NATIONAL SECURITY CRISIS! Can Keto Win the Obesity War in the Military?
By Steve Blechman
Did you know that 71% of Americans (ages 17 to 24) are ineligible to join the military? According to a recent front-page article that appeared in USA Today entitled, “Military pool is drying up” (Monday, July 8, 2019 by Melissa Nelson Gabriel). This information was obtained by Pentagon data from 2017. One in four recruits from the military are disqualified due to being overweight, according to the Economic Bureau of Research!
The military has called obesity, “a national security crisis.” According to an article in ScienceDaily “A new study [published on April 30, 2019] has researchers hopeful that a ketogenic diet could prove useful in the military, where obesity is an ongoing challenge, both in terms of recruiting soldiers and keeping them fit for service.” The study that appeared in Military Medicine concluded, “U.S. military personnel demonstrated high adherence to a KD and showed remarkable weight loss and improvements in body composition, including loss of visceral fat, without compromising physical performance adaptations to exercise training. Implementation of a KD represents a credible strategy to enhance overall health and readiness of military service members who could benefit from weight loss and improved body composition.”
This 3-month keto study took place at Ohio State University. There was no caloric restriction. Carbohydrates were kept at less than 50 grams a day. The study included 29 young adults. 15 out of the 29 followed the keto diet. The group following the keto diet lost a significant amount of weight and abdominal fat over the three-month period! ScienceDaily reported: “In the study, which appears in the journal Military Medicine, participants on the keto diet lost an average of almost 17 pounds and were able, with support of counselors, to maintain ketosis for 12 weeks. As a group, they lost more than 5 percent of their body fat, almost 44 percent of their belly, or visceral, fat and had a 48 percent improvement in insulin sensitivity -- a marker that predicts risk of diabetes.”
ScienceDaily also stated, “The comparison group of participants, who consumed diets that were at least 40 percent carbohydrates (based on food diaries they kept), experienced none of those changes.”
High visceral fat is a deep abdominal form of fat that can increase metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance and diabetes. This study was the largest published study involving the keto diet and the military. What was easy about following this diet is that you didn’t have to count calories! Also, what was important about this study was that the group on the keto diet showed comparable physical performance compared to the group that wasn’t on the keto diet.
Dr. Jeff S. Volek was a co-contributor of this keto study. Dr. Volek told ScienceDaily, "We showed that a group of people with military affiliation could accept a ketogenic diet and successfully lose weight, including visceral adipose tissue, a type of fat strongly associated with chronic disease. This could be the first step toward a bigger study looking at the potential benefits of ketogenic eating in the armed forces," said Volek, who has authored books on the benefits of low-carb diets and is a founder of a company seeking to help people with type 2 diabetes through ketogenic diets and a virtual health care model.
The research has shown that ketogenic diets are great for quick weight loss but bad and not useful for building muscle because they are low in protein! A ketogenic diet is typically 70% fat, 20% protein, and 10% carbohydrate. When following a ketogenic diet, if you combine a high level of protein with very low amounts of carbohydrates, it will enhance the liver to convert protein into glucose, which could raise blood sugar, insulin levels and throw you out of ketosis!
Ketogenic diets lower the anabolic pathways: insulin, IGF-1, and mTOR because of low protein intake. Ketogenic diets are great for weight loss/fat loss but can inhibit protein synthesis, muscle growth and lean body mass. AML™ THERMO HEAT® FAT BURNING PROTEIN is designed for people on low-carb, ketogenic diets. Research has shown that 6.25 grams of whey protein combined with 5 grams of pure leucine is four times more effective in increasing protein synthesis (equivalent to 25 grams of protein), which is ideal for people on ketogenic diets! Research has shown that pure leucine is more anabolic than leucine in food!
Leucine is the key amino acid for enhancing the mTOR pathway that regulates cell growth and protein synthesis. Leucine is an essential amino acid that serves as a building block for muscle protein synthesis. Leucine is a powerful anabolic trigger— it’s the most potent branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) and a key activator of the mTOR pathway that is critical for muscle protein synthesis that promotes muscle growth. Testosterone acts through the mTOR pathway to promote muscle protein synthesis. Leucine has many benefits: powering muscle growth, preventing muscle loss, increasing insulin sensitivity, enhancing fat metabolism and enhancing recovery.
AML™ THERMO HEAT® FAT BURNING PROTEIN also contains vitamin D3, which enhances the anabolic effects of leucine. Research has shown that leucine combined with vitamin D3 can preserve muscle mass during dieting. Vitamin D3 is the most active form of vitamin D and can potentiate protein synthesis and muscle-enhancing effects of leucine!
AML™ THERMO HEAT® FAT BURNING PROTEIN is an advanced, scientifically designed protein and amino acid drink based on the latest cutting-edge scientific research! As part of a low-carbohydrate, ketogenic diet and exercise program (aerobic and resistance training), it can help enhance protein synthesis and muscle growth and preserve lean body mass when following a low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet. Remember, a healthy weight loss is one that enhances reduction of body fat, enhances muscle growth and preserves lean body mass while dieting. Losing muscle mass during dieting can decrease one’s metabolic rate and result in burning fewer calories over a 24-hour period.
As I’ve said previously, ketogenic diets are great for fast weight loss but bad and not useful for increasing muscle! By taking AML™ THERMO HEAT® FAT BURNING PROTEIN it allows you to take low amounts of protein on a ketogenic diet and still get the anabolic effects for building muscle!
- Richard A LaFountain, Vincent J Miller, Emily C Barnhart, Parker N Hyde, Christopher D Crabtree, Fionn T McSwiney, Mathew K Beeler, Alex Buga, Teryn N Sapper, Jay A Short, Madison L Bowling, William J Kraemer, Orlando P Simonetti, Carl M Maresh, Jeff S Volek. Extended Ketogenic Diet and Physical Training Intervention in Military Personnel. Military Medicine, 2019; DOI: 10.1093/milmed/usz046
- Ohio State University. Keto diet has potential in military, researchers say: Dieters maintained ketosis and lost weight in 3-month study. ScienceDaily, 30 April 2019. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/04/190430173202.htm
- USA TODAY, US Edition 8 Jul 2019, Melissa Nelson Gabriel. Military Pool of recruits is Drying Up.
- Tyler A Churchward-Venne, Leigh Breen, Danielle M Di Donato, Amy J Hector, Cameron J Mitchell, Daniel R Moore, Trent Stellingwerff, Denis Breuille, Elizabeth A Offord, Steven K Baker, Stuart M Phillips. Leucine supplementation of a low-protein mixed macronutrient beverage enhances myofibrillar protein synthesis in young men: a double-blind, randomized trial, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 99, Issue 2, February 2014, Pages 276-286, https://doi.org/10.3945/ajcn.113.068775
- Effects of a Vitamin D and Leucine-Enriched Whey Protein Nutritional Supplement on Measures of Sarcopenia in Older Adults, the PROVIDE Study: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial. Bauer, Jürgen M. et al. Journal of the American Medical Directors Association, Volume 16, Issue 9, 740-747. September 2015
- Devries MC, Philips SM, Baker SK et al. Leucine, Not Total Protein, Content of a Supplement Is the Primary Determinant of Muscle Protein Anabolic Responses in Healthy Older Women. The Journal of Nutrition, July 1, 2018.
- Audrey Chanet, Sjors Verlaan, Jérôme Salles, Christophe Giraudet, Véronique Patrac, Véronique Pidou, Corinne Pouyet, Nordine Hafnaoui, Adeline Blot, Noël Cano, Nicolas Farigon, Anke Bongers, Marion Jourdan, Yvette Luiking, Stéphane Walrand, Yves Boirie. Supplementing Breakfast with a Vitamin D and Leucine-Enriched Whey Protein Medical Nutrition Drink Enhances Postprandial Muscle Protein Synthesis and Muscle Mass in Healthy Older Men, The Journal of Nutrition, Volume 147, Issue 12, December 2017, Pages 2262-2271, https://doi.org/10.3945/jn.117.252510
- Vargas S, Romance R, Petro JL, et al. Efficacy of ketogenic diet on body composition during resistance training in trained men: a randomized controlled trial. J Int Soc Sports Nutr 2018;15(1):31. Published 2018 Jul 9. doi:10.1186/s12970-018-0236-9
- A Low-Carbohydrate Ketogenic Diet Reduces Body Mass Without Compromising Performance in Powerlifting and Olympic Weightlifting Athletes. Greene, David A.; Varley, Benjamin J.; Hartwig, Timothy B.; Chapman, Phillip; Rigney, Michael. The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: December 2018 - Volume 32 - Issue 12 - p 3373-3382. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000002904
- Effects of a Vitamin D and Leucine-Enriched Whey Protein Nutritional Supplement on Measures of Sarcopenia in Older Adults, the PROVIDE Study: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial. Bauer, Jürgen M. et al. Journal of the American Medical Directors Association, Volume 16 , Issue 9 , 740-747. September 2015
- Defense Department to ban beer and pizza? Mandatory keto diet may enhance military performance. Kristine Froeba. Military Times. July 1, 2019.
- Effect of a Ketogenic Diet on Submaximal Exercise Capacity and Efficiency in Runners. Medicine and Science in Sports & Exercise, May 9, 2019. Shaw, David M. et al.