The money quote:
The commonly heard claim that ketogenic dieting would lead to significantly more beneficial improvements in body composition in dieting athletes, on the other hand, is clearly falsified by the results of the study at hand. If anything, the loss of muscle mass is more and the loss of fat mass less pronounced than it would be with a balanced medium-to-high carbohydrate diet.
That’s Adel Moussa, Suppversity Blog: “Keto” Diet in Taekwando Athletes: Good for Performance, Less Beneficial for Body Composition – Non-Sign. Higher Muscle & Lower Fat Loss in 25% Deficit vs. Balanced Diet.
But here’s the big rub, as Duck and I pointed out in our recent series on the noon-ketogenic state of the Inuit. The diet tested here is not even ketogenic (probably way better).
If you want to do a keto diet, say goodbuy to tons of protein: What may not be obvious to all of you is the fact that the diet at hand is low in carbs, but not high enough in fat to be truly ketogenic. With 40% protein you are not going to go into ketosis. That’s simply too much protein to be converted to glucose in the liver – specifically if you get some of the protein from fast digesting protein sources like whey, which will spike the blood amino acid levels and kickstart hepatic gluconeogenesis. Unfortunately, the study does not list the absolute protein intake, but if we assume a baseline intake of 2800kcal per day for the subjects, they would have consumed 210g of protein per day – that’s 3.2g/kg for these lean guys – and still lost muscle.
See, same as for the Inuit, except their average protein intake was 270 g/d.
So let’s get this straight. There’s a diet out there being touted as the epitome when even at 40% protein, subjects lose lean muscle and have higher fat levels. I shudder to think what happens when you take the protein down to 15% so that your blood ketone meter makes happy noises.
Fucking dumb in every way imaginable.