Cianan wrote:I can agree to the virtue of unprocessed food! Raw honey, for example, is without a doubt a far superior food to table sugar. However, to see what is different about a fat-based diet, you must understand that sugar is sugar in the body whether it's from bread, an onion or candy. It will raise insulin and cortisol levels, decrease testosterone and human growth hormone, and in the case of fructose, put strain on the liver.
The idea with a fat-based, and therefore ketone-based diet, is that you avert all the negative effects of carb-loading. Insulin sensitivity remains entirely stable, you no longer have your cortisol levels going up and down and you're not at the mercy of your blood sugar. Ketones are 40% more oxygen efficient to burn than glucose, too. That much less stress on the body will surely add up! Also, on a diet that induces ketosis, neurons will fire differently from when you burn sugar, believe it or not, and so this diet has proven effective in treating various neurological conditions over the past century.
A ketogenic diet is used for medical purposes in specific maladies (particularly child epilepsy) , it is not recommended as a normal/daily diet as it can have all sorts of adverse side effects. And, just in case you didn't know: many sugars are ketones too.
It seems to be increasingly evident such a diet is beneficial for a wide range of things, including autism, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, brain injury, stroke and obesity—and this study on obesity was long-term:
Contrary to what you suggest, there are actually quite a number of potential applications yielding some impressive results.
As to its viability as an everyday diet, our liver is handily capable of generating the glucose necessary for the brain from dietary protein in gluconeogenesis, and it's very good at it:
Emily Deans, M.D wrote:When I was taught about biochemical fuel-burning, I was taught that glucose was “clean” and ketones were “smokey.” That glucose was clearly the preferred fuel for our muscles for exercise and definitely the key fuel for the brain. Except here’s the dirty little secret about glucose – when you look at the amount of garbage leftover in the mitochondria, it is actually less efficient to make ATP from glucose than it is to make ATP from ketone bodies! A more efficient energy supply makes it easier to restore membranes in the brain to their normal states after a depolarizing electrical energy spike occurs, and means that energy is produced with fewer destructive free radicals leftover.
It also seems clear that, historically, humans have absolutely relied on ketosis: it was a common state critical to survival, and our bodies were good at it. They still are. Constant carb-loading is a relatively recent innovation for humanity as is agriculture. Admittedly, long-term studies are few, but the studies that do exist do not seem to be able to show any major negative side effects but demonstrate some clear benefits. For those who experience some negative effects on a deep ketogenic diet do extremely well with an occasional carb refeed.
I'm not here to advocate for deep ketosis for every day here on out, but based on the myriad health problems that people are increasingly experiencing in the modern day—obesity, heart disease and Alzheimer's, for example—and the mounting scientific and anecdotal evidence for dietary ketosis' therapeutic effects on these health problems, I think it's worth looking into. Many people have given it a shot, including me, and had it work well. Our bodies are clearly well-adapted to it, equipped with efficient ketone factories.
However, I'm not sure that I follow when you say that there are sugars that supply ketones. Ketones are a product of breaking down fat. Do you have any examples?