Researchers at ETH Zurich in Switzerland, have found that keto diet has been linked to the increased risk of Type-2 diabetes in mice. One of the most trending and popular weight loss diet these days is the keto diet. Many people tend to follow the Keto diet owing to the tremendous weight loss results within a short span of time. The Ketogenic diet is high in fats and low in carbohydrates. The research carried out in mice revealed that the ketogenic diet increased the risk of Type-2 diabetes in mice just within three days. Although much research needs to be done to confirm the same to happen in humans, nevertheless the current research sure serves as a warning sign for those looking to opt for a Keto diet.
What happens in a Keto diet?
Before we dig deep into the research, let’s have a brief understanding of what exactly happens in a ketogenic diet. In the case of a normal diet, the body breaks down sugar molecules from carbohydrates for the supply of energy. But in the ketogenic diet, the body uses ketone bodies or the water-soluble molecules produced by the liver. Here the energy is derived by the breakdown of fatty tissues, unlike sugar molecules. So as a result, people following the diet experience a drastic weight loss within a short time. But the physiological effects of keto diet have not been investigated so far. So the researchers thought to study the effects using mouse models.
Research carried out:
Initially, the team fed the mouse with the ketogenic diet for the first three days. The scientists expected a positive outcome such as a decrease in weight or other indication of improved health. But much to their surprise, the liver started developing resistance to Insulin. This is somewhat alarming because the blood sugar levels can no longer be controlled. It is the key characteristic of Type-2 diabetes. So this is a concern for those opting for the keto diet because it leaves them at the risk of developing Type-2 Diabetes within the few days of the Ketogenic diet.
Teresa Fung, a nutritional scientist and dietician at Simons college of London, says that the research indicates the detrimental effect it can have on humans. She suggests people follow less restrictive diets rather than Ketogenic diet until the risks are well understood. However, the current findings warrant more comprehensive research to establish the ill-effects of high fat and low carb diet.
The Research study is published in the Journal of Physiology.