6 Benefits of Eating High-Fat, Low-Carb
Recent studies have shown that a diet high in saturated fat and low in sugar and processed foods actually prevents heart disease and reduces fat storage in the liver.
It has even shown to improve triglycerides, insulin sensitivity, and the overall risk factors for heart disease. Ever since scientists analyzed the misleading history of data, it has been clear that there was a vast difference between studies on saturated fat. Some studies had allowed subjects to consume uncontrolled amounts of processed carbohydrates while other, more recent studies minimized processed carbohydrates. The consumption of carbohydrates has skewed the research done on saturated fats, leading us to become misinformed and choose "low fat" milk at the grocery store when we should have been taking the bread and cereal out of our carts.
Not all LDL cholesterol is equal or a risk for heart disease, there are small and large particles.
Research has also uncovered that there are two kinds of our supposedly “bad” LDL cholesterol, one of which is actually good. LDL becomes small and dense after adding a bunch of refined sugar as opposed to a less processed diet when LDL becomes large and buoyant. Small dense LDL particles are dangerous and circulate longer than the large buoyant LDL. It undergoes transformation and forms plaque in the artery. Refined sugar leads to an increase in small dense LDL particles while the large buoyant LDL particles increase through the consumption of saturated fat.
The more advanced tests that measure the size of LDL particles are not part of the standard of care at this time, but you can ask your doctor for an ion mobility test from quest diagnostics to find out!
For more information on the misinformation, listen to Dr. Rhonda Patrick’s informative podcast that discusses this is scientific detail, click here.
In the meantime, here are 6 benefits to eating a high-fat, low carbohydrate diet, otherwise known as the Ketogenic Diet:
Increased cognition and enhanced memory in adults. Studies have shown that the high fat diet increases stability of neurons in the brain and up-regulates brain mitochondria.
Research has shown that ketone bodies produced on a high fat diet decreases tumor cells and prolongs survival of cancer. Cancer cells are unable to effectively use ketone bodies for energy.
A high fat diet helps keep blood pressure in check and lowers triglyceride levels. The consumption of excess carbohydrates is actually the key driver of increasing triglycerides.
Studies have found that the mechanism behind a Ketogenic diet is profoundly anti-inflammatory. It’s implications on arthritis, acne, psoriasis, eczema, IBS and other inflammatory disease is immense.
A diet low in carbohydrates and high in fat assists in women’s health, including increasing fertility and normalizing hormones. Keeping blood sugar levels low and stable results in lower levels of insulin in the blood. As a result, this stabilizes hormone levels and reduces symptoms such as prolonged menstrual periods, acne and obesity.
A number of papers have been published about Ketogenic dieting for athletes. Once they are fully fat adapted (in a state of ketosis), evidence suggests that mental and physical performance is significantly improved beyond a “normal” diet.