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A 6-Week Ketogenic Diet Decreases Physical Performance

February 25, 2017

A 6-week ketogenic diet negatively impacts physical performance measures including endurance capacity and peak power πŸ“‰

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Interesting recent study by Urbain and colleagues (2017) showing that ketogenic diets may be detrimental to performance 🚴

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There are a number of positives and negatives regarding this study, as there are with all research papers ☝️

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It's good to see daily measures of urinary ketones as detractors may argue that participants were not in a state of ketosis. Further, the variety of measures of performance and blood analysis are great to see πŸ‘

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However, there are some points of contention such as food diary analysis being the primary measure dietary intake and no control group. Moreover, the authors conducted a time-to-exhaustion (TTE) test as the primary mode of exercise, however results from the actual TTE test were not mentioned in the results section, despite the authors concluding that the ketogenic diet quickened the onset of fatigue πŸ€”

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Important lesson in why you should always read the full paper before drawing conclusions about the research πŸ‘ˆ

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Apart from the fatigue aspect on the conclusion I do like what the authors summarise from the research which goes as follows "Our findings lead us to assume that a KD does not impact physical fitness in a clinically relevant manner that would impair activities of daily life and aerobic training. However, a KD may be a matter of concern in competitive athletes.” πŸ†

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The few % decreases in physical performance, from consuming a ketogenic diet, may not be relevant for the person that trains recreationally, however if optimising performance is of importance, this study adds to the majority of research showing that ketogenic diets are not as beneficial as a higher-carb diet 🍞

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The full study can be read here:πŸ‘ˆ


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