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How Keto Improves Memory at Any Age

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  • How Keto Improves Memory at Any Age

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    The most sophisticated and advanced nerve center present in the world is your brain. Or – relying on the way you observe it – a wrinkly bag of fat that is housed inside your skull. In any case, it is an accumulation of human evolution based on thousands of years.

    Memory serves the basis of a productive, stable life. If you’re unable to remember things from your past, it is difficult to remain on track.

    For this reason, Alzheimer’s disease, which is a disorder characterized by the progressively increasing loss of memory, is such an exhausting illness. However, even those who are not having existing dementia can do well for improving their memory at any age. Improving memory increases your learning ability.

    Fats, which make 60 percent of the dry weight of your brain, also have a role in your memory. Besides forming the brain structure, they are significant for sustaining memory along with other features of cognitive performance. In the same way, lack of appropriate fats contributes to cognitive dysfunction, which includes memory issues, and eventually, dementia.

    Perhaps that is why a high-fat diet like a keto diet happens to be so appealing. It is filling due to its high fat and moderate protein content. Moreover, it instantly enlightens the reward centers of your brain.

    Below, we will explore the role of the keto diet in memory and how it improves it at any age.



    Isn’t glucose the brain’s preferred fuel than fat?

    The answer to this question is both No and Yes.

    While the brain of a human being normally utilizes glucose as the main fuel source, it can easily and safely switch to breaking down substances known as ketones or ketone bodies, when there is a shortage of glucose.

    The times during which there is insufficient glucose to derive energy include low-carb diets, endurance exercise, and fasting. The main source of glucose for the human body is carbohydrates.

    Fatty acids can’t pass the blood-brain barrier to enter the brain, but ketone bodies can do that.




    Background – The Ketogenic Diet

    You probably have heard about the keto diet as an effective approach for weight loss. It is actually a high-fat, very low-carb, and moderate protein diet. It is useful because once your body runs out on glucose, it starts dipping into your fat deposits.

    The keto nutrition plan is trending on the long list of renowned diets. But do not get mistaken – this isn’t a fad or a new diet. The reduction in weight is only an added benefit; it isn’t what the nutrition plan was originally for.

    Low-carb nutrition is a science-backed treatment for pediatric epilepsy. It was effective when even the most powerful drugs could not cure it. The diet was first utilized during the 1920s as an effective way of controlling seizures.

    Scientific research has found that after following the keto diet for 6 months, nearly half of kids experienced at the minimum 50 percent decrease in seizures, and approximately one-third of them achieved above 90 percent reduction.

    The keto meal plan is today a proven cure for drug-resistant epilepsy. Science supports its usefulness in several neurological conditions.

    Now let us bring our focus on brain function and memory.



    Ketogenic Diet and Memory

    The keto ration is a low-carb meal plan that triggers similar changes as the process of fasting. Such changes include lower insulin, increased ketone synthesis, and decreased blood pressure, which are all good for the brain.

    We have discussed above that epilepsy is a chronic brain disorder, and a keto meal plan has shown successful results in treating this illness. This is the first clue.

    The second clue lies in the reality that there’s a high prevalence of seizures among individuals with Alzheimer’s disease as compared to individuals without the disease.

    Scientists are hopeful that the keto ration could be utilized as an efficacious strategy for dementia prevention. The low-carb nutrition has already been proved to be effective in treating MCI (mild cognitive impairment), a condition, which precedes dementia plus is considered one of the risk factors for the disorder.

    A study that was published in a journal named Neurobiology of Aging in 2012 studied the influences of a low-carb nutrition plan on the loss of memory. All the 23 subjects included in the study had mild cognitive impairment and were elderly.

    They were either administered a very low or a very high-carb diet for 6 weeks. By the end of the investigation, the subjects who followed the low-carb diet (keto diet) reported improvement in their verbal memory performance. Moreover, they also experienced a decrease in waist circumference and weight.

    These scientific findings show that consuming a very low-carb diet, even for a short period, can increase memory function in elderly people with a raised likelihood of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

    Apart from that, some more encouraging human and animal research findings support its role in improving memory even more.

    It has been shown that rats administered the keto ration are better capable of navigating an intricate maze, which is a task that heavily relies upon working memory.

    Based on some case reports and mechanistic data, many scientists believe that low-carb nutrition could be curative for Alzheimer’s disease. However, more research is required, but what is present is compelling.



    How does the keto diet work?

    Individuals with Alzheimer’s disease experience an impaired glucose uptake in their brains - this means that there is a deterioration of glucose utilization by their brains.

    This is also one of the reasons why diabetes (particularly type 2) increases the likelihood of dementia. People with diabetes do not synthesize sufficient insulin or are unable to use insulin appropriately.

    A low-carb meal plan treats this issue as ketones offer an essential, non-glucose fuel source for the brain. Moreover, the body’s liver can synthesize sufficient ketones every day for meeting the brain’s requirements.

    The state of ketone synthesis is termed as ketosis. This state can be provoked through a dietary regimen that comprises of 20-50 grams of carb intake in a day.

    This kind of dietary regimen (the keto diet) pushes your body to change its metabolism from glucose (carbs) to ketone bodies in order to get energy. If your body has achieved ketosis can be confirmed by the existence of ketone bodies in your urine.

    Ketosis behaves as a natural nootropic – a substance that is used for improving cognitive function (normally a drug or a herb) in the body. By following the ketogenic diet, you may attain nootropic benefits without needing to take any pill.




    Keto Coconuts

    There’s another way for deriving energy from ketone bodies, other than limiting carbs. MCTs (medium-chain triglycerides), which are saturated fatty acids, get easily metabolized in the body plus get converted into ketone bodies to derive energy. They are known for triggering ketone synthesis.

    That is why scientists think that these medium-chain triglycerides can be useful in people with Alzheimer’s disease or other types of memory problems. If they are unable to use glucose effectively, they can rather use MCTs.

    Coconut and coconut oil are particularly rich in medium-chain triglycerides. In fact, research supports it for being a ‘potential cognitive strengthener’ when it comes to those with Alzheimer’s disease.

    In a study, adult participants experienced a boost of memory after consuming medium-chain triglycerides.

    Also, an investigation was performed in which 20 participants with either mild cognitive impairment or Alzheimer’s disease were administered a dose of medium-chain triglycerides orally or placebo.

    The results revealed that higher values of ketones were linked to greater improvement of paragraph recall for MCT treatment as compared to placebo in all participants.



    Is ketosis safe? Or even natural?

    The state of ketosis is absolutely natural and safe. We all experience it inside the womb of our mother.

    Babies use ketone bodies as fuel for the brain, even before their birth. Ketones are responsible for approximately 30 percent of the brain’s fuel need before birth.

    After the birth of the baby, they experience a mild, sustained ketogenic state during breastfeeding because the breast milk of a human also contains medium-chain triglycerides – similar to coconuts.

    It is not harmful even during your adult years, either. A systemic review performed in 2003 found no harmful effects of a keto meal plan on blood pressure, fasting levels of glucose, and blood fats. Instead, trials revealed considerable weight loss and improved health.

    Another study revealed that nutritional ketosis could be safely attained through a high-fat diet like the ketogenic diet.



    Memory is the foundation of a stable life. Without proper memory, you struggle to remain on track. Improving your memory demands some effort. Better memory increases your performance in almost every aspect of life.

    Nutritional ketosis is an absolutely safe and natural state that is attained by following a low-carb, high-fat keto diet. This science-backed diet can effectively improve memory at any age.

    And this has been discussed above through various animal and human studies with proven results of memory enhancement in patients with Alzheimer’s disease and other cognitive decline disorders.

    Besides, medium-chain triglycerides can be used to boost the production of ketones in the body that may help you to attain ketosis state effectively.

    Some other tips such as prioritizing sleep, meditation, avoiding sugar, learning new things, considering fasting, and supplementing wisely with omega 3s and curcumin can be combined with a keto meal plan (after discussing with your doctor). This can further help in enhancing the diet's memory-boosting effects.
    Last edited by Claudia Allen; 07-04-2020, 11:00 AM.

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