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Keto diet could speed up organ aging

  • 2 Min To Read
  • a month ago

A recent study conducted on mice suggests that a ketogenic diet may accelerate organ ageing by increasing the build-up of damaged, zombie-like cells in the heart, kidney, lungs, and brain. The accumulation of these cells could potentially lead to health problems such as heart disease and cancer.

The research, led by David Gius at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, involved feeding six mice a ketogenic diet for three weeks, with over 90% of their calories coming from fat and less than 1% from carbohydrates. A control group was fed a standard diet with 17% of calories from fat and 58% from carbohydrates.

Analysis of tissue samples from the mice revealed a significantly higher presence of senescent cells in the organs of those on the ketogenic diet compared to those on a standard diet. Senescent cells are damaged cells that enter a zombie-like state and linger in tissues, causing inflammation.

While these findings suggest that the keto diet may accelerate organ ageing and increase the risk of various health conditions, it is important to note that switching the mice back to a standard diet reduced the presence of senescent cells.

Russell Jones from the Van Andel Institute in Michigan pointed out that the extreme nature of the diet used in the study (90% fat) may not be feasible for humans to adhere to. Further research is needed to determine how these findings may translate to human health.

Overall, the study highlights the need for more rigorous research on the health effects of low-carbohydrate diets like keto, as the existing evidence on their impact remains mixed.

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