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Nutrition expert explains the benefits of a ketogenic diet
There is a lot of, sometimes contradictory, information about what constitutes a healthy diet. The low-carb diet, much praised in recent years, is now suspected by a study to shorten the overall lifespan. Anatomy and physiology professor David Harper is convinced that the current high-carbohydrate diet is the main reason for common diseases such as obesity, diabetes and high blood pressure. He recommends a ketogenic diet as a healthier low-carb alternative.
Canadian nutritionist and cancer researcher Professor Dr. David Harper and his family have been eating a ketogenic diet for six years. As a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Institute for Personalized Therapeutic Nutrition in Canada, he attends worldwide nutrition seminars and is currently writing a book on ketogenic nutrition. He is not surprised that there is so much confusion about the right diet and wants to show a clear line for a healthy diet that will keep you slim and healthy in the long term.
Big confusion about eating right
"Over the past decade, nutritional science has provided robust evidence that high-carbohydrate diets contribute to obesity and chronic illnesses," said the nutritionist in the Vancouver Sun newspaper. The low-carb diet was also recently classified as unhealthy by a study in the specialist journal "The Lancet Public Health", since low-carbohydrate diets can reduce general life expectancy.
Dietary guidelines encourage over-consumption of carbohydrates
The currently prevailing nutritional guidelines in Canada are similar to those in Germany. Here 40 to 65 percent of the energy comes from carbohydrates. According to the nutritionist, these recommendations, which have been common for years, are responsible for the rates of obesity, diabetes and high blood pressure exploding. The overconsumption of carbohydrates is the main reason for the rapid increase in common diseases.
The nutritionist uses human physiology to explain why high carbohydrate consumption is linked to disease-causing mechanisms. According to Harper, regular consumption of carbohydrates leads to chronically high levels of glucose in the blood. The body responds to this with constant insulin production. Over time, insulin resistance would increase in many people, which can ultimately lead to diabetes.
Insulin promotes fat storage
As Professor Harper reports, insulin has another negative effect. It sends a strong signal to the body to store fat. This signal quickly leads to obesity and increased blood sugar levels, which in turn is the basis for many diseases, such as numerous heart diseases.
How can a ketogenic diet prevent this?
A ketogenic diet reduces carbohydrate consumption to less than five percent of the total calories. The main fuel in this diet is not carbohydrates, but fats and proteins. “Our glucose levels are returning to normal, we are becoming less insulin resistant, we are losing fat and reducing our risk of developing a chronic illness,” said Harper. This diet also produces so-called keto bodies. According to the nutrition expert, these contribute to the protection of the brain and nervous system and reduce systemic inflammation, which can trigger cardiovascular diseases. As a cancer researcher, Harper also knows that these keto bodies are currently being scientifically tested for their suitability for combating cancer.
Ketogenic nutrition is not the same as low carb diets
In view of the recently published study, the nutrition expert commented: The participants in the Lancet study were eating low-carb and not ketogenic, according to Harper. 30 to 40 percent of total calories still came from carbohydrates. The participants would never have reached the state of ketosis in which only the keto bodies are produced.
The ketogenic diet has been the standard for thousands of years
In conclusion, Harper points out that the current standard diet is still very young compared to human existence. Humanity has been ketogenic for millennia. So this diet is not a fad, but a return to the roots.
Not for everyone
If you are planning to change your diet, you should be well informed about the possible consequences. On the one hand, the ketogenic diet is not a fast diet, but a nutritional concept in which you have to do without many foods in the long term, and on the other hand, the consequences of such a diet have not yet been sufficiently researched. (vb)