The keto diet reduces weight but may cause kidney stones.. This is what an expert from the Mayo Clinic says about it | Health


What is the keto diet, and how does it work? And what are its potential benefits? And what are its harms? Is it suitable for health? The answers are in this report…

Here we present information about this diet, as well as its precautions, as although it may reduce weight quickly, in the long run it may increase the risk of heart problems, by raising the “bad” cholesterol that can accumulate in the blood vessels and lead to blood clots.

Our advice to you: Do not follow the keto diet without consulting a doctor, for a specific period, especially if you suffer from chronic health problems. A moderate and varied diet is the secret to maintaining a healthy weight.

What is the keto diet?

A ketogenic diet is defined as a low-carbohydrate diet With moderate protein restriction to induce ketosis without restricting fat intake. The keto diet is based on reducing carbohydrates significantly and increasing the proportion of fat in foods.

The concept of the ketogenic diet was developed in 1921 by Dr. Russell Wilder, according to a research review in Cureus Magazine.

The ketogenic diet does not limit fat intake, and consists primarily of high fats, moderate proteins and very low carbohydrates. The macronutrients are divided into about 55% to 60% fat, 30% to 35% protein and 5% to 10% carbohydrates. Specifically, on a 2,000-calorie-a-day diet, carbohydrates are 20 to 50 grams a day.

History and origin

Russell Wilder first used the ketogenic diet to treat epilepsy in 1921. He also coined the term “ketogenic diet.” For nearly a decade, the keto diet enjoyed a place in the medical world as a therapeutic diet for childhood epilepsy, and was widely used until its popularity waned with the introduction of anti-epileptic drugs.

The re-emergence of the ketogenic diet as a quick formula for weight loss is a relatively new concept and has been shown to be effective, at least in the short term, according to For a research review on the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) website in the United States.

How does the keto diet work?

Basically, carbohydrates are the primary source of energy production in the tissues of the body, and when the body is deprived of carbohydrates due to reducing its intake to less than 50 grams per day, the secretion of insulin decreases significantly and the body depletes glycogen stores, forcing the body to pass Some metabolic changes.

When glucose availability decreases, the body’s internal production of glucose is not able to keep up with the body’s needs and ketones are formed in order to provide an alternative source of energy in the form of ketone bodies. ketone bodies replace glucose as the primary source of energy.

Because of the lack of carbohydrate intake in the body, the body breaks fats into fatty acids, and fatty acids are metabolized into ketone bodies that accumulate in the body with the continuation of the ketogenic diet.

This metabolic state is referred to as “dietary ketosis.” As long as the body is deprived of carbohydrates, the metabolism remains in ketosis.

The body’s manufactured ketone bodies can be easily used for energy production by the heart, muscle tissue, and kidneys. Ketone bodies can also cross the blood-brain barrier to provide an alternative energy source for the brain.

Although the short-term effects of the ketogenic diet have been well reported, the long-term health effects are not well known.

The relatively common and short-term side effects of the ketogenic diet include a range of symptoms such as:

  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • headache
  • fatigue
  • dizziness
  • Insomnia
  • Difficulty enduring exercise
  • constipation

Sometimes referred to as the keto flu, these symptoms disappear within a few days to a few weeks, and ensuring adequate fluid and electrolyte intake can help counter some of these symptoms.

Long-term adverse effects of the keto diet include:

  • hepatic steatosis
  • Hypoproteinemia
  • Kidney stones
  • Vitamin and mineral deficiency

The “ketogenic” diet is a low-carbohydrate diet in which foods rich in fats and containing sufficient protein are used in the first place, and the other name for it is the “keto” diet, specialist family doctor Rami Eyupoglu said in a statement to Anadolu Agency. He added that the keto diet helps in losing weight.

The basis of the diet is to significantly reduce the intake of carbohydrates, as not eating them deceives the body in the metabolic process and burns fat, that is, burning ketones (which are chemicals secreted by the liver in the human body, and are secreted as an alternative source of energy production).

In this process, fats are converted into ketones in the liver, which can be used to provide energy for the brain.

Keto foods include:

  • meat
  • fish
  • eggs
  • Butter
  • Nuts, such as walnuts, almonds and hazelnuts, but in limited quantities
  • healthy fats
  • Avocado and strawberry in limited quantities بكميات
  • Low-carb vegetables like bell peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes, cabbage, and broccoli
  • Cheese of all kinds
  • Vegetable oils such as olive oil.
  • As for seasonings, you can use those that can be obtained from herbs and low-carb leafy vegetables, such as spinach, parsley, etc.

Foods to avoid are:

  • legumes
  • Toppings like mayonnaise
  • Sauces contain sugar
  • Root vegetables such as carrots and beetroot
  • Fruits and juices of all kinds.

There is no harm in exercising during the “keto” diet, and you can walk, jog or do low-speed exercises.

Cautions and problems

Doctor Eyupoglu warned that ketogenic diets can cause a significant drop in the blood sugar level in everyone with diabetes.

Changing metabolism may cause some medical problems, and in children, its persistence slows growth, and sometimes kidney stones have been observed.

Lack of energy, fatigue, weakness, sleep problems, digestive upsets early in the diet, and decreased performance during exercise.

To minimize side effects, carbs can be gradually reduced over a period of weeks before starting the keto diet, which teaches the body to burn more fat before eliminating carbs.

In conclusion, Eyupoglu warned that continuing uninterrupted keto diet for a long time can lead to serious health consequences, so it is recommended to start and continue with a diet carefully by consulting a nutritionist.

What is the opinion of the Mayo Clinic expert on the keto diet?

Jason Ewalt, a registered and licensed dietitian and dietitian with the Mayo Clinic Healthy Living Program, warns, Of the keto diet, he said: “This is a very restrictive diet that is difficult to follow. The average person will not continue to follow it in the long term.”

“Also, given its high amount of saturated fat, as well as containing only limited amounts of fruits, vegetables and whole grains, it is not ideal for health.”

heart disease

According to recommendations issued by the National Lipid Association in the United States in 2019 and reported by Reuters, although low-carb diets – such as keto – may help you lose weight quickly, they have varying effects on health indicators, which can contribute to the risk of heart disease.

Although the keto diet may have some advantages, including curbing appetite and lowering levels of fat and blood sugar in people with diabetes, it is also linked to higher “bad” cholesterol, which can build up in blood vessels and lead to blood clots.

The recommendations were published in Clinical Lipidology and found that over a 6-month period, people may lose more weight with low-carb diets such as Atkins, keto and South Beach, but after a year losing weight with these meals is similar to what people can achieve through diets that Allows you to eat more carbohydrates.

The recommendations emphasized that adherence to low-carb diets may be very difficult over time, and may exclude foods rich in nutrients that benefit the heart and blood vessels.

There does not appear to be a significant difference between low-carb diets and other types of diets with respect to other indicators of cardiovascular health, such as blood pressure.

“While some patients prefer a low-carb eating pattern that may be reasonable for short periods of time, long-term adherence is challenging, and the long-term benefits and risks are not fully understood,” said Carol Kirkpatrick, who led the team that prepared the recommendations, a researcher at Idaho State University in Pocatello. Especially with the keto diet.


Previous research has found that people on a keto diet typically eat fewer carbohydrates and consume more fat, which puts the body into a metabolic state known as ketosis, which makes the body more efficient at burning fat and leads to lower blood sugar.

Some keto dieters lose two or three times more weight than people who follow different eating habits, but a lot of this depends on short-term results.

The recommendations said that people who might benefit from following a low-carb diet for 2-6 months include people with diabetes, who have high levels of triglycerides in the blood.

The recommendations cautioned patients with a history of dangerously high cholesterol levels to avoid keto and low-carb diets.

Source : Al Jazeera + Reuters + Websites + Anadolu Agency


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here