Ketogenic diets as an adjuvant to breast cancer treatment: A summary of the evidence
By Tamzyn Murphy (RD)
There is evidence supporting the use of a ketogenic (very low carbohydrate) diet (KD) as an adjuvant to cancer treatment. It may help by suppressing insulin (which is implicated in breast and other sex-hormone -linked cancers progression) [1, 2], and/or by reducing the availability of the only fuel that cancer cells can use (i.e. glucose – known as the Warburg effect) and rather supplying ketones as an alternative preferable fuel-source to healthy cells [3, 4].
While there’s more research on KD for cancer in general and less research on KDs in breast cancer specifically, case studies of ketogenic diets in breast cancer have shown some anti-cancer benefits [5, 6]. Also ketogenic diets appear beneficial in breast cancer patients, undergoing radiation therapy, for improving body composition .
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