The keto diet has been researched for centuries and research is still ongoing. Except for amazing weight loss results, there is so much more to Keto. During the next few weeks, we’d love to place some emphasis on certain diseases and disorders that might benefit from the keto diet.
SLEEP APNEA AND HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE
Now this is considered a dangerous pair and there is a wealth of research to back this.
High blood pressure, also called hypertension, means your heart works harder to pump blood out to the rest of your body. This could lead to hardening of the arteries, to a stroke, kidney disease and even heart failure. Just to name a few.
Sleep Apnea, on the other hand, is a potentially serious sleep disorder in which your breathing repeatedly stops and starts. To give you an idea, the normal person would stop breathing less than 5 times per hour when asleep. Someone with severe Sleep Apnea can stop breathing more than 30 times per hour asleep. This can last for a few seconds or go on for several minutes.
Dangerous consequences include, high blood pressure (hypertension), diabetes, and heart problems. It is also associated with depression and memory problems like Alzheimer’s disease. Daytime sleepiness increases and may contribute to accidents. Also, it can lead to a heart attack, heart arrhythmias, and strokes. To summarise it, when left untreated it can kill you.
Now, Cillié (co-founder of Ketonize) was first diagnosed with high blood pressure. Blood pressure readings fall into four general categories, ranging from normal to stage 2 high blood pressure (hypertension). Normally your reading should be 120/80. Stage 2 is considered 140/90 or higher. His first reading was far over 160!
He was sent to the hospital for an artery ultrasound to possibly help detect any abnormal blood flows throughout his arteries and veins. A possible cause for the high blood pressure. After the results came back, and everything was considered normal and in perfect condition, they had to start looking at alternative causes.
As mentioned above, high blood pressure is one of the most common consequences of Sleep Apnea. He got sent to the sleep disorder centre in Durbanville for further evaluation. The evaluation consists of two parts: first you’ll have to complete a home test after which you’ll be submitted to the centre for an overnight evaluation if needed.
The Home Sleep Test is a simplified test to diagnose sleep Apnea. This test measures your heart rate, blood oxygen level, airflow and breathing patterns. It concluded that he had stopped breathing 25 times an hour. Basically every 2 minutes.
He went for the overnight evaluation the next week. You book in at 8pm and leave anytime from 6am the next morning. During this test, you're hooked up to equipment that monitors your heart, lung and brain activity, breathing patterns, arm and leg movements, and blood oxygen levels while you sleep. They also connected a CPAP (Continuous positive airway pressure) machine, to evaluate if this will help.The CPAP a.k.a the Space Ranger Mask
The next week, we received the results. With the CPAP machine, it reduced the number of times he stopped breathing from 25 times/hour to only once.
Although CPAP is the most common and reliable method of treating sleep apnea, some people find it uncomfortable. Besides, who wants to sleep like a space ranger or have one next to them in bed? Although it is helping a lot of people out there, this typical device only deals with the symptoms of Sleep Apnea and makes no effort in dealing with the causes thereof.
While there is a body of research that looks at the relationships of diet, macronutrients, eating patterns and sleep, there’s a relative lack of scientific study that explores how specific diets affect sleep. There are a small number of studies that look at keto diets and sleep. They show this very low-carb, high-fat diet may offer benefits for sleep, both through weight loss and other pathways.
We do however know, the first lifestyle change and remedy you could go about for treating Sleep Apnea, is to lose any excess weight.
With a bit of research, I realised Keto is considered a “biohacking” diet – to "hack" the human body's biology to optimize health results such as weight loss, muscle gain, energy and mental clarity. You, me, and every other human on the planet has the “app” of ketosis installed, you just need to know how to turn it on and get it to work for you.
Almost 4 months into following a keto diet, Cillié had to go see his doctor again. Believe me, the doc had to check the scale twice, his weight history three times, make sure his looking at centimeters and not inches on the measuring tape and ask Cillié 5 times if he really lost 15kgs and 12cm around his middle.Before and After Keto
Cillié has since been sleeping through the night, has more energy during the day (no more 2pm downers) and he’s no longer on Blood pressure medication. I’d say that we pressed the “hard-reset” button on our bodies and he completely reversed his Sleep Apnea.
So, there might not be a lot of research done on this topic, but here is a real-life case study, if you can call it that.
If you are keen to learn more about keto and press your own “hard-reset button”, get in contact with us. Our cookbook and meal plan will supply you with the needed information, tips and tricks and delicious recipes! You’ll never feel like you’re starving yourself or get tired of chicken and broccoli. It’s easy and sustainable! Once you’re in, you’ll never really want to get out!
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