In this post, I want to show you, by referring to various studies and research, how the Keto Diet can significantly improve insulin sensitivity and blood sugar levels.

Globally, the number of people diagnosed with diabetes will, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Diabetes Federation, increased from just over 400 million to 600 million by 2030. But who among us are at risk, and how will diabetes affect the next generations? And, can Keto improve insulin resistance?

The latest figures from 2012 show that diabetes caused the death of 1.5 million people and led to an additional 2.2 million deaths caused by higher than optimal blood glucose. Forty-three per cent of these 3.7 million deaths happened before individuals reached 70 years of age.

A landmark study on diabetes in sub-Saharan African reported in July that diabetes and other cardiovascular diseases were overtaking HIV/Aids‚ respiratory infections‚ diarrhoeal diseases and malaria as the leading causes of death.

People with Diabetes are at serious risk for some of these conditions:

  • Blindness
  • Loss of Limbs such as toes and legs
  • Kidney Failure
  • Heart Disease 
  • Stroke

It’s estimated that 2.3 million South African adults have diabetes.

Lifestyle Changes Can Improve Blood Sugar Levels And Insulin Sensitivity

Insulin Resistance

Years of following nutritional guidelines from the Standard American Diet, which are based on false science, had damaging effects on people’s health. The latest research shows that a Ketogenic Diet, with decent diabetes control, can be a viable treatment for restoring insulin sensitivity and healthy metabolic function in people with Insulin Resistance

Eating carbohydrate-rich meals frequently throughout the day causes your blood sugar levels to be chronically elevated and may lead to Insulin Resistance

Where Does One Start?

All foods contain macronutrient, which is Protein, Fat and Carbs. Of these three macronutrients; carbohydratesespecially high-glycemic carbohydrates, is the only macronutrient that significantly causes a spike in insulin and causes blood sugar to rise. Unlike carbs or protein, fat does not have an insulin response and cannot be converted into sugar and cause high blood glucose. 

Eating a high fat, low carb diet can reduce your insulin levels and blood glucose levels and ultimately also lead to weight loss.

  • Being in ketosis regulates hormones that affect weight gaininsulin being the primary hormone that affects weight gain. Following a well-formulated ketogenic diet leads to lower levels of insulin. Think about it this way, as soon as you have a significant rise in insulin your body can not burn fat. In fact, as soon as there is an insulin response, you are in a fat-storing mode. 
  • Being in ketosis or avoiding carbohydrate intake stabilises blood sugar levels. Stable blood sugar levels mean fewer spikes and crashes. Constant spikes and crashes lead to feeling such being tired, having cravings, and overeating.

What The Studies Show On A Keto Diet and Insulin Resistance

A  2008 study compared the outcomes of the low-carb ketogenic diet (LCKD) vs a low-glycemic index diet (LGID):

The people in the LCKD group had significant improvements in weight loss, haemoglobin A1c and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol compared to the low-glycemic index diet (LGID) group. These results are incredible: 

  • Weight loss: The people in the Ketogenic Diet group lost on average almost 12 kilograms compared to those following the low-glycemic index diet who lost on average just over 6 kilograms.
  • Improved blood glucose: The keto group decreased their blood glucose levels significantly more than the low-glycemic index diet group.
  • HDL cholesterol: The keto group improved their HDL (good) cholesterol substantially more than those following the low-glycemic diet.
  • Decreased use of diabetes medication: Diabetes medications were reduced or eliminated in 95.2% of the keto group, versus only 62% of those in the low-glycemic group.

Because Type 2 Diabetes is diagnosed based on elevated blood sugar, if your blood sugar remains normal without the use of diabetes-specific medication and you no longer meet the diagnostic criteria, you have successfully reversed your type 2 diabetes.

Exogenous Ketones and Diabetes Medication 

To manage diabetes doctors will often advise some changes in lifestyle, but also recommend that pharmacological treatment is necessary. The drug commonly prescribed for patients who have been diagnosed with Type II Diabetes is called Metformin. Metformin is considered the agent of the first line for treatment of Type II Diabetes. It’s also sold under the brand name Glucophage, which costs significantly more.

As with many medications, Metformin does have some side effects as explained in a recent study published in the journal Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism.

“Metformin commonly causes gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhoea and flatulence”.

What should also be considered is the fact that medication does not cure the root cause.

Could Exogenous Ketones assist in the treatment of Type II Diabetes?

This study found that supplementing with Exogenous Ketones (Beta-hydroxybutyrate or BHB) lowers blood glucose. This has enormous benefits for Type II Diabetics. By drinking ketones, your blood glucose drops and the BHB also enhances insulin sensitivity.

*Most Type II Diabetics have some degree of overweight or obesity. It has been connected to insulin resistance and defects in insulin secretion.

For those who follow a Keto diet, Exogenous Ketones are currently one of the hottest topics on the market right now. The big question; what are the benefits of Exogenous Ketones and how can they benefit you? The truth is, the benefits of exogenous ketones are vast. Here are just a few different use cases;  fat-loss, lessening negative ketosis symptoms (like keto flu), improving athletic performance, and improving mental focus and energy. For more info on the Benefits of Exogenous Ketone, read this post.


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