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Thread: Warning against Ketogenic diets during pregnancy page 4

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by gcbcb View Post
    I would find this much more compelling if the linked studies had actually examined the effects of low blood sugar on the development of the fetus. The speculation on a link between ketones and epigenetic programming is an interesting thought, but I don't see any evidence that it's actually true. Which is important when it comes to making scientific claims.
    Marcus Pembrey's research has shown that epigenetic modifications are inherited and it can take a few generations for them to disappear if the stimulus that caused them disappears from the environment. He's found that the grandchildren of Brits who lived through rationing in World War 2 as young children are more likely to be obese than those whose grandparents didn't go through that experience.

    Research in epigenetics is very much in its infancy. We can only speculate on what the long-term consequences of radical changes in our diet will be.

    An absence of scientific evidence to prove that an extreme diet is not safe is not good enough for me. I want strong scientific evidence that it is safe for my ancestral group and demographic before I'll even consider any extreme diet.
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  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonfly View Post
    Also, I work with pregnant moms and many I have talked to have been LC during pregnancy with zero problems for moms or babe. In fact, the moms I know who ate the lower carb diets had the least amount of morning sickness and other pregnancy issues. Here's a story for you:Paleo from Pregnancy | The Primal Parent
    Yeah I know the primal parent story, however our argument is against VLC not LC. I think the risks are only there when you are <50 carbs on a regular basis, which would put your in ketosis most of the time. Do not get me wrong, Primal pregnancy's I think are FAR healthier then SAD. I will have a primal pregnancy one day for sure. I just think we need to be a little more cautionary about the carbs (good ones like fruit/sweet potatoes/and maybe white rice) and not purposely restrict them especially if we are craving them. I see no good reason to do so, and I see potential harm in doing so.
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  3. #33
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    I don't buy this, people on the zeroinginonhealth forums have been on zero carbs diets while they were pregnant and they did very well. They also raised their children on zero carb diets
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  4. #34
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    Interesting
    Indications are Ketogenic diets do not breed obese cultures, as evidenced by Inuit & other high fat eating civilisations, but maybe the epigenetic factor does tune them better for a low carb environment, these cultures only got fat when white man brought them donuts & sugar, maybe they will adapt to donuts in another ten generations.

    Regarding the Ductch Starvation babies, it was specifically those that were foetal during this time, if they were born before, even though they may still be nursing and spent the first 2 years of life in a low nutrition environment, they reflected normal population rates of diabetes, obesity etc.
    What I would like to know is what are the diabetes/obesity stats for the children of the Dutch starvation babies, have they reverted to normal levels again?

    There are some who think epigenetics is playing a big role in the current chronic disease epidemics, as in the low fat/high carb diet that has been prevalent since the 1970's - I haven't got the full details, but I saw the stats for autism and it describes the typical mother of an autistic child being an educated professional, slim, weight conscious, artificial sweetner, low fat, sun protection etc. it seems that this environment results in some form of malnutrition and altered gene expression.

    I think people should be wary of making strong assumptions on very loose corrolations, that is of course what the Sat Fat/Cholesterol story was about, there is very little evidence that a ketogenic diet is detrimental to anyone, even pregnant women.

    Best bet seems to be run the middle ground, go the primal but don't restrict the carbs too much.

  5. #35
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    This seems like a random "poke" at keto diets with little to no proof.....I was searching some old info the other day and came across this ...."There are a number of striking things about the data once you sum them up. First of all, diet composition varied widely. Many groups were almost totally carnivorous, with 46 getting over 85% of their calories from hunted foods. However, not a single group out of 229 was vegetarian or vegan. No group got less than 15% of their calories from hunted foods, and only 2 of 229 groups ate 76-85% of their calories from gathered foods (don't forget, "gathered foods" also includes small animals). On average, the hunter-gatherer groups analyzed got about 70% of their calories from hunted foods. This makes the case that meat-heavy omnivory is our preferred ecological niche. However, it also shows that we can thrive on a plant-rich diet containing modest amounts of quality animal foods." from Guyenet....so tahts 46/229 = roughly 20%

    So if 20% of hunter gatherers get "over 85%" of calories from hunted food AND small game counts as "gathered food" I'm just gonna make the guess that most these peoples where in ketosis a significant amount of the time, and yes probably during pregnancy. Sorry, but I just don't buy the OP's alarmism. Especially with lack of any real evidence. When evidence is lacking I'm going with the HG's.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonfly View Post
    Um, folks--nice theorizing, but really there is no problem with ketosis during pregnancy as long as you are getting enough calories and nutrients. Fetuses and babies thrive on ketones. Babies brains need healthy fats for development.

    Read this:Ketogenic Nutrition: Ketones fuel fetal development

    Also, I work with pregnant moms and many I have talked to have been LC during pregnancy with zero problems for moms or babe. In fact, the moms I know who ate the lower carb diets had the least amount of morning sickness and other pregnancy issues. Here's a story for you:Paleo from Pregnancy | The Primal Parent

    Even some calorie deficit in the first trimester doesn't seem to be a problem (morning sickness anyone?) since our bodies are designed to make sure baby gets sufficient nutrition & will rob mom's nutrient stores to do so. Assuming mom has sufficient nutrient stores, of course!

    I do not mean to imply that you need to go low carb during pregnancy or to be in ketosis! Simply that neither is a problem as long as the diet is nutrient dense and calorie sufficient overall.

    When moms come to me for nutrition coaching, if mom has been on a SAD diet, I suggest that she will want to focus on creating gut health & replenishing her nutrient stores for at least a year before conceiving. I do not recommend low carb, unless mom is having issues with a higher carb diet.

    And +1

  7. #37
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    Yep, I think putting a "consult your doctor if you are or think you may be pregnant" caveat on any diet plan is a CYA legal move.

    (It was noted earlier that "even Atkins" cautioned against using their diet during pregnancy.) I don't think this means it's dangerous, just that there are so many other things that could complicate pregnancy and then be blamed on <insert diet program here>. ketosis is no different.

    +1 to dragonfly saying the major thing is adequate nutrition.

  8. #38
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    Ketosis is strongly NOT recommended for pregnancy and proper fetus development. Anyone basing their decisions on "what grok might have done" or any other evolutionary theorizing in this type of situation is highly irresponsible and taking a completely unnecessary gamble with the life and well being of their unborn child.

    Quote Originally Posted by BennettC View Post
    I don't buy this, people on the zeroinginonhealth forums have been on zero carbs diets while they were pregnant and they did very well. They also raised their children on zero carb diets
    So a small bunch of people online doing something makes it a good idea? I know parents who smoked and drunk alcohol through pregnancy and their children turned out ok as well.
    Edit: Man, I just had a quick browse and I found that forum just plain disturbing. Some parents that won't allow their children fruits and vegetables even though their kids aren't thriving and have been diagnosed with low thyroid, fatigue and learning difficulties. It's possibly even more disturbing than reading about raw vegan parents seeking answers as to why their kids are thin and sickly living despite being on the "healthiest natural diet possible". Makes you want to reach through your computer screen and slap some sense into these extremists.
    Last edited by Forgotmylastusername; 09-27-2012 at 02:49 AM.

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forgotmylastusername View Post
    Ketosis is strongly NOT recommended for pregnancy and proper fetus development. Anyone basing their decisions on "what grok might have done" or any other evolutionary theorizing in this type of situation is highly irresponsible and taking a completely unnecessary gamble with the life and well being of their unborn child.
    Please Explain
    Do you have a credible source for this statement with appropriate scientific data?

    I am not advocating ketogenic diet during pregnancy as I said earlier, but do challenge the absolute negative until I see more information.

    Informed decisions are required, not alarmist opinion.

  10. #40
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    Allow me to blatantly copy/paste this answer...seems like a good compilation of what little evidence we do have outside of the obvious epidemiological evidence provided by a large portion of hunter gatherer tribes:

    "You will see it all over the web that ketosis is dangerous for the fetus, but you won't find evidence. I see three classes of the so-called evidence. There is evidence that if you have diabetic ketoacidosis it is not good for the fetus, but we know that you can't compare benign dietary ketosis to diabetic ketoacidosis. There is animal evidence that if you starve pregnant rats, which also produces ketosis, it is not good for the fetuses. The flaw in that reasoning should be obvious. Finally, there is one experiment where they sliced up the brains of rat fetuses and soaked them in ketones, and the brain cells survived but the slices stopped producing new brain cells. This is supposed to be evidence of ketosis causing retardation.

    On the other hand, a fetal metabolism text will tell you that fetuses are naturally using ketones themselves before and immediately after birth. This study shows that a pregnant pigs who are put on a ketogenic diet have fetuses with "increased fetal brain weight, protein content, and cell size." This text book article says "During early pregnancy there is an increase in body fat accumulation, associated with both hyperphagia and increased lipogenesis. During late pregnancy there is an accelerated breakdown of fat depots, which plays a key role in fetal development. Besides using placental transferred fatty acids, the fetus benefits from two other products: glycerol and ketone bodies. Although glycerol crosses the placenta in small proportions, it is a preferential substrate for maternal gluconeogenesis, and maternal glucose is quantitatively the main substrate crossing the placenta. Enhanced ketogenesis under fasting conditions and the easy transfer of ketones to the fetus allow maternal ketone bodies to reach the fetus, where they can be used as fuels for oxidative metabolism as well as lipogenic substrates..." In this study they inject pregnant rats with ketones and show that the fetuses readily use them for fuel. Similar here with sheep. In this one they took embryos and soaked them in ketones which either had no effect or caused them to grow.

    Emily Deans also wrote something relevant and telling recently

    Let me put it this way. Breastmilk is high in fat. Newborns (should) spend a lot of time in ketosis, and are therefore ketoadapted. Being ketoadapted means that babies can more easily turn ketone bodies into acetyl-coA and into myelin. Ketosis helps babies construct and grow their brains. (Update - looked more into this specifically and it seems that babies are in mild ketosis, but very young babies seem to utilize lactate as a fuel in lieu of glucose also - some of these were rat studies, though - and the utilization of lactate also promotes the same use of acetyl-CoA and gives the neonates some of the advantages of ketoadaptation without being in heavy ketosis.)

    Couple those with the fact that some cultures like the Inuit ate an all meat diet, and that we probably evolved on it, I am not concerned about it." - Ambimorph (her web site here http://www.ketotic.org/)

    For more Paleo Diet hacks: Ketosis during pregnancy - PaleoHacks.com Ketosis during pregnancy - PaleoHacks.com

    Again just for a reality check as to the so called dangers.
    Last edited by Neckhammer; 09-27-2012 at 09:22 AM.

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