Major Effect the Keto Diet Has on Men

According to research presented at the 23rd European Congress of Endocrinology, a low-calorie ketogenic (keto) diet has been shown to improve sex hormone levels in overweight and obese men.

In the first study of its kind, investigators from Italy examined the potential effects this eating pattern could have on weight loss, along with testosterone

and sex hormone levels called sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) since obesity can lead to low testosterone (typical symptoms of which include low sex drive and difficulty getting an erection). 

In order to test this theory, the authors instructed 17 overweight or obese men who didn't have diabetes to follow an 800-calorie-a-day keto diet for four weeks. Tests were performed before

and after the one- and four-week marks of the study.At the end of the study, the participants showed a significant decrease in body weight, fat mass, and body mass index (BMI),as well as a

"substantial increase" in total testosterone and SHBG levels. The medical researchers say their findings have shown a link between insulin action, energy balance, and testicular function.

According to the latest statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), obesity affects approximately 42% of adults in the U.S. and is one of the leading causes of premature

and preventable—deaths from various chronic conditions, including heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer."The aim of this study was to assess the effect a low-calorie

ketogenic diet had on a group of subjects affected by morbid obesity. Therefore, a typical keto diet wouldn't allow a remarkable weight loss as we expect from a low-calorie approach,

 lead researcher Angelo Cignarelli, MD, PhD, assistant professor in the section of internal medicine, endocrinology, andrology, and metabolic diseases at the University of Bari Aldo Moro, Italy

He explains it's well-understood that fat mass—particularly visceral adipose tissue (defined as a type of fat that surrounds the organs) is associated with a reduction of testosterone level,

which is referred to clinically as functional hypogonadism. "Moreover, hypogonadism is responsible itself for abdominal fat mass gain dragging subjects in a sort of vicious cycle reducing exercise

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