15 Health Conditions A Ketogenic Diet Can Improve

Ketosis is becoming extremely popular. It is either implemented through a ketogenic diet which contains almost zero carbs or through ketone supplements which are said to curb your appetite, cure almost any health issue, and enhance your performance. Advocates for the ketogenic diet are arguing that if you consume a lot of fat and little to no carbs, you will enjoy enhanced health, obtain a better quality of life, enhance your performance and brain functions, and create a set of abs that are out of this world. These are 15 health conditions a Ketogenic Diet will help.

1. Metabolic Syndrome

This is often a condition that is recognized before one is diagnosed with diabetes. It is a condition where your body is suffering insulin resistance. There are three criteria to meet when getting diagnosed with Metabolic Syndrome:

  • Having a waistline 35 inches or wider in women and 40 inches or higher in men
  • Triglycerides elevated to 150 mg or higher.
  • Low HDL cholesterol that is 40 mg or less in men and less than 50 mg in women.
  • Having high blood pressure of 130/85 mm or higher.
  • Having an elevated fasting blood sugar of 100 mg or higher.

If you are suffering from metabolic syndrome, you are at an increased risk of diabetes, heart disease or other serious illness related to insulin resistance. When you follow a ketogenic diet you increase your chances of fighting off many features of the metabolic syndrome. It will improve cholesterol values, reduce blood sugar, and reduce blood pressure.

2. Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

PCOS is a disease that occurs in women that are obese and are showing signs of insulin resistance. It is a disease that is marked by hormonal dysfunction and results in irregular periods and infertility. Women who suffer from PCOS will show symptoms that affect their appearance. PCOS will cause increased acne, facial hair and other masculinity signs related to testosterone levels.

Following a ketogenic diet will help you lose weight. Studies show after six months of following the ketogenic diet, women have lost 12% of their weight and declined their fasting insulin by 54%. During this period, their reproductive hormone levels also improved.

3. Cancers

Scientific research has suggested a ketogenic diet may help some cancers. Patients must also follow other traditional treatments such as; radiation, surgery, and chemotherapy. It has also been shown that elevated blood sugars, type 2 diabetes, and obesity are linked to breast cancer and other forms of cancer. When you restrict your carbs and lower your blood sugar, you may prevent tumor growth.

It is believed the ketogenic diet may be beneficial for brain cancer. Studies and patient data have shown improvements in various types of brain cancer, including the most common form, glioblastoma multiforme.

4. Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease affects the nervous system and is characterized by low levels of the signaling molecule dopamine. When there is a lack of dopamine several symptoms will develop; tremors, impaired posture, stiffness, and difficulty in walking or writing.

The ketogenic diet features a protective effect on the nervous system and brain. It has shown promising results in improving symptoms of Parkinson’s disease in both animal and human studies.

5. Glut1 Deficiency Syndrome

Glut1 Deficiency syndrome is a rare genetic disorder and involves the deficiency of a special protein. This protein helps move blood sugar into the brain and without this, symptoms will begin shortly after birth. Symptoms include; developmental delay, seizures, and difficulty with movement.

The ketogenic diet will provide an alternative fuel source that will help the brain be more effective. This diet therapy helps to improve several symptoms of the Glut1 Deficiency syndrome and has been reported to decrease seizures and improve muscle coordination.

6. Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple Sclerosis damages the covering of nerves leading to communication problems between the brain and the body. Symptoms of MS include; vision and memory problems, numbness, and problems with balance. This disease reduces the cells’ ability to use sugar as a fuel source.

A ketogenic diet will assist with energy production and repair cells. Studies show benefits of the ketogenic diet to treat MS are very promising and have been found to significantly improve the quality of life scores.

7. Alzheimer Disease

Alzheimer’s is a progressive form of dementia. It occurs when plaques and tangles occur in the brain that impair one’s memory. This disease appears to share some of the same features as epilepsy and type 2 diabetes. It creates an inability for the brain to properly use glucose and causes inflammation linked to insulin resistance.

The ketogenic diet will improve balance and coordination but does not address the amyloid plaque that is a major contributing factor with Alzheimers. When you supplement the diet with ketone asters it appears to reduce the amyloid plaque. It has been shown that supplementing your diet with ketone esters to increase ketone levels it can improve several Alzheimer’s disease symptoms.

8. Epilepsy

Epilepsy causes seizures due to excessive brain activity. There are anti-seizure medications that are effective for some people, however; some people do not respond or cannot tolerate the side effects.

A ketogenic diet has shown to have many benefits for epilepsy and has a lot of evidence to support those benefits. Seizures typically improve in almost half of the epilepsy patients who have gone on the diet. This diet may also have benefits for your brain far beyond seizure control.

9. Glycogen Storage Disease

Glycogen Storage disease is when you lack the enzymes needed to store glucose as glycogen or are unable to break glycogen down into glucose. Depending on the enzyme that is missing will determine which form of GSD you suffer from. Patients who suffer from GSD experience muscle cramps, low blood sugar, fatigue, and an enlarged liver. They are advised to consume high-carb foods frequently.

A ketogenic diet will help improve and relieve symptoms of GSD by providing ketones that can be used as an alternate fuel source. Some patients who have implemented the ketogenic diet have shown dramatic improvements in symptoms.

10. Diabetes

People who suffer from diabetes experience their body being unable to produce any or enough insulin. This causes elevated levels of glucose in their blood. When they begin a ketogenic diet they show an impressive reduction in blood sugar levels in both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. The diet has shown it will reduce blood sugar, and in some cases has returned values to a normal range.

11. Autism

Autism spectrum disorder is a condition where a person suffers from communication problems, social interaction, and repetitive behaviors. Autism can share some features with epilepsy and many have experienced seizures related to over-excitement of brain cells.

Studies are showing the ketogenic diet reduces brain cell over-stimulation in mouse models of autism. It is also showing benefits for behavior.

12. Obesity

Obesity is defined as being grossly overweight or fat. It is one of the most pervasive, chronic diseases and the leading cause of mortality in the United States. It is also a leading cause of disability and healthcare utilization.

Being on the ketogenic diet will reduce one’s hunger and allow for them to lose weight. Studies show this diet is very effective for those who are obese. It has the power to suppress appetites which is a key factor for those trying to eat less and better.

13. Traumatic Brain Injury

A traumatic brain injury normally occurs from the result of a serious blow to the head. These are often sustained in car accidents or falling where your head hits the ground with unusual force. It can affect your physical functions, memory, and personality.

The ketogenic diet will help the body’s ability to use sugar following a head injury as this is normally impaired due to the accident. Animal studies are showing the diet improves outcomes after traumatic brain injury has occurred.

14. Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver disease is one of the liver’s most common diseases in the Western World. It is linked to diabetes type 2, metabolic syndrome, and obesity.

It has been shown that those who begin a ketogenic diet will benefit as it provides a significant decrease in weight, blood pressure and liver enzymes. In one study it showed the diet was very effective in reducing liver fat and improved other health markers in those suffering from the nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

15. Migraine Headaches

Migraine headaches cause severe pain, nausea, and sensitivity to light. It is not known for sure what exactly causes migraines but there are certain situations that trigger them. Knowing the triggers; lights, sound, foods and personal habits helps one to avoid common triggers.

Studies are showing those that begin a ketogenic diet begin to report a reduction in migraine frequency. The severity of the ones they do experience begin to lessen and are reported to finally diminish after continuing with the diet.

The ketogenic diet is being considered for use in several disorders and diseases due to its beneficial effects on both the nervous system and on metabolic health. In specific situations, the ketogenic diet, done under close medical supervision may play a useful part in the prolonged treatment of these 15 health conditions.