However, they are also beneficial for certain brain disorders.
This article explores how low-carb and ketogenic diets affect the brain.
What Are Low-Carb and Ketogenic Diets?
Although there is a lot of overlap between low-carb and ketogenic diets, there are also a few important differences.
- Carbs are limited to 50 grams or less per day.
- Protein is often restricted.
- A major goal is to increase blood levels of ketones, molecules that can partly replace carbs as an energy source for the brain.
- Carbs can vary from 25–150 grams per day.
- Protein is usually not restricted.
- Ketones may or may not rise to high levels in the blood.
On a ketogenic diet, the brain is mainly fueled by ketones. These are produced in the liver when carb intake is very low.
On a standard low-carb diet, the brain will still be largely dependent on glucose, although it may burn more ketones than on a regular diet.
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