The Benefits of a Cyclical Ketogenic Diet
The MMT diet is a cyclical ketogenic diet, high in healthy fats and fiber, low in net carbs with a moderate amount of protein. Nutritional ketosis is the metabolic state associated with an increased production of ketones in your liver; i.e., the biological reflection of being able to burn fat, and is defined as having blood ketones in the range of 0.5 to 3.0 mmol/L.
However, a key component that differentiates MMT from most other ketogenic eating plans is its emphasis on CYCLICAL ketosis. Once your body starts to burn fat for fuel, you need to switch to a cyclical ketogenic diet, as long-term continuous ketosis has some serious drawbacks that may actually undermine your health and longevity.
The "metabolic magic" in the mitochondria actually occurs during the refeeding phase, not during the starvation phase. Alas, you cannot get to that magic unless you first go through the starvation phase. This is why we refer to the MMT plan as a cyclical ketogenic diet. So, just what might you gain from MMT? The following chart lists some of the most important benefits of this program:
By rebalancing your body's chemistry, weight loss and/or improved weight management becomes nearly effortless. Studies have shown a ketogenic diet can double the weight lost compared to a low-fat diet.3 By reducing hunger and carb cravings, it also lowers your risk of overeating.
When burned for fuel, dietary fat releases far fewer ROS and secondary free radicals than sugar. Ketones are also very effective histone deacetylase inhibitors that effectively reduce inflammatory responses.
In fact, many drugs are being developed to address immune related inflammatory diseases that are HDAC inhibitors. A safer and more rational strategy is to use a ketogenic diet, as it is one of the most effective ways to drive down your inflammation level through HDAC inhibition.
Reduced cancer risk
While all cells (including cancer cells) can use glucose for fuel, cancer cells lack the metabolic flexibility to use ketones for their energy needs, which your regular cells can. Once your body enters a state of nutritional ketosis, cancer cells are more susceptible to being removed by your body through a process called autophagy. A cyclical ketogenic diet is a fundamental, essential tool that needs to be integrated in the management of nearly every cancer.
Increased muscle mass
Ketones spare branched-chain amino acids, leaving higher levels of them around, which promotes muscle mass.4 However, be careful and make sure to implement cyclic ketosis. Chronic ketosis will actual result in muscle loss as your body is impairing the mTOR pathway, which is important for anabolic growth. mTOR needs to be stimulated, just not consistently, as many people do with high protein diets.
Lowered insulin levels
Keeping your insulin level low helps prevent insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes and related diseases. Research has demonstrated that diabetics who eat a low-carb ketogenic diet are able to significantly reduce their dependency on diabetes medication and may even reverse the condition.5
Lowering insulin resistance will also reduce your risk of Alzheimer's. Recent research strengthens the link between insulin resistance and dementia even further, particularly among those with existing heart disease.
One of the first things people really notice once they start burning fat for fuel is that any former "brain fog" lifts, and they can suddenly think very clearly. As mentioned earlier, ketones are a preferred fuel for your brain; hence, the improved mental clarity.
One of the reasons you can survive a long time without food is due to the process of ketosis, which spares protein breakdown.9 A fairly consistent effect seen in people on a ketogenic diet is that blood levels of leucine and other important structural proteins go up, allowing these proteins to perform a number of important signaling functions.
Ketones also mimic the life span extending properties of calorie restriction10 (fasting), which includes improved glucose metabolism; reduced inflammation; clearing out malfunctioning immune cells;11 reduced IGF-1, one of the factors that regulate growth pathways and growth genes and is a major player in accelerated aging; cellular/intracellular regeneration and rejuvenation (autophagy and mitophagy)