How the Keto Diet Went from Arctic Staple to Bro-Science

♪♪♪ By now, you’ve probably heard of the keto
diet. You might even know someone who swears by
it. The keto, or ketogenic diet, involves eating
lots of fat and very few carbohydrates. Think steak, bacon, and pork chops, day in
and day out. It might sound like a heart attack waiting
to happen, but proponents say the keto diet is great for everything from weight loss to
brain health. Some of its claims are backed by evidence. The rest? Not so much. One thing is for sure: the diet is nothing
new. People have been surviving on high-fat, low-carb
diets for centuries. In 1879, Lieutenant Frederick Schwatka and
17 companions set out across the Arctic tundra. They were in search of a British naval mission
that had disappeared roughly 30 years earlier while searching for the Northwest Passage. All they brought was a month’s worth of
food and ammunition for their hunting rifles. Food is heavy, and the plan was to live off
the land. One year later, the expedition returned. All 18 people and 44 dogs survived, despite
the fact that they had covered more than 3,000 miles on foot on a meat-only diet. How was this possible? A meat-only diet was unfamiliar to most Europeans
at the time, but for the three Inuit families who traveled with Schwatka, it was part of
their way of life. Because little vegetation grows in the frigid
temperatures of their native range, the traditional Inuit diet is very low in vegetables and other agricultural products, which means the Inuit consume few carbohydrates. Instead, they traditionally rely mostly on
the fatty meat from what they hunt and fish. The Inuit guides on the Schwatka expedition showed the crew how they could thrive by eating almost exclusively reindeer and other Arctic critters. It wasn’t easy at first, but eventually
the crew adapted to the new diet. Schwatka wrote in his diary that eating nothing
but reindeer meat initially caused them to feel weakness and fatigue. But everyone adjusted in two to three weeks. 26 years later, this ultra-high-fat diet found
its way into the scientific literature when the Harvard-trained anthropologist Vilhjalmur Stefansson went to live with the Inuit and study their culture. Starting in 1907, Stefansson lived the next
decade of his life between European and Inuit settlements and wrote extensively about his
experience. One main theme was the fact that the Inuit
— and Stefansson himself — survived on only meat and fish. This was around the time that the first vitamins
were being discovered and nutrition science was just beginning to take hold. And Stefansson’s claims of remaining healthy
on a high-fat, virtually-no-carb diet seemed to fly in the face of that new science. So Stefansson agreed to recreate the diet
under laboratory conditions. In 1929, he and a colleague from his explorations
ate a 100% meat-and-fat diet for a full calendar year, all the while undergoing frequent tests to
ensure they were sticking to the diet. The results? They both finished the year in good health,
without any signs of scurvy or other vitamin deficiencies. Around the same time, another branch of science
was toying with the idea of cutting carbs. In the 1910s and 20s, scientists studied the
practice of fasting going without food for anywhere from a day to weeks at a time specifically as part of a therapy to treat seizures. Several crucial observations, made in multiple studies published in 1921, found that not only was fasting effective at treating epilepsy, but that a specific kind of diet could produce the same effect. This led to the development of the ketogenic
diet. Doctors found that either starving or on a
very high-fat diet, chemicals called ketone bodies could be detected in patients’ blood
— a metabolic state known as ketosis — and that this diet could help manage seizures
as well as fasting could. Since the diet was designed to produce those
ketone bodies, it was dubbed the “ketogenic diet.” In a time before modern anti-epileptic medications
were available, this diet was a game-changer. In one textbook, a physician at Johns Hopkins
Hospital reported that of 1,000 children on the diet, 52% had complete control of their
seizures, and another 27% had improved control. So what’s going on? What links starvation, seizures, and ketone
bodies in the blood? Well, it turns out that a body without carbs
has a backup plan. To survive, your body usually requires glucose, most of which you get from carbohydrates in foods like bread, pasta, potatoes, and fruit. Your brain is the biggest consumer of this
sugary fuel. It accounts for 20% of your body’s total
energy expenditure, and half of that needs to come from glucose. But when you run out of carbs, your brain
doesn’t just shut down. Instead, it switches to another fuel source. Usually, that fuel source is fat. When it’s used up most of the available
carbs, your liver starts to break down fat — either from your diet or from its own
fat stores — into fatty acids, which are broken down further into a usable fuel known as ketone bodies, or ketones. At this point, you’re in ketosis. That’s the state where your body is running
on ketones instead of glucose. Ketones are water-soluble molecules that contain a double bond between a carbon atom and an oxygen atom. There are three types of ketones present in
ketosis: beta-hydroxybutyrate, or BHB; acetoacetate; and acetone. When fat breaks down, those ketones are released into the bloodstream where they travel to your brain and vital organs and into the mitochondria in their cells to be used as fuel. And though they’re not your body’s first
choice for energy, ketones are a fantastic fuel. Gram for gram, they’re actually more efficient than glucose. So that answers one question: When Arctic
explorers live on a meat-only diet, their bodies stop relying on glucose for fuel and start breaking down fat for its energy-giving ketones. And as Schwatka learned back in the 1800s, it can take a few grueling weeks for your body to fully adapt to this process. But once it has, it’s pretty smooth sailing. But as to why ketosis reduces seizures? Scientists have several hypotheses, including changes in the brain’s energy production or the balance of neurotransmitters like GABA and norepinephrine. GABA has roles in motor control, among other things; and norepinephrine is a stress hormone that also plays a role in attention and emotion. But scienctists are still figuring all that
out. Yet keto shows a lot of promise in treating
other neurological conditions, too. One study published in 2012 showed that for 23 elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment, six weeks on a keto diet was associated with improved verbal memory. Another study of 152 Alzheimer’s patients
in 2009 found that those on the keto diet demonstrated cognitive improvement after three months. And a very small 2005 study of seven patients with Parkinson’s disease found that the keto diet was associated with significant
improvement in their physical symptoms. Even more interesting, some patients might
not need to stay on a keto diet forever to reap the benefits. A 2009 review in Neurotherapeutics noted that even when patients stop the diet after a few months, some still experience improvement in their epileptic symptoms. Ok, but what about all the /other/ benefits? Keto evangelists claim that the diet helps
otherwise healthy people lose weight, boost athletic performance, and sharpen their minds. Is that true? The reasoning behind keto’s purported weight-loss
magic comes down to something called the carbohydrate-insulin hypothesis. It says that a diet high in carbs makes your
pancreas secrete more insulin, which makes your body store fat instead of breaking it down for energy, ultimately leading to weight gain. This idea goes all the way back to the 1970s with Dr. Robert Atkins, who popularized his high-fat, high-protein, low-carb Atkins diet, calling it a “high-calorie way to stay thin forever.” The problem is that this is a hypothesis — one that made testable predictions, which have been tested and found wanting by the scientific community. Some experts still argue for it, but many
think this model’s time has come. A 2017 review of the idea concluded that not only is experimental evidence for the carbohydrate-insulin model lacking, but recent studies directly
contradict it. The keto diet just hasn’t been shown to
be any better than any other diet at helping people lose weight. In studies that put people on different diets
of different macronutrient ratios that is, different amounts of carbohydrates, protein, and fat many find that people lose the same amount of weight, regardless of the diet. Low-carb diets might make you think you’re
losing weight quickly because stored carbs in your body bind to water, so losing those
comes with a reduction in water weight. Eating fat also slows down your digestion,
which could make you feel fuller on the diet. But both of these effects seem to disappear over the long term. That’s partially because one of the biggest
factors that determines weight-loss success is whether you stick to your diet, and any diet that requires you to cut out an entire food group is really hard to stick to. So if it’s weight loss you’re after, we’ve
got nothing but bad news. But as for athletic performance? For that, the keto diet has some tricks up
its sleeve… depending on the sport you’re talking about. For a study published in 1983, cyclists were
put on a super high-fat diet. Once they had been on the diet for a few weeks long enough for their bodies to adapt to burning fat the cyclists pedaled at a moderate pace until they couldn’t pedal any more. It turns out that their endurance and aerobic capacity were nearly identical to what they were at the start of the experiment. That’s great news, since fueling mid-exercise can pose a big problem for endurance athletes especially those who compete in multi-hour events like ultramarathons. If an athlete could maintain the same endurance by using their body’s fat stores for fuel as they did by using carbohydrate, they wouldn’t have to worry about bringing all that fuel with them and choking it down mid-race. But there’s one problem: that 1983 study
showed that while the cyclists’ endurance was unchanged, they weren’t as good at picking
up the pace for short sprints. That’s because steady endurance exercise
can use either glucose or fat for fuel, while high-intensity exercise requires glucose. Once you’re adapted to a keto diet, you
don’t only have less glucose to use for fuel; your body is actually worse at using
it in the first place. In the end, if you’re a slow-and-steady
athlete, keto might help. But if you’re someone who needs bursts of
power, it might do more harm than good. There’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all
diet, keto least of all, but research suggests it has its place. Thanks for watching this episode of SciShow. We couldn’t do what we do here, including
cutting through all the questionable science around fad diets and nutrition, without the help of our community of Patreon supporters. If you’re interested in learning more, head
on over to ♪♪♪

100 thoughts on “How the Keto Diet Went from Arctic Staple to Bro-Science

  1. Nice overview of the diet. The diet practically saved my life. Never been in such steady stable mood and almost gave up on ever losing weight until I tried it. Just the mental stability is enough to stay in it. I may be more carnivore now but still have the same effects 3 months on.

  2. These moronic establishment "sci mouthpieces" will NEVER understand basic science… Morons are wondering "how is it possible to survive only on meat" 🙄 Such idiots… "Heart attack waiting to happen" haha thousands of people are reversing diabetes, losing weight, PREVENTING heart v attacks, strokes… But these MORONS will never look at real people proving all these establishment "docs and scientists" to be total FOOLS!

  3. Basically your body normal burns carbs as the main source of energy, and if you starve your body of carbs it promotes the burning of fat instead because you have no carbs to burn.

  4. No offense but from somebody chubby your hardly one to convince people about diet. Would you get tattooed by someone with no tattoos?Your study you use was a terribly small study. A keto diet is not a meat diet… a carnivore diet is what your thinking of but it does create ketones. I know quite a few impressive athletes on the keto diet who went from fat to holy cow! Thomas Delauer on youtube. You are suppose to eat 5% carbs anyways , and if your body is deficient in carbs it will convert protein.. which in the carnivore diet would be just fine. A "cheat" meal once every 2 or 3 months is also good for curbing the muscle issue mentioned here. I appreciate you trying with all your fancy stories however. Cute.

  5. Key to success in this diet might as well be in that fat foods make you satiated more quickly.
    You can eat a 1000cal cookie pack and still need more or eat piece of steak and be full.

    So, less calories in = weight loss.

    Also there's no debate about insulin response to certain foods.
    It's called Glycemic index…..

  6. The U.N. just released a report that concludes the best way to solve the world's food crisis aggravated by climate change: plant based diet. And this new keto fad diet encourages meat consumption? Oh, please!

  7. A lot of bull. Most people are not hyperactive athletics.
    To much sugar is poison in many ways. It reacts with proteins and blocks their functions.
    Ldl has a receptor that is blocked by sugar. Ldl is then not taken up by the liver but is detected by macrophages. This happens in the blood vessels. They get damaged and cardiac or brain problems occur. Tens of millions suffer and die every year.
    An other problem is fatty liver problems and diabetes type 2 .

    Effects of to much sugar (in food) is the worst health problem of today.

  8. Works for me and im old. Im almost 44 years old .Im going on two years on keto and feeling great , never felt better. My moles are falling off. I dont crave sugar at all cause now it makes me feel sick. My cholesterol has improved so much , its hard to believe that I eat 10 to 15 eggs a day. My bad cholesterol has gone down and my good cholesterol is now at 95. Total cholesterol was around 200 but only my hdl has improved to now 95 it was like 50 .

    My weight loss happened in the first two months l went from 170 to 140 in that time. I always have energy now and my mental state is always great, feeling alert . So try it but give it 100 percent no cheating cause it will stop your progression.

  9. Insulin hypothesis is still challenged? What are you talking about? It is proven. You can even prove it yourself. Eat bread and eat fat. Then measure which one cause your blood sugar to rise and measure which one spike your insulin level. It is a also a known fact that insulin stores sugar as fat. Which one of these are still in grey area?

  10. Eskimos are laughing they eat lots of greens for ages but the Democratic liberals scientists know better, they got ivy league universities and Medical schools

  11. I've lost over 50 pounds on the keto diet, and have more muscle mass. There are a lot of ways to go wrong, I don't know what the protocols were for the study's hes taking about.

  12. I did hear ladies that don't eat carbs could have problems while pregnant well I guess the baby has the problem because they are born without brains. What am I supposed to believe?

  13. Duh! As usual, it's what isn't said. Any diet that requires life long calorie restriction is unsustainable and causes nasty changes in BMR.

  14. No, this is not backup plan
    Consuming fat for energy is actually main source of energy
    Carbohydrates are second source of energy and body does everything to get rid of any unnecessary amount of carbohydrates. Actual emergency is too big ratio of carbohydrates to fat. More then 5% (energy wise, and not volume or weight wise) of carbohydrates and/or 20% of protein is actually not what body wants. Body does everything to bring it down to exactly those ratios.
    Even if you go fasting body will actually bring back from body fat exactly same ratio of macros (5% glucose, 95% fat – energy wise).
    Why we do not store pure glucose as storage? Because actually any amount of (any) sugar above 5-6mmol/l is detrimental to health and becomes a poison.

  15. Not true
    Brain does not 50% of energy as glucose
    At best it needs 25% percent
    Your data is straight wrong

    Clearly you have read something, but it was not scientific.

    Try ketogenic diet and then start describing while process.
    If my brain consumes 20% of my goal energy, then
    My daily energy consumption is around 2300 calories
    2300 * 20% = 460 calories
    460 * 50% = 230
    230 / 4 = 57.5 grams of carbohydrates
    I consume not more then 30 grams of carbohydrates a day
    This gives 27.5 grams of deficit. I can store at best 290 grams of glicogen
    This gives 290 / 27.5 = 10.54 days of stored carbohydrates
    I am on carnivore diet for a month. My brain should be dead by now.
    But I actually keep my weight (despite consuming extra 300-500 calories a day) and my brain never have been in such great shape

  16. Well I see you are the guy who want to prove something which is not only clearly stupid, but is proven to be wrong
    It is well known that hormones are regulating body functions
    The less insulin (storage hormone) you will produce in answer to what you eat, the less you store for later.
    Fat causes smallest insulin response.
    Protein causes medium insulin response
    Carbohydrates are causing big insulin response
    You cannot store pure fat as such
    But you can easily store glucose as fast and actually you have to, as you can at best store 290 grams of it as glycogen. Rest have to be cleared from body as fast as possible or you will get sick. It is stored as fat

  17. Keto definitely helped me with binge eating, I love it but I know it's not for everyone and it takes a bit more effort and organisation. But for me it's worth the cons because I got my life back from addiction and depression 😁

  18. This whole idea that carbs are evil is irritating. Do keto if you want, but stop acting like everyone else is a moron because they eat pasta occasionally

  19. I never heard the athletic claim. What I heard from pro keto diet said if you are an endurance athlete of any kind then it's not for you

  20. When people say that on the keto diet you burn more fat it's kind of misleading. You aren't burning more adipose tissue you're just burning more fat as you are refueling yourself for energy from via dietary fat.

  21. I understand advocatus diaboli, but if u try keto ull get it. Im on Vince Gironda's steak and egg diet. Give it a shot and ull see

  22. When people "test" the keto diet in a lab, they tend to mess up the macros. One such study put mice on a 40 percent carbs, 40 percent fat and 20 percent protein diet. Anyone can tell you that is NOT ketogenic. The fact that the Virta health study showed up to a 90 percent remission rate of type 2 diabetes on a low carb diet shows that the insulin-carbohydrate theory is correct. You are creating too much insulin because your body is getting too much carbs and your glycogen is full to it gets dropped into fat cells. Cutting carbs is optimal to cure that problem. There are hundreds of Pubmed studies showing the same weight loss effects of keto when you get the macros correct. I am also living proof at 100 pounds down with no attention payed to calories and only cutting carbs to next to nothing.

  23. Meat only diet is not keto diet. That's carnivore diet ( real thing look it up) when you eat too much meat it can kick you out of ketosis due to fact that body will metabolizes unused proteins to glucose. So yes keto diet (70% fat, 20% protein, less than 10% carbs) works , carnivore (meat only) diet works. They are close to each other but not the same.

  24. So now that zach bitter did a new world record for ultra marathon following a zero carb diet what video you gonna do ? You already did a video 2 years ago saying that keto diet was wrong , now you’re already changing your mind with this video…

  25. Disappointed. How did that bro science snuck in there at the end.
    Also keto is not all meat diet, that's called carnivore diet. Normally on a keto plate you would have approx half of it as greens.
    Here's a bit better explanation on fat in diet:
    Also, if you're having issue with fat. There's an awesome book on that: "Why we get fat"

  26. Regarding weigth loss, while it might be true that under the same calories consumption several diets can be similar, it is does not take in account that keto reduce or eliminate your cravings while it make you feel satisfied with less food, therefore you end lossing weight easier compared with to a normal low cabs diet or portion control.

  27. Keto works for me because I am physically incapable of cheating. There are no "cheat days" on keto. Yes some people do refeed days after being on keto for weeks or months, but that's not the same as, "Oh I'll just have a piece of chocolate cake every Sunday after church." You can't do that on keto. Plus, with my blood pressure issues, if I cheat, my body punishes me with skyrocketing heart pounding blood pressure. I cannot consume sugar anymore, and it a food has it I can taste it immediately. This is the first diet where I've actually lost weight, 20 lbs so far. It really is a lifestyle change for me. The very first one that I found I can live with. Contrary to popular misconception, I don't eat a ton of meat on this diet. In fact, I'm eating more leafy greens than ever. I just don't have to hold back on the ranch dressing like I used to.

  28. I believe there was one study that did say keto allowed 20% more calories. The point is mute,since a keto diet lowers hunger. So eating as much as you want means eating less…. For example,eat a stick of butter. Few people can eat a whole one. You need insulin bumps to up the appetite, which are absent on a zero carb diet. This is why all peanut butter has sugar, unless you find the rare $10 a quart natural stuff at whole foods. Wow, what a difference between the two peanut butter, which shows why carbs are ultimately fattening,addictive,and great for padding fat for a food free winter.

  29. Glucose was the body’s back up plan for energy. Ketones was supposed to be the first choice. This was of course before big Pharma and sugar industry paid to create the food pyramid that listed fats at the top. Carbs are glucose, glucose is sugar, sugar causes diabetes. Why is the main food group recommended able to cause diseases like diabetes, or exacerbate existing conditions like epilepsy? Not to mention studies that show that benefits of keto for breast cancer. Glucose feeds these cancers and allows them to grow and metastasise meanwhile when someone is following a ketogenic lifestyle, they find that the tumour is starved for energy and as a result shrinks. I appreciate your videos as you always try to show an unbiased view of the evidence. but this is the most biased topic in human health with all the science showing we threw the baby out and kept the bathwater. Science evolves because it is challenged not because it is followed.

  30. This is a generally good video, except for the fact that you made it sound like keto is an all meat diet. You will eat more vegetables than you have in your entire life on keto.

  31. Ketogenic diet is not a "high fat diet" it's just a "low to zero carb diet"

    To solve the problem with performance, just eat a lot of vegetables, leafy greens, and consume some fruit.

    Also one key note to keep in mind is the conventionally grown GMO food that are laced with Pesticides, herbicides, fungicides and chemicals that all act as endocrine disruptors. If your hormones are out of whack, you'll notice drops in performance, drops in energy levels, and irritability.

    Organic vegetarian keto should be the standard diet. Below that would be an organic Mediterranean ketogenic diet.
    And below that is a grass finished organic Carnivore* diet

    *Strict meat dieting limits the nutrition and antioxidants you gain to the animal you're consuming. For optimization of maintaining weight and health, it is recommended that you still eat some berries and vegetables/herbs

  32. Keto is not just steak, bacon, and pork chops day in and day out. Why do all these critics forget the veggies. Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, lettuce, zucchini, avocado, etc. And how about the eggs butter, coconut oil, olive oil, ghee, etc. Then there are breads that are made with almond or coconut flour.

    Now the body wasn't meant to run on glucose only. Carbs or glucose is not essential because the body can make it's own glucose when needed through a process called gluconeogenesis.

    Then there are the terms this guy is using like "keto evangelist " or "keto weight loss magic"… This is, and I'm not sorry to say it, a disinformation campaign.

    Wow in the end of the video. No diet is one size fits all then makes a point that keto is the worst. Really.

    My diabetes is gone, I've lost a ton of weight, have crazy energy, have never felt better at work where I'm driving a gas truck, picking up heavy hoses and fittings. I was only able to do 2 jobs a day. 3 if I pushed. Now I'm doing 4 to 5 jobs a day with ease and feeling good. Also my paychecks are looking fatter now. 44yrs old and feel like a freaking teen again.

    Keep the disinformation coming. I'm no keto evangelist, I'm no keto magician, and keto has been around since the late 1800's to treat epilepsy and in the early 1900's to help cancer patients but then the pharmaceutical industry slowly did away with all that stuff.

  33. I've tried many different diets over the last few years, and I was only able to get to 50 kg when I was pretty much starving myself, it was hard, exausting and terrible, and the worst part was that I didn't really burn fat, I just lost weight
    I've been on keto for the last 2 months and in such a short time, I got to 50 kg again, lost a bunch of fat, specially in the arms, thighs and stomach, AND most importantly, I eat as much as I want to, I don't feel hungry and I no longer feel exausted easily
    I know it's just another diet like many others, but it's easier to stick to than most of them, and it actually burns fat
    That's my persoal experience with keto

  34. fat is not a back up it's the primary preferred fuel source. access sugar and carbs is actually toxic to the body when present for too long so you force your body to break down carbs first you dont force your body to burn fat it's the native fuel source for the body. and the weight loss aspect is false yes you loose weight like any other diet but you metabolism slow down so you gain it all back keto diet does not do that. and other diet loose weight by loosing fat and muscle but with keto is a fat burning and muscle retaining diet please update your information.

  35. Just keep pounding away the sugar and fructose. Big business needs your continued support and Big Pharma will be there to profit off of you when your body falls apart.

  36. I had been trying to lose weight for years and just kept gaining. Since going low carb I have lost 23 pounds and have kept it off for more than a year. I'm not constantly hungry, feel great, my PDMM is gone, and all of my numbers look great. So if you don't like it keep eating carbs and sugar. My life is 100 times better without it.

  37. The keto way of eating has to be trained back. The longer it is done the better and more efficient you become at fat utilizing. I can now do hiit no problem on ketones. The info on keto not being able to work on this is wrong. You just need to train. The results are almost like cheating. Ketones are far superior than glucose and less inflammatory. Iv been doing this for over three years now and daily IF. I'm Type 1 diabetic on a pump and cgm. Iv counted carbs every meal for over 35 years.

  38. You're mixing fasting (intermittent or otherwise) and keto together — not that they don't mesh well, they do …. but they're distinct.
    Re: losing weight … what sets the keto diet apart is that you're satiated —- try to say that on a strictly low cal diet.

  39. If your fat and force your body to burn your fat stores you will lose weight. Eat less calories than you burn and boom weight loss directly from fat. Your body wont need to do extra work burning off glucose and carbs.

  40. If you guys go watch a few videos made by Dr Berg and Dr Ken here on YouTube, you would see the science behind it and why it is not broscience as you call it.

    Also, the Keto diet is not a meat only diet, it consists of meats, veggies, and nuts. The meat only diet is known as Carnivore diet (yes, this is a thing).

    For those thinking about going into the Keto diet, this video wouldn't be for you. Go check out Dr. Berg and Dr. Ken (actual MDs).

  41. This is the first thing that you've messed up your analysis. Low carb means low starch and sugar derived carbs. Fiber is still part of the dietary intake and KETO is not just meat. Why didn't you mention that your body will produce all of the glucose you need? The only cells that won't use ketones are those without mitochondria, like red blood cells. God, so much bad information in this one.

  42. This is a great concise video on some of the history of ketogenic diets. However, the interesting thing again, is this idea that weight loss cannot be maintained on a keto diet. This is actually not the case, and there are many studies on that as well. Further, studies that have compared diets have quite a bit of methodological flawas. They also show comparative results in the weight loss department – but don't all discuss the improvements in metabolic markers in the end. A glaring methodolocical flaw, is comparing weight loss and control, without maintaining strict/ correct parameters for "keto" through the duration of the study.

    An example of looking at weight control under the hood, is the ketogenic diet's impact on hunger related to physiological changes in circulating leptin and ghrelin hormomes. These greatly stabilize on a ketogenic diet – essentially, leaving you more satisfied and not craving. The other thing that is not discussed in this video, is the improvement in many other metabolic factors that are also related to weight loss and control, such as – hsCRP levels, insulin, blood glucose and HbA1c, waist circumference, blood pressure, reductions in triglycerides, and increased HDL levels. LDL in some people increase but usually they are the larger particles, as opposed to the small dense artherogenic particles involved with cardiovascular diseases. All these things matter in weight loss and maintenance and they work behind the scenes. for example— how can you maintain a positive desire for weight loss if your MD tells you after 1year, that your blood pressure is high, and hbA1c level is prediabetic? the ketogenic diet is very well known for reducing both those issues! And as such – most people are motivated to continue with their weight maintenance journey.

    The most compelling thing is about motivation. Many many studies on this have shown that people just more motivated to do something about their weight when they see results. That is one of the quickest things the keto diet will do due to the initial water losses – but this does not mean its only water. No, biochemically, fats will also be burned and yes you will lose adipose tissue. So ultimately – seeing the results is quite motivating and enough for most people to keep doing it. No other diet can really do that as functionally well as this one and continue to maintain good blood markers.

    Further, once adapted to this way of utilizing ketones and glucose dynamically in the body, human physiology is primed for fuel partitioning as per food availability. With the decopuling to sugar and carb addiction – the human body can start to utilize proper food sources in an effective manner. So, yes you can transition to a lower carb diet of healthy carbs (whole plants, not garbage cookies and cakes), and you will still be able to maintain your weight. Again, the diet is controlled during the initial burn in to let the body adapt – after which some carbs can be added. This part has to be individualized as some people handle carbs differently from others as part of their genetic makeup.

    Ultimately, though this is a good video – it omits some key components regarding the longevity of wt control compared to other diets. Yes weight loss can be similar – but in terms of nutrient density of the ketogenic diet, and metabolic markers exclusive of weight control, the ketogenic diet tends to do better – -and who knows, longer trials may shown severe reductions in carb addiction via changes in brain chemistry.

    All diets have to be monitored as they tend to affect people in unique ways. And yes, different diets can work for different people. However, overarchingly, this diet affects both brain chemistry and metabolism in many beneficial ways. And yes, glucose and its requirement for HIIT and short burst anaerobic activity, is absolutely essential. Fats are not utilized well for that. so Agreed – glucose has its place in those activities. But the issue with exogenous glucose (in the forms of sugar and its many iterations) is that its addictive properties have been vastly exploited by the food and drug industries – causing insidious changes in brain chemistry as well as subsequent metabolic derangements.

    Exogenous glucose is fine – but how much can you handle before addiction sets in?

    I'll choose a low carb high fat diet any day, and if I'm doing HIIT aerobic training, I'll add in some additional healthy carbs like fruit/ and potatoes. (till those are fully GMO'd to have an increased glycemic load for sales purposes…then I'll have to go full carnivore)

  43. This comment section is toxic and full of stupid. From my perspective this was a poor quality video overall. I’ve come to expect better from SciShow. Some decent facts tossed with questionable choices particularly in the language.

  44. Honestly, the only reason why I avoided the keto diet is because of the excessive amounts of meat. Processed and red meat is terrible for not only your risk of cancer (raising the risk by 1% per year), but terrible for animals and the environment. I’m no vegan or PETA person, but that’s just what I read. Yet I can see why it works. Not only is it forcing your body to start adapting to burning body fat, but you also have to cut out most things that you’re typically told to in order to lose weight and get healthier, such as processed carbs and junk food. It’s no wonder why you start out fatigued with lack of energy, but also why your health raises. You’re cutting out most processed foods, and ingesting more proteins. Maybe a more balanced diet for the average person could be a good idea, or consulting a doctor before you do it. Just for safety.

  45. you missed on this one. i have lost 6" on my waist size, no long slightly diabetic, and my mind is sharper and my mood enhanced. the diet is for me to follow because it's almost identical to the way i ate before i retired 15+ years ago. keto and intermittent fasting work for me since it's the way i ate for most of my life. i ate a few more carbs then but other than that it's natural for me.

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