If you're just now learning about the keto diet, then you'll be intrigued to learn that recently a group of Spanish researchers uncovered an incredible reason to love this diet. It turns out that not only does the keto diet burn fat quickly, but it can also help keep weight loss off long term.
In a study published in the Nutrition & Metabolism Journal, researchers used obese patients who desired to lose weight and discovered that a low-calorie diet was ideal for maintaining weight loss.
As you'll learn in our fat burning book the Body Reboot, the keto diet means cutting carbs but eating food high in fat and protein, which results in your body relying on fat as its energy source. When it runs out of ingested fat, it burns excess fat stores. When this takes place you lose extra weight – magic!
The resting metabolic rate (RMR) decrease, observed after an obesity reduction therapy is a determinant of a short-time weight regain. Thus, the objective of this study was to evaluate changes in RMR, and the associated hormonal alterations in obese patients with a very low-calorie ketogenic (VLCK)-diet induced severe body weight (BW) loss.
From 20 obese patients who lost 20.2 kg of BW after a 4-months VLCK-diet, blood samples and body composition analysis, determined by DXA and MF-Bioimpedance, and RMR by indirect calorimetry, were obtained on four subsequent visits: visit C-1, basal, initial fat mass (FM) and free fat mass (FFM); visit C-2, − 7.2 kg in FM, − 4.3 kg in FFM, maximal ketosis; visit C-3, − 14.4 kg FM, − 4.5 kg FFM, low ketosis; visit C-4, − 16.5 kg FM, − 3.8 kg FFM, no ketosis. Each subject acted as his own control.
Despite the large BW reduction, measured RMR varied from basal visit C-1 to visit C-2, − 1.0%; visit C-3, − 2.4% and visit C-4, − 8.0%, without statistical significance. No metabolic adaptation was observed. The absent reduction in RMR was not due to increased sympathetic tone, as thyroid hormones, catecholamines, and leptin were reduced at any visit from baseline. Under regression analysis FFM, adjusted by levels of ketonic bodies, was the only predictor of the RMR changes (R2 = 0.36; p < 0.001).
The rapid and sustained weight and FM loss induced by VLCK-diet in obese subjects did not induce the expected reduction in RMR, probably due to the preservation of lean mass.
Basically when you eat less your body learns to cope by using less energy. It then goes into survival mode and conserves energy for when it's needed the most. When your body adapts to needing less energy over time it'll need less energy intact overall.
The hypothesis for this study assumed that the low-calorie keto diet could trigger a reaction and stop the likelihood of gaining the weight back later on. Unfortunately, the results of the study didn't show an overall change in resting metabolic rate but the good news is that it resulted in participants maintaining their weight loss. That's great news for people who are looking to lose and keep the weight off!
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For more on this study check out Nutrition & Metabolism Journal.
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Discover how to activate your body's “Reboot Switch” that flips on a fat burning inferno so you can finally get healthy and achieve your weight loss goals!