Thursday, April 21, 2011

Ketogenic Diets Might Reverse Kidney Damage in Diabetes

Diets are by no means a 'one size fits all' sort of deal; everyone has different needs, goals and preferences. While most people can obtain and maintain good health though following a healthy balanced diet based on the principles outlined in Canada's Food Guide, it doesn't work for everyone. People who are at a higher risk of developing disease or already have it have different dietary needs that, in some cases, go against the grain.

According to new research, 'ketogenic' diets, or those higher in fat, moderate in protein and low in carbohydrates might be ideal for individuals living with diabetic kidney failure; at least in the short term. Ketogenesis occurs when the body is starved of carbohydrates and sugars, which triggers the body to burn fat instead of glucose. It has been found that such diets may actually reverse existing kidney damage in individuals living with type 1 or 2 diabetes who have developed kidney failure as a result. The catch (there's always a catch!) is that the research to support these findings was done using mice. However, the researchers are hopeful that similar outcomes will occur in human trials.

The researchers believe that in humans, exposure to the diet for as little as one month may be all it takes to "reset" the gene that causes diabetic kidney failure. They caution, however, that this diet is not meant to be followed for long periods of time because there are plenty of other side-effects that go along with a state of ketosis. Nonetheless, it is interesting to realize that depending on what ails you, modifying your diet in ways that might not be considered conventional might actually improve your health!

3 comments:

Anne Dix said...

This is hard to imagine... especially since us Type 1 diabetics (I've had it for over 30 years) have to check for ketones every time our blood sugars rise above 14 mmol/l. Seems really bizarre that ketosis could actually help one's kidneys

Anne said...

Seems very bizarre, I agree. Have been type 1 diabetic for a long time, and know how much we have to avoid ketones in the system... Hope the side effects are out-weighed by the benefits, if any?!

Anne said...

Seems very bizarre, I agree. Have been type 1 diabetic for a long time, and know how much we have to avoid ketones in the system... Hope the side effects are out-weighed by the benefits, if any?!