Most Comprehensive Review Yet of Keto Diets Finds


(Bob M) #22

Your thoughts on the 20%? I think that might be low…

More to say about this…concerning societies’ well-meaning but deranged obesity war. Saw a post from someone on Twitter where her son was weighed at school and she got a letter saying he needed to lose weight. This caused many people to chime in saying similar letters caused disastrous results for them, which took at times decades to get over.

(Old Baconian) #23

Twenty percent could well be low, but that’s the estimate I’ve seen. My impression is that the percentage vulnerable to addiction doesn’t reach as high as 50%, however, certainly not for most things. Since addiction is by definition self-destructive behaviour, vulnerability to it doesn’t carry an evolutionary advantage.

(VAL) #24

Thanks Diet Doctor for correcting this incorrect information!

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #25

Thanks for that. Great smackdown.


(Philip H Kern) #26

At the risk of sounding like a conspiracy theorist, almost all these studies come from or are funded by the 7th day adventist church. When you see Loma Linda anywhere in the story, that’s a clue. They’ve been propagating veganism for ages and have extolled the virtues of grains as a way of tamping down the male libido–because I guess sex is bad. It’s an interesting story for the historically inclined because they’ve had a lot of colorful characters trying to change the way the world eats. You’ll know some of the names.

It’s all easy for me to say. My ‘bad cholesterol’ went down on Keto while my ‘good cholesterol’ went up.

(Joey) #27

Yes, because vegetables don’t activate the male libido…

(Alec) #28

This video is required viewing if you are in any way concerned about these studies… Dr Scherr does a fantastic job in demolishing all the crap these guys are spouting.

The key point is right up front: who sponsored this meta analysis and report? A group who’s sole purpose is to promote vegan and vegetarian diets. This means there is inbuilt bias and therefore this is NOT science, and your crap detection needs to be on HIGH.


The researchers divide the study participants into 5 groups. A group in a 5-ways divided investigation is known as a quintile. A quintile is one type of quantile. They look at the control group data and define the “restricted carbohydrate” as the quintile with the most restricted carbohydrate intake. Carbohydrate intake is not a set measure point, such as 20g/day, as might be designed in a prospective study. I wonder what the restricted carbohydrate actual amount was? In large general studies ‘low carb’ is usually greater than 100g/day because the majority of the population are on a standard processed food type diet.

(Old Baconian) #30

When looking at terciles, quartiles, quintiles, sextiles, etc., it is important to know the usage range associated with each group. If the amount used/consumed/performed by neighbouring groups does not differ significantly, the division serves no useful purpose, except possibly to mislead. The N of the study needs to be high, and there needs to be a significant difference in usage/consumption/performance levels for the division to be meaningful.

The technique is simple, you rank your N participants in decreasing order of carb consumption, start at the bottom and take N/5 participants, then take the next N/5 participants, and so forth. If there are a lot of people at the same consumption level, you may have to assign them at random into one quintile or the other. You can then characterise the groups by their mean, mode, and median consumption and sometimes get some interesting results. But if, say, out of a study of 100 people, the bottom 20 have 15 people who ate 50 g of carbs and the next 20 have 15 people who ate 55 g of carbs, the inferences you can draw are not very significant. So I would treat this study’s conclusions with great caution, unless they give all the details involved.

In the College Board and SAT exams, for example, the population taking the test is numerous enough, and the variation in scores is wide enough, to make it worthwhile dividing the test-takers into percentiles.

(BuckRimfire) #31

I can’t believe how polite Bret Scher is. He didn’t use the phrase “lying vegan hatchet job” even ONCE to describe that “study.”

(Joey) #32

Great analogy. But this is also known as “grading on a curve.” And so there is always the very real possibility of a large N population which is fundamentally different than other populations.

For example, if the Class of 2021 is appreciable dumber than the Class of 2020, an SAT score of, say, 1000 in 2021 could be markedly different than a student who scores 1000 in 2020. Dumb and dumber?

And back to quintiles applied to carb studies. Was the bottom quintile on a keto diet … i.e., enough carb restriction to invoke ketosis?

If not, what’s the point of comparing those who ate more plants vs those who ate less plants when none of them were in a state of ketosis. Hopefully the point is not to draw conclusions about the effects of keto.

It’s the state of ketosis that defines a ketogenic way of eating. Studying other things may or may not be of interest, but it’s certainly not an indication of the results of ketogenic eating if none of the subjects are in a state of ketosis. :roll_eyes:

(Edith) #33

I guess I should of worded that question, “How many carbs does that mean?” :crazy_face:

(Old Baconian) #34

The scores are not supposed to be adjusted to fit a curve; that’s what the percentiles are for. At least, that was true back in my day, but it’s been a few years . . . . :scream:

How much do you want to bet? And that is why I wrote that we need to know the entire data distribution and the ranges for all the quintiles before deciding whether their conclusions are worth anything.

Well, there’s plenty of point, if your underlying motive is to find a way to disparage a ketogenic diet… . .

From your mouth to Walter Willett’s ear. But don’t hold your breath. As Upton Sinclair wrote, “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, if his salary depends on his not understanding it.”

(Todd Allen) #35

Easy for me too despite my cholesterol more than doubling, both the good and the bad. And the ugly, my sex hormones more than doubled even though they were above the reference range before keto. Ugly as I have a genetic untreatable progressive neuromuscular wasting disease, SBMA, supposedly driven by testosterone. But I don’t have CVD with an LDL of 287 and my SBMA has been in slow but accelerating reversal for the past 5 years of keto. Medical science is nearly as awful as nutritional science. I have more trust in my mirror.

(Bob M) #36

That’s…good, I hope? Do you credit keto with helping this? Do you know of others with your disease who have had similar effects?

(Todd Allen) #37

It’s better than I imagined possible and yet I know I’ve made numerous mistakes and my progress could have been better. And I expect I’m still making mistakes and I hope to sort more of them out before advancing age becomes too limiting.

I think keto was an important possibly essential first step for myself although now I seem to do better with higher protein than I could tolerate previously even though eating higher protein lowers my ketone levels below the threshhold of 0.5 mmol/l blood ketones commonly considered the lower limit for therapeutic ketosis when eating for weight maintenance. I still have some excess fat to lose and on my weight loss weeks when I’m cutting calories I still get days of higher ketones. I’ve also been focused on exercise, sleep, stress management, toxin reduction and micronutrient optimization all of which have played a part although it is hard to judge the relative benefits of each. One thing I’ve been doing for over a year and I value more highly now than anything else including keto is I converted our bathroom into an infrared sauna in which I do a nightly strength training session before bed.

I know of one other who is experiencing significant improvement similar to myself on a keto diet with guidance from a functional medicine physician and two others who believe they have slowed their decline. They haven’t been at it that long and I’m hopeful they will continue making progress. It’s an uphill battle though against a research community working on pharmaceutical treatments for the disease and nutrtitionists advising lowfat high carb plant based diets because people with this disease tend to have elevated cholesterol and NAFLD…


In contrast this

Never thought I would see Vollek and Willett on the same paper

(Todd Allen) #39

Thanks for pointing that out. I saw that paper a few weeks ago but somehow missed seeing Walter Willett’s name on it. It would be interesting if papers were published in a format with a version history so one could see the contributions of each author.

(Edith) #40

I read through most of the paper. It seemed pretty balanced and reasonable. I wonder what it means that Walter Willett is a coauthor? :thinking: