Do ‘higher levels’ of protein intake from KD potentially stress the kidneys?
Ans: The KD provides a normal protein intake as recommended by the WHO. There has been no report in scientific literature on kidney failure caused by such a properly instituted KD. KD is a high fat low carbohydrate diet with normal protein consumption. A well-formulated ketogenic diet is, therefore, not high in protein. Recommendations of the WHO are to eat 0.8 grams – 1 gram of protein for each kilogram of desired body weight in adults. If the KD used by Ms. Mishti Mukherjee did not conform to this and had a higher protein component then that could lead to kidney failure. This could happen either because the diet was prescribed by someone without a deep knowledge of KD, or it was unsupervised, or both of the above.
In fact, KD has been proven to control blood glucose levels and to control and reduce blood pressure, thereby helping to prevent the future development of kidney disease.
Unfortunately, the keto diet has become a fad diet these days for weight loss. People taking KD by reading the internet, or self-administering, or taking it as prescribed by gym trainers, run a real risk of major side-effects. Most gym trainers do not have basic qualifications in dietetics and nutrition.