The ketogenic diet has been gaining popularity lately as a way to lose weight. Still, it also has some other potential health benefits. One of these is its effect on blood pressure. A few studies have looked at the ketogenic diet and blood pressure and found that it can lower blood pressure in both the short- and long-term.
However, more research is needed to understand the exact mechanism by which this happens. In the meantime, if you’re trying the ketogenic diet, speak with your doctor first to see if it’s right for you.
What is the Ketogenic Diet?
The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet that has been shown to have several health benefits, including reducing blood pressure. The exact mechanism by which the diet reduces blood pressure has yet to be fully understood. Still, it is likely due to the reduction in carbohydrate intake and the increase in fat and protein intake.
Studies on the ketogenic diet have shown mixed results, with some studies showing a reduction in blood pressure and others showing no significant effect. However, the evidence suggests that the ketogenic diet may effectively reduce blood pressure.
How does the Ketogenic Diet work?
The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet that forces the body to burn fat for fuel instead of carbohydrates. This shift in metabolism results in a decrease in blood sugar and insulin levels, which reduces blood pressure.
The diet is typically divided into two phases: the induction phase and the maintenance phase. The induction phase lasts two weeks and is designed to jump-start weight loss by drastically reducing carbohydrate intake. During this phase, people eat a diet that consists of 80% fat, 15% protein, and 5% carbohydrates.
The maintenance phase is designed to help people maintain their weight loss by following a less strict version of the diet. During this phase, people eat a diet that consists of 70% fat, 20% protein, and 10% carbohydrates.
What are the benefits of the Ketogenic Diet?
There are a few different ways that the ketogenic diet can help to lower blood pressure, and they all stem from the fact that this way of eating can help to reduce inflammation throughout the body. In general, the ketogenic diet is a very healthy way of eating that has been shown to improve several health markers, including blood pressure.
One way the ketogenic diet can help lower blood pressure is by reducing inflammation. When you eat a lot of carbs, your blood sugar spikes and then crashes, leading to inflammation. The keto diet helps to stabilize blood sugar levels, which in turn reduces inflammation.
Another way that the keto diet can help to lower blood pressure is by improving your gut health. A healthy gut makes for a happy body, and a happy body is less likely to experience high blood pressure. Good gut bacteria help keep your immune system strong, and a strong immune system means less inflammation throughout the body.
Lastly, the ketogenic diet can help to lower blood pressure by reducing stress levels. When stressed, your body releases hormones constricting your arteries and raising your blood pressure. Eating a nutritious diet like the keto diet can help alleviate stress and improve your overall well-being, leading to lower blood pressure.
Why does blood pressure drop on a keto diet?
When following a keto diet, your body enters a state of ketosis in which it begins to burn fat for energy instead of carbohydrates. This shift in fuel source can lead to a drop in blood pressure as your body becomes more efficient at using fat for energy. Additionally, the reduction in carbohydrate intake on a keto diet can cause a decrease in water retention, which can also lead to lower blood pressure.
While a decrease in blood pressure can benefit some people, it can also be a sign that you are not eating enough carbohydrates. If you experience a significant drop in blood pressure on a keto diet, check with your doctor to ensure it is safe for you.
What are the risks of the Ketogenic Diet?
The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet that has been shown to improve blood pressure in some people. However, there are also risks associated with the diet, including an increased risk of heart disease, kidney stones, and osteoporosis.
The ketogenic diet may also interact with some medications, so it is important to speak with a healthcare provider before starting the diet.
Some of the other risks associated with the ketogenic diet include the following:
- gastrointestinal issues such as constipation, diarrhea, and vomiting
- increased risk of hypoglycemia
- kidney stones
- protein deficiency
- nutritional deficiencies
- increased risk of heart disease
Possible Risks of Keto for Blood Pressure
A few potential risks are associated with the ketogenic diet and hypertension. First, the keto diet may worsen your condition if you have uncontrolled high blood pressure. Second, the keto diet may cause electrolyte imbalances, leading to dehydration and low blood pressure.
Finally, the keto diet may interfere with its efficacy if you take medications for blood pressure or other conditions. If you are concerned about these risks, please speak to your doctor before starting the keto diet.
Evidence suggests that the ketogenic diet can help lower blood pressure. One study showed that people who followed a ketogenic diet for eight weeks had significantly lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure than those who followed a standard American diet.
Another study found that the ketogenic diet effectively reduced blood pressure in people with uncontrolled hypertension. While more research is needed, the ketogenic diet may be a promising option for people looking to manage their blood pressure.