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Effects of Two Months of Very Low Carbohydrate Ketogenic Diet on Body Composition, Muscle Strength, Muscle Area, and Blood Parameters in Competitive Natural Body Builders
Review

Effects of Combining a Ketogenic Diet with Resistance Training on Body Composition, Strength, and Mechanical Power in Trained Individuals: A Narrative Review

1
Faculty of Sport Sciences, Universidad Europea de Madrid, 28670 Madrid, Spain
2
Fissac—Physiology, Health and Physical Activity, 08015 Barcelona, Spain
3
Physical Activity and Health Research Group (‘PaHerg’), Research Institute of the Hospital 12 de Octubre (‘imas12’), 28041 Madrid, Spain
4
Institute for Lifecourse Development, School of Human Sciences, Centre for Exercise Activity and Rehabilitation, University of Greenwich, London SE10 9LS, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: David Lee Hamilton and Antonio Paoli
Nutrients 2021, 13(9), 3083; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13093083
Received: 29 June 2021 / Revised: 11 August 2021 / Accepted: 30 August 2021 / Published: 1 September 2021
Ketogenic diets (KD) have gained popularity in recent years among strength-trained individuals. The present review summarizes current evidence—with a particular focus on randomized controlled trials—on the effects of KD on body composition and muscle performance (strength and power output) in strength-trained individuals. Although long-term studies (>12 weeks) are lacking, growing evidence supports the effectiveness of an ad libitum and energy-balanced KD for reducing total body and fat mass, at least in the short term. However, no or negligible benefits on body composition have been observed when comparing hypocaloric KD with conventional diets resulting in the same energy deficit. Moreover, some studies suggest that KD might impair resistance training-induced muscle hypertrophy, sometimes with concomitant decrements in muscle performance, at least when expressed in absolute units and not relative to total body mass (e.g., one-repetition maximum). KD might therefore be a beneficial strategy for promoting fat loss, although it might not be a recommendable option to gain muscle mass and strength/power. More research is needed on the adoption of strategies for avoiding the potentially detrimental effect of KD on muscle mass and strength/power (e.g., increasing protein intake, reintroduction of carbohydrates before competition). In summary, evidence is as yet scarce to support a major beneficial effect of KD on body composition or performance in strength-trained individuals. Furthermore, the long-term effectiveness and safety of this type of diet remains to be determined. View Full-Text
Keywords: low-carbohydrate; power output; resistance training; muscle; keto low-carbohydrate; power output; resistance training; muscle; keto
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MDPI and ACS Style

Valenzuela, P.L.; Castillo-García, A.; Lucia, A.; Naclerio, F. Effects of Combining a Ketogenic Diet with Resistance Training on Body Composition, Strength, and Mechanical Power in Trained Individuals: A Narrative Review. Nutrients 2021, 13, 3083. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13093083

AMA Style

Valenzuela PL, Castillo-García A, Lucia A, Naclerio F. Effects of Combining a Ketogenic Diet with Resistance Training on Body Composition, Strength, and Mechanical Power in Trained Individuals: A Narrative Review. Nutrients. 2021; 13(9):3083. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13093083

Chicago/Turabian Style

Valenzuela, Pedro L., Adrián Castillo-García, Alejandro Lucia, and Fernando Naclerio. 2021. "Effects of Combining a Ketogenic Diet with Resistance Training on Body Composition, Strength, and Mechanical Power in Trained Individuals: A Narrative Review" Nutrients 13, no. 9: 3083. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13093083

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