Keto Diet Depletes Magnesium

April 13, 2017

The Keto Diet is all the rage and I say Ho Hum because it was all the rage 30 years ago and I suppose it will cycle back around in another 30 years. It’s a high fat, low carb diet that is being promoted as the next weight loss miracle but it’s just another way that you can become depleted of magnesium.

It’s by no means a balanced diet, high in fats and low in carbs to force the breakdown of fats. It’s so low in calories from carbs at 5% that it’s not sustainable for most people. 5% of a 1500 calorie diet is 30 calories or 7.5 grams (there are 4 calories in 1 gram). The only carbohydrate that I could find that would meet the 5% criteria was a medium carrot at 8 grams; which means no potato, no bread, no rice, nothing else, just one carrot for the day. The rest of the diet consists of 35% protein and 65% fats. 35% of a 1500 calorie diet is 525 calories; divide this by 4 and you have 131 grams of protein, which makes the keto diet very high in protein. 65% of 1500 calories is 975; divide by 9 calories per gram of fat and you have to obtain 108 grams of fat per day.

This is what 108 grams of fat looks like:

Butter: 1 TBSP: 12 grams

Cheddar cheese: 2 oz:   18 grams

Cream cheese: 3 oz: 29 grams

Avocado: 1 cup: 21 grams

Olive oil: 1 TBSP: 14 grams

Coconut oil: 1 TBSP: 14 grams

I have concerns about the Keto Diet because Keto foods are high in calcium and low in magnesium. Keto practitioners admit that you can get muscle cramps and constipation on the diet. They tell you to drink more water and suggest magnesium as a laxative but not as the solution to their high calcium diet. Magnesium is required to help keep calcium in solution and direct it to the bones and teeth. If there isn’t enough magnesium, calcium will precipitate into arteries – coronary, carotid and renal; help create kidney stones, gall stones, heel spurs, breast tissue calcification and much more.

Why is the calcium so high on a Keto Diet? High fat dairy products – cheddar cheese (600mg calcium in 3 oz) and cream cheese (90mg in 3 oz) are mainstays of the diet. Even fermented dairy, full fat kefir is high in calcium (190mg in 6oz).

I don’t recommend the Keto Diet but if you do go on it or know someone who is, be sure and at least match the amount of calcium with equal or greater amounts of magnesium from ReMag. Otherwise you can build up calcium in soft tissues – a side effect that nobody is talking about. Because you are so limited in fruits and vegetables, it’s going to be very difficult to get enough minerals from your diet. Therefore, I’d also recommend ReMyte for its multiple minerals and sea salt in your drinking water.

Carolyn Dean MD ND

The Doctor of the Future®


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