6 Ways a Ketogenic Diet Improves Brain Function

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Ketogenic Diet Improves Brain Function

The ketogenic diet like the keto boost was originally developed as a medical approach to reducing weight loss. Since then, research has shown more and more results on how this diet improves brain function. In
recent years, the ketogenic diet has come to the fore because we have realized that constant consumption of carbohydrates is not only unnecessary but can even have negative effects.

That’s why I took a look at the benefits of a ketogenic diet and would like to explain in this article what effects it has on the brain.

Aim of ketogenic nutrition

Before we delve deeper into the subject, let’s briefly consider the goal of the keto diet.

The goal of a ketogenic diet is to lower blood sugar so low that the body focuses on fat for energy. So if you eat too many carbohydrates or too little fat, your body may not be in a state of ketosis. Too much protein can also prevent this, as excess amino acids are converted into glucose.

Everyone reacts differently to carbohydrates, which is why I always conduct a blood test with my personal training customers to clarify this reaction. So I can determine exactly which diet is best for each individual and create a nutrition plan. Just send me an email for more information.

Health Effects

Mitochondrial biogenesis

Your body needs the energy to perform its functions properly. This energy is mainly produced by structures called mitochondria that inhabit pretty much every cell in your body. There is more of it in some parts of the body than in others, and that determines exactly how much energy these parts of the body need to function.

Your brain is one of them. If you increase the number and the energetic output of the mitochondria in your brain, you provide it with more energy. That alone can bring many of the performance-enhancing benefits. Fasting and a ketogenic diet are currently the most promising
methods for increasing mitochondrial biogenesis.


BDNF comes from the English (“brain-derived neurotrophic factor”) and
means in German for example: “neurotrophic factor originating from the
brain”. It is a protein from the group of neurotrophins and is closely related to nerve growth factors.

Its main function is to regulate the growth of neuronal connections in the brain. A low level of BDNF has been associated with mental illnesses
such as Alzheimer’s, depression, schizophrenia and Huntington’s, and has become the target of many modern medical therapies.

Fasting or a fasting-like diet like keto is believed to have the potential to
improve neurodegenerative diseases by increasing the BDNF. The neurodegeneration is counteracted because the growth and development of the neuronal connections is promoted.

Improved Insulin Signaling:

Most people today mainly burn sugar as their main source of energy. Insulin is needed for transport so that sugar can penetrate
the cells and be transformed. Due to chronically high carbohydrate intake, many develop an undesirable blood sugar regulation that begins with a sharp increase and ends in a hard crash.

This pattern of blood sugar imbalance is extremely harmful to the brain, which can be seen in cases of hyperinsulinism. Research has shown that ketogenic nutrition improves insulin signalling and reduces the side effects of this insulin roller coaster.

Less Oxidative Stress:

Oxidative stress is beneficial in small amounts. However, if it gets out of hand, it can be very harmful to your mitochondria. Excessive oxidative
stress leads to inflammation and impaired mitochondrial energy rejection. This can have negative effects on all of your body cells.

Because your brain is so dependent on healthy mitochondria, it is particularly affected by the effects of excess oxidative stress.

Oxidative Stress is a natural by-product of energy production in the mitochondria. A ketone metabolism produces much lower levels of oxidative stress compared to a glucose metabolism, which leads to less inflammation and improved mitochondrial health. Ultimately, that means improved energy production.

Neurogenerative diseases such as multiple sclerosis, which are characterized by myelin loss, are strongly influenced by chronic inflammation. This makes the ketogenic diet a promising therapy.

Glutamate – GABA Balance

Glutamate and GABA are two very important neurotransmitters that are responsible for concentration and relaxation. Proper neurological function requires a balanced change between the two.

An imbalance often shows up as an excess of glutamate, which has been linked to brain disorders such as autism, Lou Gehrig’s, ALS, epilepsy, and mood swings. Typically, people with excess glutamate and low GABA levels
often feel nervous, have trouble sleeping and “brain fog”.

Chronically elevated glutamate levels are extremely flammable because they constantly over-stimulate the brain cells. In healthy people, excess glutamate should be turned into GABA to balance the neuronal process. A ketogenic diet has been proven to help set this conversion in motion. The
immediate effects are improved focus, focus, and reduced levels of stress and nervousness.

Omega Fatty Acid Balance:

Most people who follow the recommendations of the health authorities consume high amounts of oxidized omega 6 fats and very low amounts of omega 3 fats in fish and meat.

Omega 6 fatty acids are used on the eicosanoid pathways in the body, which are important for the production of inflammation. While temporary inflammation can help stimulate healing in the body, excessive amounts of omega 6 can lead to chronic inflammation, which in turn leads to even more problems.

If cells become inflamed and unable to respond to insulin (insulin resistance), they will produce inadequate amounts of acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is one of the most important biochemical
messengers (neurotransmitters) in the human organism. Among other things, it controls the transmission of excitation from nerve impulses to muscle fibers and thus influences all movement sequences (motor function). The autonomic nervous system, which regulates, among other things, heartbeat, breathing and digestion, is modulated by acetylcholine (ACh). Low levels of acetylcholine can lead to brain fog and slowed
brain functions.

A good keto diet counteracts this problem in that it contains high amounts of omega 3 and thus improves the omega 6 to omega 3 ratio. This reduces inflammation.


The ketogenic diet has become particularly popular in recent years as a performance booster and popular with anyone looking to increase their productivity. At the same time, it shows that it can be an important
healing method for metabolic, neurodegenerative and cancerous conditions in the body.

Fortunately, the ketogenic diet is extremely safe for the majority of the population, and improves brain function in numerous ways. Whether you are fighting a brain disease or just want to improve your mood and concentration, this diet can prove to be extremely beneficial for you.

Disclaimer: Please do your own research before taking any decision and this is not a medical advice.

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