Is the keto diet for everyone?
Not all patients are appropriate candidates for the keto diet, especially those with chronic conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, or other conditions that may be the result of a previous diet, Rahnama noted.
She also pointed out that this diet can result in such a big change for many people’s metabolic and other bodily systems, that adhering to the diet may even change the effectiveness of a person’s medication.
Patients need to be evaluated and monitored by a physician when they start a keto diet due to the level of dietary restriction. They may need to begin electrolyte supplementation or change any daily medication dosages they take. Talking to your doctor before you begin is a smart idea.
Got the keto diet go-ahead? You’ll want to boost your water intake before you start.
“Some patients may need to supplement with sodium, as long as they do not have blood pressure issues. Some may even need prescription potassium supplementation,” Rahnama said, adding that she begins all keto diet patients on a magnesium supplement, as it’s an electrolyte that can be taken with low risk of overdose. She also said keto dieters may have to up their carb intake if they have continued issues with hydration.
“Keto is not a great long-term diet, as it is not a balanced diet,” Rahnama said. “A diet that is devoid of fruit and vegetables will result in long-term micronutrient deficiencies that can have other consequences.”
The keto diet can be used for short-term fat loss so long as the patient is medically supervised. But it’s not a permanent weight loss or maintenance solution, Rahnama said.
“The keto diet is a very successful way for rapid weight loss as long as it is done safely, you do not want to cause bigger problems in order to solve a smaller one,” she added.