcomes, such as being overly thirsty, exhausted, and having to urinate quite often which you may think are indications of hyperglycemia.
If your physician gives you the go-ahead to embark on the keto diet, it is essential to pay attention to your symptoms carefully. Remember that there are other options available besides the keto diet.
Other Diets for People with Type 2 Diabetes
In addition to eating a regular diet that is low in calories to help with weight loss, people with type 2 diabetes can also think about alternative meal plans.
The Atkins diet, like any ketogenic diet, puts an emphasis on reducing consumption of carbohydrates. This dietary regimen, conceptualized by Dr. Robert Atkins, involves various stages which must be traversed in the appointed order.
The initial period starts with limiting one’s daily intake of carbohydrates to 20g. The next steps involve slowly incorporating foods with carbohydrates into the plan. The last phase focuses on sustaining the successes that were obtained in the prior stages.
Johns Hopkins Hospital formulated a different version of the Atkins Diet, which was known as the Modified Atkins Diet (MOD), in 2003. This altered version of the Atkins Diet necessitated a less stringent approach to nutrition. This diet has the following macronutrient distribution:
The main distinction between the keto and Atkins plans is the absence of limitation on proteins. Individuals who take part in a keto diet become locked into ketosis, enabling them to utilize their body’s fat reserves as a source of energy.
The end result of using the changed Atkins diet for individuals with diabetes is identical to that of the ketogenic diet. Additional research should be done to substantiate the beneficial effects of the modified Atkins diet on people who possess type 2 diabetes.
The Paleo diet is a way of eating which focuses on consuming foods that would have been consumed by people from the Paleolithic period. During this time period, people were only consuming whatever food they could hunt or gather. This includes fish, meat, fruits, veggies, nuts, and seeds.
Adopting the Paleo diet means that the vast majority of carbohydrates are eliminated from one’s diet by omitting grains and legumes. This eating plan involves consuming few carbohydrates, lots of protein, and a moderate to substantial amount of fat. The macronutrient distribution is usually:
Fat: 50 %
Studies and experiments have proved that the Paleo diet is advantageous for individuals with type 2 diabetes. It was demonstrated that when compared to the standard diabetic eating plan, the Paleo regimen had a beneficial effect on blood glucose regulation, lipid levels, insulinemia sensitivity, and various heart disease risk factors.
The absence of extensive research done over a long period of time prevents the Paleo diet from being endorsed as a suitable choice for individuals with type 2 diabetes. Prior to embarking on this diet, speak with your doctor first.
South Beach diet
The South Beach plan emphasizes small amounts of carbohydrates, a great deal of proteins, and moderate amounts of fats. The South Beach diet also has a ketogenic variation.
The traditional South Beach diet has three phases:
The initial stage lasts for a period of fourteen days and limits the majority of carbohydrates. Consume lean proteins, vegetables that are high in dietary fiber, and meals containing unsaturated fat.
The next step typically lasts until you accomplish what you set out to do with your diet. You can include nutritious carbohydrates and make sure that you are getting a significant amount of protein in your daily diet, approximately 25% of your total calories.
The last step is the upkeep stage, which allows you to enjoy all foods in small amounts.
Studies have indicated that a low-carb diet could be advantageous for individuals with type 2 diabetes, which could make the South Beach diet an excellent means of shedding extra pounds and maintaining normal blood sugar levels. Be sure to consult your doctor before attempting it.
How to Follow a Keto Diet
If your physician gave you the go-ahead to begin a ketogenic diet as a form of treatment for type 2 diabetes, it is important that you first become familiar with the allowable and forbidden food items.
Foods you can’t eat on a keto diet:
Grains: Rice, corn, cereal, pasta, and other wheat-based food
Sweets: Honey, syrups, agave, juices, treats, and any other items containing a high amount of sugar.
Legumes: Peas, lentils, chickpeas, beans
Tubers: Potatoes, yams
Root veggies : Carrots, beets, radishes, turnips
Foods that are high in saturated fats include mayonnaise, vegetable oils which have been processed, sausages, hard cheeses, and butter.
Fruits: Except limes, lemons, tomatoes, and berries
Foods you can eat on a keto diet:
For carbohydrates : Broccoli, eggplants, bell peppers, celery, asparagus
-For fats, some examples include olive oil, avocado oil, flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds, nuts, coconuts, high-fat dairy items, creamy salad dressings, and avocados.
Protein sources include chicken and turkey (the darker cuts), beef, salmon, tuna, shrimp, pork, cheese, and eggs.
You can substitute sugar with low-carb sweeteners such as Stevia and Erythritol. It can be challenging to comprehend what meals ought to be composed of on a ketogenic diet. It might be advantageous to talk to a nutrition expert and put together an eating schedule for at least seven days.
Preparing for side effects
Once your body is in ketosis (which can be achieved in about two days), you may experience some uncomfortable symptoms, for instance headaches, cramps, incredible thirst, weariness, and difficulty sleeping. In many cases, the symptoms will diminish after a few weeks.
If the side effects of ketosis are adversely affecting you, speak to your doctor about another type of dietary regimen.
Cooking at home vs. eating out
Adopting a keto diet often requires a lot of preparation in the kitchen. Cooking at home keeps your meal plan under control. It can be difficult for those on the keto diet to dine out, as it is tough to determine the exact quantities of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats in the food prepared by a restaurant.
Starting a keto diet with insulin-treated type 2 diabetes
If you’re a diabetic and you take insulin to manage your condition, your doctor may advise you to reduce the amount you take once you start the ketogenic diet. For individuals with diabetes who commence a low-carbohydrate diet, the initial medication dosage is typically reduced by 30 to 50 percent.
As time passes, your physician may reduce the amount of medication you take even more. You have to keep a careful watch on your blood sugar levels constantly. Some patients may come off insulin completely.
Is the Keto Diet a Good Choice if You’re Living With Heart Disease?
It is essential for those with heart disease to consult with their cardiologist on a regular basis in order to make the most beneficial lifestyle changes for their hearts. Your doctor may suggest that you adhere to a Mediterranean style diet instead of the keto diet.
In April 2016, a research study published in the European Heart Journal surveyed 15,482 individuals who had experienced persistent heart conditions and questioned them about their dietary habits. At the end of a four-year observation, individuals who most strictly adhered to the Mediterranean diet had less jeopardy of having a coronary attack or stroke in contrast to those who consumed a Western diet (containing greater amounts of refined grains, sugars, and fried food). The researchers reached the conclusion that incorporating more nutritious foods, such as fruits, vegetables, pulses, and whole grains, instead of avoiding unhealthy choices (like desserts) was the principal element in avoiding a different cardiac issue.
In a study for the American College of Cardiology in May 2016, Dariush Mozaffarian, a cardiologist and professor of nutrition at Tufts University in Boston, suggested to medical professionals not to give too much attention to popular diets such as low-carb plans since their impact on health is either small or insignificant. He also emphasized that the Mediterranean diet is the best evidence-based choice that achieves desired results.
RELATED: 10 Easy Mediterranean Diet Swaps to Make Today
The Bottom Line on the Relationship Between Keto and Heart Disease
According to Steinbaum, several elements may contribute to the growth of heart disease, such as blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, familial background, smoking, and tension. She emphasizes that, while diet is significant, it is only part of the overall picture. “Ultimately, it’s not about keto. It’s not about eating sugar. Individuals may be motivated to adopt this diet out of a desire to take charge of their health, however, it is not a magic solution. It’s just not that simple,” she says.
Do not depend on the keto diet to guard against or patch up heart disease. If you are in danger of heart problems, speak to your physician or cardiologist before beginning a keto diet, particularly if there is a history of the illness in your family, which may then signify that this type of diet could be hazardous.