The keto diet could improve your body's chances of tackling the flu, a new study claims. This high-fat diet, which has become a huge health trend, also includes foods that are low in carb and contain a moderate amount of protein. The goal of this diet is to help your body burn more fat and ketones.
When researchers at Yale University set out to investigate how this type of diet impacts the body's immune system, they were surprised by the result."This study shows that the way the body burns fat to produce ketone bodies from the food we eat can fuel the immune system to fight flu infection," co-senior author Vishwa Deep Dixit told a news portal. The study's findings were originally published in the Science Immunology.
For the study, mice were divided into two groups. Some were fed a diet similar to the keto diet, while the others were given a high-carb diet. The results showed the keto diet helped mice tackle the flu better than those who were fed a normal diet. What's more, researchers say it doesn't take long to take effect as the mice were put on the diet only a week before being infected with the flu.
Researchers speculate the reason the keto diet may have helped is that it was able to activate the production of mucus-producing cells in the lungs. Mucus helps to control the virus by trapping, which helped the mice build a stronger defence in order to fight it.
Multiples studies have shown how beneficial the keto diet can be on our health. A study, published in the journal Scientific Reports, conducted by University of Kentucky researchers found it could prevent cognitive decline.
"While diet modifications, the Ketogenic Diet in particular, has demonstrated effectiveness in treating certain diseases, we chose to test healthy young mice using diet as a potential preventative measure," Professor Ai-Ling Lin told a news portal. Adding, "We were delighted to see that we might indeed be able to use diet to mitigate risk for Alzheimer's disease."
A 2005 study conducted by Emory University School of Medicine researchers also found the diet can enhance brain energy, which could prevent seizures."These findings support our hypothesis that a dietary regimen can dramatically affect the expression of genes and the function of neurons within the brain, which enhances the ability of these neurons to withstand the metabolic challenges of epileptic seizures," Emory pharmacology professor Raymond Dingledine told a news portal.
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