What Can The Keto Diet Do For Polycistic Kidney Disease?

The keto diet, which emphasizes higher fat along with a dramatic reduction in carbs has enjoyed growing popularity for those looking to lose weight, but its ability to function as a therapeutic diet for medical conditions is still a rather contentious subject. A new scientific study sought to shed light on the specific correlation between polycystic kidney disease (PKD) and ketosis, the metabolic state brought about by ketogenic diet in which the body feeds off fat instead of carbohydrates for its energy supply.

According to the current research, even reducing food intake by a small amount was shown to slow PKD’s progression, although the reason for this was unknown with scientists unable to determine whether it was due to caloric restriction or some other aspect. Now, they’ve concluded that the slow-down of the disease was coming from the induction of ketosis, which the keto diet can help generate. Calorie restriction wasn’t a factor contrary to the original theories, with time-restricted feeding having demonstrated a strong ability to slow PKD in the mouse models used. 

When the actual keto diet was tested, it exhibited a similar effect and helped to regress the formation of cysts on the kidneys which is a hallmark of PKD. Acute fasting and ketone BHB or beta-Hydroxybutyric acid supplementation provided even more rapid relief of symptoms. Scientists determined that dietary intervention and supplementation with BHB could help significantly improve PKD patients’ condition.

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