If you eat according to the keto diet, your heart will thank you

Ketogenic diets have become quite popular in the last few years.

Basically, the keto diet is the ultimate high-fat, low-carb diet. Keto diets send your body into ketosis, which is a metabolic state in which your body starts burning fat to produce fuel, triggered by the diet because of the switch from energy from carbs to energy from fat. Many fans of the keto diet practice it because of its potential for significant weight loss and weight management.

Almost all diet fads should be taken with a grain of salt, and not all diets work for everyone. But many have come to swear by the keto diet, and there has been research to support some of its weight loss and health benefits.

One such health benefit is its potential to improve cardiovascular health.

Can the keto diet help with heart health?

A study was recently done at St. Louis University that suggested that keto diets could prevent or reverse heart failure. The researchers measured the effects of a ketogenic diet in mice and found that the high-fat, low-carb diet significantly improved aspects of heart failure.

One suspected source of the improvement is that a ketogenic diet stimulates fatty acid oxidation, which can help improve cardiac remodeling and performance.

Additionally, this research suggests that fasting may produce many of the same positive heart health results as the keto diet does:

“Like the ketogenic diet, prolonged fasting increases the cardiac reliance on fatty acid oxidation and reduces ketolytic flux despite increased cardiac ketone body delivery. The 24-hour fast reduced blood glucose levels, and strongly enhanced plasma concentrations of non-esterified fatty acids and ketone bodies.” (Saint Louis University)

Aside from its impacts on heart health, a ketogenic diet may also positively impact other aspects of wellness, including blood sugar levels, seizures, and possibly even a variety of brain disorders. Some evidence has shown that keto diets might improve cholesterol, but more research needs to be done to establish the long-term impact on cholesterol levels.

Should you try the keto diet?

So, while there is some promising evidence regarding a ketogenic diet, it is still unclear whether its benefits are as vast as its proponents would like us to believe.

As with any diet, it’s important to do our own research, take our own health and individual needs into account, and consult a doctor with any questions or concerns we may have.

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