A new twist on extreme weight loss is catching on in many parts of the world. It’s called the "keto diet."
People promoting the diet say it uses the body’s own fat burning system to help people lose significant weight in as little as 10 days.
It has also been known to help moderate the symptoms of children with epilepsy, although experts are not quite sure why it works.
Proponents say the diet can produce quick weight loss and provide a person with more energy.
However, critics say the diet is an unhealthy way to lose weight and in some instances it can be downright dangerous.
The “keto” diet is any extremely low- or no-carbohydrate diet that forces the body into a state of ketosis.
Ketosis occurs when people eat a low- or no-carb diet and molecules called ketones build up in their bloodstream.
Low carbohydrate levels cause blood sugar levels to drop and the body begins breaking down fat to use as energy.
Ketosis is actually a mild form of ketoacidosis. Ketoacidosis mostly affects people with type 1 diabetes. In fact, it is the leading cause of death of people with diabetes who are under 24 years of age.
However, many experts say ketosis itself is not necessarily harmful.
Some studies, in fact, suggest that a ketogenic diet is safe for significantly overweight or obese people.
Critics say the keto-type diets usually work only in the short term and can be unhealthy.Once your body enters ketosis, you also begin to lose muscle, become extremely fatigued, and eventually enter starvation mode. Then it actually becomes even harder to lose weight.Keto diets should only be used under clinical supervision and only for brief periods.Anyone with type 2 diabetes can benefit from weight loss and a reduced-carb diet because it will improve insulin sensitivity. However, a keto diet will do more harm than good for the majority of patients, especially if they have any underlying kidney or liver issues.