I introduced the definitions and basic theory underpinning endurance athletes’ ketogenic diets (EAKD) in the first blog, but what happens when the theory is subjected to scientific research? A recently published systematic review (which by definition should incorporate all relevant, good quality studies) will help us answer this question. I will warn you that this is quite a detailed synopsis, so feel free to skip to my ‘take home thoughts’ at the end if what comes before is a bit too heavy. The review claims to be the first of its kind looking at EAKD and key outcomes for endurance […]
Ketogenic diets in endurance exercise (part I)
Ketogenic diets have been used as an established treatment for epilepsy (particularly among children) for many years, but more recently there’s been a much broader interest in going ‘keto’, especially in certain dubious corners of social media. Most of the attention is based on its potential as a weight-loss tool, but there has also been a growing buzz about its capacity for performance-enhancement in endurance exercise. I’m not going to comment on the former here (especially as it has always seemed to me an unnecessarily restrictive approach to weight management…although each to their own), but I have been meaning to blog on the latter for […]
A few weeks back, I advised a healthy dose of scepticism when faced with the fad diets of the new year. In fact, many of my blogs from last year carried a barely-hidden negativity towards ‘dieting’, so you could be forgiven for wondering whether dietitians have anything to do with ‘diets’ at all. So, just to clarify a few points… The ‘anti-dieting’ thing is really just my response to the standard media message that ‘diets’ are a short-term, quick-fix towards health goals, as implied by the phrase ‘going on a diet’. Of course the true meaning of the word ‘diet’, […]
New year…new fad diets
I hope you’ve all had a lovely Christmas break. As I write this, I am still very much in that hazy, blissful state of purgatory between Christmas and New Year where days of the week have become utterly meaningless. However, I know that thoughts will soon turn to January, and with that, the inevitable deluge of resolutions. I don’t think there’s anything inherently wrong with this – a new year can be a new start, and it also presents us with the perfect opportunity to assess how things have gone over the past 12 months. So, racked with post-festive gluttony […]
Another week, another public health event. This time it is the turn of the increasingly popular ‘Christmas’, where the general message seems to revolve around consuming all food groups, in vast quantities, at all times. I jest. I have noted, celebrated and explained many of the most important health events and milestones of the year, so I don’t mean to be flippant. But at this time of year, I think it’s important to accept that, for a very brief period, it is ok for nutrition to take a back seat, and to let family, friends, charity and celebrations drive proceedings. […]
World Diabetes Day
This Friday is World Diabetes Day, a timely reminder of this most devastating of diseases. As the world’s waistlines grow, the burden of diabetes does too. We’ve all heard the stats, but if you’re anything like me, these numbers are quoted so often that they start to go in one ear and out of the other (the same goes for obesity stats actually). Take a look at the diabetes UK website or the NHS choices diabetes section for some of the latest figures (and a great deal besides that), but for now, let’s just concentrate on the basics. Halloween may have been and gone, but […]
Clocks go back…time for breakfast!
For many of us, this will be the last week of the year that we can even think about leaving work in daylight, what with the clocks going back this weekend. So, while that is in itself a depressing prospect, it does bring with it two potential upsides: An extra hour of Sunday morning / Saturday night (delete as appropriate). Two of the best times of the week, i’m sure you’ll agree. The prospect of not waking up and going to work in total darkness… for a little while longer. This second point means, in my case at least, that […]
Be smart and look beyond the headlines!
Visitors to the BBC website this week may well have spotted an article with the following heading: ‘Any diet will do, say researchers, if you stick to it’. The article (which you can read here) was in fact a summary of work published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, which itself was a meta-analysis (statistical combination of studies) of 48 individual trials. The primary finding, as the headline suggests, was that the specifics of any diet being followed is less important than the act of actually sticking to that diet. They go on to state that this is down to […]