Does a healthy ketogenic diet cause irreversible insulin resistance?

(CharleyD) #62

Yeah, ignorantly fixating on a marker is how we got statins.

I figure as long as I eat ketogenic my BG is just my BG. It’s where it needs to be.

(I was disappointed that at 6 months and then 11 that my HbA1C was a flat 5.0, but then I remembered I have a beta Thalassemia minor trait so my hemoglobin’s all janky anyhow.)

(VLC.MD) #63

Your A1c 5.0 … - that sucks
The rest of the world - amazing !

(CharleyD) #64

See, I was ignorantly fixating on getting 4.8 :sweat_smile:

(Take time to smell the bacon) #65

ROTFLMAO! :grin:

(Consensus is Politics) #66

Two mice? Did the number “42” happen to come up?


I think it’s this: independent of insulin issues, high levels of sugar in the blood aren’t generally considered good for our cells. I’m not sure if this is actually true - in fact I’d love to know! - but that’s why there’s a focus on serum glucose levels in these posts. Folks are looking at serum glucose levels not (only) as a marker for insulin resistance but as a measure of the glucose concentrations in the blood and the worry that they’re higher than is considered healthy in the long term.

(Take time to smell the bacon) #68

Too bad we can’t test insulin and HbA1C at home, then, because knowing those numbers could tell us whether to panic or relax.


Yes, those would be great! But actually they still wouldn’t answer the “is an ongoing high glucose level healthy?” question, especially since A1C is somewhat dependent on how long our hemoglobin lives (it’s generally three months, but could be longer or shorter, which would change the significance of that number).

(Take time to smell the bacon) #70

But if it’s not very glycated (i.e., HbA1C is low), then it’s much less susceptible to oxidative damage, as I understand it, and that has to be a good thing, all by itself.


@PaulL A1c is essentially a measure of how much glycation has happened over the life span of the hemoglobin, right? So when the lifespan is shorter, I think the 5.0 doesn’t mean the same thing (or, basically, it’s showing an artificially low number). And in Zimon’s case, it seems like his average would be higher based on the glucose readings he’s getting.

(Richard Hanson) #72

Just some guy? What does it matter?

Information should be evaluated based on the content of the information, not on the authorship. It is a logical fallacy, an argumentum ad verecundiam, to assert that something is true because it is presented by an authoritative source or that something is false because it is not.

If multiple doctors are expressing different, contradictory, opinions, then it is obvious that at least some of them are wrong despite being doctors. Even if all the “experts” are presenting the same opinion, it might well be that all of them have it wrong. What if “just some guy” states a view that is contradicted by “just some doctor” and you dismiss his view based on credentials while there may, at the same time, be many other academics that are in complete agreement with “just some guy” of whom you are ignorant?

Dr. Ansel Keys was, well he was more than “just some doctor.”

I grew up in a family of scientist, professors, so I know that they far from perfect, often pompous, prideful, human, often wrong, sometimes dishonest, and at times wonderfully objective and intellectually honest. I would never dismiss the views of “just some guy” based on a lack of credentials, it is not in my nature, rather I ask if what is asserted is rational and supported by data, just like any objective scientist.

The diet of many hundreds of millions of people, likely billions, has been impacted negatively by the views of Dr. Ansel Keys, an establishment view, while any rational “just some guy” could easily observe that there are peoples around the world, the Inuit, the Massai and others, peoples completely devoid of all of the diseases of western civilization, who have been eating LCHF for a great many generations.

I find more veracity in the observation that “just some peoples” have been eating LCHF disease free for a great many generation then the views of “just some doctor”. That is I trust my own ability to reason, to think rationally, more then the views of “experts”, who, when they get it wrong, lead enormous numbers of lemmings over the cliff

I think it important that everyone at least attempt to think for themselves.

Eat like an Eskimo.

Keto for Life!


[on edit] I apologize for the rant.


tl;dr version: Per my doctor: No, the ketogenic diet does not cause irreversible insulin resistance.


Went to the doctor and asked if the ketogenic diet could or would change anything in me permanently and she said no. She also did not balk at my stating that I had read that the diet induces peripheral insulin resistance but rather nodded. She also said I may cheat from time to time, how ever often or little I like and that staying in ketosis will not cause diabetes or any other problems and that if I go back to a normal diet my body will adapt and go back to normal.

She also said that the ketogenic diet is not known to cause arterial stiffening and agreed that it should improve cardiovascular health (this is related to another thread of mine which I will also update).

(Robin) #74

Great thread here folks! I’ve been low carb for about 2 years, am now a healthy weight and just started seeing my morning BG increasing. My fasting insulin is 3 and my HbA1c showed my BG is 108, meaning my HOMA-IC score is .8 which is in the Optimal category. I recently found two links that may help folks. One is a great article from Diet Doctor on this and the other is a HOMA-IC calculator that gives you optimal ranges. That said, I’m now considering some sort of carb cycling as an experiment to test this theory.

(Lisa Stevens) #75

I started adding a few carbs to my diet to see how I did. I started with a extra carbs every 3 days which led to my having a confidence that I could switch from sugar to fat easily any day. I would have maybe as much as 80 carbs in a day. Soon I started feeling like crap with night sweats and poor sleep. I’ve come to the conclusion that I was actually having nocturnal hypoglycemia. I did a 2-day fat fast and no more night sweats or trouble sleeping. I think it’s time to invest in one of those smart devices that tracks BG all day. I wish I had a doctor I could share this info with. I know I would get a lecture if I talked to my current MD.


What was you BG or insulin before you started keto?

Also, if you are in the US you will need a prescription for a continuous blood glucose monitor like the Freestyle Libre

(Lisa Stevens) #77

I never checked my bg before except for yearly blood work with my doc. It was always around 110. It’s still at least that high in the morning and I started keto in Oct 2017. About 3 months in I had a fasting insulin of 10. I’m 56 now so I’m wondering how much can I actually repair my metabolism at this point. I work from home but my job is stressful so that throws dirt on my trail as well.

(SunnyNC) #78

Fry, I enjoyed reading all your responses. Any new updates? I am replying just to keep this awesome discission going. I am still not understanding why it’s ok to have higher fasting BG while on keto … high BG is high BG, regardless of the reason and we know high BG is not good. Saying your BG is high because your insulin is low on keto makes it sound like T1D (just for analogy purpose, I know T1D is a million times worse).

(SunnyNC) #79

Awesome discussion. Any new updates or a new thread with latest discussion? I am replying just to keep this awesome discission going. I am still not understanding why it’s ok to have higher fasting BG while on keto … high BG is high BG, regardless of the reason and we know high BG is not good. Saying your BG is high because your insulin is low on keto makes it sound like T1D (just for analogy purpose, I know T1D is a million times worse). If anyone has found any new studies that answers this iam interested. Thanks!

(Take time to smell the bacon) #80

It’s all relative, but the simple explanation has to do with glucose sparing by the muscles, once they are fat-adapted. Serum glucose is tightly regulated, if we are not jacking up the level with an excessive carb intake. It naturally rises and falls throughout the day, but should stay within a fairly narrow range. Dr. Paul Mason, the Australian sports physician, says that he’d rather see stable levels in his patients, even if they are what some would consider high, than wild fluctuations.

As for “adaptative glucose sparing,” also called “physiological insulin resistance,” here is an explanation:

(Joey) #81

Fascinating. Not sure I fully grasp every nuance, but the different needs of muscle vs brain tissue for glucose provides an “a-ha” moment for me.