Is keto bad for the kidneys?

Ketogenic diets are great for burning fat, but are they bad for your kidneys?

Is keto bad for the kidneys?

The ketogenic diet can stress the kidneys and possibly cause kidney stones. Kidney stones are a well-known potential side effect of the ketogenic diet. Eating a lot of animal foods on the ketogenic diet can lead to more acidic urine and an increased risk of kidney stones. This acidic state may also worsen the progression of chronic kidney disease.

Why is dietary protein intake sometimes raised as a concern for kidney health? Well, when the kidneys are damaged one of the first signs is protein leaving the kidney and appearing in the urine. This condition is called proteinuria and shows that the kidney's filtration system is malfunctioning. In addition, moderate to high protein intake in the setting of more advanced kidney disease can accelerate the deterioration of kidney function; restricting protein is strongly recommended when the kidneys are severely damaged. Reducing protein intake to the range of 0.6 - 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight per day (about 40-50 grams per day) - or less than half of what most people usually eat - can slow progression to end-stage kidney disease, reduce protein in the urine, delay the onset of kidney failure symptoms and delay the need for dialysis or transplantation, 30.

Very high levels of ketones make the blood more acidic and overload the kidneys. Medical News Today reports that one of the side effects of a ketogenic diet is the formation of kidney stones. By processing larger amounts of protein, the kidneys are working hard and are forced to excrete more sodium, calcium and potassium, as well as filter out more by-products of protein metabolism. This extra loss of fluids and electrolytes can lead to low blood pressure, another function mediated by the kidneys.

Ketosis in the presence of diabetes can lead to ketoacidosis and coma, and can be life-threatening. The ketogenic diet, or "ketogenic diet", is one of a series of trendy low-carbohydrate ("low carb") diets that include the Atkins diet, the South Beach diet and the Zone diet. It was developed at the Mayo Clinic in 1924 as a treatment for epilepsy in children. In recent years, the ketogenic diet has re-emerged and is now being used again by medical teams as a therapy for epileptic children whose seizures do not respond to medication.

The medical ketogenic diet is based on precise proportions of fats, proteins and carbohydrates and therefore requires careful monitoring by a medical team. This is because the diet is not balanced and can lead to nutrient deficiencies, among other things. The researchers concluded that the only well-supported use of keto diets is to reduce seizure frequency in some individuals with drug-resistant epilepsy. Most of the research on kidney stones and the ketogenic diet has been conducted in children with epilepsy, as the ketogenic diet was initially designed as a dietary management tool for refractory seizure disorders in children.

Several animal studies link the ketogenic diet to decreased bone strength, probably due to losses in bone mineral density, which can occur as the body adapts to ketosis (16, 1). Ketogenic diets, which can result in ketosis, may be especially unsafe for women who are pregnant or may become pregnant, with strong data suggesting that low-carbohydrate diets are associated with an increased risk of neural tube defects in infants, even if mothers take folic acid. In particular, some studies suggest that the keto diet does not provide enough calcium, vitamin D, magnesium and phosphorus (. A review in Frontiers in Nutrition has claimed that keto diets put pregnant women and patients with kidney disease at risk of adverse health effects, and found that for most people, the potential long-term risks - including heart disease, cancer, diabetes and Alzheimer's disease - outweigh their potential benefits.

Following a proper ketogenic diet plan with electrolyte supplementation will also help ensure you don't run into these problems. To date, research has shown that some keto diets may cause rapid regression of renal cystic burden in mouse, rat and feline models of PKD. And Chi said that while he had not noticed any dramatic increases in kidney stone patients on keto plans, he had seen some extreme cases of stones in keto dieters. Although the data is still coming in on the long-term effects of a keto diet, I think there are too many risks and unknowns to confidently advise this type of diet for most people with kidney disease.

One small study suggested that the keto diet might improve blood glucose control in patients with type 1 diabetes, but triggered more frequent and extreme hypoglycaemic episodes. Children on the keto diet to help control seizures are sometimes given oral potassium citrate tablets, which can help reduce the number of stones they develop and prolong the time it takes for them to form. The review's lead author, Lee Crosby, director of the nutrition education programme of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, described the keto diet as "a disease-promoting disaster". Keto diets have been promoted not only for weight loss, but also - though less commonly - for other health reasons, such as seizure disorders, all of which were considered in the review.

A typical keto diet includes high-fat foods such as meat, oily fish and seafood, eggs, high-fat sauces from coconut oil, olive oil, heavy cream and butter, high-fat dairy products and lower-carbohydrate vegetables such as green beans, broccoli, cauliflower and broccoli, among others.

Elsie Parry
Elsie Parry

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