More and more people who want to lose weight are pursuing their goal with a ketogenic diet/nutrition. However, women should hardly be successful with it – or only when they have left the menopause behind. American researchers are now saying so.
No carbohydrates, but lots of protein and fat – this is how the ketogenic diet works, roughly summarized. Their followers do without rice, noodles and bread or comparable baked goods, and sweets at all. Fruit is also prohibited due to its (fruit) sugar content, as are starchy vegetables such as potatoes, red peppers or carrots. Meat, fish, dairy products and tofu, i.e. animal and vegetable protein suppliers, are very popular.
That’s what the keto diet is supposed to bring
Because the body is deprived of carbohydrates and sugar, there are more fat cells in the blood than sugar cells. This is to get maximum fat burning going. Another side effect: The fact that the cells have to look for alternative energy sources is said to bring with it a so-called “starvation metabolism” (also “ketosis”). This leads to an accumulation of ketone bodies in the blood, which are then used to supply the central nervous system with energy. Among other things, this should have a positive effect on blood sugar levels and also help to keep the weight off – at least for men.
Also interesting: What you need to know about the ketogenic diet
US researchers say the keto diet only works for men
As in any case with the web portal of the “Endocrine Society“ (= international medical organization for metabolism) can be read, the woman’s body reacts “very badly” to the ketogenic diet. A current press release deals with findings from a study by the University of Iowa. There, researchers examined the effect of a ketogenic diet in both the female and male bodies – on mice. Such a study had previously existed, but the sexes of the test animals had not been taken into account.
So love the Study ab
Study leader Jesse Cochran and his team divided the female and male test animals into two groups. Over a period of 15 weeks, group one received a diet made up of carbohydrates (around 47 percent) and seven percent fat. Group two was on a ketogenic diet, i.e. around 75 percent fat and only three percent carbohydrates.
The result: The ketogenic diet had no positive effects on the blood sugar level in the female mice – on the contrary: the values were even worse than in the non-ketogenic control group – and they had not lost any weight either. The researchers found both positive and negative changes in the male mice. Their blood sugar levels were good and they had lost weight, but (due to the high-fat food) were showing the first signs of fatty liver.
Also interesting: That’s why it’s healthy not to eat for 16 hours
Does the Keto Diet Work for Postmenopausal Women?
The researchers think it’s possible that the ketogenic diet works better for postmenopausal women, so they’ve attached a follow-up study to that effect. The background: women and men differ in terms of the distribution of sex hormones. For Cochran and his team, it was therefore obvious that the estrogen level (much higher in women) might impede the success of the diet. To test the thesis, they removed the ovaries from some of the female mice and carried out the test again. And sure enough, after removing her genitals, the ketogenic diet had resulted in both weight loss and reduced fat.
Not everyone is made for the ketogenic diet
Reducing industrially produced foods and sugar is a good idea for everyone when in doubt. With the ketogenic diet, however, the often increased fat intake is also noticeable. And this can also have negative effects in the case of certain metabolic disorders, previous diseases of the gallbladder or even the heart…