A study comparing the Mediterranean and the keto diets from the perspective of blood sugar levels, was recently published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The research showed that both diets are good for improving the levels of blood sugar.
However, beyond the sugar level in our blood, it seems that Mediterranean diet wins at being the healthier one. While both diets are rich in vegetables and low in processed foods and sugar, the keto diet is high in fats, which leads to increased cholesterol levels. At the same time, people following a keto diet were more likely to quit it than those adopting a Mediterranean diet plan.
The study was performed by researchers at Stanford University and it analyzed data from 33 people suffering from pre-diabetes or type 2 diabetes. The participants in the research had to follow the two diet plans on two separate periods of 12-weeks each.
Participants who were on the Keto diet had to consume a high quantity of vegetables, a balanced amount of protein and no more than 50 grams of carbohydrates daily. The Mediterranean diet was inspired by the eating habits of people in Mediterranean countries, like Spain and Italy, which is based on vegetables, fish, olive oil, nuts and seeds.
While the two diets are very similar, the difference between them is that fruits, beans and whole grains were part of the Mediterranean diet, but not of the keto one.
The results of the study were that both diets contributed to the decrease of blood sugar levels and even to weight loss. However, according to Insider, the keto diet was found to have some major disadvantages, which include:
– increased cholesterol levels, due to the high intake of saturated fats
– deficiency of vitamin C and magnesium
– low intake of fibers, which are essential for a healthy digestion and a reduced risk of chronic illness.
So, which is better?
At the end of the study, researchers emphasized that “there should be less focus on promoting one particular diet approach as best, and, rather, allow patients to make an informed choice to help them establish which approach is most suitable for them”.