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Is The Keto Diet Healthy For Diabetics?

Jason Hughes
Published by Jason Hughes
Fact checked by Markus Oliver, BHSc FACT CHECKED
Last updated: June 30, 2022

The keto diet is one popular answer for people who want to lose weight. Some people who have type 2 diabetes or who simply want to maintain a healthy weight may want to know if the keto diet is a good option for them.  

You likely have several questions when considering how to change your eating habits if you have diabetes. How does the keto diet work? Is the keto diet the right option for me? What about a plant-based diet vs the keto diet for type 2 diabetes?  

Let’s find out what the keto diet is, compare a plant-based diet vs the keto diet and learn whether the keto diet plan is a healthy choice for people who have diabetes. 

Obesity and Diabetes in America 

Obesity affects more than one-third of the adult population in the U.S. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicates that the obesity prevalence increased from 30.5 percent to 41.9 percent from 1999 through 2017. 

The CDC also indicates that more than 37 million people in the U.S. have diabetes, and that 96 million people have pre-diabetes. The number of people who have diabetes has more than doubled in the last 20 years. It is now the seventh leading cause of death in the country. 

There are several complications of obesity and diabetes, including issues such as an increased risk of heart attack or stroke. People who have type 2 diabetes learn from their medical care team that they need to eat a healthy diet, which may help to reduce the risk of other diabetes complications, such as the increased risk of fatty liver disease, nerve issues, eye disease, foot problems and skin issues. 

One diet that people who have type 2 diabetes may consider is the keto diet. What is it and is it safe for people who have diabetes? Let’s find out. 

What is the Keto Diet? 

The ketogenic, or keto, diet is a low carbohydrate, high fat eating plan, or diet. You may eat foods high in saturated or unsaturated fat, since most of what you eat on the keto diet comes from fats. WebMD explains that 20 to 30 percent of your diet comes from protein if you choose a keto plan.  

Your diet consists of less than 50 grams of carbs per day. Compare that amount to the recommended daily intake of 200 to 300 grams per day. The body burns stored fat, and turns it into ketones. The metabolic process of ketosis occurs when the body has no stored carbs or glycogen. 

It is important to distinguish between this process of ketosis and the dangerous condition called ketoacidosis, which affects some people who have diabetes. Ketoacidosis occurs when there is a build-up of ketones when your body does not have enough ketones. 

Plant-Based vs Keto for Type 2 Diabetes 

The nutrients that you focus on and how you get them is the primary difference in the way that you eat when considering plant based vs keto for type 2 diabetes. A plant-based diet focuses on obtaining most of your nutrition from fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and green plants. You avoid meat and animal products and dairy when following a plant-based vs keto diet plan.  

A keto diet focuses on eating foods that may include animal products such as lean chicken, or fatty meats such as bacon. Your fats come from either healthy fats or saturated fats, including butter, coconut oil, and dairy products.  

Researchers examined the efficacy of keto diets on type 2 diabetes and found that although the keto diet has “promising dietary intervention” for the improvement of glyceric control, and that researchers need to conduct further research studies. They also noted the need for coordination with dietitians and physicians to avoid adverse effects. 

The UC Davis Health Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing published a review that focused on examining literature related to plant-based diets, ketogenic, A1C and diabetes. The researchers performing the review discovered that while both diets helped to reduce A1C levels, the keto diet did not reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. They concluded that studies “support the role of whole-food plant-based diets over ketogenic diets” in reducing and maintaining type 2 diabetes. 

Patriot Power Greens and Diabetes 

Patriot Health Alliance reveals that Patriot Power Greens floods the body with powerful nutrients, phytochemicals and probiotics and enzymes to tame inflammation, and to support healthy aging and all-day energy. The company also claims that the product provides superfoods that “you’re likely missing from your diet, no matter how healthy you eat.” 

The manufacturer indicates that there are other benefits, which include:  

  • Cardiovascular support 
  • Detoxification power 
  • Brain and memory support 
  • Improved digestion 
  • Healthy joint support 

Is Patriot Power Greens safe for people who have diabetes? The product provides a healthy serving of 40 fruits and vegetables and several other healthy ingredients. It is sugar-free, so it is safe for diabetics. 

If you have diabetes, do not forget to check with your doctor or dietitian before trying this or any other product. Your medical team will monitor the need for any changes in your medication. 

FAQs 

Can I eat fruit on the keto diet? 

Consider the fact that you limit carbs to no more than 50 grams per day, and the fact that a small apple has 25 carbs. That is half your carb intake for a day on the keto diet. 

Is the plant-based or keto diet healthier overall? 

The keto diet severely limits carbs and allows you to eat saturated fats, while the plant-based diet allows you to consume healthy fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and legumes, which help you to reduce your risk of various medical conditions. 

Can a keto diet reverse type 2 diabetes? 

No, in fact, results of one study showed that vegans had half the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, compared to people who eat meat. 

 

 


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