For those who don’t know what Keto really is, the ketogenic diet is a very low-carb, high-fat diet that shares many similarities with the Atkins and low-carb diets. It requires drastically decreasing carbohydrate intake and substituting it with fat. This reduction in carbs puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis.
The diet has been associated with effective weight loss, but it doesn’t necessarily get the approval from doctors.
“I wouldn’t recommend the keto diet to anybody,” Jeffrey Mechanick, medical director at Mount Sinai Heart’s Marie-Josée and Henry R. Kravis Center for Clinical Cardiovascular Health, told USA TODAY.
“In theory, the keto diet basically mimics starvation,” Mechanick said. “If you don’t eat carbohydrates but you eat an excessive amount of fat and protein, you’re still going to waste tissue. The tissue is still going to burn off.”
As suggested, reducing your intake of carbs, as the keto diet does, goes hand-in-hand with reducing intake of whole grains, fruits, and some vegetables, which is totally not approved by health professionals.
“That’s where I get a little concerned about the keto diet,” Vasanti Malik, adjunct assistant professor of Nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, told USA TODAY.
“You want to be mindful because these foods – whole grains, fruits, and vegetables – carry a number of beneficial nutrients – vitamins, polyphenols, fiber – that have been shown time and time again to be beneficial for cardiometabolic health.”
“I don’t feel particularly comfortable telling people to reduce intake of things that we know offer benefits for health,” Malik said.
Conclusion: the Keto diet is among the lowest-ranked diets overall. Many of our experts stated concerns about the diet’s emphasis on fat-rich foods. This diet is fundamentally at odds with everything we know about long-term health.