Low-carb and keto news highlights

DD Banner March 2

Last week, we covered the headlines. This week, we’ll take a look at emerging science and real food success stories.

Emerging Science


  1. A small clinical trial, ongoing in overweight men with recurrent prostate cancer, shows a keto diet leads to significant weight loss. At six months, patients averaged 28 lbs lost on keto versus 0 lbs in control group. BMI was reduced by an average of more than 4pts. Unclear if diet/weight loss deters cancer growth (trial ongoing). Similarly, a small prospective pilot study of patients placed on a 4 week ketogenic diet to prepare for bariatric surgery showed “highly significant decreases in body weight (− 10.3%, p < 0.001, in males; − 8.2%,p < 0.001, in females), left hepatic lobe volume (− 19.8%, p < 0.001)” and a resolution of micronutrient deficiencies.
  2. A clinical report, published in Cell Metabolism, finds that carbohydrate restriction delivers “rapid and dramatic reductions of liver fat and other cardiometabolic risk factors” in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). No pill can do this for you.
  3. Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism published a study that demonstrates how fasting glucose creeps up gradually, often tied to chronic insulin resistance. Authors argue for early detection and intervention to prevent progression.
  4. A small RCT comparing MyPlate to a calorie counting approach found both completely ineffective for weight loss. Participants (primarily Hispanic) in both groups averaged NO CHANGE in body weight after coaching sessions and a year following one of these two failed approaches. Yet this continues to be the public health response to obesity…
  5. An observational study in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease shows strong association between more dietary protein and less of the Alzheimer’s biomarker, amyloid beta. Top third of protein eaters (over 118g protein /day) are 12 TIMES less likely than bottom third (<54g/day) to have high levels of the Alzheimer’s marker.

Wait… there is more science. Can  a ketone drink reduce glycemic response and improve insulin sensitivity in healthy young adults? What does this large cohort study from last year, comparing vegetarian or modified vegetarian diets to omnivorous diets, say about plant based meals and all-cause mortality? Can a liberal low-carb (<130g/day) diet help bladder cancer patients with diabetes or prediabetes reduce blood sugar levels? How does Virta Health’s Dr. Stephen Phinney think about keto and protein intake? (Includes a great chart of daily protein needs for men and women by height.)

Real Food Success Stories

Keto success isn’t just weight loss:

  • Parents of an eleven-year-old girl with type 1 diabetes share their decision to try a very low-carb diet to manage her disease. Results so far are fabulous with fewer hypos, better glycemic control, and a happy kid! Read this thoughtful testimonial from the community builders at Low Carb USA.
  • A patient with a new type 2 diabetes diagnosis turns his life around through Virta’s virtual clinic (with keto) regimen: “After four months on Virta, I’ve reduced my HbA1c from 12.4% to 6.4%, putting me under the diagnostic threshold for type 2 diabetes. I lost 20 pounds, and I eliminated my insulin and other diabetes medications.”
  • This young mom eliminated PCOS, back pain, and ulcerative colitis. AND she lost 48 pounds.
  • Alicia Vikander prepared for Tomb Raider with a keto diet. It was a key to her lean, muscular look and high energy levels on set

But carbohydrate restriction works for weight loss, too:

Want more?

Tune in next week for longer reads and interesting articles about food. Plus, everyone’s fave, the wall of shame…


This news gathering is from our collaborator Jennifer Calihan, who also blogs at Eat the Butter. Feel free to sign up for her weekly newsletter.

More with Jennifer Calihan

Top 10 ways to eat more fat

How to eat low carb and keto when dining out

Living low carb in a high-carb world

Low-carb basics

Advanced low-carb topics

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