The K-E Diet: Latest Fad Diet Casts Shadow on Low Carb Diets
Posted Apr 24 2012 3:10pm
Tracy Rose, the Topic Editor at Suite101 for the Weight Loss Section, posted a link on Facebook this morning to her latest diet article. This article deals with the latest trend being marketed to brides: the K-E Diet.
Now, we know that low carb diets in general are not new, and we know that when followed correctly, protein-sparing modified fasts are not dangerous. In fact, if you’re relatively free from additional food sensitivities, allergies and health issues, low carb programs are easy to implement and many varieties offer a luxurious living style.
The latest fad diet (the K-E method) casts a dark shadow over low carb and PSMF diets. It involves inserting a feeding tube through your nose and into your stomach. This feeding tube delivers a protein solution that totals about 800 calories per day, so in essence, this diet scheme is a low carbohydrate protein sparing modified fast. You don’t eat. You just take in this solution of protein and fat for 10 days and magically shed 20 pounds before the big day.
So why don’t dieters just drink the solution?
The creators of the K-E plan believe that a continuous infusion of the solution throughout the day will prevent the hunger you would have were you to take the feeding orally. They also believe that tube feedings will cause the body to break down more fat stores and protect more muscle tissue. They claim that their diet plan has been shown to be more effective than a liquid PSMF Diet, and because the solution contains no carbohydrates, it works faster than Atkins or South Beach.
Okay – so it’s a high-priced crash dieting scheme to help these women fit into a smaller wedding dress that must be overseen by a physician. They know that going in. They know this is a temporary fix because they have to take their feeding tube with them everywhere they go throughout those 10 days. They know their eating habits haven’t changed, so they might realistically regain that excess body fat.
So what’s the problem? It puts these women into ketosis, it allows them to drop some excess body fat and it gives them peace of mind that they will be able to fit into their wedding dress. The program only lasts for 10 days, and since we know that ketosis isn’t dangerous, what’s the harm?
Oddly enough, it isn’t the diet itself that’s casting a shadow over low carb programs, although it certainly is a drastic way to go. The problem for low carb diet plans is those who oppose the K-E diet. They are playing to the myths surrounding dietary ketosis that the low carb communities have been trying to correct since Dr. Atkins first published his low carb diet book back in the early 70s.
Those who oppose this K-E dieting style are justifying their position by claiming that ketosis is unhealthy and dangerous. Most of these opponents are pointing to potential kidney and liver problems, potential side effects and secondary conditions that can come from wearing a feeding tube, the dangers of losing weight too quickly and are even going so far as to call ketosis starvation mode.
Ketosis isn’t starvation and it doesn’t create kidney or liver problems unless you already have kidney or liver issues before you go onto a low carb diet plan. Ketosis is an alternative metabolic pathway to glucose metabolism, and it occurs naturally as a life survival mechanism. It keeps blood glucose levels steady. The body turns to its stored body fat for fuel even on standard low calorie diets whenever glucose or calories are in short supply.
But as the warnings against this latest diet fad grows, and we know they will, so will the misconceptions surrounding standard or slightly tweaked low carb diets. Everything we have fought so hard to overcome will be reversed. I can’t help but wonder how far back this is going to push us now.